53 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
Least hygienic and hospitable place I've ever stayed
"This was the least hygienic and least hospitable place my partner and I have ever stayed, for multiple reasons. We understand that you get what you pay for, so we were expecting something basic, and went with the frame of mind that it was just somewhere to sleep and shower. However, Iraklis couldnât even get these basics right. Other guests we met during our stay and in online reviews weâve since read repeat the same problems.
1. Upon arrival we found in our room an extensive list of rules. The first, and very reasonable point, is that some guests wish to relax, and therefore itâs not acceptable to make too much noise and disturb others. We had no such problem with other guests, but the owners allowed their child to have a colossal tantrum in the courtyard, and constantly screamed at each other across the courtyard, to the point that I now have an aversion to the name Maria, having heard âMARIIIIIAâ¦MAAAAARIIIIIIIAâ screeched at maximum volume so many times.
2. The staff constantly seemed quite angry and aggressive, and were the least hospitable people we met throughout our whole stay. We arrived late at night so met the owner the following day, and rather than offering any sort of welcome she was more concerned with making sure she got our hotel voucher so she could get paid. The owners seem to be very selective about who they are and arenât friendly towards â guests who want to eat/drink/spend money in the apartments seem to be treated much better than those who prefer to spend time and money outside.
3. Iraklisâ website claims that toiletries are provided, but nothing is provided at all, not even hand soap. One toilet roll is provided on arrival, and after that guests need to buy their own. However, another guest we spoke to who mentioned to the owner that sheâd recommend to others if she had a good experience was offered extra, and had her room cleaned more regularly.
4. Iraklis imply that WiFi and air conditioning are provided, but these cost extra. The WiFi was very sporadic. We only found out that it cost extra through other guests, as this was never offered or explained to us. Charging for air conditioning seems like a really underhand way to make money â in October we could manage with the window open, but the room was quite humid and I think in the summer it would be impossible without air conditioning.
5. Of the two swimming pools advertised, only the smaller was available for use. The other had hazard tape around it and for some reason was covered in a layer of oil.
6. The swimming pool that was available had visible dirt on the floor, and even worse, cat droppings from the stray cats in the area. Iâm quite disgusted to say I went swimming in that.
7. The toilet in the public area contained no soap or hand towels throughout our entire stay.
8. The bins were not emptied for days, and no information was provided about where guests could empty them. This is especially bad as the list of rules stated that used toilet paper should be put in the bin rather than down the toilet.
9. Towels werenât changed even when visibly dirty.
10. The bed sheets and pillowcases were dirty, but the cleaner just took them off and turned them so that the dirt was at the opposite end of the bed. I had to ask for clean ones and then change them myself.
11. Every so often we noticed an unpleasant sewage smell inside our apartment, which had no obvious source.
12. Furnishings were stained, ragged, and clearly not maintained.
13. The towels provided are almost all worn out and have holes in them.
14. Our fridge was worn out, had no door for the freezer drawer, and didnât shut properly unless it was slammed.
15. The bathroom tap was hanging off the sink to the point that you had to hold it in place when turning it on.
16. Weâre a couple and were allocated a room with two single beds, which we ended up pushing together with a gap in the middle, which we lovingly referred to as âThe Trenchâ. However, another guest who was traveling had been allocated an apartment identical to ours but with a double bed. Another couple we met also had two single beds. Where is the logic in that?
17. The mattresses were the hardest I have ever come across, and it felt like sleeping on the floor. The pillows were totally flat and no extras were provided. We both struggled to sleep all week.
18. The shower always took 5-10 minutes to warm up, and another guest mentioned having the same problem. On the final morning there was no hot water at all.
19. The shower always leaked all over the floor. Providing a â¬1 squeegee would have fixed that. The bathroom floor ended up getting absolutely filthy because we had to wear flip flops in the bathroom.
20. The bath mat immediately became absolutely soaked because of this, and rather than replacing it the cleaners just hung it out on our balcony, where it remained absolutely soaked.
21. Emphasis seems to be put on guests cleaning up after themselves, which would have been fine if theyâd supplied a brush to go with our dustpan.
22. The cleaners were polite but tended to walk into our apartment without knocking. In fact the cleaner was the only person who bothered to say goodbye to us when we left.
We refused to let these issues ruin our holiday, but staying here really was a massive disappointment. We were expecting basic, but also expected a basic standard of hygiene and manners. Within the town Iraklis and its owners seemed to have a poor reputation too. We would absolutely visit Crete again, and would love to stay in Stalis again, but hell will freeze over before we stay at Iraklis again.
