Our Members Say
- Reviews: 1585
Xenis House -Galata: The Charm of a Country-house, Excellent hosts!
During my stay in Kakopetria and while having a stroll around the village, I came across a nice couple from Belgium who were also out enjoying the beautiful afternoon and taking photos as well. Seeing them posing and taking each other’s photo I offered to take them one with their camera. They thanked me, adding that they find Cypriots kind and they went on telling me about the Cypriot hospitality and their experience in the village. We were walking and chatting a lot so we got acquainted.
VISITING THE PROPERTY: They told me they were staying at one of Xenis studios. To make story short I was invited to their studio for a glass of wine early that afternoon.
Theirs was the garden studio so we made ourselves comfortable out in the yard. The wine was excellent and the chat went on and on. The owner showed up as well asking their guests how their day was, and I asked Andreas to show me a bit around. Both him and his Mother are wonderful people, and the little that I was there I understood that they do their best to please their guests because as they told me they want them all to have memorable holidays.
STUDIOS: Well, the stone-built property (3 studios) is worth visiting and has the local traditional charm of old country-houses with wooden-beamed ceilings and iron beds. Fully equipped kitchenette, stove, coffee/tea facilities, fridge and a toaster. The couple told me that they never bothered switching on the TV set because they prefer to be out most of the time or relax by reading a book at the beautiful courtyard and the surroundings. I had a quick look in the interior of my friends’ studio which I found cozy while to my bad luck the other two were locked since the persons staying there were out.
WI FI: No internet access available.
LOCATION: The house is centrally located in the village of Galata and in short proximity to the Square of the village with age-old oak and plane trees. Kakopetria is only a 3 minute drive, while Nicosia is 60 km away.
IN ALL: I spent a nice afternoon out here. The house is really nice, the people behind it nice and the studios are ideal for both long and short stays. The owners are excellent hosts, the surround area is breathtaking and it can be a starting point for exploring the Troodos Mountain and its beautiful villages. Ideal for year-round holidays. It is preferable to call the owners for bookings. Highly recommended.
- Reviews: 1585
ENIPNION Apartments -Kakopetria: Homely feeling, Excellent Value!
I had the opportunity to visit this stone-built property in Kakopetria recently. I was staying at another property but some friends from Limassol decided to surprise me happily and drove all the way to spend one day with me.
They booked at this property so I was given the opportunity to get the feeling of staying out here.
The word ‘Enipnion’ sounded strange to my ears but after I checked it out I found that it means ‘Dream’. The original houses were built almost a century back and the property is found in the old neighbourhood of Kakopetria.
It is a family business like several other houses that are available for rent out here while the complex consists of 3 separate buildings. There is a reception office right at the back of its beautiful courtyard.
The one my friends had was nicely furnished in a kind of traditional style -simple but nice, impeccably clean and fully equipped with nothing missing. There was an LCD TV set, plenty of space, functional and pleasant. The studio had it all and the feeling was homely. My friends were delighted with the shower Jacuzzi. The studios are well-looked after, ideal for both long and short stays.
In short proximity there are 2 supermarkets, a bank, shops, tavernas, restaurants and coffee shops mainly by the central square. Everything is within walking distance.
SERVICE: The owners are mostly around and they are people who care for their guests. It is advisable to let them know if something comes up unexpectedly, because they are there and their only aim as Yianni the son was telling us, want to make their guests feel at home but at the same time experience the authentic Cypriot hospitality.
TIP: It is a Non Pet friendly property, and Smoking is prohibited. All bathrooms have shower Jacuzzi. One out of the four studios is equipped with a big bath-tub Jacuzzi.
IN ALL: Great value for money. Highly recommended.
- Reviews: 1585
Irene's House: A Dreamy stay, Excellent Location!
I recently spent two nights at Irene’s House going out with my sister the last two days before flying back home. It was an unexpected trip actually.
The first time I heard about it was a year back from some close friends who got so excited from their stay that they thought I need to know. I only decided to go however, only after my niece told me that they spent 4 dreamy days with her fiancé at this house a month ago.
So, with my sister insisting on going, and covering for me the accommodation we made it there and we were not at all disappointed.
Irene’s House is located right in the centre of the old and very popular neighborhood of ‘Palia Kakopteria’. Only if you experience this feeling in the real old neighbourhood you can understand the significance of this village.
VILLAGE/FEELINGS: Kakopetria is both a poem and a painting. The village itself is like a beautiful painting with its ceramic coloured roofs of its old houses and its many orchards and poplars dressed in green, yellow or red. This was the feeling I had every time I was sitting outside the little tiny balcony of the house.
LIVING ROOM/KITCHEN: The wooden staircase leads to a comfortable traditionally furnished interior with wooden-beamed ceilings. The living room has a pleasant sitting area and it is one piece with the kitchen. The house provides a well-equipped kitchenette with a refrigerator, a washing machine, a microwave and an electric kettle.
There is a fireplace by the corner and an LCD Plasma TV. The other one is in the bedroom. There is central heating installation for the very cold winter days as well. The two tiny balconies one in the kitchen and the other next to the bedroom overlook the river and the Troodos Mountain.
