St. Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas
12 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
"I have just returned from the biggest disappointment of my life, a week in the St Nicolas Bay Hotel. The Hotel sells itself as a five star resort and although there is no doubt that the grounds are beautiful and the staff are excellent, the food, although plentiful, is no better that other hotels of the same class. The drinks and any food you purchase there is overpriced and the accomodation although clean does not even begin to match the standard of some three star hotels. I had booked a Junior Suite, which incidently turned out to be a glorified double room, a suite in anyone's language means more than one room, and when I complained about the calibre of accommodation was speechless to find that I had been UPGRADED to a Grand Suite! The Grand suite consisted of two rooms, one which contained a couch, with not even a cushion for comfort and a throw to cover the marks on it, a unit which contained the mini bar and a writing desk, the bedroom contained an uncomfortable bed, either too small or too large pillows, a console table, a chair, again with no cushions, and two bedside tables. Where did you store your clothes I hear you ask, they were stored in the totally inadequste two drawers and double three quarter length wardrobes, fitted with ten coat hangers. The only difference from the basic accommodation I used to book in Greece 30 years ago for Â£200 a fortnight were the two plasma TVs, one in each room, although the one in the "lounge" picked up hardly anything and the one in the bedroom was so offset from the bed that you couldn't watch it from there. To add insult to injury there were two old fashioned, lumbago inducing, canvas deck chairs on our veranda!Five star accommodation it was not; but it did cost a five star price of Â£3500 for one week. We were there for a wedding and although the couple being married booked and only paid for a double room, they were upraded to a suite with their own private swimmming pool and I have to admit that the hotel pulled out all of the stops to make their wedding day very special, I am of the opinion that every other paying guest pays for that, because although the happy couple get way more than they pay for, everyong else gets far less, so perhaps those looking for the ultimate wedding experience should go to this hotel and anyone prepared to pay for a five star holiday should look elesewhere. "
- Travel date: Sat 27th of October 2012
Fabulous week away
"I felt I should write this review to counteract some of the previous reviews written for St Nicolas Bay hotel during the 2006 season. (Sue and Dave I hope to see yours here too)
We have just returned from a week in St Nicolas Bay in mid May. We booked the hotel with the travel agent in mid April and then reading reviews on this site were quite apprehensive about our visit.
However, all of our concerns were unnecessary. We received excellent service throughout the entire holiday. All of the staff were most helpful and courteous. The service we received was excellent. All parts of the hotel were clean and our room was serviced twice every day. The hotel is laid out in a way that means no balconies are overlooked by any others allowing complete privacy. The pool area deserves a mention as it was impeccably clean and so very tranquil it was extremely easy to drift off to sleep in the afternoon!
The hotel have acted on some of the feedback that has been given and they have appointed a guest relations manager, Kelly at the start of this yearâs season.
Guests should provide feedback to the staff and management at the hotel whilst they are there so that it makes it easier for the hotel to act upon this as quickly as possible rather than writing scathing reviews on Trip Advisor on their return. Staff want to be helpful to guests even if they are been given negative feedback, as long as it is done in a polite and courteous manner.
We found Nikos the Front Office Manager very helpful and he was able to help with our requests when asked.
Special mention must also be given to a few other members of staff:
Costas and Christophas for their attentive service in the restaurants and great food
A very special mention to Michalis and Valentina for providing an outstanding bar service â possible the best we have ever experienced anywhere in the world! If you want good local restaurant recommendations â ask them.
Kathryn and Adrian"
- Travel date: Mon 28th of May 2007
Our favourite hotel on Crete
"We have just returned from a week's holiday at the St Nicolas Bay Hotel, Aghios Nikolaos and would fully recommend this hotel.
Despite encountering a few minor niggles (refurbishment to some of rooms taking place) the Front of House Manager was very effective in resolving our issues to our satisfaction and above.
Our suite was everything we were told it would be, the food was of an excellent standard and the service the same.
We found the only improvement could have been more options within the main restaurant at dinner.
We look forward to returning next year."
- Travel date: Fri 25th of May 2007
Perfect spot for a "do nothing" holiday
"We wanted a hassle-free, comfortable and relaxing week away with good weather and the option to wander out to a town to eat, drink and watch the world go by as and when the mood took us. Our stay at the St Nicholas Bay Hotel provided this and more, with the added bonus of the friendliest bunch of hotel staff we have encountered in a long time. Special mention must be made of Michalis and Valentina, who not only performed their respective duties with enthusiasm, but also proved to be excellent tour guides and entertainers! Enjoyed lunch gazing out to sea in the Blue Bay Beach restaurant - great spot. We recommend you walk into town and take a taxi back (5euros). Ate at a restaurant called Barko a couple of times in the town. Not the cheapest but very good food and really friendly people running it."
