30 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Thoroughly enjoyed it
"We stayed here this August for just a week, on arrival from the bus to the airport we were greeted by Olga one of the owners at the hotel. Her husband Dimitri was also there too. We were checked in very quickly and then Alex the bar man showed us to our apartment even carrying one of our suitcases. We were in a top floor apartment overlooking the pool. The apartment had one bedroom which of course my husband and I slept in and our two girls were in single beds in the lounge area come dining room. The bathroom was adequate for a quick shower after a day sunbathing and a quick wash in the morning. the kitchen consisted of one surface with a kettle, toaster and then a small oven underneath. So adequate to make breakfast and lunch. Not sure about evening meals as we like to experience the local restaurants and culture. We had two balconies one overlooking the pool the other overlooking a allotment. Fascinating to watch the local man harvesting his crops. The pool was clean and my children certainly enjoyed swimming in it and diving for their dive sticks. It has no diving although at one end it is certainly deep enough to do so and my children never got told off unlike other adult visitors. Dimitri cleans the pool and Alex and Natalie supervise the pool area. I asked for extra pillows as I like two as do my daughters. I asked for more toilet paper as my children eat it all were greeted with a smile and accommodated. As I have already said we ate out every evening and then returned to chat in the bar, a round of drinks for four cost â¬12 I would have Tia Maria and coke(these were like doubles) my husband a local beer which are served in a chilled glass and my children a sprite each with grenadine syrup(a drink from a hol to Egypt ). The atmosphere was lovely music playing but not too loud. A pool table and then once a week a quiz. Make sure you know some Greece history! This is run by Natalie who runs the bar during the day. We thoroughly enjoyed this holiday relaxing, calm, friendly and we all feel recuperated. We are already looking to book for next year. "
- Travel date: 1st September 2013
How do you apply to be a Cretan?
"Have just returned from 9 nights at the Marie Kelly in Kato Gouves, and we want to go straight back! Never have we had such a relaxing holiday. Warm climate, warm people, and a staff who made our first visit to Crete memorable. Yes, as a self catering establishment you have to look after yourselves, but it's not hard is it? The supermarkets are a short stroll, if a little pricey, but that is the way of the world today. It was very clean,in the apartment and around the complex. The pool is a treat, and the bar area gr-eat! The team of Natalie and Alex, who make up the bar staff, make you feel as if this is your local at home. A short walk, 200 yards, to the beach. Bus access to anywhere on the island a mere 15 minutes stroll, and a choice of Tavernas to suit every possible taste. To note are Skorpios, watch out for Sofia, and Georges, who have a selection of Greek trad dishes, as well as more basic fare. The only downer, if you like your beans on toast. Take a couple of cans with you as they are 3.30 euros per tin in the shops! "
- Travel date: 22nd June 2011
Will never stay here again, after having dirty bed linen!
"I have just returned from a weeks stay in Villa Marie Kelly, Gouves with a friend. I will not be staying here again after having an awful week. On arrival the staff were rather abrupt in checking us in. They never gave any details on where things we in the apartment complex. When getting to the room, it was very small and at first seemed clean. But upon closer inspection the bed linen was flithy and the surfaces were mucky. There was no indication in the welcome leaflets as to how much things cost such as air conditioning and the safety deposit box. This all had to be found out by going down to reception and getting a very cold response from the staff. We spent most of our time in the apartment complex next door (Villa Andreas) where some friends were staying. They were much more welcoming and friendly and couldnt do enough to help. Nothing was ever too much trouble. I would recommend staying at Villa Andreas. Overall Gouves is a very welcoming place with friendly locals, very close to the beach and a small supermarket for everyday needs. "
- Travel date: 9th August 2010