The couple who own the house are fussy with cleanliness and this is highly appreciated. We arrived a bit earlier so we had a treat of a cup of coffee at the living room. The house was impeccably clean but suddenly I noticed that Michali had all plates, glasses, cutlery, pots and pans out and as we were chatting he was washing, drying and putting everything back in its place before handing us the keys.
I was really surprised and asked the reason. Michalis told us that every time somebody leaves, everything is washed and placed back to the cupboards before the new residents arrive. This is something you scarcely see it happening isn’t it?
The entire house is nicely decorated, fully air conditioned, and equipped well to meet the needs of demanding guests. It is split in two levels and right in the centre of the bedroom an old 4 poster metal canopy bed dominates the room.
BATHROOM: A Spa bathroom, not that large but beautifully decorated, with a corner Jacuzzi, candles, slippers, toiletries and clean fresh towels.
WI FI: Internet access is free.
TIP: 1) The house can easily accommodate 4 guests. In a similar case, the 4th guest can be accommodated at an extra bed. 2) Logs for the fireplace are provided free of charge only on the first night. Guests will be charged from then on for the rest of the nights if they need it.
3)In short proximity there is a free parking lot available, a Supermarket for the daily necessities and very close and around the central Square there are shops, tavernas, a Bank and several Coffee shops.
IN ALL: The stay here is totally different from staying in hotels or hotel apartments. Private with much peace and quiet we relaxed and filled our batteries. I believe people visiting Kakopetria should know about the existence of this traditional guest house. I highly recommend it for all the above reasons. Stalo and Michali are excellent hosts and the house has a nice positive energy throughout. I would really love to return but this time I want to come here in winter.
- Reviews: 1585
The Mill Hotel: The Jewel of Kakopetria -Steady Value!
I spent 4 amazing days in Kakopetria on my recent 3 week Business trip to Cyprus and I consider the Mill Hotel where I picked to stay, the landmark of the village. Of course this was not the first time I was here. It is a place you will fall in love and I am sure you will want to visit again and again.
LOBBY-CHECK-IN: The lobby and reception are to be found on the second floor. Checking-in was smooth, swift and efficient and the ladies out there were very friendly like always. It is pleasant to be here the year round, either sitting by the fireplace or overlooking the mountain-view on the terrace. On this same floor there is a sauna as well, but it is available upon request.
LOCATION: Perched atop the river that runs through the village it enjoys the flowing river and overlooks the old village which is unique in architecture and is like a huge, open-air museum. Mind you, the village is the only one of its kind in Cyprus and the Mill Hotel is just 5km from the summit of the Troodos Mountain.
THE HOTEL: Pictures do not and cannot do it justice. I consider it the perfect mountain retreat for holidays and relaxation. The view is breathtaking so if you need to get away from the heat and seek peace and tranquility it is the perfect place to be. It certainly worth a couple of hours drive to swap the frantic life for a laid back and relaxing stay. I urge tourist not to leave Cyprus without even just for once drop by to experience this unbelievably authentic hospitality of the owners and the warm welcoming of the staff. I am positive the stay will be memorable, peaceful and fulfilling. The people here are professionals and the amazing with this hotel is that there are many repeaters.
MY SUITE: The suite was really huge and elegant and the interior exquisite. With its exposed beams and rock, the contrast of the emerald green carpet and terra cotta tiles, the elegant seats with pretty cushions make it a unique place to relax and enjoy the tranquility of the surroundings. The colour of the interiors harmoniously balances with the texture and space.
You seldom come across teak wood in such extend while the balcony doors and window shutters are so heavy and tough that reminded me of those we see in old castles. The interior has a touch of tradition.
The suite enjoyed a really big balcony that overlooked the old village and the slopes (a breathtaking view) while the sound of the waters below made the stay memorable. (The sound of waters and birds can be heard throughout the village as you take a stroll). You rarely come across such divine country-like accommodation and I had really missed it. My previous visit here was some years back where I spent 8 memorable nights with my husband enjoying part of our summer holidays. Now that I am back, I pleasantly noticed that the Business continues to keep its steady value. In all, it has a lovely rustic feel and after renovations it is still in a very good condition.
BATHROOM: It was spacious with a huge mirror covering a big part of the wall and a marble stand and sink for washing the hands. There is also a Jacuzzi bath tub and a shower but this time instead of the usual aromatic salts, the hotel provides complimentary a Shampoo and a Bath gel. It is the very popular Tamana Organic Line. Towels are changed daily. When I asked for a Body Milk I was brought one, but I did not have one the first day.
Coffee/Tea facilities are not provided but there is always the restaurant on the 3rd floor where you can have whatever you wish. It stays open the whole day till very late at night. There is a mini bar in the suite providing a wide selection of spirits, soft drinks and chocolates…in reasonable cost. There is also a Safe and a hair-drier as well.
TIP: It is well worth paying the extra for the junior suite.
WI FI: Free Wi Fi access throughout the premises.
BREAKFAST: It is served at the dining area of the restaurant and is buffet style. It had everything to fill you up till late afternoon. I would not call it ‘continental’ as the brochure indicates. I would call it a Generous one, however when there are not so many guests it is served individually. I had no idea about this myself so when I showed up a bit late the second morning I thought that I arrived much late and I missed it. In this case, the waiter who is very friendly asks you exactly what you wish to have and it is served directly to your table. Personally I prefer this type of service than buffets but I enjoyed both.
