Greece › Santorini › Hotels › Ikies Review
by Santorini Dave • Updated: January 25, 2022
• Location: In a quiet area on the caldera at the entrance to Oia
• Hotel website: ikies.com
• Hotel phone: +30 22860 71311
• Check prices for Ikies
Ikies – Boutique, luxury hotel with private jacuzzis, a cliffside pool, and impressive views over the caldera.
This intimate hotel features thirteen unique studios, maisonettes (lofts), and suites – all with magnificent views of the caldera. Each room is distinct in size and layout since they were all carved by hand from the cliffside to accommodate the natural geography. All blend bold, modern décor with traditional architecture and a handful of antique pieces. Ten have private jacuzzis; nine of those ten also have steam showers. All have access to a shared swimming pool overlooking the caldera. Located in a quiet nook at the beginning of Oia, the hotel is walking distance to the village’s best dining and attractions, while remaining tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the tourist core. Expect warm, personalized care from the expert staff.
Ikies – Location
• Area: Excellent location on the caldera at the entrance to Oia. The hotel is within 4 to 20 minutes’ walking distance of the best restaurants, shops, and attractions in the village, but in a quiet section removed from the throng of sunset tourists.
• How to Get There: Ikies is located on a footpath just off the main road into Oia, making it very easy to travel to and from, whether by taxi, driving yourself, or riding the bus. It is approximately 18km from the Athinios ferry port and the Santorini Airport to the hotel, though they are in different directions.
There are always buses waiting at the ferry port for every ferry arrival, as well as buses departing hourly from Santorini Airport. There are no direct buses from the port or airport to Oia, however; buses from both locations go to Fira, where you must then board a different bus to Oia – the entire trip from the port or airport to Oia will take at least an hour and cost about €5 in total. Tickets are purchased on the bus, in cash only. From the Oia Bus Terminal, it’s a 16-minute walk to the hotel.
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 to Ikies will cost roughly €35 to €40. A taxi from the ferry port will cost around €35 to €40. Booking through a private car service will cost only a bit more – about $60 (or €50), but is 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 in Oia, Ikies offers free parking onsite (a major perk).
• Handy to: The Oia-Fira hiking trail, Oia Bus Terminal, and the restaurant/shopping heart of Oia.
Map of Ikies
Ikies – The Basics
- Ages: 13 years and older only. Guests tend to be couples celebrating an occasion, usually a honeymoon or anniversary.
- Beach: The closest swimming spot (though it is not a proper beach) is at Ammoudi Bay, the port immediately below Oia, 2 km from the hotel. 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: Overlooking the caldera with excellent views, especially in October.
- Private Pools/Jacuzzis: 10 of the 13 rooms here offer private jacuzzis. The Boatman’s, Artisan’s, Captain’s, Cook’s, Antiquarian’s, Carpenter’s, Alchemist’s, and Shipbuilder’s Houses all feature private, outdoor jacuzzis – as does the Winemaker’s House, whose outdoor jacuzzi is the most secluded of the lot. The Collector’s House boasts an indoor/outdoor jacuzzi.
- Kitchen: No units at Ikies include a kitchen.
- Parking: Free parking in their lot, just 60 meters away.
- Extras: For the honeymoon suites and villa (The Carpenter’s, Winemaker’s, and Collector’s Houses), Ikies offers a honeymoon package for an additional price. This package includes champagne breakfasts, rose petals on the bed at arrival, sunset cocktails, 2 massages, a welcome bottle of Moet and Chandon champagne, a sunset wine and cheese platter, and a kimono to take home. This package is customizable.
- How to Book: Booking.com will have the best rates.
- When to Book: The hotel usually operates from mid-April until the end of November. Reserve at least 4 months in advance (6 months is better.) for stays during high season from June through September, and about 3 months in advance for the low and shoulder seasons.
- Phone: +30 22860 71311
- Email: email@example.com
- Website: ikies.com
Ikies – Amenities
- Pool: The small, quiet, and unheated pool overlooks the caldera.
- Spa: There is no spa here, but they offer a wellness treatments, such as sunrise and sunset yoga, meditation, Ayurvedic massage, aromatherapy, Reiki, and reflexology. Treatments can be done on the private terrace or in-room.
- Fitness Center: No gym, but personal training, yoga, and Pilates can be arranged in-suite or on the private terrace.
- For Disabled Guests: The hotel is unsuitable for guests with mobility issues, as it is on the caldera and filled with stairs. No elevator.
- For Families: 13 years and older only. This adults-only hotel does not offer facilities or amenities for children. For families traveling with older kids, they offer several rooms that sleep up to 4 guests.
- Activities: Spa and wellness treatments on request. The staff can also arrange private cruises, car tours, wine tasting, and more.
Ikies – Food and Drink
- Restaurant: There is no restaurant onsite, but they do offer in-house private fine-dining service served to rooms from noon to 10:00 p.m.
- Lounge/Bar: No bar, but wine and cocktails can be ordered to your room.
- Breakfast: Complimentary breakfast is served to each room’s private terrace every morning at the time of your choice, between 8:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. Breakfasts are hearty and delicious, featuring Greek products, made-to-order eggs, and great coffee.
- Room Service: Always for breakfast, and available for lunch, dinner, snacks, and drinks from 1:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
Ikies – Rooms
- Room Types: Gardener’s House (studio) • Boatman’s House (studio) • Artisan’s House (studio) • Cook’s House (maisonette) • Sailor’s House (maisonette) • Fisherman’s House (maisonette) • Captain’s House (suite) • Antiquarian’s House (2-bedroom suite) • Carpenter’s House (honeymoon suite) • Winemaker’s House (honeymoon suite) • Shipbuilder’s House (1-bedroom suite) • Alchemist’s House (maisonette) • Collector’s House (2-bedroom honeymoon villa)
- Smoking Rooms: Smoking is not allowed inside any of the rooms. It is allowed on the private terraces and in the outdoor common areas.
- Best Room: The Honeymoon Suites are the top category rooms here, and include upgraded champagne breakfasts every morning, and cocktails in the evening. The Winemaker’s and Carpenter’s Houses are the best choice for couples celebrating a special occasion, with secluded outdoor jacuzzis, indoor jacuzzi baths, and steam rooms.
- For Families: Ages 13 and older only. The hotel does not offer any facilities or amenities for small children. For guests traveling with older children, they offer several rooms that sleep up to four, but the Collector’s and Antiquarian’s Houses are the best, accommodating up to 6 guests. These are the only 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom suites onsite, and both feature 1 king and 1 queen bed, plus 2 single sofa beds. The Collector’s House honeymoon villa boasts an indoor/outdoor jacuzzi, indoor jacuzzi baths, and a steam room with caldera views, plus an upgraded champagne breakfast and evening cocktails daily. The Antiquarian’s House is the largest luxury suite onsite, spread over 2 floors with an outdoor jacuzzi and fully-equipped kitchenette.
Ikies – Local Transport
- Walking: The hotel is located at the entrance to Oia, just a few steps from the Oia-Fira trail. