10 Traveller reviews from Holiday Watchdog
What a view!
"My family and I recently stayed for a 3 night stay. And yes there are a lot of stairs, but worth it when you see the view! We had a recently renovated room which was lovely, but please be aware not all rooms have a view, from our balconey we had 1/2 of a view - the other was blocked by the hotel directly in front of the Blue Dolphins. From all the information I received on the web I thought the hotel to have a perfect unobstructed view of the caldera- it just depends on which rooms you have. But the view from the breakfast area, was uninterrupted awesome caldera views! The walk into town was quite easy about 15 mins, and we always took a taxi back up the hill which was only 3 euros. We also booked a volcano/hot springs tour for 18 euros, but found the cost added to by the 8 euros to get up and down to the old port and the 2 euro charge to get onto the volcano. Worth the trip, but again just be aware of the additional costs."
- Travel date: 21st April 2007
Great place to stay in Firostefani
"We had a great stay there! The staff was very nice and the view is unbelieveble! Right in front of the main door you can rent 4 wheel motos (I recommend you to get 1)!"
- Travel date: 28th March 2007
Favourite accomodation in Greece
"Pros: Amazing view, very helpful staff, best breakfasts that we had. Clean, cozy rooms. Cons: voices apparently carries through walls easily. Fair amount of stairs down cliff to hotel - although most of the cliffside hotels had similar amounts, some more than others (attached pic of staircase, my friend is about 2/3 way up) Positive to the stairs - great view on the way down! Would definitely stay again."
- Travel date: 19th November 2006
"Stayed for 3 nights in the honeymoon suite - near the end of season and hotel willing to negotiate deals. We were really pleased - nice big balcony with good views of caldera and sunset. Room reasonable - standard double bed. Walk in shower. Not glorious but fairly spacious. Staff recommended good restaurants nearby in Firostefani. Thira itself around 10-15min - easy downhill but tough back. We really enjoyed our caldera/hot springs/ia/sunset cruise - would definitely recommend. Exellent breakfast as mentioned. Staff nice. Haven't stayed anywhere else so can't compare. Shame no pool - I felt a bit jealous looking out over the various infinity pools. Seemed good value for money - esp considering location."
- Travel date: 7th November 2006
"This hotel is awesome. As soon as we arrived Alexis was polite, helpful and ushered us straight to our room. The room was breathtaking. We had the romantic suite with a private balcony. The veiws were to die for and a dream come true. Alexis and his mum were just awesome, so helpful. They even packed us a 5am breakfast when we left so we wouldn't go away on an empty tummy!! Room was gorgeous with a little kitchenette, cd player with a great selection of cd's for relaxation etc. The location was brilliant, out of the rush of Fira but oh so close to walk to. I can't brag enough about this place, its' awesome."
- Travel date: 28th October 2006
Amazing view, manager looks like John Malkovich
"The view from the deck is unbelievable, absolutely fabulous. The apartments are pretty nice for the price. (We stayed in August and paid ~80 Euro per night, which is a good price for a place on the Caldera.) The breakfast is also very good, generous buffet. One point of criticism is that it is about 25 min from downtown Fira on foot; its a very pretty walk (along the caldera) but a bit of a hassle when you're coming home from the bars. Another bonus is the manager, who looks like a young John Malkovich."
- Travel date: 24th August 2006
"My mother, step-Dad, and myself all stayed in a two-bedroom apartment at the Blue Dolphins Apartment/hotel in Firostefani on Santorini. First off, the island, while sometimes busy and crowded, is simply magical. The views from the cliffs are unparalleled. We had a lovely view from our window looking out over the ocean and down into the culderra. The rooms were nicely furnished with dark wood furniture and local art on the walls. I wouldn't say it's a full apartment (in the traditional sense) as there is no kitchen, just a small fridge. However, the rooms are clean, comfortable, and generally quiet. The only noise was the construction outside early in the morning (but that was not the hotel's fault). The breakfast was to die for each morning: Boiled eggs, different cereals (including a yummy muesli), fresh Greek yogurt, honey (from the owner's father's own beehives), dark, rich coffee or tea, orange juice and different fresh baked breads (including a chocolate cake style bread - awesome!). We gorged ourselves! The rooms were a tremendous value as our stay included two days of car rental and a full breakfast for 3 each morning. The owner and manager are delightful - they speak English and French, and they want to help in anyway they can to make your stay more comfortable. It's not fancy - but it's lovely in its own way. I cannot recommend Santorini as a destination highly enough - and the Blue Dolphin is a great place to stay during your holiday on this Greek isle."