- Travel date: Fri 21st of October 2016
Pat & Billy Patterson
"What a fantastic holiday we had. Maria & Stavros are the nicest two people on earth and their children, Emily & Irene are the most beautiful little girls. They go out of their way to make you comfortable and nothing is any bother. The food is great and we ate really well. The apartment was very clean, tidy and well looked after. Maria & Stavros's family were also very nice and friendly. It was an amazing stay and I will treasure the memories. They also put on festive nights for us. Maria & Stavros, you are the best people and we love Stalis but you made it that little bit extra. Thank you. Was very sad when holiday ended."
- Travel date: Fri 25th of July 2014
Hollie & Rainbow
"We stayed here for two weeks, and can honestly say it is the nicest resort we have ever stayed in . when we first arrived we were greeted by the most lovely staff ( Maria & Stavros ) they were very friendly and helpful and would go out of their way to help you with anything you needed or wanted ! the apartment itself was lovely , the furniture was nice and the rooms had everything we needed. they were very clean and tidy and were kept that way all through our stay. the food here is gorgeous and the food and drink is also very cheap ! we ate here every day of our stay. they had weekly themed nights , Thursday was spaghetti night and Sunday was BBQ night which was friendly and lots of fun , it always felt like a big family dinner ! the apartments are very family orientated and there was never any noise to complain about. we are planning on coming back in September and we will continue to come here every year in the future ! we love this place & we very much love the staff !!!!"
- Travel date: Thu 24th of July 2014
stay at the iraklis apartment
"Before going to this resort i did what everybody else did and read the comments about the resort i was in two minds weather to go or not having stayed at Koni Villages for the last three years but all my worries put to rest when i got to the resort and was greeted to a warm welcome from owners maria and stavaros we where shown to our room which was basic and very clean where people said there was no air con all rooms had it they could have air con if they payed for it as for the cleaner not coming again we had no problems there the sheets where changed and the towels and the room was well cleaned they even had a Greek night which is great as for all the bad reviews i can only assume these people where expecting 5 star rooms for what they payed for as for me and my wife we had an absolute brilliant stay and are looking forward to go back next year
- Travel date: Sat 17th of August 2013
"Dirty and Broken is the best way to explain this place. Two buildings, the right hand side where the owners live were pretty good but the left hand building was awful. Broken toilet that exploded out the back when flushed and constantly dripping and told to fix it ourselves by the owners (they didnt want to know). The shower was so dirty that the water didnt go down so overflowed every time we showed and made the floor very slippery which me and my husband constantly slipped on. No kettle and a coffee table and chairs for our table and chairs (you couldnt eat off it). The bed kept breaking in the night if you turned over the slats underneath fell to the floor with a bang so it woke us both up because the slats were not big enough or nailed down. Beds wernt changed in two weeks just the sheets turned over and towels not changed the first week. Stravos picked his nose, and had his hands in his trousers and then made food and drinks, eugh! Maria only spoke to my husband, didnt want to know me. Loved Stalis though, great place just dont stay here!"
- Travel date: Sun 4th of September 2011
An excellent holiday
"Basic but very clean accommodation. Recently refurbished. Run very efficiently by a lovely family - helpful and nothing was too much trouble. Very close to the beach, the busy road was not a problem.
We thoroughly enjoyed our holiday and would not hesitate to go back there.
Pauline and Christine, Whitley Bay.
- Travel date: Tue 16th of August 2011
2 star SELF CATERING August 2011
"does exactly what it says on the tin, rating of 2 star and in fair condition, typical greek style apartments, very basic and a place to put your head down at night (who wants to spend their holiday stuck in their room) Clean sheets and towels, clean rooms and a pleasant communal area, please bare in mind the rooms are self catering and if you want kim and aggy then you have to fly them over, the maid will only give a basic clean when your staying, you can buy bleach and other cleaning products in the fantastic super market just down the road. its not the ritz and you wont pay for the ritz either, cheap and very cheerful, air conditioning and fans are available for your comfort and Maria will go out of her way to help in any way. a 5 minute walk to the main tourist area and local bus stops are at the front door for the Water park and other excursions. i have been to crete many times and stayed in many similar apartments, some worse and one or day better which i paid a hell of a lot extra for. "
- Travel date: Tue 16th of August 2011
"We have just returned from a holiday here. We booked on bed & breakfast. The rooms were dirty. We only had clean towels the day we arrived. bedding was not changed. The owner was very unpleasant with guests, only interested in how much money she could get out of people. Her husband spent his days trying to catch birds with his nets, to put in his cage. We had to leave our breakfasts, as the bacon & sausage were raw & eggs very brown! The accommodation is a very long walk to the beach & you have to cross the busy highway, which is very dangerous. Best avoided... "
- Travel date: Wed 13th of July 2011
"after reading other reviews before I due to made me very worried.....Don't believe these other reviews they just aren't true.
we arrived at the studio's very early 16.40 but thoughtfully left our keys in the door or us. apartments were basic and incredibly clean...perfect for our 2 weeks as love getting out during the day,though joining in is a must as it good fun plus we got to meet other people that we will remain friends with. Maria and stavros do a pasta night which for 3 Euro's. If there are problems they will be sorted out very soon.
