Ticking all the boxes in Greece

I spend way too much of my time browsing travel sites on the eternal quest to find the perfect boutique hotel in Europe. ‘Perfect’ meaning it has a pool, there are sea views (and you don’t have to get in a car to reach the sea), there are foodie options within walking distance, and the food in the hotel works for evenings when even walking is too much of an effort. Oh, and the interiors make me smile.

Sounds simple. Actually pretty hard.


Via the aforementioned hours of browsing, I chanced upon Ekies All Senses Resort. Once I’d checked – more than once – that ‘resort’ didn’t mean resort in the British sense of the word, and got over the fact it was a good 90-minute drive from the airport, we booked.

I love Greece. Well, I love halloumi, and anywhere salty cheese is a stable form of protein is ok by me. Normally Greece means islands – any glossy travel magazine would tell you so.

Ekies is actually on mainland Greece. Halkidiki to be precise. It loses nothing for that fact. The interiors tick my perfect box. Quirky. Cool. And eminently snappable. (Typing ‘instagrammable’ then would have felt too much of a cliché, but needless to say I instagrammed. A lot.)

The walk to the beach is actually a trip onto the beach, although we spent most of our days next to the pool with its lampshade-style umbrellas and beanbag loungers, before retreating up to the treehouse for ruby red rose (I usually hate any rose that’s goes even one shade brighter than the palest, palest pink, but, hell, when in Rome.)

Food was good. A little repetitive and, in the evenings, they are particularly strict about where you can sit to each from which particular menu, which wound me up no end. Along the beach there are numerous places to eat. None look too swanky, but the prices tended to match the exteriors, which made for insanely inexpensive nights out. And we didn’t have a single bad meal. Restaurant Paris was a particular favourite (although despite the waiters’ very best efforts I managed to avoid the blue ice cream on each and every night we ate there).

One word of warning: this is a mecca for families, so if you’re looking for a romantic week for two, make sure you book out of the school holidays, and even then be prepared for plenty of babies crawling round.

Until I find another hotel that ticks all the boxes, Ekies is definitely on the re-visit list.

Carla Buzasi