Esperas Santorini Hotel in Oia, Santorini

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by Santorini Dave • Updated: November 5, 2018

Esperas Santorini – Charming, cave-style suites with a pool and caldera sunset views.

Located in Oia, below the windmills and overlooking Ammoudi Bay, this picturesque hotel offers unobstructed sunset views over the caldera. Suites, studios, and houses are simply furnished in traditional, Greek style (white walls, rich blue accents, and dark woods). Many feature private jacuzzis and plunge pools, and most offer sunset views from their own private terraces. Their fantastic pool is half cave-style with seating inside, and half open to the sun. An a la carte breakfast is served to each room daily, while lunch, dinner, and cocktails are available at Ombra, with sweeping views and an authentic, local menu. Expect a warm welcome and exceptional care throughout.

Esperas Santorini – Location

  • Area: Tranquil, quiet location in a pedestrian-only area at the western tip of Oia, underneath the windmills and above Ammoudi Bay. Walking distance to the castle ruins, Maritime Museum, the restaurants in Ammoudi, and the shopping and dining in central Oia.
  • How to Get There: The hotel sits midway down the side of the caldera along one of Oia’s maze-like footpaths. It is easiest to have the staff here schedule transportation from the airport or port, so that someone can guide you to the entrance and assist with luggage. There are always buses at the ferry port for every ferry arrival, as well as buses departing hourly from the airport (both buses will stop in Fira, where you’ll get a different bus to Oia – the entire trip from port or airport to Oia will take at least an hour); the Oia bus station is only 450m away from the hotel (though you should still arrange assistance through the hotel to meet you at the bus terminal and guide you to the entrance). 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 ahead to avoid this – or rent a car. A taxi from the airport to Esperas Santorini will cost roughly €25. A taxi from the ferry port to Esperas Santorini will cost roughly €30. If renting a car, there are a few free public parking lots within a 5 to 10-minute walk to the hotel, but be patient, as you may need to check a few lots before finding an open space.
  • Handy To: Byzantine Castle Ruins (4 minutes on foot), Ammoudi Bay (10 minutes on foot there downhill, and about 15 minutes to climb back up), Oia Bus Terminal (7-minute walk).

Esperas Santorini – The Basics

  • Ages: 12 years and older only (though this is somewhat flexible). Guests tend to be couples between 28 and 45 years old, mostly celebrating honeymoons and anniversaries.
  • Beach: The closest swimming spot (though it is not a proper beach) is at Ammoudi Bay, the port immediately below Oia, about 500m (10-minute walk) from Esperas. This is a popular spot for swimming and cliff diving; though it’s too rocky and small to do much lounging. Ammoudi Bay is the main port of Oia, and is served by several spectacular seafood restaurants. It’s a steep trek down and back again, but it’s relatively easy to catch a cab at the bottom to bring you back up the hill. (Buy a snack at one of the restaurants and the waiter will be happy to call one for you.)
  • View: All rooms face toward the caldera, and offer views of the Aegean Sea. Most of these offer full sunset views from their private terraces.
  • Kitchen: Cave Suite and Esperas Suite both offer kitchenettes with 2-burner stove-tops. All rooms include a minibar, mini-fridge, kettle, and coffee/tea facilities.
  • Private Pools/Jacuzzis: All 6 suites include either an outdoor jacuzzi or plunge pool.
  • Extras: Pool, complimentary breakfast served to room, welcome wine on arrival, and a DVD library.
  • When to Book: The hotel operates from mid-April until the end of October. Reserve at least 3 months in advance (4 months is better) for stays during high season from June through September, and about 2 months in advance for the low and shoulder seasons.
  • How to Book: Booking.com will have the best rates.
  • Phone: +30 22860 71501, +30 22860 71088
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Website: https://www.esperas-santorini.com/

Esperas Santorini – Amenities

  • Pool: Great pool with the front half open to the sun, and the back half sheltered inside 2 caves, both with recessed seating areas.
  • Spa: No spa.
  • Fitness Center: No fitness center.
  • For Disabled Guests: This hotel is not accessible for anyone with mobility issues. Lots of stairs getting to and from the entrance, suites, and all facilities.
  • For Families: There are no specific kid-centric amenities, but families will find room options suitable for larger groups.
  • Activities: No activities onsite, though the staff can arrange tours, wine tastings, and sailing with outside vendors.

