Home > Greece > Santorini > Santorini Hotels > Grace Hotel Review
by Santorini Dave • Updated: February 11, 2019
The view of the caldera from the pool at Grace Santorini Hotel – The best luxury hotel in Santorini.
Grace Hotel Santorini – Elegant hotel with an award-winning restaurant and champagne lounge, well-appointed rooms, and breathtaking views from the largest infinity pool in the caldera.
A sophisticated hotel offering bespoke experiences, Grace customizes guests’ amenities to taste, from room scent to pillow type, plus guests personally meet the chef to go over food preferences. Many suites include private, heated plunge pools, while all offer special perks, such as iPads, flat irons, and twice daily maid service, including turndown service with different goodies every night. Dining and drinks are incredible every day, whether at the restaurant, champagne lounge, or poolside. Expansive caldera views are available throughout the hotel, with Skaros Rock front and center, and looking out to Akrotiri, the volcanoes, Thirassia Island, and Oia.
Grace Hotel Santorini – Location
- Area: Absolutely gorgeous location in the heart of Imerovigli village, with amazing dining and attractions all within a couple of minutes from the hotel. Imerovigli sits at the highest elevation on the caldera, and the views are stellar throughout the hotel and from most of the restaurants here.
- How to Get There: The hotel sits above the caldera in the center of Imerovigli village, not far off the main road connecting Fira and Oia, making it easy to reach by bus, taxi, or driving yourself. 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 from where you’ll get a different bus to Imerovigli – the entire trip from port or airport to Imerovigli will take around an hour). The bus stop is just 8 minutes away on foot, and the walk from there to the hotel is mostly flat or downhill, easy to navigate with luggage. Taxis are also available from the port or airport, though there are only about 25 taxis in total serving the whole island, so there is often a long wait; schedule ahead to avoid this – or rent a car. A taxi from the airport to Grace Hotel should be about €20, and a taxi from the ferry port to Grace Hotel should be about €20 too. There will be a small surcharge for luggage, or for booking in advance. If renting a car, there is free parking in front of the hotel (often full), near the Imerovigli Basketball Court, and near Sunbird Rent-A-Car. Imerovigli has the hardest-to-find parking in Santorini, so you may have to circle around a couple times to find a spot.
- Handy to: The Oia-Fira Hiking Trail (1-minute walk), Anastasi Church (4-minute walk), Skaros Rock (8-minute walk).
Map of Grace Santorini Hotel
Grace Hotel Santorini – The Basics
- Ages: This is an adults-only hotel, and guests must be at least 14 years old to stay here, with the exception of the villa, which is for all ages. Guests tend to be couples on a romantic getaway.
- Beach: The nearest beach is Exo Gialos, a quiet, black sand beach with intriguing wind-sculpted cliffs at its southern end. The best beach bar and restaurant is East Breeze, just a few meters from the cliffs (15-minute drive). The north end has a small harbor, and another great beach bar and restaurant called Yalos (12-minute drive). From the hotel, it’s a short 4.8 km drive to the north end, or 7.2 km to the south end, where the cliffs are.
- View: Exceptional caldera and sunset views throughout the hotel, centered on Skaros Rock.
- Kitchen: The villa includes a fully-equipped and stocked kitchen with a private chef available on request.
- Private Pools/Jacuzzis: Most rooms, suites, and the villa have private, heated, outdoor plunge pools. Those include the Deluxe Room with Plunge Pool, Junior Suite with Plunge Pool, Honeymoon Suite, Superior Suite, and VIP Suite. The VIP Suite has the largest terrace, while the Grace Suite has a second, indoor plunge pool and steam room. The Villa features an indoor jacuzzi and steam room in addition to its outdoor, heated swimming pool, larger than the plunge pools at the suites.
- Parking: There is free parking in front of the hotel, which is often full. The main parking area in Imerovigli is near the Basketball Court, and there is a small lot near Sunbird Rent-A-Car; both of these are free lots. Imerovigli has the hardest-to-find parking in Santorini, so you may have to circle around a couple of times to find a spot.