THE RESTAURANT: The Mylos restaurant prides for its succulent trout, but in all I found the cuisine exquisite and very interesting. Whatever I tried was superb and the portions are huge.
There are professional members of the family who are Chefs and cooks here and I asked to meet them to congratulate them for the excellent dishes I tried throughout my stay. This is how I found out about the people behind the restaurant.
Besides the Mylo’s Special Trout that is beyond compare (€18.00) and I highly recommend, I tried the Grilled Prawns for €24.00, and the Pepper tender sirloin for €15.00. The latter was juicy and spice to the extent that was pleasing, and the Prawns were divine.
The Village Salad costs €13.00 -virgin olive oil is used and you could tell that it was freshly cut minutes before serving. I also tried and loved the Avocado Vinaigrette starter (€4.75) I found it refreshing. The smoked Salmon is a starter you should not miss (€6.50) It was amazingly tasty!
There are Cold and Hot Starters like Prawn Cocktail, Grilled Lounza (4 pieces) Stuffed Red Peppers with Spicy Hot Feta Cheese, Cyprus Homemade Sausage, Grilled Mushrooms and several more ranking from €4.00 - €6.50.
Very popular are the Pork Filets with Commandaria and they cost €15.00. There are 7 different Steak dishes ranking from €14.00 and it is the Sirloin (cooked on the grill and is served with French fries or jacket potato) while the most expensive one is the T. Bone which costs €29.00. I cannot comment on this because I have not tried it but I am sure it is excellent like the rest of what I had.
Burgers rank between €5.50 with the Hamburger being the cheapest and both the Cheeseburger with Bacon & Chips and the Chicken Breast in Bund and Chips cost €7.25.
The cheese platter costs €9.00.
BEVERAGE: The Local Keo beer small bottle costs €2.65 while the big one is at €3.50. The wine I really loved and accompanied my dishes with, was one of the excellent wines coming from the ‘Vlassides’ family winery. The owner can recommend the best that really matches with what you order …only ask for it. It is amazing how much the owners care for their guests so don’t be surprised to see them coming to your table and ask about the food or your stay.
Both Father and Son are a wealth of information on things to see and do in the area and no matter how busy they might be they will make the time to sit and chat making your stay a memorable experience. (As you can see, prices are quite reasonable).
TIP: There are special dishes for both vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike. Because the restaurant is always busy, it is advisable to make a reservation firstly to secure a better spot but also to assure that you will find a table.
DON’T MISS: If you love culture and history approach Mr. Yianni the owner. There is nothing in the area that he misses, and by all means don’t leave without visiting the Church of Ayios Nicholas tis Stegis. There are several monasteries and Old Churches many of the UNESCO Sites.
IN ALL: My stay here is one to remember thanks to the warm hospitality and friendliness of the owners, the unbeatable team and staff. They do their best to make their customers feel valued guests and this is how I felt out here.
Keep the good work up guys. You are a bunch of professionals and you have proved it through all these years that we guests keep coming back. I owe you a big Thank You.
- Reviews: 1585
Casale Panayiotis Traditional Village: A “Small village” in the Village”-Earthly PARADISE
My stay at the Casale can be described as a dreamy experience. On every trip to Cyprus I try to include one or two Agro-Hotels in my Guides and this time I grabbed the opportunity since I was in Nicosia staying at the Hilton to visit it for 3 nights. It is only an hour’s drive from the city centre by car.
STAFF: I cannot say that all are professionals, but the majority is. One or two are learning to become… I found them friendly and attentive. Paulina is a passionate manageress, -the heart of the business, unbelievably capable, loyal, and hard-working. She is very co-operative with everyone, always with a good word and a smile.
Well, what is Casale like? It is like a “small village” in the picturesque Village of Kalopanayiotis, located on the foothills of Troodos. At Casale it is possible to have neighbours local people…isn’t this wonderful? The ‘unit’ as I call it, overlooks the cliff and lies above the river Setrahos. You will love it no matter what season you come up here. It was autumn when I came to Kalopanayiotis 2 years back and it was just as magic as it is now in January. Of course it is a complete different picture and feeling but the beauty is a fact!
LOCATION:The setting is exquisite, quiet and calm mountain view perfect for retreats, business meetings, corporate events and honeymoons. The Casale is situated among other buildings in a traditional Cyprus village setting overlooking the historic monastery of St. Ioannis Lambadistis. You certainly need a car out here although I went by bus myself and it cost just one euro from Nicosia. Get the bus from “Kolokasi Bus Station” The bus will drop you off outside the Bank of Cyprus in Kalopanayiotis and you have to walk all the way down the steep road for less than half a km to Casale.
The place is still expanding and with the progress of work it gets more and more beautiful. With the completion of the sulphur springs Spa, shortly the place will be turned into an earthly paradise. Kalopanayiotis is known for its sulphur springs and the gurgling of the river below the property can be heard all over this dreamy place. For tourists this spot out here will give a taste of the real Cyprus and I find it to be the perfect getaway for anyone.
Casale is not simply an Agro-hotel. It is like a small cultural village in reality and this is what makes it so different, unique and very special. The accommodation is sited in 6 independent traditional houses each one different from the other. Some have fireplaces, others don’t but each has a unique character and different facilities. They are the Maratho, Troullino, Eliako, Byzantino, Laouri and Kastri -18 in all, -rooms and suites.
