Astarte Suites – Secluded boutique hotel with a cave-style infinity pool and a contemporary Mediterranean restaurant.
Astarte is an intimate, all-suite property on the south side of the caldera, offering stunning caldera views over the volcanoes but without the crowds of the northern villages. The hotel is home to 15 spacious suites, ranging from 40 to 90 square meters, each unique in size, layout, and furnishings; all boast private sun terraces and indoor or outdoor jacuzzis, along with whimsical decor. The aptly named Cave Pool Suite adds a cave-style pool, dug into the side of the caldera, while the Astarte Suite adds an open-air infinity pool. Dining is superb at Alali, an award-winning fine dining restaurant with remarkable views. Located at the western fringes of traditional Akrotiri village, a short drive from the ruins of ancient Akrotiri, Caldera Beach, Red Beach, and the Akrotiri Lighthouse, perfect for a romantic sunset.
Astarte Suites – Location
A remote retreat, Astarte sits on the caldera at the western edge of Akrotiri village, one of the least populated areas of the island. The Akrotiri Ruins, Red Beach, White Beach, Caldera Beach, the Akrotiri lighthouse, and the beloved wine region are only 5 to 10 minutes away by car. Renting a car is recommended for stays in this area.
• How to Get There: The hotel is located on the main road heading through Akrotiri, making it easy to travel to and from, whether by taxi, driving yourself, or riding the bus. It’s about 10.5 km from the Athinios ferry port and 13 km from the Santorini Airport to the hotel.
There are always buses waiting at the ferry port for every ferry arrival, as well as buses departing hourly from Santorini Airport, but although the bus is easy enough to navigate, it is not the best choice for arriving at Astarte Suites. There are no direct buses from the port or airport to Akrotiri; buses from both locations go to Fira, where you must then board a different bus bound for Akrotiri village; the bus stop closest to the hotel is one stop after the village. The entire trip from the port or airport to Fira then to Akrotiri will take over an hour (maybe even 2 hours) and cost about €5 in total. Tickets are purchased on the bus, in cash only. The nearest bus stop (all routes bound for Fira) is just up the steps from the hotel, about a 2-minute walk away.
Taxis are also available from the port or airport, though there are only about 25 taxis serving the whole island, so there is often a wait; schedule a ride through a private car service in advance to avoid this (I use and recommend Welcome Pickups). Taxis on Santorini are not metered, so be sure to agree on a price with the driver before setting out. A taxi from the airport or ferry port to Astarte Suites will cost roughly €35. Booking through a private car service will cost only a bit more – about $45 (or €37) – but it’s worth it to avoid the wait and for the convenience of paying ahead.
For those who prefer to drive themselves, we recommend renting a car either at the airport on arrival, or in Fira. The road from the ferry port is steep and narrow, with many tricky switchbacks, large trucks, and buses. Leave that for the locals to navigate. We strongly recommend reserving a vehicle in advance, especially if you require automatic transmission. Upon arrival at the property, each villa includes a designated parking space (a major perk).
Astarte Suites – The Basics
- Ages: Guests ages 13 and older are welcome at the hotel. There are no specific amenities or facilities for families, though there are a few suites able to accommodate up to 4 guests. 95% of guests here are couples celebrating a romantic occasion.
- Beach: The hotel is close to several of Santorini’s best beaches. Caldera Beach, the only beach in the caldera, is only a 5-minute drive away; this is a quiet beach with a narrow strip of sand, served by 1 dive shop and 1 restaurant (no umbrella rentals here). Vlichada Beach, 13 minutes away by car, is the closest organized beach, a casual spot with affordable umbrella and sunbed rentals, wind-sculpted cliffs, and the old tomato cannery as a backdrop. Agios Georgios Beach at the south end of Perivolos is just 14 minutes away; this is a more upscale beach area serviced by the luxury beach club Sea Side and many more boho chic bars and restaurants. All of these beaches have black pebbly sand. The only white sand beach and the picturesque red sand beach are also nearby, though they are best visited by boat. White Beach is accessible via a hiking trail, while Red Beach is sometimes open by footpath but often closed due to falling rock. Check with the hotel before heading out to Red Beach.
- View: The hotel and all suites boast thrilling caldera views from a lesser-known vantage point with clear views over both volcanoes, Thirassia Island, and expansive views of the cliffside villages all the way to the tip of Oia and including distinctive Skaros Rock and the Old Port of Fira (lit at night). All suites have panoramic caldera views not only from their outdoor terraces but also from inside the suites. This is the view you wake up to.
- Private Pools/Jacuzzis: Each suite includes a private, heated jacuzzi either indoors or outdoors. The Cave Pool Suite and Astarte Suite both add outdoor, unheated swimming pools, either covered cave-style or open-air infinity-style.
- Parking: Free parking onsite just outside the main entrance.