- Extras: Everlasting memories (Polaroid photo on arrival, and a memory box to keep Santorini mementos), weddings and events, complimentary yoga and pilates classes, personalized in-room amenities [pillow menu, fragrance selection, food preferences, monogrammed robes (for additional fee)], complimentary yoga and pilates classes, twice daily maid service, different turndown service nightly (chocolates and brandy, popcorn and movies, tea and delicacies, etc.), 24-hour reception, 24-hour room service.
- When to Book: The hotel is open from mid-April to November 1. Reserve at least 4 months in advance (6 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 21300
- Email: [email protected]
- Website: gracehotels.com
- Video: Hotel Review of Grace
Grace Hotel Santorini – Amenities
- Pool: The largest infinity pool in the caldera, with gorgeous views of Skaros Rock, Thirassia, the volcano, and of each tip of the island itself.
- Spa: No spa, but in-room spa treatments are available.
- Fitness Center: Small but well-equipped gym with cardio machines, free weights, and state-of-the-art cable machines. Complimentary yoga and pilates classes are available daily.
- For Disabled Guests: This is a caldera hotel with lots of steps and no elevator. Many of the smaller suites have loft bedrooms. Not suitable for guests with mobility issues.
- For Families: This is mostly an adults-only hotel, and guests must be at least 14 years old to stay in the rooms and suites, though The Villa is available for guests of all ages. It is not recommended for very young children due to the number of stairs in the hotel.
- Activities: Grace offers exclusive Bespoke Experiences that center on wellness, wine, photography, culture, and caldera cruises. Additionally, their dedicated team of concierges can arrange private helicopter tours, island excursions, dive tours, and much more.
- Other Facilities: Chapel, boutique, wedding, and event spaces.
Grace Hotel Santorini – Food and Drink
- Restaurant: Santoro is Grace’s signature restaurant. Winner of Greece’s prestigious Golden Cup Award, Santoro is open all day for breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the main restaurant, and for snacks and cocktails at their pool bar. The menu features inspired Mediterranean flavors, which can all be customized to suit each guest’s palate. The atmosphere during lunch or at the pool bar is casual, while dinner service is an elegant fine dining experience. The restaurant is open to the public, so it is best to make reservations to get a table with the best view, especially if traveling during the high season. Lunch is served until 6:30 p.m., and dinner is served until 11:00 p.m. • $$$$.
- Lounge/Bar: 363 Champagne Lounge has recently been named the Best Hotel Bar in Europe, and is an especially popular spot for sunset cocktails. With a wide array of bubbles, local wines, and superb cocktails, this lounge is a favorite of guests and locals alike. Do not miss their signature Grace Cocktail. Open from 4:00 p.m. until midnight.
- Breakfast: Complimentary breakfast is served every morning at Santoro from 7:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. Breakfast is a decadent 5-course affair featuring local products and superior recipes. The set menu changes every day, and can be tailored to guests’ preferences. Guests may order something entirely different than the set meal, if they prefer, at no additional charge.
- Room Service: Available 24 hours.
Grace Hotel Santorini – Rooms
- Room Types: Deluxe Room • Deluxe Room with Plunge Pool • Junior Suite • Junior Suite with Plunge Pool • Honeymoon Suite • Superior Suite • VIP Suite • Grace Suite • The Villa
- Smoking Rooms: The hotel does not allow smoking in any of their room categories. It is allowed on the private outdoor terraces and in the outdoor common areas.
- Best Room: The Grace Suite is the highest suite category, perfect for couples. It is the most private of their suites and features an outdoor plunge pool with panoramic caldera views, and an indoor plunge pool with sunset views. The suite features a king-sized bed, an open-plan layout, a steam room, and a 2-person shower.
- For Families: Most rooms and suites at Grace are for adults only (ages 14 and up). The one exception is their luxurious Villa, which is open to guests of all ages. The Villa can be arranged as a 1 or 2-bedroom unit, and features an outdoor, heated swimming pool, 2-level sun terraces, an outdoor fireplace, and gazebo, with panoramic caldera views throughout. It also boasts its own private spa with an indoor jacuzzi, steam room, and treatment room as well as a fully-equipped, fully-stocked kitchen with an optional private chef.
Grace Hotel Santorini – Local Transport
- Walking: The hotel is located in the center of Imerovigli, above the caldera, and on the Oia-Fira hiking trail, with the village’s best restaurants, shops, and attractions just a few meters away. Easy access to all dining and attractions in Imerovigli as well as the nightlife and shopping in Fira, just a 31-minute walk south.
