Discovering the ultimate escape at Mandraki Beach Resort, Hydra. Unwinding in a luxurious beachfront suite, savoring exquisite cuisine, and exploring the island’s rich history and stunning landscapes


Some hotels transcend the typical accommodation expectations, offering not only gourmet dining, luxury, and breathtaking views but also a unique piece of land on the Earth imbued with something intangible yet profoundly vital. Mandraki Beach Resort on the beautiful island of Hydra is one such place. Imagine a sanctuary that’s not just a retreat but a springboard for physical and mental adventures—a genuine cocoon of comfort. This is a place where the air feels lighter, the sound of the waves whispers secrets of forgotten eras, and your soul finds the relaxation it’s been secretly craving. Two years ago, I enjoyed staying in the Tower Suite at Mandraki Beach Resort. It quickly became one of my top three rooms with a view. This year, I returned to experience the beachfront suites, and it did not disappoint.

Arriving at Mandraki: A Journey Through History

Even getting to Mandraki is special. You approach by boat, gliding over sparkling waters with anticipation building. The gentle sway of the sea and the salty breeze create a magical atmosphere. Fortress structures on either side of the bay make it feel like you’re stepping back in time.

Each wave washes away stress, and every breeze brings a sense of peace. The boat ride showcases Hydra’s secluded coves, charming houses, and stunning landscapes, hinting at what makes Mandraki Beach Resort unique. As you near the bay, original cannons and relics from the 1800s greet you, blending history with tranquility. Here, in this historical bay, Admiral Andreas Miaoulis’ ships were built and launched in the 1800s to protect Greek seas.

Beachfront Bliss at Hydra

From the door of my suite to the beach was just 42 steps. Yes, I counted them. Having the beach so close to the suite was a rare luxury on an island where swimming from rocks is the norm. This proximity to the sea was a constant delight, allowing for spontaneous swims at any time of the located.

Inside, the suite felt like a sanctuary. The high ceilings and stone walls gave it a rustic yet elegant vibe, creating a sense of timelessness that grounded the space in the island’s history and natural beauty. In contrast, the soft, minimal neutral palette added a modern twist, infusing the interiors with a fresh, contemporary feel. The bed, with its plush mattress, promised nights of uninterrupted sleep. The private terrace, with its charming courtyard of potted plants reminiscent of a traditional Hydra house, was the perfect spot to unwind in the evening. Whether with an ice cream, an iced tea, or a chilled glass of wine and a good book, it was an ideal retreat, and I took full advantage of it. The private pool sparkled invitingly, with sunbeds perfect for relaxing.

A day at Mandraki Beach Resort

Each day at Mandraki Beach Resort began with a leisurely breakfast in a picturesque setting, featuring eggs cooked to order, fruit platters, and pancakes. After breakfast, the rest of the day was spent basking in the sun, swimming in the crystal-clear waters, and savoring delicious meals on the sunbeds. The atmosphere of the hotel was spellbinding, with the gentle sound of waves, the warm embrace of the sun, and the timeless beauty of the surroundings creating the perfect setting for relaxation and reflection.

Long days on the sunbeds, long swims to the next beach, and getting lost in a good book became our daily rhythm. A signature cauliflower salad with caramelized almonds and honey vinaigrette, and a delicious quinoa salad with Aegina pistachios and miso were just a few culinary highlights we often enjoyed on the sunbeds.

Exploring Hydra added another layer of enchantment to our stay. We found it a fantastic idea to walk to the port late after sunset or dine while watching the spectacle of the sunset. The 30-minute stroll to the port felt meditative, passing by abandoned mansions, renovated manors, Jeff Koons’ “Apollo” and old chapels, each step revealing more of Hydra’s storied past. As I rounded the final bend, the iconic amphitheater view of Hydra’s port emerged, a sight that never fails to take one’s breath away. Spending time with loved ones, enjoying the sea, and soaking in the aristocratic bohemian atmosphere of Hydra was a dream come true.

Evenings at Mandraki were also all about the spectacular sunsets. As the sun began its descent, the sky transformed into a canvas of fiery reds and oranges, making the sunset at Mandraki a spectacle that demanded full attention. With a glass of chilled white wine in hand, we enjoyed dinner at Captain M Restaurant. Evening meals at Mandraki Beach Resort were a delightful mix of local and contemporary cuisine. Fresh fish, prawns, and traditional meze like fried zucchini and tarama were served alongside a modern twist—not to mention my favourite dessert, a chocolate ball that melted under a drizzle of hot caramel, revealing ice cream inside. The setting, with the sea as the backdrop, was perfect for long, languid meals, making each day at Mandraki a blend of relaxation, exploration, and culinary delight.


Art at Mandraki Beach Resort

Since my last visit, Mandraki has welcomed a remarkable addition: Wilhelmina’s Art Gallery. Exhibiting contemporary works by international artists between June and October, the gallery is housed in the main historic building on Mandraki Beach that was once the Captain’s Mansion. A love for art, a dynamic mentor in Alex Reding of the Nosbaum Reding Gallery in Luxembourg, and a fortunate encounter with the owners of Mandraki Beach Resort gave Wilhelmina von Blumenthal the impulse she needed to kickstart her own gallery. Wilhelmina’s Art Gallery (WAG), minutes away from the DESTE Project Space Slaughterhouse.

One of the standout exhibitions this year in Greece is Magic Mirror, running from June 17th to July 21st, 2024. Curated by Wilhelmina von Blumenthal and artist Irini Karayannopoulou, the exhibition features works by thirty-three international artists. Through painting, collage, sculpture, film, and photography, these artists explore the enchanting complexity of mirrors, their uses, and their users. The lineup includes both emerging and acclaimed artists such as Pilar Abarracín, Emma Ainala, Loukia Alavanou, Belkıs Balpınar, Burçak Bingöl, and many more. Each piece reflects a unique interpretation, making the exhibition a must-see for art lovers visiting Hydra.

Final Thoughts: An Experience to Cherish

A stay at Mandraki Beach Resort, Hydra, is more than just a vacation; it’s the perfect backdrop for a truly personal escape. It’s an immersion into a world where history, luxury, and natural beauty blend seamlessly. Whether you’re savoring a leisurely breakfast on the sunbeds, taking a meditative stroll to Hydra’s port, or dining under a sky painted with the colors of the sunset, every moment at this blessed spot in Hydra is designed to captivate and rejuvenate.