"I stayed at the Villa Marie Kelly in August 2009 with My husband and 9 year old son. If you want a relaxing holiday then this holiday then this place is a one to book. It's a small family run hotel, with two fantastic bar staff 'Alex' and 'Stu'. The rooms are of average size, all with balcony's. Very clean. Basic but adequate utensils Ours was 5 metres from the pool and bar, no noise on an evening could be heard which was great. The bar is always well stocked. Alex is Greek, fluent in English, he's the most laid back guy in the world. He has a great sence of humour and makes everyone feel at ease. Alex runs night shift at the bar and will stay until the last guest decides he/she needs their bed. If you sit at the bar, on occasion he will have a beer and a chat with you and if you don't, he doesn't pester you. He will always smile and say 'hello'. Stu runs the bar area from around 8 in the morning until 6 pm. He cooks all of the food which is on the menu. Prices are more than reasonable, 2-6 euros for all dishes, breakfast, lunch, dinner. There are lighter snacks, which are rather large for the 2 euro mark which consists of anything from scambled eggs on toast, bacon/sausage sandwichs etc. There are a few simple Greek dishes on the menu to, for instance 'Greek salad'. If you were just wanting a light snack at lunch then get one meal to share as Stu's portions are massive. Stu's cooking is fantastic. Stu is British and very 'camp' He is an amusing, witty guy. Stu runs a 'Toga bingo' and also a 'Quiz night' once a week, we had alot of fun on both nights and it's the only time you'll ever see the bar remotely full. The pool opened early in the morning and there was no rush for sunbeds. The most I ever seen aound the pool at any one time was 6 other guests, none well loud or drunk, just relaxing, taking everything in their stride. The sunbeds were very well spaced out. There is one pool table and one air hockey table. There are 2 computers which has internet access for 50c for 15 minutes. The beach is minutes away from the hotel, this is perhaps why the pool seemed so quiet. There are plenty of beaches along the stretch, which seems to go on the miles. Sunbeds are cheap at around 2.50-3.00 euro with umberella all day, just keep ur reciept and return after lunch. The beaches are almost white and sea clear and warm. Very clean and safe for children. Resturants are all of similar price although there are some slightly cheaper if you take a look around. The Oasis is on the hotels doorstep. Food here is great although waiters weren't as friendly as Medusa's, which is 3 minutes to the right of the Villa Marie. There all lots of resturants and taverners within 20 minutes walk. Local beer (Mythos) in the Hotel is 2.50 euro's for a pint. Which is slighly cheaper then a few places we visited, typically 2.50 -3.50. There are some really nice bars and few within 20 minutes walking distance which have safe play areas for the kids. There is a very nice bar (can't remember the name) 15 minutes walk from the hotel. Absoulty stunning place, which was all open, it was lite up in a very soft blue. Be careful here though as we paid 20 euro's for 2 small beers. Which came with a bottle of water, lots of ice and a paper plate which upon it consisted of uncooked carrot, cauliflower and served with a wooden chip fork. So unless you are looking to spend what you almost would on a mea, for 2 small drinks, as nice as the place is....avoid it. We hired a Jeep for 4 days for 150 euro's. Well worth the money. We had trips up into the mountains, which are a must see. We went to the cave of Zeus, which was 4 euro each and free for kids. It's a hard walk to the top and donkey rides are offered for 20 euros, which I diddn't think was worth it. Malia is a good day trip lots of nice beaches but very busy place. There is a Lidl 20 minutes drive away, and is very cheap. It's well worth having a venture here. The supermarkets are very expensive next to the hotel, 5 euros for cornflakes etc. Even native foods were very expensive here. The milk was 2-3 euros for a small carton. There are 2 hire car places also within 5 mins walk. Mikes tours are good for boat trips although the car hire is a con , a couple whom were staying at the Villa marie told us the car they hired broke down on the second day and Mike tour refused to do anything about it, no refund or replacement. The car hire we used oppersite we couldn't fault, we actually haggled him down for an extra day. We had an amazing time here, so relaxed and so pleased we picked this hotel and area for the perfect getaway. "
- Travel date: 3rd March 2010
Closed on Arrival!
"Hmmm...well what can i say. Booked 6 months in advance with Thomas Cook and we arrived at a hotel that was closed....yes...closed! Ok so it was the first week of the season but why book guests in to a hotel knowing it wouldnt be open? As Didier Drogba would say, "its a (ahem) disgrace!" The Marie Kelly remained closed from arrival on friday night to wednesday morning. The weather was bad for two of those days so there was nothing to do save to sit in a bare apartment. There were single guests in the complex too so i felt doubly sorry for them. We ended up having to gatecrash the hotel next door, who (and fair play to them) were more than welcoming and understanding or our plight (Minos, you are a legend!). Once the hotel opened, facilities ranged from average to bad. I wouldnt recommend using the toilets by the pool as the doors didntnt shut or lock. The owners were distant too. I dont think we spoke to them once except to get scowled at for requesting an extra toilet roll. The only saving grace was the arrival of the friendly barman, stuart, who was fantastic. Other than that you can expect a below average hotel with basic amenities. Pretty crap really. Stay at the Andreas next door and you'll have a better time in Gouves."