- Bus: The nearest bus is in Imerovigli village, near Sunbird car rental and Posidonia Tavern, an 8-minute walk from the hotel. Buses here serve all of the major villages and beaches on the island, often with a change in Fira if heading to the airport, port, or beaches. 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, all the way down in Fira, so not very practical to walk or bus to. Plus, there is often a wait here as there are only 25 taxis serving the entire island (with guests from about 1,000 hotels, villas, and Airbnbs). Book ahead to avoid the wait, and have them meet you directly at the hotel. There will be a small surcharge for advanced reservations and for carrying luggage, usually just a couple of Euros. The average rate from Imerovigli to Fira is roughly €10, and from Imerovigli to the airport or port is around €20.
- 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.
Grace Hotel Santorini – What’s Nearby?
Best Nearby Restaurants
- The Athenian House: Elegant fine dining with spectacular sunset views. Contemporary and imaginative Greek dishes incorporate modern gastronomic techniques and locally-sourced ingredients. Most of all, they’re delicious. 3-minute walk.
- La Maison: Contemporary, Greek fine dining with sweeping caldera views. Food, wine, and service are all phenomenal. 8-minute walk.
- Avocado: Traditional Greek menu, charming space, super friendly staff. Cycladic recipes and a fantastic selection of Santorinian wines. 9-minute walk.
- Anogi: Al fresco dining with local specialties and classic Greek dishes. Rich flavors and large portions, so come hungry. 9-minute walk.
- Le Moustache: Elevated Greek and Mediterranean dining and excellent cocktails with panoramic sunset views over the caldera. 10-minute walk.
- OVAC: Mediterranean-Asian fusion with spectacular sunset views and a romantic ambiance. Stupidly expensive, but everything on the menu is absolute perfection. 26-minute walk.
Best Nearby Bars and Breweries
Best Nearby Cafes
- Hlios Bakery: Good coffee, basic pastries, and deli sandwiches. Not exceptional, but they’re cheap and they deliver (cash only for deliveries). 9-minute walk.
- To Briki: Fantastic café, the best place to try traditional Greek coffee. Breakfasts are superb and the sunset views are gorgeous. 17-minute walk.
Nearby Shopping & Cool Shops
- Pegasus Boutique: Next to the hotel of the same name, this little boutique offers clothing, shoes, swimwear, and accessories by Greek designers. 9-minute walk.
- Under a Fig Tree: Upscale boutique featuring Greek-designed fashion, accessories, and swimwear right on the Oia-Fira trail. 12-minute walk.
- Oia-Fira Hiking Trail: 1-minute walk. One of the top attractions on the island is this scenic 10.5 km hiking trail connecting Oia and Fira. A mix of sidewalk, cobblestones, and dirt trail, this route boasts gorgeous vistas the entire way. Hiking northwest, the full length of the path from the hotel to Oia Castle takes about 2 hours. Heading south to the trail’s end in Fira, near Keti Hotel, takes about 33 minutes. Add at least 30 minutes for a detour at Skaros Rock either way.
- Agios Georgios Church: Small white church on a platform over the caldera, marking the start of the trail to Skaros Rock. Gorgeous, panoramic views from here. 3-minute walk.
- Anastasi Church: The most picturesque, blue-domed church in Imerovigli offers gorgeous caldera views overlooking Skaros Rock. Popular for weddings and photo shoots. 4-minute walk.
- Imerovigli Basketball Court: Not an attraction, but good to know. This is the main parking area in Imerovigli. 9-minute walk or 3-minute drive.
- Skaros Rock: Impressive volcanic rock formation housing the ruins of a medieval castle and town, dating to 1207. The monastery at its base, Panagia Theoskepasti, is the only part of Skaros that is still active. 8-minute walk.
Nearby Markets or Grocery Stores
- Jimmy’s Market Cava: Market and deli with a great selection (especially the wines) plus great coffee and breakfast sandwiches (more consistent and better quality breakfasts than Hlios, but they don’t deliver). 9-minute walk.
- Supermarket Nissi: The friendliest market in the area, and usually the best prices in Imerovigli. 9-minute walk.