- Travel date: Sat 19th of May 2007
Wish and Reality ...
"The Management must have noses like Pinocchio ... and/or they have the best photografers and the best copywriters.
Here are some details:
The Websie (The Wish):
An intimate atmosphere and luxurious surroundings brimming with character and charm.
Sorry, this hotel has neither luxury nor character and charm. It is a very, very normal hotel. It is not worth to be listet in the group of Small Luxury Hotels of the World! And the hotel is definitely not a 5-Star-Hotel!
The Website (The Wish) - Deluxe Suite:
Superbly decorated suites, in privileged location, with one bedroom and separate living room.
Decoration and furniture are shabby and styleless. the quality is very bad.
The Website (The Wish) - Deluxe Suite:
Luxurious marble bathroom fully equipped with aero spa bathtub, separate shower cabin, hairdryer and separate W.C.
A very small bathroom.
No separate shower cabin.
No windows (only a small stripe in the W.C.)
The Website (The Wish) - Deluxe Suite:
Luxury bathrobes, slippers and beach towels
The luxury bathrobes were old and shabby. I would use them to clean shoes.
We moved the next day to the Blue Palace Hotel in Elounda (see separate report).
Last but not least: The prices are shameless. We paid for a sandwich, a small greek salad and two glasses of white wine 43,00 Euro!"
- Travel date: Tue 15th of May 2007
St Nicolas Bay, absolutely fab!
"Have just returned from an early season family holiday in May at the St Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas in Crete which was absolutely fab.
We were all there a couple of years ago, at which time we really enjoyed the vacation then, but this time, exceptional.
The staff, mainly locals, couldnât have been attentive enough and all helped make our stay a memorable one. We had numerous âspecial needsâ, which the staff took in their stride and more importantly, didnât need reminding from one day to next. The guiding hand of the hotelâs senior management was always there to help the hotelâs employees, who always seem to be bright and cheery, what ever the time of the day. Clearly the hotels management have taken on board the various comments raised by previous Trip Advisor reviews, since the hotel had a certain fresh feel about it, which was difficult to put a finger on, but whatever it is it works!
Our family room was ideal for our needs, plenty of space for us to all move around yet, close and secure and with breathtaking views of the sea, where the sun rose from early in the morning. At least one morning of your stay make the effort and get up and watch the sun rise out of the water. Simply stunning. We brought far too many clothes and too much luggage. Nevertheless storage wasnât a problem.
The St Nicolas Bay Hotel has its own enclosed bay, where it is possible to swim safely and to hire paddle boats canoes and also to try out the various water sports on offer. Most of the time, however we spend lounging around on the sun beds around the beach or by the excellent swimming pool. The gym looked inviting, but somehow I never quite made it there!
We took advantage of the half board arrangement, having dinner each evening at the Labyrinthos Restaurant, the buffet style enable us to pick and choose exactly what we wanted. And we did! Although we did use our half board credit a couple of evenings to dine at the Kafenion Restaurant, which serves authentic Cretian specialities and Minotaure Restaurant which had a Greek evening when we were there. The Blue Bay was a firm favourite for the children for lunch. Try the light Summer Salad, delicious. One evening we went to La Strada in Agios Nikolaos town, which served excellent fish. Getting to/from the town is easy. Recommend walking there and getting a taxi back around â¬5.
Very comfortable accommodation, great food, excellent staff and Greek hospitality seemed to be a winning formula at the St Nicolas Bay Resort Hotel & Villas. We will be back!"
- Travel date: Tue 8th of May 2007
"I find it hard to understand some of the negative comments about this hotel.
I stayed there last year with my wife and two friends. Our booking was by email, very efficient and no rush to take a deposit.
We booked two junior suites on room and breakfast.
On arrival at around midnight we were welcomed, taken to our rooms in a "golf buggy" and told that a late (complimentary) supper was ready for us , if needed, in the restaurant.
This made a very good impression, very nice room( we booked junior suites) great welcome and nice food.
For the rest of our holiday we enjoyed the outdoor breakfasts, spent time by the pool and beach and went out in the evening so I can't comment on dining.
Here's my tip..... if you want to go to Agios Nikalaos for dinner, book the water ski boat, about Â£2.50 each for 4 pax and a great way to arrive.
Check out was polite and efficient with the pre-booked car ready and waiting to take us to the airport.
Greece and the Greek people our diffrerent! Cretan people are different again. Respect the difference and you'll love your holiday and you might find the Greek people love you to!"