- Travel date: 9th May 2009
We were a little concerned about this ho...
"We were a little concerned about this holiday as it wasn't our first choice, but we needn't have worried - it was wonderful. Villa Marie Kelly was in a lovely unspoilt area of Gouves (all Gouves is lovely), with a few tavernas, gift shops and 2 supermarkets just around the corner. The beach is beautiful sand, the sea clear blue, warm and with the added bonus of some good surf but very safe because you have to go out a long way before out of your depth. Only 4 minutes walk (no exageration) and you can be relaxing on the sunbeds (2 euros a day) by the waters edge. So swimsuits and towels are all you need. The pool is lovely and well furnished with sunbeds and tables and the bar wellstocked and open very long hours. They serve food from 8.00am to 6.00pm but with such lovely eateries so close it's not really needed. We had a one bedroom apartment for the 2 of us and it was spacious, well furnished and very clean. Shower with lots of hot water, an electric oven and hob with integrated grill and sufficient utensils etc made for our added comfort. The best two tavernas were Mylos and Medusa just around the corner, although even at the end of September Mylos was very busy with local people as well as holiday makers who had made bookings. We loved the Greek food, it wasn't expensive and the service and atmosphere were great. A nice touch at everywhere we ate was the complimentary drink before we left! It is a very long walk from the Apartments to the central shopping area of Gouves but there is a 'train' that drives around the resort and plenty of taxis if you're not feeling like a walk. The walk along the seas edge is lovely especially on an evening as the sun sets and you can visit the little church at the waters edge on the way. There were 2 weddings and a christening while we were there - lovely to see. A trip up the mountain to the old village is also worth a visit it will cost you 6 euros by taxi but of course if you're fit you can walk - we met many who did. We visited the ruins at the Palace of Knosses and did it for a quarter of the tour operator price by going by local bus - well worth a visit and much better to do it in your own time (people over 65 get in for half price) but its very cheap anyway. We also went to the Island of Spinalonga but booked this through Mikes Tours around the corner. Wonderful day out, but we would have liked more time on Spinalonga. When we go again we we will investigate going by local bus as we did to Knosses. I say when because we will certainly go back - Crete is a wonderful island, the locals are friendly, the food devine, the weather great and it's very Greek!"
- Travel date: 4th October 2008
Just back from a week at Marie Kelly wit...
"Just back from a week at Marie Kelly with my friend. Had a great time - everyone is so laid back. Have been to Gouves twice before and just love the relaxed atmosphere. The studio apartment was bright and a good size and the whole place seemed to be quite clean. We only ate once at the apartments and were not very impressed. Most nights we ate at Skorpios. The lamb kleftico was fab, but we could never eat all the other things on the plate. Staff there are very friendly and each time we went they involved everyone in Greek Dancing. I can't say the same for the owners of Marie Kelly as they were not at all friendly, but Alex and Vass were both really nice and tried to ensure everyone had a great time. Apartments are very close to the beach and tavernas, but it is quite a walk to the main road for the bus. We would both go back to Marie Kelly, but next time, I would probably hire a car to go sightseeing."
- Travel date: 2nd October 2008
Great location, clean and friendly.
"We really enjoyed our week at Villa Marie Kelly. It is located only 2 minutes away from a lovely safe beach, in a relatively quiet area, but with a good choice of local tavernas (our favourites were Mylos and Skorpios). Good access to bus services, and car rental places, if you want to explore, as we did. The studio was fairly small but very clean. The complex has only about 30 residences in total, with a good pool. Our only criticisms would be the bed ( too firm to be comfortable) and the lack of basic cleaning stuff in the apartment ( no dishcloth, teatowels, brush). Overall, though, a pleasant place to stay, and good value."
- Travel date: 24th September 2008
The Marie Kelly apartments are located a...