Esperas Santorini – Food and Drink

  • Restaurant: Ombra Restaurant is located on the main level with the pool. Specializing in local and Mediterranean fine dining, the restaurant is open for lunch, dinner, snacks, and cocktails from 12 p.m. until 11 p.m. Décor is simple, and many tables overlook the caldera, offering sunset views. The restaurant is open to the public, so reserve in advance for the best tables. No kids menu. • $$$$
  • Bar: The Esperas Pool Bar is located inside Ombra Restaurant, and operates during the same hours, serving refreshing cocktails, local and Greek wine and beer, smoothies, and light bites.
  • Breakfast: Complimentary. Order from the a la carte menu the night before, and it will be delivered to the room at the time of your choosing every morning to be enjoyed in-room or on your private terrace.
  • Room Service: Always for breakfast, and available during normal restaurant hours from 12 p.m. to 11 p.m.

Esperas Hotel – Rooms

  • Room Types: Studios with Sea View • Superior Studios with Sunset View • Standard House with Sea View • Superior Houses with Sea View • Cave Suite with Outdoor Jacuzzi • Esperas Suite with Sea View and Plunge Pool • Honeymoon Suite with Sea View and Outdoor Jacuzzi • Superior Suite with Sunset View and Plunge Pool • Honeymoon Suite with Sea View and Plunge Pool
  • Smoking Rooms: Smoking is not allowed indoors, but is allowed in the outdoor areas.
  • Best Room: The Honeymoon Suites (whether Plunge Pool or Jacuzzi option) are the best rooms for romantic getaways, with large terraces boasting sunset views over the caldera from the private pools or jacuzzis.
  • For Families: The best room is the Esperas Suite, which sleeps up to 6 guests. This room offers 1 king bed in the main bedroom, a 1-queen loft, plus 2 single beds (one in its own small room and the other, a daybed, in the living room), and a well-equipped kitchenette with a 2-burner stove-top.

Esperas Santorini – Local Transport

  • Walking: The hotel is located in the western point of Oia, walking distance to the area’s best restaurants, shopping, and sights. Ammoudi Bay is accessible via a steep and winding path, easy to descend the 500m down, but arduous going back up; many people taxi back to the top. The heart of Oia, with its fine dining, luxury boutiques, and a few bars is only a 10-minute walk from the hotel, while the castle is only 4 minutes away.
  • Bus: The Oia Bus Terminal is only 450m away, and serves all of the major villages and beaches on the island. 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 a.m. to 5:00 a.m.) run less frequently and cost a little more, from €2.30 to €3.10. Buses can get very crowded, especially during the high season, so much so that they often fill to capacity and are unable to take on more passengers. There are only 23 public buses serving the island.
  • Taxis: The nearest taxi stand is at Stathmos Taxi, uphill and about 500m east near the Oia Bus Terminal, but there is often a wait as there are only 25 taxis serving the entire island (with guests from about 1,000 hotels, villas, and Airbnbs). Book in advance to avoid the wait, plus you can choose a closer pickup point. There will be a small surcharge for advanced reservations and for carrying luggage, usually just a couple of Euros. The average rate from Oia to Fira is €15, and from Oia to the airport runs about €25.
  • Scooters/Motorcycles: Just don’t, unless you’re Evel Knievel! 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: This is a super popular mode of transportation with tourists, but the locals absolutely hate them. They move too slowly, and hold up traffic in an area where getting around is already a hassle. ATVs with smaller motors have been banned from the roads, and a full ban is expected to pass soon.

Esperas Santorini – What’s Nearby?

Best Nearby Restaurants

  • Lotza: Simple, honest Greek comfort food with stunning caldera views. 3-minute walk.
  • Roka: Authentic, Santorinian menu with solid dishes, especially the meatballs and octopus. 5-minute walk.
  • Candouni: Cozy, family-owned restaurant with live, Greek music and absolutely delicious food. 6-minute walk.
  • PitoGyros: Hands-down, the best gyros in Oia. Seating is limited. 8-minute walk.
  • Ammoudi Bay Restaurants: Each of these waterfront restaurants is phenomenal, offering the freshest fish on the island. The steep 10-minute walk down takes longer coming back up, but your waiter will be happy to call you a cab.
  • Melitini: 100% Greek menu, using local Santorinian, Cycladic, and Greek ingredients only. 11-minute walk.

Best Nearby Bars and Breweries

Best Nearby Cafes

  • Vitrin Café Creperie: One of the best breakfasts on the island, plus AMAZING sunset views if you arrive early enough to snag a table. 1-minute walk.
  • Meteor: Excellent coffee and breakfast with sweeping caldera views, though a little on the pricey side. 3-minute walk.
  • Passaggio: The best coffee in Santorini, solid breakfast, killer cocktails, and pretty okay sunset views from the balcony, just a little back from the caldera. 13-minute walk.