TROULLINO: I stayed at Troullino, one of the three independent traditional guesthouses. Mine was the one on the ground floor….no balcony but directly set in the garden. The concept of the different rooms scattered in the 3 different houses of Troullino makes you feel more at home. Troullino’s cobblestone charming courtyard was fully equipped with stylish white bamboo garden facilities which were adding to the serenity.
ROOM: My superior studio actually used to be a stable 100 years back, and the entrance door might even be the authentic one from those days. The interior after renovation is charming with a combination of rustic, rococo and shaker style pieces of furniture on a small scale,-very tastefully done. A blend of modern comfort is combined with some original features creating the traditional feeling and an apparent quality.
The windows have the original old wooden shutters but inside they are nicely decorated with traditional hand-made lace curtains, beautiful linen, a nice comfortable bed with wood carvings, while beautiful lamp-shades decorate the ceiling. Equipped with kitchenette and a small fridge with very little crockery –for a snack though and not to fix a meal. The room indeed has that exquisite quality and character I am after. Through my travelling I try to spot some really nice traditional accommodations but this exceeds by far any other I have come across so far.
A big bowl of seasonal fruit -many of it coming from the owner’s farm and orchards, and a bottle of “Soufas” red wine, coming from Paphos winery were indeed a nice gesture and highly appreciated.
BATHROOM: Top line at every aspect. Light and space is what I am after in a bathroom besides anything else and here there was ample of both. Bright white towels/ slippers/robes/ magnifying mirror/ tissue kit and toiletries were placed on the right hand wooden shelf stand. The hotel is using the German products “Pure Herbs” which I happen to know well for their excellent quality and texture. I could never imagine that I would find them out here! All these are enough to pamper the guest but for more I recommend that you visit the Spa.
SPA: An old traditional stone-built homestead has been turned into an amazing SPA combining modern furnishings with tradition. The relaxing lounge of the Spa is something I am not going to describe….only to make you go there. It is the perfect place to unwind, indulge and relax in the light of candles and soft music. You can take your tea out there, sit back and start making only positive thoughts. It is very different to what I have ever come across.
The Spa has lined up several tempting cost-saver propositions for its guests who appreciate the benefits of top-to-toe treatments for beauty and wellbeing. I can speak highly of the couple Desi and Tom Cheva. They are truly professional experts. I recommend the Li’tya Mirri, an Aboriginal inspired pressure point facial massage that helps to relieve stress and tension whilst a scalp and shoulder massage clears the mind. The therapy lasts 45 min –Cost is only 45 euro. I had a combination of Full body relaxing and Deep tissue massages. The first one costs 50 euros while the second one 55. They last 60 minutes each. Tomy is the top of tops on the massage and the price is unbelievably logical. Tommy can spot the pain and works on that specific area to relieve deep seated tension from the muscles. If you plan staying at the Casale, be sure to pre-book your treatments along with your booking.
BREAKFAST: I have never before been served such good quality traditional breakfast, so tasty along with a smile! You will surely feel the Cypriot hospitality out here. For me when I am out at a restaurant it is not the quantity that counts but the quality and the way food is served. Don’t expect a long buffet. On the contrary, I felt a personal touch of service and this counts for me more. Here the guest feels at home and I honestly felt that.
I tried some amazing halloumi (Cypriot cheese) a very tasty sausage and had a fried egg. There were two different pies that were outstanding. What a treat! The guest can taste several home made jams, marmalades, and cakes! I cannot find words to thank Mrs. Antigoni -an asset to the business. She was kind enough to offer to drive me along in her car to the farmhouse where I had the chance to have a stroll and see the platform where guests can go for rod fishing. Guests can taste the fruit directly from the trees of the orchards.
RESTAURANT: Beautifully decorated with soft colours and taste Byzantino is a unique spot for Traditional Cypriot dishes ideal for intimate evenings with friends. There is a fireplace for the cold winter days/nights, but guests can also dine outside at the balcony, -weather permitting. Imagine dining on the wooden balcony while listening to the sound of the water in the river flowing right below.
I highly recommend the ‘meze’. I counted more than 16 different plates and Maria who is the cook told me that ingredients are fresh and sourced from local producers with many coming from the farm and orchard of the owners as well. Try the grilled haloumi topped with fig marmalade. It is heavenly and it was included in the meze, but also the Lamp’s Ankle, or the amazing recipe of ‘koupepia’ that reminded me of my grandmother’s recipe. The Cypriot sausage was also outstanding and ‘pastitsio’ was exceptional. Try ‘purgouri’ with kebab. It is a traditional dish nicely cooked by Maria.
The grilled salmon I had the next day was cooked to perfection. The trout is also another signature dish of the restaurant worth trying. If you are here for only one night, undoubtedly ask for meze. Manoli will help you choose the appropriate wine to match your meal. He is a great guy, very attentive and a professional. Some are typical dishes but they are presented with creativity and inspiration. Do not leave without trying the mouth watering home-made traditional spoon sweets. They are unbeatable! Portions are big and I found prices reasonable.