Grace Santorini – The Hotel
Outside Grace Santorini, facing southwest toward the volcanoes and Akrotiri at the far tip of Santorini. Grace is arranged vertically over several levels as seen here, down the side of the caldera.
The stairs at the entrance connect all of the floors. Like most hotels in the caldera, there is no elevator. This view faces east toward Skaros Rock and Thirassia Island.
View of Skaros Rock from the bottom floor of Grace Santorini, with the volcanoes and Thirassia Island in the back. The trail to Skaros passes by the lower level of the hotel. There is one Junior Suite at the lower level nearest to the trail, making it the least private room onsite, but with a truly spectacular view regardless.
The chapel is near here, reserved for Greek Orthodox weddings.
Santoro Restaurant sits on a higher level. This is the interior seating area.
Lunch here is more casual than dinner, but still well-presented with extraordinary flavors.
Santoro’s outdoor dining terrace is one floor down from the infinity pool, and offers sweeping caldera views.
Grace’s infinity pool is the largest in the caldera.
There are plenty of sun loungers around the unheated pool. Since most suites have private pools, the main pool is usually quiet. In the back right, the Pool Bar (run by Santoro) is visible. Oia village is in the center (all the white buildings), and Thirassia Island is partially visible on the left.
Another floor up is the award-winning 363 Champagne Lounge, with stellar cocktails and an extensive menu of champagne and wine.
The bar’s outdoor terrace is the most popular seating area for sunset views.
The rooms, suites, and villa offer bespoke amenities and special touches. Each room comes with a memory box to store mementos of Santorini, and create everlasting memories.
The mini-bars are well-stocked with local, Santorinian products.
This is a Superior Suite. Like the rest of the hotel, the décor is understated and elegant.
This is one of the mid-range suites. Like all rooms and suites, it features a king-sized bed.
The suite features traditional, Cycladic design, such as its rounded ceiling. All rooms are unique, and built to suite the caldera’s unique geography.
The marble bathroom features a spacious vanity and a glass shower.
The Superior Suite’s terrace features a plunge pool and an al fresco dining table for 2.
The plunge pool overlooks the caldera, and boasts gorgeous, panoramic views.
View towards Oia from the Superior Suite’s terrace.
The Suites, Location, and View at Santorini Grace Hotel
The view from Santorini Grace looking west towards Skaros Rock and Thirassia (the island in the distance). To the north (right) is Oia at the tip of Santorini.
All rooms have been refurbished for summer of 2016. This is a Junior Suite.
The bed in the Junior Suite.
Large beautiful bathrooms.
Private deck with views of the caldera, sunset, and Oia in the distance.
The plunge pools are exactly what they sound like: small pools but not hot tubs.
Two neighboring suites at Grace Santorini. Like most Santorini hotels along the caldera there’s some privacy but don’t be expecting total seclusion.
View from a private deck.
The view of Skaros Rock from inside a suite with private plunge pool on the deck. The Deluxe Double Room with Plunge Pool is the cheapest room with a private pool. If cost isn’t a concern then splurge on the Grace One Bedroom Suite with Plunge Pool. Photo: flickr/JohnM
Beds in Greece are often hard and uncomfortable (for most, I actually love hard beds). But not at Grace, where the beds are super comfy.
Pillow Menu – Oh yeah!
The private villa at Grace Santorini. Attached to the hotel but just set off on its own a little bit. Private pool and jacuzzi, private spa (with steam bath), full kitchen, and 2 bedrooms each with king beds. Grace is adults-only but all ages are allowed in the villa.
Grace does have a lot of stairs (over 200 from most rooms to the town square up above). Hotel staff will help with luggage. If you need a luxury hotel with an elevator (but still great views) look at Canaves and Katikies in Oia.
The pool, bar, and restaurants with more seating inside. (Oia is visible in the distance.) It’s open to non-guests and has tables spread around the huge pool with wonderful views of the caldera and sunset.
The brand new lounge/bar at Santorini Grace.
Layout of Honeymoon Suite at Santorini Grace.
Layout of Grace Suite at Santorini Grace.
Layout of Junior Suite with Private Plunge Pool at Santorini Grace.
Layout of Junior Suite (no pool) at Santorini Grace.
Layout of Private Villa at Santorini Grace.
Layout of Superior Suite at Santorini Grace.
Layout of VIP Suite at Santorini Grace.