"The Marie Kelly apartments are located about one mile from the main resort, close to the beach, and adjacent to a number of restaurants and shops. The apartments are well maintained, with basic kitchen facilties, spotlessly clean with air conditioning (supplementary charge) and plenty of storage space. Our apartment had two sea-view balconies and was close to the bar, but must have been double glazed because there was no excessive noise. The owners were, Dimitris and Olga, were friendly and helpful, and were always ready to assist with a smile. Olga's breakfast and snacks were always perfectly cooked - highly recommended! There were just two bar staff most days - Alex and Vas - who were perfect hosts and made sure we had a perfect holiday. Nothing was too much trouble for either of these guys, who ensured that this was the best holiday we have had for many years. Whether the bar was busy or quiet we were always entertained with their astonishing range of bar props - from an array of wigs to other things that are perhaps not best mentioned in this review! We were made to feel part of the family. I know that lots of regulars go back to these apartments year after year, and I know that the owners and staff genuinely look forward to seeing everyone again, which created a great atmosphere. Vas and Alex arranged a very special night for our daughter's 16th birthday which we will never forget. It all helped to make the holiday very special. Local restaurants - we would recommend Mylos very highly - consistently excellent food and if anything cheaper than some of the others. Much better than your usual resort rubbish!! Try a Furnisto (Cretian chicken pie), Stifardo (Veal Casserole) or the excellent Italian cruisine cooked by their Italian Chef in their Italian (gas-fired!) wood stove. Good friendly and efficient service too, and a short walk from the apartments. All in all an excellent holiday choice."
- Travel date: 11th September 2008
great for families
"Marie Kelly was a pleasant surprise and well worth the little money paid for the apartment. Advertised as 10 mins from Heraklion airport, it is in fact further than that and the only real reason they say 10 mins is the fact that the taxi drivers drive at literally 90MPH. In reality it is netween 10-25 mins dependent on driver and time of day. It will cost 30-35 euros for a one way taxi so a Â£60 coach transfer I would recommend if booking independently. Located 100m (lax Greek measurements) from the beach, but actually about 200m from the beach, our apartment had 2 ideal balconies overlooking the sea and pool. One had the morning sun and the other caught the sun in the evening which was great for sitting out on at both ends of the day. Although, from looking at them I don't believe they all had this view, so if you're at all fussy enquire first to get your ideal. The location was ideal for what we were looking for- a relatively quiet and easy quick break in the sun. Just within 5 mins walk are about 4 great Greek tavernas with a mix of traditional and Greek cuisine, 1 steak house a few supermarkets and adjoining bars, which were all pretty quiet when we went (early June) but well worth the visit for the Moussaka. Gouves centre is a little futher near the 2nd and 3rd beach and has more eateries, a few bars, a few supermarkets/ gift shops etc. Be warned- no clubs. The staff at Marie Kelly were all pleasant and friendly enough, with the resident barman Alex keeping those at the bar entertained enough. The staff were very helpful in any queries we had. It was the start of Euro 2008 when we were there so they had a large screen on for the viewings and this seemed to be on all day. The bar was ideally located at the foot of the pleasantly warm pool (allow time for yourself to adjust from the time in the scorching sun!)Snacks were also available. The general feel of the apartments is very relaxed and family orientated (generally older couples, families and yound couples). Definitely not recommended for young singles looking to party. A few small downsides for Marie Kelly- although minor are worth bearing in mind before booking the apartments and Crete in general. From mid June onwards you will need the air conditioning (50 euros a week-not cheap, but necessary to sleep at night- you could alternatively take small fans with adaptors). Also, insects in the hotter season can be annoying- take insect repellent and buy repelling candles and don't leave out food. Ants on the tiles near the pool came out in their 100's but generally don't bother you whilst on a lounger or in pool. This is not so much a reflection of the accommodation as the climate. Beware the mosquito bite- especially women! Also although generally good, some nights even the more senior holiday makers can make a fair bit of noise when a little tipsy and the bar music can be heard sometimes til nearly 3am, but it isn't too loud you would not be able to sleep, especially with the air con on and and windows shut. But if you have young children bear this in mind.The towels are a bit small, so if you want a decent one, take your own! Other than that, Marie Kelly also has a book lending, pool table , safety deposits, a kitchenette with small oven and great location on offer (you can easliy leave the beach for 10 mins and return to apartments if needed). Also in the room is free TV, although mainly all in Greek- some English programmes were on such as some films, House and CSI! (although I hope you don't need that- football etc also available in bar.)You also have the 3 beaches on offer with loungers available at 2,20 euro each and parosol the same. So a day on the beach with loungers etc is 13,20 euros for a family of 4, say. Well worth it in the scorching heat! The apartments are clean (the maids come round regularly) and generally well-maintained.Quite basic, but everything you need if you're the eating out and going out type If you fancy a louder, brasher, more exciting night out or more commercial offerings then 20 mins away (the barman will point you in the right directon) is a bus stop, and for about 1,30 euros you can get a bus to Malia or Hersonissos. They come about every 20-30 mins (again in relaxed Greek fashion, so be patient!) and are cheap, fast and very well air conditioned. All in all for those looking for the basics and are on a budget- Villa Marie Kelly is a great find and is well worth visiting. All in all, if you fancied; you could easliy base your holiday around these apartments- 3 beaches, supermarkets, tavernas/eateries, a few bars etc a safe , good bet when booking your break."