It was like a second honeymoon for us and the Iraklis, maria and stavros made it special we will deffinately be back and for the other whinging lot go to a 5 star hotel next time"
- Travel date: Wed 25th of August 2010
"The family is very nice, helpful and friedly the apartment is very clean , the cleaner comes in every day and make sure everythink is clean i go back every year as i think no i know its one of the best around "
- Travel date: Mon 29th of March 2010
OK for a cheap break
"If you like an English breakfast and a sunday roast when you are abroad the resort of Stalis is for you.
The Iraklis Apartments seemed fairly typical of the area (tired and run down, the beach saves it) so although comments I read made on this review site are true, I am not sure the apartments quite deserve the bad reviews and low listing. The apartments need some updating to the external areas in particular which are looking very tired. The look of the actual apartment building is excellent which is a shame as the garden areas really let it down. The furniture and fixtures are old but tasteful and generally clean. Bear in mind it is listed as two star and is probably correct it being in my opinion between a 1 and 2 star.
The apartments are owned by a elderly Greek couple whose daughter Maria is responsible for it. The father has been very ill and is quite frail, it is obviously their nest egg. I am guessing they bought it before Stalis became so 'touristy' and when it was a comparatively quiet village and they are probably not savy enough business people to be able to deal with the competitive commercialised market that they now find themselves in. The apartments only seem to have one cleaner who appears to have no vacuum, no cleaning solutions or protective gloves. She does a good job considering but her being so illequipt may be partly responsible for the overall problems people have had with the cleanliness of the apartments.
''Beware'' of the tour operator (ours was Libra) we wanted another apartment but they said it was full and Iraklis was the only available one, a few other people on our holiday got this story!!!
The loo was rather a 'challenge' for me personally and if you are in anyway squeamish I wouldn't recommend you go any lower than a four star hotel.
Overall if you stay in the Iraklis apartments be ready for a 'rustic' Greek experience.
+Clean sheets and towels which were changed daily
+Bins changed daily
+Freshly painted in apartments and balconies
+Building interior and exterior walls and tiled flooring freshly painted and very clean
+Clean fridge and furniture
+Nice pleasant staff
-A few of the fixtures and fittings not working or in disrepair
-Cooker and extractor not working(perhaps system tripped )
-Kitchen and bathroom sink, table and dressing table surface, shower needed a clean and polish
-Low water pressure, so not enough water to flush loo sufficiently(I put some bleach down it
probably not meant to) and shower had very little water coming out, hot water was sporadic
-Two pools one concrete one tiled, in which the filtration system didn't seem to be visibly working, possibly potential health problem
-Old cleaning bucket and brush and loo brush left in bathroom wasn't very aesthetic
-Our studio apartment's kitchen directly outside bathroom which was not very conducive to wanting to prepare food, we ate out
-A ceiling room fan fitted as standard would have been good
-Take a travel kettle and fill with mineral water, as there is a lot of calcium in the water and leaves deposits in kettle.
-Separate single beds with wood surround so even put together you can't get together! Great if you row a lot!
-Needed new table and chairs on balcony "
- Travel date: Mon 28th of September 2009
Don't stay here!!
"No fresh sheets, No air con, towels only changed once in a wk, and they don't replace the toilet roll (they said buy your own)!!
On arrival there was no one at reception and had to call the operator to find out where our room was (the key was left in the door, not safe). The room was very very basic, and on opening the balcony door (because there's no air con) the handle came. In the morning i noticed the cooker plug had been melted and just taped up with insulation tape so never used it. The shower just works, but don't expect hot water, and there's no hook for the head so you can't stand under the dribble you do get.
The hotel is next to a busy road, and if you manage to block out the traffic noise, the fridge makes a noise like an air plane taking off every time the motor kicks in to cool it down (approx every 20mins, just as your about to nodd off)!! another couple were charged 70 euro's just to move rooms!
All this was really annoying knowing that we paid extra to stay here because the magazine said it was 3star, and closer to the beach than the other option, but this is 1 star at best, i've travelled the world and stayed in some right dive's, and this is up there with them!!
Great resort, but DO NOT stay here!!"
- Travel date: Tue 22nd of September 2009