Lagoon-toting Amirandes hotel in Crete is a palatial child-friendly paradise, with sea-facing suites, a tempting choice of restaurants and an ayurvedic spa. Classic Grecian decor, beaches on the doorstep and an adventurous activity list make it a hotspot for stylish, fun-seeking families.
At the hotel
Beach, spa, salon, gym, sauna and three swimming pools (including an Olympic-size one), six restaurants, bar, kids’ club, gardens with tennis courts, playground, golf club, shops, free WiFi throughout, private car park with valet parking, DVD library. In rooms: flatscreen TV with built-in DVD player, CD player, minibar, fridge, tea- and coffee-making facilities, and Eau de Grece bath products. Villas also have a pillow menu, beach bag and a wine cooler.
Our favourite rooms
Families of four should book a Family Bungalow, which has a bedroom and a living area separated by a sliding door. Parents hooked on working out will love the Deluxe Bungalow Suites that come kitted out with their own fitness room – perfect for sneaking in some exercise when the kids are having a nap. For separate bedrooms and more space, go for one of the Villas, most of which have private terraces with outdoor lounges, a pool and direct access to the dedicated beach (solely for guests booking this type of room). Superior Rooms are smaller and so perfect for couples with just one tot in tow.
The star of the swimming show is the Olympic-size saltwater pool, with columns around the edges, underneath which you can nab a spot of shade. Nearby, there’s a shallow, unheated kids’ pool for learners. There’s a heated freshwater pool inside in the spa. Swimming aids and inflatable toys are on sale in the hotel’s shop. One-to-one swimming lessons are available (24 hours’ notice is needed). Some room categories also have a private infinity plunge pool. Most of the suites and villas have private plunge pools too.
The peaceful, grown-ups-only Elixir Spa offers ayurvedic treatments in one of seven treatment rooms. There’s also a sauna and mani/pedi room.
Forgotten something? The resort shop sells all the essentials, from nappies and sun creams to sandals and beach balls.
Babysitting requires at least 24 hours’ notice and it’s wise to request baby monitors and any other equipment you might need when booking. The spa is popular, so it’s best to secure your slot as early as possible.
Under-12s stay free in parents’ rooms; cots for babies and extra beds can be added to all room types. Some free daytime snacks and activities are also laid on for little ones.