Wi Fi: Internet is fast in the room and it costs 5 euros for 2 hours, 15 for 24, but the guest can have it for free at the coffee shop ‘kafenio’ and the guest lounge.
CULTURAL CENTRE: It has a touch of glamour and elegance and serves as a conference and cultural centre. It is a spot that will travel you.
TIPS: Take the nearby trail and get to the Monastery of St. John Lambadistis –a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Explore the local surroundings on a nature trail featuring natural healing spa waters, medieval stone bridges and a traditional watermill.
Enjoy fishing in the village dam or participate in village and country farm activities.
Go for skiing, or take a ride to the slopes of Troodos.
Visit the Monastery of Kykkos.
The other alternative is to simply relax in the beautiful environment of the Casale.
In all it was an amazing trip and experience. I met lovely people, left behind friends, felt the authentic Cypriot hospitality and I can’t wait to be back when the Spa swimming pool will be finished. Thank you guys and do keep the good work up. I have missed you all already!
- Reviews: 1585
Semiramis Hotel: Great Accommodation, Amazing Hospitality!
The “Semiramis” is one of my favourite Hotels in Platres. I have come here the previous year when it was under the supervision of Agi Iacovides the Hotel owner but Niki, Agi’s sister is running it this year. The hotel is situated in Pano Platres – a very popular mountain resort.
Semiramis Hotel attracts guests the year round because many locals find Platres the ideal retreat from the heat of the coastal areas in summer, and it is also popular with skiers in winter who find refuge here as Mount Olympus is only 9 kms away. Of course Platres is known all over for the nightingales that come during the months of April and May. How can one resist the beauty of autumn with the colourful and scenic view and beauty of nature!
It is a unique structure of the early 1900’s and it retains its classic 1920’s style that surely stands out among the other buildings. It has bestowed the honour of granting protected status by the Cypriot Government and the European Union. The interior design blends with traditional hospitality providing an ambience that is a guarantee for the demanding visitor. I come here because I love exactly this style, the surround area, and the people who owe it. It is very different from the rest of the hotels here, and it stands out as a gem in Platres. You cannot pass-by without noticing it.
There was a TV set in the room but if you are in Platres you surely won’t bother even to listen to the news! Don’t expect to have an ice box in your room either. Instead you are given a Cypriot clay jug with cold spring water. These clay jugs keep the water cool for many hours and you can kindly ask to have them refilled. This is how water was kept cool from ancient years! This is tradition.(Ask for it if you notice that there is not in the room).
I had room #4 which was nicely decorated overlooking to the amazing garden and the high pine trees that stand at the side of the hotel. I loved the bathroom with the low ceiling. It was like an attic and through the window I could see as far as the coast of Limassol. It was as if I was looking at a nice piece of painting when I was looking through the window, and the window was the actual frame.
Breakfast was more than adequate with grilled halloumi cheese and lountza, a fried egg, marmalade, honey, and coffee. For the first time I had the chance to have my breakfast out in the beautiful garden next to the pine trees. It was just amazing!
The mountain air is so fresh and clean and the birds will surely wake you early in the morning because they are all over in Platres. I spare these moments in my memory now and long to return and wake up from tweets of birds and the gurgling of water which can be heard throughout Platres.
The people who are running the hotel now are still members of the family and there is Jack (Iakovos) the Father who is always around to help with the guests. He is always around until the last guest returns to lock the entrance door, but he would give the guest tips of the round area, and help in any way he can to make the guests’ stay more comfortable.
When you come to Platres I urge you to walk the KALIDONIA TRAIL which is only 2 Kms and the walk is pleasant and easy especially during this season.
Avoid wearing slippers if you plan walking there.
There is always a good reason to return here as it is one of my favourite destinations with much beauty around, just 39 Kms from Limassol and only 9 Kms from Troodos.
I love the simplicity and elegance of the interior the subtle alliance of soft light colours, the natural wood piece of furniture and the new textiles that combine to the contemporary yet soothing atmosphere.
- Reviews: 1585
"Vouni Lodge" Angelica House: Traditional Accomodation, Tranquillity!
I wanted to include one or two Traditional Country Houses in my Guides on this trip to Cyprus and decided to book at Vouni Lodge. I read that the village is small and very picturesque with beautiful cobblestone alleys that made me curious to visit for some photos. I always urge people visiting Cyprus to spend at least two or three days in Agro Hotels or Country Houses because here they can find the Authentic Cypriot, the Cypriot culture and taste the island’s warm hospitality of locals.
The “Real Cyprus” is found here in the beautiful countryside of the island and not out at the beach Resorts that are scattered all over the island.
The village of Vouni is accessible by bus from Limassol in case somebody is on budget and cannot afford to hire a car. Buses are very affordable in Cyprus, and I paid just One Euro to come here from Limassol. I took Bus #40 from opposite the Old Hospital and had a pleasant and interesting drive through other little villages (Kandou, Souni, Kyvides, Ayios Ambrosios). There is a smaller bus at Ayios Amvrosios that is waiting there and in seconds after I arrived with some others the driver drove us to Vouni! So, the access is very simple, the drivers were really helpful and talkative and seemed to know nearly all the people on the bus. Because Vouni is very close to Limassol I can say it is ideally located for both country and beach lovers the whole year round.