Nearby Shopping and Cool Shops

Nearby Attractions

Nearby Markets or Grocery Stores

  • Mini Market: There is a small market up the hill directly above the hotel with drinks, snacks, and some basic items. 1-minute walk.
  • Asteras Supermarket: Small, but solid selection with a surprising amount of fresh produce for its size, along with prepackaged deli cuts, snacks, beer, wine, and some beach gear. 8-minute walk.
  • Elliniki Diatrofi Supermarket: Great selection of local cheeses, wine, liquor, fresh produce, and staples. Open until after midnight, sometimes as late as 2:00 a.m. 8-minute walk.

Esperas Santorini – The Hotel

The hotel is located under the Oia windmills, and oversee the caldera below.

The hotel faces the caldera underneath, just 50 meters downstairs from the Oia windmills.

The Esperas Santorini hotel is on a cliff with al level accessible only by stairs.

The hotel was carved into the caldera’s cliffside, and is divided up over several levels, all accessible by more stairs.

The hotel features a traditional, Cycladic, cave-style architecture.

The hotel follows traditional, Cycladic, cave-style architecture: completely carved from the rock using hand tools, emphasizing arches and domes, using lava rock, marble dust, and concrete. The main level houses the modest reception area…

The cave-style pool has 2 shaded and recessed seating areas.

…and the cave-style pool. The pool features two recessed areas with seating inside…

The pool features several sun loungers with caldera views.

…while the other half is open to full sun. Sun loungers sit in front of the pool overlooking the caldera and Ammoudi Bay. The pool is not heated.

The view of the caldera from the pool terrace if fantastic.

View from the pool terrace.

The Ombra Restaurant and Pool Bar serves a Mediterranean menu and good cocktails.

Ombra Restaurant and Pool Bar are just upstairs from the pool. The restaurant serves a Mediterranean menu, with fine dining in the evening and a more casual lunch and snack menu during the day. Open from 12:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m.

The view from the Ombra Restaurant is even better than that from the pool.

The view from Ombra is similar but just a little better than that from the pool.

The entry-level Superior Studio with a traditional-design.

Because every room is hand-dug and conforms to the natural shape of the cliff, each studio, suite, and house is completely unique. Different rooms from the same category will have similar amenities, but the layout will be different. All rooms feature traditional Greek furniture in dark wood, built-in platform beds, white and blue colors, and many feature cave style showers. This is a Superior Studio, the entry level category.

Superior Studios sometimes have 2 floors.

This particular studio is a two-storey unit, though most Superior Studios are all one level.

The Superior Studios feature tiled showers.

The bedroom is upstairs and the bathroom is downstairs. In this case, there is a tile shower, rather than a cave-style shower.

The Superior Studios feature their own private terraces.

Like all accommodation here, it has its own private terrace with a caldera view.

The Honeymoon Suite is spacious and feature Cycladic architecture and traditional Greek furniture.

Honeymoon Suite with Sea View and Plunge Pool. Being one of the first hotels in the area, rooms here are larger than at newer properties in the area. Here is the same Cycladic architecture and traditional Greek furniture. Hand carved walls and ceilings are delightfully off-kilter.

The Honeymoon Suite's newly-renovated bathroom features a cave-style decor.

The recently renovated bathroom is done in a cave-style with a marble dust finish.

The Honeymoon Suite's balcony features a plunge pool.

The plunge pool sits on a private balcony with views of the caldera and sunset.

The largest suite is the Esperas Suite with 2.5 bedrooms.

The Esperas Suite is the largest: a 2.5-bedroom suite. Its living room features a daybed and a dining table.

The kitchenette in the Esperas Suite is well-equipped.

This is one of two rooms with a kitchenette (the other is the Cave Suite). The kitchenette is well-equipped with a two-burner stove-top, kettle, and various pots, pans, and utensils.

The main bedroom of the Esperas Suite has a king bed.

One king-bed room is on the bottom floor…

The single bedroom is over the main bedroom.

…with a small single-bed room above.

The loft bedroom has a queen bed.

There is also a slightly larger loft bedroom above the living room with a queen bed.

The upstairs bathroom of the Esperas Suite i made of glass and marble.

Upstairs bathroom with glass and marble.

The downstairs bathroom of the Esperas Suite is made of marble and glass.

Downstairs bathroom with marble and a glass and tile shower.

There is a plunge pool on the terrace of the Esperas Suite.

The Esperas Suite also offers a plunge pool on its terrace.

The Honeymoon Suite features a jacuzzi.

All suites feature either a plunge pool, as previously shown, or a jacuzzi as seen here in this Honeymoon Suite.

The living room of the Superior House.

A 2-bedroom Superior House. The living room…

The dining area of the Superior House.

…and dining area.

The main bedroom of the Superior House.

The first bedroom…

The second bedroom of the Superior House.

…and the second.

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