- Travel date: 20th July 2006
"I just got back from Greece and spent 2 nights at the Blue Dolphins Apartments. Overall, I was quite pleased. The location was very good. It was an easy walk to the shops and restaurants in Firostefani. The walk to Fira was about 20 minutes. The rate was 75â¬/night and included car rental for 2 days. Thanos (spelling?) was extremely helpful in providing suggestions for restaurants and activities. I booked a studio, but was given a large apartment. My friends stayed in a studio and it was sufficient, but the smallest room of the entire trip. There was a great common balcomy where breakfast was served. I spent 3 nights in Santorini and at the time of booking, Blue Dolphins said they could only accomodate me for 2 nights but would put me at Shine Studios for the 3rd night. Being a little skeptical, I decided to walk by Shine Studios before I made the move to check it out. I went twice and could never find it. I asked around and nobody seemed to know anything about it. The morning I was to move, I told them that I didn't want to go there. They were fine with that and didn't give me any problems. I moved to the Hotel Ira which is just in front of Blue Dolphins. This hotel was amazing, but quite a bit more expensive than Blue Dolphins. If you are looking for a simple room with a beautiful view and helpful staff, Blue Dolphins is a very good option. If you want a little more luxury, you might be disappointed."
- Travel date: 24th June 2006
Nice but dishonest
"OK, now that I have your attentionâ¦ Blue Dolphins, as a hotel, merits better than the one star rating I am giving it, but this is a cautionary tale. My main disappointment rests with the fact that the owner, Alexis, was dishonest with me when I made a booking. I wrote to them to inquire about availability and he responded the following day advising they had space available. I answered two hours later with my credit card info to reserve the room. He wrote back 2 days later to tell me they had accepted my reservation and deducted a deposit from my credit card, BUT they no longer had space at Blue Dolphins and therefore would give me a room at another hotel called Shine Studios. Not only did he not ask if this was acceptable for me and not offer any additional info, but he also neglected to mention that Shine Studios is in a lower classification and is located in the next town (Imerovigli), things I found out on my own while trying to find info on the web. When I wrote back to say this was not acceptable, he offered us a deluxe room with view and private balcony at the Shine as compensation. We accepted on the condition that if we were not satisfied upon our arrival, he would refund our deposit. As we were arriving in Santorini early in the morning, Alexis told us to make our way to Blue Dolphins where we could have breakfast (very good) and leave our luggage until the room at Shine was ready. The room at Shine was far from a deluxe suite, it was a disaster. Shine was not a hotel at all, but a room in an apartment block. The room was small. The mattress was thin and unpadded. The toilet ran continuously, even after I tried to fix it. To get hot water for the shower, we had to flip a switch and wait 30 minutesâ¦and even after doing that, it ran out of warm water after 3 minutes!!! There was no reception desk, and the people next door were not guests, they lived there. There were no locks or blinds on the window and no chairs or table on the âbalconyâ. The view from the âbalconyâ you can see in the attached photo above...not impressive. To top it all off, when we tried to call Alexis, we found the phone was broken. After finding all these problems with the room, we were disappointed. We walked to Blue Dolphins (15 minutes) and advised Alexis that we were not satisfied. At first he resisted and told us he would have to charge us a penalty, but finally admitted he was aware the room was not great, and remembered he had agreed to refund us if we were not satisfied. He also admitted he tried to pass off this room on us because he knew we were a young couple and probably wouldnât complain. To his credit though, once he admitted the above, he seemed slightly embarrassed and became very helpful and even helped us find a room at a wonderful little pension nearby called Maria Damigou. So in conclusion, from what I saw of Blue Dolphins, it seems like the best quality vs. price in Santorini. But be careful not to get tricked into staying at Shine Studios. Insist on getting what you paid for and if they canât get you a room at Blue Dolphins, book somewhere else. PS.: Blue Dolphinsâ website says a 10 minute âstrollâ to townâ¦it is more like an easy 20 minutes hike."
- Travel date: 20th June 2006
Great view and service
"Blue Dolphins was a lovely place to stay for a small trip to Santorini. Based within easy walking distance (wearing sturdy shoes to deal with cobblestones) of the main tourist town of Fira, this small hotel offered nice, clean rooms and amazing service from lovely owners. The rooms were perhaps a little small but with a balcony overlooking the fabulous view of the Caldera who will be in them for long! Breakfast was simple but very nice and the ambience of having it served on the balcony overlooking the island made it very special. The owners made sure everyting was perfect, offering very good advice as to where to eat and drink, what sights to see and even organised all transportation to and from the ferry, and a vehicle for use around the island. This was a very well-priced option for the island, for the location it is one of the cheapest options available. This does not impact on what you get though as it is a wonderful place to stay."
- Travel date: 19th June 2006