It is nestled in the foothills of the Troodos range in the heart of the wine region. I loved my strolls in the picturesque village with quaint cobble-stone streets, the traditional old houses many of which date back to Venetian times, -houses with archways and courtyards full of colourful flowers with a stunning scenery all around. It is an ideal little village to come to, especially for people who are after a tranquil holiday to rest on the large terrace, to have breakfast under the olive tree of the garden in the morning sunshine and enjoy the view over the village and the mountains around.
The house “Vouni Lodge” is right at the entrance of the village. It is a two storey stone house built more than 200 years ago. Mrs. Helen Diomidous who is the owner has restored the building to its original splendour. I had one of the three separate one-bedroom apartments -the Vasilika which consisted of a separate bedroom apartment that can take 2 more persons (children mostly) in the large sitting area.
It was fully equipped with all the necessary amenities. The apartments are ideal for both summer and winter because they have central heating as well as a fire place.
I met some very interesting people here by the way. It was the president ‘mouhtaris’ of the village Mr. Nikolas and Yiannos the secretary. Mr. Nikolas took me around to see the most interesting spots in the village and I want to thank him for this. Along with us we had one of the two couples who were staying at the Lodge as well.
There are three restaurants in the village but I had the chance to visit the two. The other one was closed.
It is “Takis Taverna”, popular with local dishes, and the Hellenic Traditional Cuisine “Orea Hellas” which I will write separately about each restaurant and which I highly recommend. I found authentic people here, amazing dishes, and real Cypriot hospitality!
I visited the school with the president of the village Mr. Nikolas and I came across the youngest lady of the village who is Antonia who runs the school’s canteen. Antonia makes home-made rice puddings, mahalepi – a Cypriot delicacy, and serves snacks, coffee, soft drinks and beer. It was a clever idea and way to keep the beautiful school premises open. The view from the school is stunning. Usually when the village’s coffee shops close early in the afternoon, locals come here to watch TV and have some coffee or a snack before returning home.
- Reviews: 1585
Ambelikos Traditional House- Potamitissa: Unique Spot for Exploring-Bird watchers' favorite!
I have visited Ambelikos Agrohotel two more times since my last review on TripAdvisor, both in March and again in May. This time I was with a group of 8 friends from Greece for 6 nights.
The location is superb and as it is high up in the Troodos range, so centrally located towards all four sides around the range, we found it a unique spot to start our exploring from Potamitissa towards several attractions, ancient churches and picturesque little villages, not excluding several wineries. My friends were amazed with the beauty of the surroundings -coming here for the first time. The village of Potamitissa is really small and there is not much you can do here, but what excited them was the fact that we would set out early each day and return late in the afternoon from the different nearby walking trails or the beautiful villages like Laneia, Trimiklini, Agros, Pelendri, Omodos, Kykkos Monastery and Platres resort and even on the other side of the Troodos range, the beautiful villages of Kakopetria, Kalopanayiotis, and Pedoulas. All these are within a short distance and Ambelikos is the unique spot for daily trips. The best of all is that it is not more than 45 minute drive from Limassol,and Nicosia.
We were flexible with meals, and we arranged each morning what we wanted for dinner and the time we wished to dine. One or two times Aki would sit with us offering us a glass of wine and recommending places to visit the following day. His suggestions were greatly appreciated because he knows the area well.
The nearby short walking path becomes more and more beautiful every time I come here depending on the season. The singing and twittering of birds and the gurgling waters in the river that passes through the village of Potamitissa makes the stay here unforgettable. From dawn till late at night you can hear the birds and the river below.
Honestly speaking I picked to visit Ambelikos in May because of the nightingales and my friends decided to follow.
We had 6 different rooms, each one with a different character and style. To be honest I could not easily decide what to choose. Ambelikos is a hidden gem indeed and I consider it a perfect retreat for nature lovers, artists, cyclists, skiers (depending on the season) and in all, the perfect spot for both exploring, and relaxation.
This charming boutique-like hotel gave us the chance to fill our batteries. Our stay was a breathe of fresh air indeed, and I felt happy that my friends and I had a wonderful time away from the big commercial chain hotels….lost in this small natural paradise we felt sad that we had to leave.
I just returned from this beautiful hotel two days ago, and I have already booked to visit it again in June when I will be in Cyprus again.
- Reviews: 1585
Forest Park Hotel in Platres: Nature Lovers' Spot for Exploring and Relaxation
As I start writing my comments about Forest Park I have a quick look on what other people wrote. I really cannot understand the nonsense of some people. I am sure there are those who write deliberately to harm the hotel. I am a guide writer and I am on the go most of the time. I visit different hotels very often. I believe the majority of people don’t know how to ask politely for something. For instance…yes there are no coffee or tea facilities in the room. I have politely asked for one and I was brought in my room in minutes.
I am reading complains about the management of the hotel, and out of my experience I found the most professional people here. The owner Mr. Hercules and his brother Antony who are the directors seem to know well their business.
Forest Park hotel is an imposing building with great history standing amidst 20 acres of forest and gardens. It is well preserved, and if you are a bit romantic you can imagine the late King Farouk of Egypt, and Princess Royal Mary of England staying here and Daphne du Maurier spending a whole month at the premises writing “Rebecca” ….these to mention a few! Many Arab Sheikhs used to come to this hotel in the late 80’s and early 90’s. The Forest Park Hotel is family run and under the personal supervision of the owners, now in their fourth generation. I spent 3 nights here on this visit, but many years ago when much younger I visited it again. This stay brought good and happy memories of the past!