- Extras: Welcome bottle of champagne and fruit plate on arrival, turn down service, free daily bottled water, Hermès amenities.
- When to Book: The hotel is open from April until the end of October. Reserve at least 4 months in advance (6 to 7 months is better) for travel during the high season from June through September. Reserve at least 3 months in advance for stays during low or shoulder season.
- How to Book: Booking.com will have the best rates.
- Phone: +30 22860 83388
- Email: [email protected]
- Website: astartesuites.gr
Astarte Suites – Amenities
- Pool: The hotel features a cave-style infinity pool, partially covered in the back area near the bar and open to the sun at the infinity edge overlooking the caldera. The pool includes a jetted section and chromatherapy lights.
- Spa: In suite spa and salon services available.
- Fitness Center: No gym.
- For Disabled Guests: This is a caldera hotel built over multiple levels into the side of a cliff, all connected by long flights of stairs and no elevator. Not suitable for guests with mobility issues.
- For Families: Astarte Suites is open to guests ages 13 and older. There are no amenities or facilities for children. Families with older kids can book one of their larger suites that accommodate up to 4 guests. Larger groups will need to book a second suite.
- Activities: Sunset picnics at the lighthouse can be arranged by the concierge, as well as wine tastings and tours, archaeological excursions, or sailing cruises.
Astarte Suites – Food and Drink
- Restaurant: Alali, meaning “speechless,” is the hotel’s FNL star-winning signature restaurant, serving contemporary Greek fine dining made to be paired with wine from their extensive selection of Santirinian and regional Greek varieties. The restaurant serves a casual bistro menu for lunch from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and an elegant, culinary experience from 7:00 p.m. to 23:00 p.m. The restaurant is open to the public and popular with locals, so make reservations in advance.
- Lounge Bar: The pool bar serves light fare, cocktails, and refreshments all day from 10:00 a.m. until midnight.
- Breakfast: A complimentary, a la carte breakfast is served daily to each suite’s private caldera-view terrace at the time of your choosing.
- Room Service: Available all day during restaurant hours.
Astarte Suites – Rooms
- Room Types: Junior Suites • Senior Suites • Executive Suites • Honeymoon Suites • Astarte Suite • Cave Pool Suite
- Smoking Rooms: Astarte Suites does not allow smoking in any of their rooms. Smoking is allowed on the private terraces and in the outdoor common areas.
- Best Rooms: The Astarte Suite and the Cave Pool Suite are the top-tier rooms on the property. Both feature 90 square meters of space, indoor jacuzzis with caldera views, and outdoor, private pools. The Cave Pool Suite is the newest addition to the hotel, made of two floors, with the bedroom, bathroom, and jacuzzi on the main floor and the cave pool, sun loungers, and a daybed on the rooftop terrace. The Astarte Suite offers the same amenities, but all on one floor, with an open-air infinity pool.
- For Families: Guests over 13 years old are welcome at Astarte. There are no amenities or facilities for children. Families with teens should opt for a Honeymoon Suite. These 75-square-meter, 1-bedroom suites feature a king-sized bedroom, separate living room with sofa beds, and spacious outdoor terraces with dining tables, sun loungers, and daybeds. There are 2 Honeymoon Suites onsite, one with an indoor jacuzzi and one with an outdoor jacuzzi.
Astarte Suites – Local Transport
- Walking: The hotel is located at the west end of Akrotiri village, about a 20-minute walk to the village center. Off the beaten track but not difficult to reach. This is an excellent home base for exploring local life, as tourists rarely visit the village. There are a handful of family-run restaurants and picturesque small churches here. However, many of the best area attractions, including the ruins, beaches, and lighthouse are not within easy walking distance. Renting a car is strongly recommended.
- Bus: The closest bus stop to the hotel is right at the top of the hill on the main road above the property, about a 2-minute walk away. There is also a bus stop in Akrotiri village about 22 minutes’ walk along a mostly flat route. Buses here are all head to Fira, where you’ll need to get out and change buses to reach Oia or the other villages. One exception is the stop along the way in Megalochori where you can get out to explore the traditional village and vineyards, or you can connect to a second bus to reach Perissa and Perivolos Beaches. All other destinations require a change in Fira. The entire trip to the port or the airport can take an hour or two by bus. Tickets are bought on board and range from €1.80 to €2.50 per person in the daytime, depending on the route. Night buses (12:30 am to 5 am) run less frequently and cost a little more, from €2.30 to €3.10. There are only 23 buses serving the island, so the buses can get crowded, especially during the high season, so much so that they often fill to capacity and are unable to take on more passengers. If your time is limited, it is best to call a taxi or rent a car.