Layout of Deluxe Room with Plunge Pool at Santorini Grace.
Layout of Deluxe Room (no pool) at Santorini Grace. The least expensive room at Grace but still beautiful with great views.
The stairs in front of Grace leading to Skaros Rock.
At the end of those stairs you encounter this little church which is very popular for wedding photos.
View looking out at Skaros Rock. Little church is just to the right.
Grace from above. Hotels in Imerovigli have the best sunset views on Santorini. It does change depending on the time of year but generally the sun will set in the gap between Thirassia (on the left) and Oia (on the right). While Oia is known for its sunsets very few hotels there have sunset views. The white buildings visible on the tip are actually looking back into the caldera and do not get a direct view of the sun setting into the sea.
View of Grace from the south (looking north towards Oia). If you look closely you can see the stairs that lead past Grace and towards the little church.
Similar view as above but here you can see the pools at Tholos (bottom) and Astra (top) just beyond Grace.
Similar view but a little farther north and the entrance to Grace just ahead (the small set of stairs). This is the footpath that runs from Fira to Imerovigli and then on to Oia. Astra, Tholos, Kapari, and Sophia Suites are all in the clump of buildings visible. Annio Furnished Flats is the white complex with dark blue trim just to the right.
Continue walking on the path and in 10 minutes you’re out of Imerovigli and walking north to Oia.Visible ahead are the hotels West East Suites, Rocabella Hotel & Spa, and Santorini Princess. You can then see a hill and then another clump of white buildings – these are San Antonio Suites and Aenaon Villas.
The view looking back towards Skaros Rock and Imerovigli from (roughly) the hill I mention above.
That path leads all the way to Oia (walking it is one of the highlights of a trip to Santorini). Here’s a view from Oia looking back at Imerovigli. You can just make out Skaros Rock.
Now let’s go south from Imerovigli. Here’s a view of Skaros Rock from Firostefani – the closest village to Imerovigli as you go south and about a 10 minute walk from Grace. Part of the volcano is visible to the left. Thirassia island is in the center of the photo and Oia a bit to the right.
A little farther south. The View of Imerovigli from the Belvedere and Homeric Poems hotels in Firostefani.
And then a little farther south. This is in the stretch between Firostefani and Fira. This is the same footpath that will eventually pass Grace and lead to Oia.
A 20 minute walk south of Imerovigli and you get to Fira, the largest town on Santorini. Imerovigli and Skaros Rock are visible as is Oia in the far distance (to the left).
A restaurant in Fira looking directly out on the volcano. Fira has the most nightlife and places to eat on Santorini.
But while Imerovigli doesn’t have a lot of restaurants (only 8 to 12 depending what you include) they are all good and many are great. This is Mezzo, my favorite restaurant in Imerovigli and just up the steps from Grace. (You can see the Grace swimming pool down below.)
Avocado restaurant in Imerovigli. It’s up in the main part of Imerovigli and doesn’t have views, but the food is absolutely incredible. Avocado is open for lunch and dinner whereas Mezzo is only dinner.
Kapari Hotel also has a great restaurant (specializing in local food). You can see the pool at the Grace private villa in the distance.
The view of the volcano from the private jacuzzi (honeymoon suite) at Sophia Suites. Once again, the pool at the Grace private villa is visible.
Astra Suites is almost as luxurious as Grace. A good alternative if Grace is fully booked (which often happens).
Tholos Resort – wonderful hotel with great views. Not as expensive as Grace or Astra.
Absolute Bliss has incredible views (and perhaps the best sunset views on Santorini). The private patios have more privacy than many units at Grace or Astra. That said, it does lack some of the magic and character of the other hotels. The owners are super-friendly and helpful.
Need a less expensive hotel? Kasimatis Suites is not as luxurious but has some large suites, wonderful views, and a nice pool. It’s also one of the more kid-friendly places in Imerovigli (those are my 2 boys getting ready to jump in the pool.) Oia is visible to the right. Thirassia to the left. Kasimatis is a good option for last minute bookings.
One final look at Grace, Skaros Rock, the volcano, and the far southern tip of Santorini (and the village of Akrotiri) in the far distance.
Menu at Santorini Grace
Lunch menu at Grace Santorini.
Dinner menu at Grace Santorini.
Good Hotels near Grace Santorini