Both my room and bathroom were spacious and comfortable, very clean with many towels and toiletries. I surely appreciated the pre-filled water jar with cold water and the mini bar. There was a satellite TV… but who cares watching TV if in such a beautiful environment! My balcony was overlooking the beautiful gardens with the very high trees and lush vegetation with the swimming pool. I used to sit and enjoy the afternoon sun and hearing the birds singing. In May, Platres is full of nightingales and this was one of the reasons I am here. Breakfast was adequate and there was a variety of different things to choose from. I loved the idea of how they had halloumi in warm liquid (milk)? So, it looked like gum when you were chewing it. I only had dinner once at the premises which I enjoyed, because most of the time I am eating light and yoghurt will do for me in the evening. A treat I had from the owner Mr. Hercules was a glass of some fine very old 150 old Commandaria Cypriot wine. (see photo)
The hotel is ideal for people of all ages coming here to either relax, take long walks, cycle, ski, enjoy horse riding, climbing and in all, nature lovers. The Kalidonia and Millomeri Falls in Platres and the many other paths scattered all around the Troodos range are within a short distance. I used to walk a lot after breakfast covering a distance of at least 13 kms each day. In the evening the heated indoor swimming pool was the perfect place to exercise for another 1.30 minutes, making my stay here at this hotel unforgettable. I long to return again in winter with snow outside and me swimming in the indoor heated pool on the 2nd floor.
The only drawback which I have to mention is the fact that there is no free internet access. The card costs 2.5 euro for 30 minutes and the worst is that you have to sit in the lounge to do your work. In all, it was a pleasant 3 night stay, with much to see and do in the whole round area and in the hotel as well. I strongly recommend it, and I urge people to come here to relax and have fun.
- Reviews: 1585
Ambelikos Traditional House in Potamitissa: A Small Paradise,Tasty Food,Excellent Hospitality
I spent 4 days at Ambelikos in March again, visiting it for a second time because it is a place for peace and quiet which is what I really needed.
This time I told Aki the manager about the one and only bad comments I read concerning Ambelikos from one reader commenting on the scrambled eggs and the trout and I wanted so much to check this out. There was another couple that day and we asked Aki to make some scrambled eggs for us. This time we had a big laugh because Aki informed me that from that day on his scrambled eggs are called “Aki’s scrambled eggs” and I can assure they were very tasty, and we all loved them.
As for the trout I cannot find words to describe the passion with which Aki was filling them with lemon slices, garlic and parsley. They were the best I have ever tasted without cream or silly sauces.
The small village of Potamitissa at this time of year was a paradise. The trees and plants in full blossom, wild orchids and violets on the banks of the river, and all guests taking long walks out in the country-side or short trips in the beautiful round area.
Aki is always present to advice or help his guests and what I observed all these 4 days out there was that he would always bring more and more extras to the guests to taste many of which for free. We had friendly chats and he was telling me that what he really wants is to please his guests….and he surely succeeds in doing this.
In the evening after dinner we would gather in the dining room and together with the other couple we would chat and enjoy some wine next to the fireplace, -a treat from the hotel mostly. Aki’s father would visit us for a game of backgammon after dinner. He played with one of the guests. It was great fun believe me. I felt like home with all this hospitality and kindness.
I have only the best memories from this hotel once again, and I recommend it to people who really need to be out in the nature and clean air. Potamitissa is a very small village, so don’t expect to find anything there, but I can assure that you can find everything you need in the hotel of Ambelikos.
- Reviews: 1585
Semiramis Hotel in Platres: A Classic Hotel, and an Amazing Stay!
Surrounded by a forest this beautiful hotel has a Classic style and gives you the impression that you are at home. The owners were really friendly. Mr. Iacovos looks after the hotel, and his son Agi is the owner of the Village tavern.
Centrally located in the heart of Platres, a superb family run hotel that you want to go there again and again.
There are different rooms small and much bigger, and even if I was given a small one it was cozy and comfortable and clean -besides most of the time I was out walking. Platres is not a place to sit in but be out in nature, walk next to the waterfall and listen to the gurgling of water and the singing of birds.
I noticed that there was not a coffee teapot in the room and I asked for one and I was immediately given. I was also given a clay pot with some cold fresh water to have next to my bed for the night because there is not an ice box in the room. There was an extra electric heater brought to my room because Iacovos told me that after 10:00pm the main central heating is off. That was very kind of him and it was not a problem at all.
The hotel’s main areas are nicely furnished and decorated. There was no buffet in the morning but you are asked what exactly you wish to have for breakfast and you are brought the moment you get in the dining room. I find this very clever because everything is fresh and prepared the moment you want it.
My balcony was overlooking the wood and the high pine trees. I could sit for hours out there just looking at the trees and listening to the birds. My stay was really short but I will arrange and spend more days on a next visit.
I highly recommend it, and I left with the best impressions and all positive thoughts.
- Reviews: 1585
'Lofou Agrovino": “The Real Authentic Cypriot Hospitality!”