- Taxis: There is no official taxi stand in Akrotiri so it’s best to have the hotel call a taxi for you as needed. There are only 25 taxis serving the island, so book ahead when possible to avoid a wait, and have them meet you directly at the hotel. There will be a small surcharge for advance reservations and for carrying luggage, usually just a couple of Euros. The average rate from Astarte Suites to the airport or ferry port is roughly €35.
- Scooters/Motorcycles: Scooters are the main mode of transportation for the locals, but if you’re unfamiliar with the terrain, it can be very dangerous. The roads here are zigzagging, hilly, narrow, and have sheer drop-offs with no guardrails and no street lights in most areas. Lots of dirt roads and potholes.
- ATVs/Quads: ATVs are a fun and popular mode of transportation with tourists, but for the locals stuck driving behind them, they move too slowly and hold up traffic in an area where getting around is already a hassle. For those who don’t ride quads regularly (i.e. most people), they can be dangerous at high speeds and on turns. Crashing your ATV is a sure-fire way to ruin your vacation.
Astarte Suites – What’s Nearby?
Best Nearby Restaurants
- Zafora Akrotiri Restaurant: Wonderful traditional taverna in the village serving Santorinian and Greek favorites. 22-minute walk.
- Cave of Nikolas Restaurant: Beautiful seafront restaurant offering fresh-caught fish and farm-fresh meats and veggies. 7-minute drive.
- Sea Side Santorini: Sea Side is 2 restaurants in 1: a fine-dining seafood and sushi restaurant in one half and an upscale beach club in the other, located at Agios Georgios Beach (aka the south end of Perivolos). 14-minute drive.
Best Nearby Bars and Breweries
- Boutari Winery: Beautiful winery and vineyards offering vineyard and winemaking tours (reserve ahead) or simple drop-in wine tastings paired with local delicacies. 9-minute drive.
- Gavalas Wines: Family-run winery with fantastic varieties at affordable prices. Try a 3-wine flight for €7.50 or 5 for €12; tastings include a quick tour of the winery, though the vineyard is in a different location. 10-minute drive.
- Hatzidakis Winery: One of the most influential winemakers in Santorini, Hatzidakis is located near Pyrgos village and offers tours and tastings by appointment. 12-minute drive.
Best Nearby Cafes
Nearby Shopping and Cool Shops
- Venetian Castle: The medieval castle ruins sit on top of the hill above the main village. The castle itself is in bad shape with not a lot to see, but the views from the castle make it worth the climb. 20-minute walk.
- St. Epifanios Church: Dating back to 1673, St. Epifanios is the most easily recognizable landmark in the village. There is not a lot of activity here, but it’s a good reference point to have when exploring the area. 22-minute walk.
- Akrotiri Lighthouse: The best sunset viewpoint in Akrotiri, the lighthouse offers an expansive view over the caldera with none of the crowds you’ll find in Oia village. Many people choose to hike along the caldera, but it’s much easier to drive and park. 37-minute walk or 5-minute drive.
- Caldera Beach: The only beach in the caldera and the closest to the hotel. Caldera Beach is fairly secluded with just 1 restaurant, a dive shop, and a small parking area. 5-minute drive.
- Prehistoric Town of Akrotiri: The main attraction in Akrotiri is the excavation of a Bronze Age Minoan settlement. Similar to Pompeii, the entire town was covered in volcanic ash thousands of years ago, which preserved the ruins. 8-minute drive.
- Red Beach: An unusual, strikingly beautiful beach known for its red sand and towering red cliffs. The trail to the beach is usually closed now due to falling rocks, so the beach is normally empty. 8-minute drive plus a downhill hike if you choose to try your luck on the trail, but most people visit by boat from Vlichada Beach.
- White Beach: Named for its stunning white cliffs and pebbles, though the sand is the same volcanic gray as most of Santorini’s beaches. This is a quiet beach since it’s hard to get to, but there are a few sunbeds to rent. 8-minute drive plus a difficult hike down. Most people visit by boat from Vlichada, usually after visiting Red Beach.
- Wine Country: The hotel sits near Santorini’s wine country with vineyards all around. Most tasting rooms are in nearby Megalochori village, a 10-minute drive.
- Vlichada Beach: For a more secluded beach than Agios Georgios with more sand and services than Caldera Beach, Vlichada Beach is another fantastic choice. 13-minute drive.
- Agios Georgios Beach: At the south end of Perivolos, this is the finest black sand beach on the island with great restaurants and beach clubs all along the strip. 14-minute drive.
Nearby Markets and Grocery Stores
- Supermarket Arvanitis Bakery: This is the main store in the village, small but well-stocked with produce, groceries, wine, and best of all, their fresh sweet and savory pastries and breads. 22-minute walk.
- Anna’s Mini Market: Great little market with all the essentials: snacks, wine, beer, some groceries, sunscreen, and more. There is also an ATM right out front. 23-minute walk.
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