Few cultures understand relaxation better than the Greeks. After all, it was Socrates who once said, "Beware the barrenness of a busy life.” What better way to kick up your feet in style than in the comfort of your own private villa—a splurgy but well-worth-it expense that packs seclusion, privacy, and unparalleled views into one indulgent punch? We narrowed down the best hotel villas in the Greek islands to these nine favorites.
The Villa, Grace Santorini
Occupying one of Santorini's highest points, overlooking the island's famous submerged caldera, Grace Santorini's whitewashed villa is its own kind of Mount Olympus—albeit with top-notch modern amenities. There are two all-white bedrooms featuring king-size beds and a private spa that includes a hammam-style steam bath, Jacuzzi, and treatment room. Days are best spent lounging by the pool, which looks out over the hill and down to the Aegean Sea. At sunset, let your private chef whip up a personalized meal, pairing each course with a glass of red (or white) from the villa’s own wine cellar.
White House, Andronis Luxury Suites, Santorini
Each one of the 27 rooms at this cliffside all-suite hotel is a Cycladic-design-lover's dream come to life—think whitewashed walls, steep stone staircases, and cave pools that open out to views of the caldera. Andronis's best assets are its private suites, which up the romance factor. The Sunset Villa Socrates suite, for example, features a heated infinity pool and private terrace dining, while the Cave Pool Suite has its own private indoor cave swimming pool for intimate dips. Our favorite sleep is the White House, which comes with its own waterfall and outdoor hot tub.
Villa, Canaves Oia, Santorini
The villa at Santorini's Canaves Oia is our sleep of choice for boutique hotel buffs. Comprised of cavernous living spaces filled with sleek white furniture, soft lighting, and picture windows framing the Aegean Sea, this three-bedroom villa is ideal for a family or group takeover or couples who really want to indulge in style. The kitchen has enough space for whatever your need, whether it's to stock provisions picked up from local markets or hold a private cooking class. Two large private verandas connected by a long infinity pool make for an ideal sunset perch, but don’t forget to explore the rest of the property—be it during champagne brunch at the alfresco restaurant or outdoor yoga.
Mystery Villa, Mystique Hotel, Santorini
For the refined minimalist, Mystique Hotel’s villas are steeped in subdued nature-inspired design, with neutral tones, organic shapes, and rock-on-wood accents. The Mystery Villa is the hotel's centerpiece, with airy cave-like architecture, handcrafted furniture, well-appointed bathrooms that feature glass-cabin rain showers and Jacuzzi tubs, and balconies decked out with cushy daybeds. Be warned: its private, secluded infinity pool will make you want to ditch any day plans.
UltraLuxe Villa, Domes of Elounda, Crete
The Domes of Elounda owns prime vacation real estate on a hillside near a slice of Crete beachfront. The best area to place yourself? One of its two- or three-bedroom UltraLuxe Villas, which come with residential-style amenities (think granite bathrooms with two-person Jacuzzis and balconies attached to an outdoor living room) and views over the gulf of Elounda and the nearby island of Spinalonga. If you splurge on one of the three-bedroom villas, you'll be rewarded with your own private spa and sauna, a four-person Jacuzzi overlooking the Mediterranean, and perks like complimentary sun beds at the beach and airport limo transfers.
The Mansion, Daios Cove, Crete
Set on 37 hilly acres on the quiet side of Crete, Daios Cave was built to maximize sea views, with buildings and villas that cascade down a slope towards the beach and connected via labyrinthine tunnels and a funicular. Inside, modern restaurants dish out upscale Mediterranean cuisine while rooms incorporate pieces of the very stone they were built into. If you've got the cash to spare, you'll want to spend all of your time in The Mansion, the most luxe villa in Cove's fleet. In addition to a dedicated concierge and opulent open living areas (whose floor-to-ceiling windows let in tons of natural light), expect a private spa with an indoor heated pool, a full gym, and three bedrooms featuring walk-in wardrobes and designer furniture by B&B Italia and Maxalto.
RELATED: Hotel Views That Will Blow Your Mind
Royal Blue Villa, Blue Palace, a Luxury Collection Resort & Spa, Crete
Staying in the aptly-named Royal Blue Villa at this bohemian-chic resort, on Crete's Elounda coastline, feels like you're living in your own Greek mansion. All open-plan living spaces and towering archways, the three-bedroom residence offers a beautiful heated pool and sprawling veranda with lush, palm-tree-dotted gardens that overlook the cerulean sea. To ensure privacy, your full kitchen staff uses a separate service entrance for preparing in-room breakfasts and other meals in the private dining area (which includes a wood-burning oven and barbecue grill by the pool). Looking to dip your toes in the sand? Villa guests are granted exclusive access to The Haven, a private section on the beach.
Villa Boheme in Ftelia, Boheme Mykonos
This posh retreat offers a far more remote experience than its main property outside Mykonos Town, some three miles away. That distance spells ultimate seclusion for you and your 12 closest friends, who will have the run of the 6,028-square-foot space. We're talking two pools (including a private infinity number looking out over the bay of Ftelia), a sun terrace, an oversized Jacuzzi that fits 8 people, a marble-lined hammam, and a tricked-out kitchen for entertaining. The look is just as bright and contemporary as Boheme, with bold accents like graphic fabric prints and Acapulco chairs that pop against its typical-for-Mykonos whitewashed walls. Looking to burn off those wine-induced calories? Hit your personal gym, or take a hike down the hill to the sand.
Villa, Kensho Mykonos
Inspired by Greece’s natural beauty, Kensho Mykonos is a case study in Mediterranean Zen—think white walls, blond wood, and copper light fixtures that keep the look relaxed yet refined. The hotel's crown jewel is its five-bedroom villa, whose furnishings are crafted by renowned designers like Patricia Urquiola, rooms are stocked with luxury linens and Hermès amenities, and grounds are equipped with a sunbathing terrace and infinity pool featuring views of Ornos beach. Leave some time for a meal at the hotel's restaurant for a taste of chef George Stylianoudakis’s inventive menu, which might include wagyu beef stifado or red mullet with artichoke and dill.