I spent two nights at Agrovino studios. My studio was number 3 and it was amazing, cozy and comfortable. The en-suite facilities were of a high standard.
My studio had a washing machine and a big fridge. It was fully equipped for self catering, but I had no intention to cook inside. In my private courtyard there were two studios but I was just on my own the days of my stay. The studio had the traditional Cypriot décor with a comfortable bed, a sitting room and kitchen all in one.
The walls were all made of stone, and the colours of the whole interior décor were natural and so warm.
Costa the owner has the tarvern of the village which is usually closed on Mondays, but he always opens at night if he has guests in his studios. There was no other tavern open for lunch and I did not find even a bakery to buy something during the day. It was a bit difficult for me, but in the evening the tavern was open for the people staying in the studios so it was fine as there was a variety of dishes to choose from, all tasty and fresh. Costa told me that the products are mainly from the family’s garden.
There is no internet access in the studios, but there is the Agrovino Coffee shop where people who need internet access can go there instead. I was disappointed though because it was a Monday and this was closed as well.
The owner Mr. Costa Violaris is an excellent host and a very good cook himself. I saw a certificate on the wall from the Cyprus Tourism Organization for his excellent Cypriot cuisine valid till the 20th November 2008. It is a family run business and I strongly recommend a visit to Agrovino hotel to people who want to get a taste of the real Cypriot culture.
- Reviews: 1585
"Olga's Katoi" in Kalopanayiotis: A Traditional and Hospitable House to come to!
I spent 2 nights at Olgas Traditional House. From the very first moment I arrived the landlords Mrs. Agni and Dinos Papaioannou made my stay exceptional. I have never met such hospitable people, a couple whose only abstraction is to make their visitors feel comfortable, like home.
My room had a panoramic view from its huge verandah , overlooking the Marathasa Valley. It was as if I was standing in front of a painting!
I felt the Traditional human touch of Authentic Cypriots two people I will never forget. Mrs. Agni wants to please her guests, and I had the chance to taste the real Cypriot cuisine here.
This traditional house surrounded with this natural beauty is unique for relaxation, for outdoor excursions, for people who want to feel the warmth of the Cypriot hospitality.
I however, have noticed one or two cons which I owe to mention. I could have stayed longer if I just had an internet access but I was told that very soon this will be arranged. A need of small refrigerator is a must in the room.
The main house consists of a huge sitting room where guests can gather around the fireplace during winter, listen to music or watch TV. There is no tv set in the rooms but people who come here surely don’t bother watching tv since there are other more interesting things to do here.
The price for each bed is 35 euros including a rich breakfast which I find very reasonable. Agni is a specialist in the Cypriot cuisine. She can cook for you anything you ask.
I could never believe that I would have the chance to become such good friends with these people because their kindness and hospitality is obvious!
Thank you Agni and Dinos….I am coming back really soon to see you.
This specific business is unfortunately at this time of year UNDER RENOVATION!
I have arranged to return as soon as it opens again, although somebody who wishes to spend the night out there can do it but there is lots of noise because of works. So, you better have this in mind!
- Reviews: 1
Acorn Villa: The best accommodation I have stayed in Cyprus.
We stayed at Acorn Villa last month, it's a 3 bed villa in Lania ,Limassol, on the foothills of the Troodos mountains.
We loved having the house to ourselves and having the breakfast things ready for us when we arrived, all the tea /coffee /cereals /orange juice and breads, there's a kitchenette with kettle / toaster /fridge and microwave (no cooker though)and all the crockery. plenty for what we needed, as we ate out everynight at the local tavernas.
The 4 poster bed was a great plus, and the views from the villa are fantastic.
It is very peaceful and private,and was the holiday I was looking for, close enough if we wanted to go to any other towns and beach yet in the tranquil surrounds of the Troodos.
A few minutes to Trimikilini village which as a fantastic bakery and supermarket.
Lania also as a taverna / cafe and a coffee shop , museums, winery, olive press,a treat to step back in time, and quite popular with tourists.
I would definately recommend to anyone, it's prices are unbeatable, we paid 300 Euros for 1 week and that was including breakfast things and drinks. and because there were 4 of us , we would have had to book 2 rooms, so we saved a few 100 on this alone.
Ideal for walkers / nature lovers/ touring around the island .
I feel as though I've seen the real side of Cyprus on this holiday.
The views are the best I've had in accommodaton in Cyprus.
The rooms are spacious, and the lounge has windows facing south /west /north.
Very clean .
Loved sitting out on the garden swing to watch the sun set.
- Reviews: 26
We haven't stayed here but have ridden through on our bicycles many times.
This looks like quite a lovely campground with lots of trees and picnic tables. Facilities include grilling areas ("fireplaces"?), bathrooms (of the "hole-in-the-ground" type) and a children's playground. Not having stayed there myself, I'm only listing what I've seen to be available.
So there may not be much in terms of facilities but this is more than compensated by the environment (really nice), the weather (pleasant mountain air) and the price. The price? Free. (Can't get much better than that.)
Situated in a lovely pine forest, this campground has been completely empty since I first discovered it. This, I would attribute to the lack on interest on the part of the locals (they're much more "into" 4 star hotels and such and would find "camping" to be quite a miserable affair) and the lack of information on the part of tourist agencies and tourists themselves.
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