- Travel date: 15th June 2008
Three girls looking for a relaxing holid...
"Three girls looking for a relaxing holiday and we found it here. We didn't stay around the pool as it was far too hot, so headed down to the beach to enjoy the breeze and the sun loungers. We enjoyed the apartments and found them to be spacious and clean and we could keep the windows and doors open all night as the shutters could be pulled down to keep the sun out (don't know if you can do that on the ground floor though). Every night we would try somewhere new to eat and we are a difficult bunch, one vegetarian, one who can't eat fish and thankfully one who is easy to please... we found all the little tavernas and restaurants near the apartment were fantastic and everytime we left our little area of Gouves we were disappointed by the food - we went to Malia once and no one wanted to go back. There isn't much happening at night but the two barmen at the Marie Kelly kept us entertained every night - pouring drinks, playing pool, teaching us how to speak Greek and more importantly how to dance Greek! They would keep the bar open until we wanted to go to bed, it was my birthday when we were there and they threw me a surprise party and the barman even bought me a cake which had my picture on it - very impressed! Friends we met at the apartments hired a car for a few days and we all squeezed in and headed off for the water park, this is easier said than done - you think you might be able to see it from a distance or that there would be a signpost so I think we must have went the non tourist route but we got to see some lovely mountain villages as we got lost over and over again. We did eventually make it there and it was really good fun, the only thing that annoyed us was that after paying in you then had to pay to use the sunbeds... there were a lot of mosquitoes at the park and I would avoid the lagoon at all costs as it looked dirty and swarming in bugs but everything else was great fun... beware though it's built into the side of a mountain so there are quite a lot of hills to run up and down. We had a great time in Gouves and on the coach back to the airport we saw all the posher hotels we could have paid out a fortune for but I don't think we would have enjoyed our holiday quite as much."
- Travel date: 16th January 2008
just a bit disappointed
"We found the studio very basic, no storage for any food and there become a problem with ants, the owners seemed not too helpful when we requested a change of studio and we were told none were available until the following week. The room was cleaned about twice during our two week stay and the bin in the bathroom was left unchanged for about 3 days (NOT HYGENIC) the towels and sheets (they were like sleeping on sandpaper) were only changed once during our stay. We resorted too washing the towels ourselves. Perhaps it was the maid who serviced our room as we did notice that the other apartments seemed to be cleaned more often so perhaps we just had the short straw. On the up side we were told that they served an excellent english cooked breakfast and Alex at the bar more than made up for their lack of being customer friendly.The pool was nice although they could invest in some sort of cushions for the sun beds as they were very hard and a lot were broken, so we used air beds on the top of them, sorry to say we will not be returning to this complex again although on the whole we did have a good holiday as it is only as good as you make it yourselves, and we did find a lot of lovely taverna's which served wonderful food which did'nt break the bank, and a stroll into kato gouves in the evening to enjoy a meal and drink was very pleasant if you needed a change of surroundings made a pleasant change, and the Irish Bar served a mean pint."
- Travel date: 11th October 2007
Top traveller tips for Villa Marie Kelly
"Stay in bed late, enjoy the siesta, and expect life to begin at 8pm."
"Relaxing,, Amazing.. Safe for kids.."
"Mylos is by far the best restaurant as is the Chilli Lounge, Jeep Safari is a must do..."
Villa Marie Kelly is also called
- hotel marie kelly
- marie kelly hotel