Welcome to Kea Village, a Cycladic retreat that feels like home
There are hotels that subtly discourage you from including in your list of activities visits to the beaches, walks at picturesque villages or bar hopping in island ports. They make you, instead, stick around their own micro-world. A minuscule Cycladic paradise in a highly privileged spot of the island, Kea Village had exactly this effect on me when I visited it on a June weekend.
Kea or Tzia is the Cycladic island closest to Athens. That makes it an ideal spot for a weekend getaway. Nevertheless, it has kept an original character and it is famous for its stunning Aegean Vistas and secluded beaches. Perched on the northern hillside within the traditional village of Ioulida, Kea Village is a group of deeply calming suites that have spectacular view of the sunset and the Cycladic archipelago.
We stayed at a two storey house in pastel hues commonly found in the picturesque island “Chora” named Ioulida. A master bedroom and a living room with a huge veranda overlooking the island on the top floor and two more bedrooms on the ground floor, all ideally decorated in a laid back island style, were to be our home for the weekend.
Upon our arrival on a Friday afternoon all we needed was to relax on the sun beds of our veranda, watch the sunset and slip into the slow rhythm of island life. Yet, Kea Village is one of those hotels that by experiencing it you get to discover new things all the time. While strolling at our group of villas we found the cutest swimming pool hidden in a bush garden of Greek herbs.
Continuing our walk, we ended up to the second group of Kea Village suites all made of stone, built in a traditional way and yet another pool with dark blue water surrounded by concrete and wood deck in a minimal style. This is also where the restaurant “To Spiti sti Hora” (meaning “The house in Chora”) is found; surely a unique Cycladic spot since you feel suspended overlooking the capital of the island.
A panoramic view that only a drone could offer, mesmerizes you while you indulge in a Mediterranean cuisine experience with a gourmet twist. Chef Aggelos Makris has created a menu focusing on hand picked organically grown local products. Traditional flavours and fragrances are blended magically offering the most intriguing journey to the senses.
The culinary experience starts with an equally awesome breakfast. Guests are asked from the previous evening to choose from an impressive menu. Next morning you wake up to a huge tray filled with all kinds of local delicacies which is brought to your room at the time of your preference. What we never missed to order was the authentic Cycladic Froutalia (omelette with vegetables) the assortment of handmade breads and hams and the local cheeses. We started our day in a really blissful way enjoying breakfast with a view on our private veranda!
The man behind Kea Village
At this point it was clear to me that I had to seek the man behind the hotel. Hence, I got to meet and chat with Christos Liodakis the one who envisioned Kea village. Mr Liodakis fell in love with the island when he first visited it at a young age. He learnt a lot about hospitality while working in big hotel projects as a landscape architect. He kept on visiting Kea for his vacations and embraced the local customs and culture until he acquired his own home there and became a local himself. Eventually he started to dream about his hospitality concept being determined to respect history and location but also add a twist of modernity.
While he was narrating anecdotes from the time the hotel was being built he paused several times to recommend to clients wines handpicked from a small winery in Crete, talk on the phone with a jazz musician about a future live session from the many that are organized at the hotel and make a suggestion to the Chef. It made total sense to me. Such a multitasking and passionate hotelier can be nothing but successful.
5 + 1 reasons why you will want to go back to Kea Village
- Best pool view ever! You swim having a panoramic view of the island
- An Instagram worthy sunset that actually ends up to dreamy moments gazing at Ioulida at the sound of jazz melodies.
- An authentic culinary experience at the restaurant of the hotel “To Spiti sti Hora”
- You will enjoy precious privacy as if you had you own Cycladic villa. Kea Village is a retreat that feels like home.
- Great location. This is an ideal spot to explore Kea island with easy access to gorgeous beaches like Spathi and also a stone’s throw away from picturesque Ioulida
- Hospitality of high standards. Talking about a hotel that offers a well balanced blend of traditional island life and absolute pampering.