- Travel date: Thu 29th of March 2007
"We visited this hotel in August 2005. We like privacy so went for a room with private pool for myself and my husband. For our 14 year old we had requested a standard dbl (single occupancy) close by. When we arrived we were very surprised and pleased to see that our room communicated directly with our daughter's by a door from our terrasse to her patio. The rooms were just next door and we both had direct access to our little pool. Upon return, after having read other reviews, we realised we did the right thing in paying a little exta for the higher level room/pool. Appartenly, the standard rooms are nothing special.
Overall a very nice hotel which suited our needs. Breakfast was fine as was dinner at the Greek Taverna by the sea (next to the chapel), lunch was also nice. However, beware of the standard Half-Board dinner. The food is awful! Like a school cantene. After one first try, we ended up eating in the Greek taverna and paying the extra money. Half-board is definitely not a good deal here!"
- Travel date: Tue 6th of February 2007
"When I was around 20 years old (now 41), I worked for a travel agency and I have 'send' many Dutch tourist to this beautiful hotel (without being there ever) on Crete. Me and my daughter (12) thought of doing a week holiday in Greece this year, so why not going to this place for the very first time? The personal welcome by the hotel manager was very nice with an invite to a glass of champaign upon arrival and a BBQ. The room was clean, very very clean and has a lovely view on the main swinning pool and offcourse the sea. Breakfast was fantastic, staff very friendly and helpful. Everyday we have spent time on the small private beach with enough things to do such as wakeboaring, kano and a jetski. The view over te beach and the small islands was fantastic! The whole week we had lunch (many choice, good quality) overseeing the beach and the islands as well. The spa and gym (unfortunately i never did before) where a nice welcome for me. Professional staff, nice threatments if I can say like that. First time a 'facial' and massage and after we could use the jacuzzi for free. Also the quality of food in all restaurants surprised me, and the price was ok. The personal service went far: the general manager saw my daughter was not feeling well. He offered to bring new tea for her, with honey in it: "But dont drink it to hot" he advised. That was very sweat of him and it represents the level of service and care for clients. One thing they can do better (small detail): the pillows where small and soft and I could only find two in the room."
- Travel date: Tue 31st of October 2006
"We stayed in St Nicolas Bay Hotel for one night after reviewing the property on the website of Small Luxury Hotels ([--]). The bungalow looked nice and the private pool also. But when we went to sleep we were in for an unpleasant surprise. The mattress was too awful for words, cheap and full of bumps, see pic, it was every bit as uncomfortable as it looks. When we complained about this, reception promised to bring us another mattress. Nothing happened for almost 2 hours. Management then showed us 2 other rooms, but the beds were not much better, so we decided to leave. They had a terrible attitude and threatened to charge us the extra 2 nights that we had booked. We settled for one extra night just to be out of there. We moved to Elounda Beach Hotel, what a relief. Avoid this place!"
- Travel date: Mon 25th of September 2006
Better than expected
"We had already booked the hotel after rave reviews in Traveller magazine before we read the comments on Trip Advisor, which gave us some concern! However, whilst we would agree that some improvements are required for a 5 star resort we enjoyed or holiday and would certainly return. In general the staff were very good and our room very nice. The food was excellent, our towels changed daily by the maid and we could always find a nice pair of sunbeds to relax on. There is a cinema each night, table tennis, music in the Piano Bar, watersports and "theme" nights with music."
- Travel date: Tue 12th of September 2006
Very nice hotel, all the staff where fri...
"Very nice hotel, all the staff where friendly, enough hotel entertainment. Really nice views, have own beach and provide free transport to get to the beach. We had a lovely time and would go back! It is up on the top of a hill, so it's not in the centre of town, so nice and quite, isn't far into town but turkey has a lot of steep hills, which is great for walking off those extra pounds.
If you can't walk for I'd suggest a taxi into town. everyone in the town and resort speak English so no problems there. The hotel has a shop out side of it, which isn't connected to the hotel, but you would be able to get most things you want there. Because they are they only shop next to the hotel they do charge a little extra, so if you can wait it might be best to get what you need in town.
The restaurant is lovely, fantastic service, they are so pleased if you give them a tip, and they're food and service is definitely worth it! Clean and tidy room, the cleaning staff are really friendly too, but don't speak alot of English. We found every day we walked in our towels where laid on the bed in all different shapes, they even decorated them with fresh flowers from the garden.
The paths around the resort have gardens around them where we saw baby rabbits, even turtles. Very child friendly place, we have a 3 year old and they loved him. The swimming pools are always clean, you may get some people reserving their beds but we found only 2 did during our holiday, after breakfast they do tend to go fast but about lunch they would start to clear, we would go to the pool about 9 or 10 and we found beds.
So no problems, the whole holiday was such a pleasurable experience, I would definitely recommend it to anyone, suits all sorts of people. I'm sure you'd have a great time like I did, maybe even better!
- Travel date: Mon 21st of November 2005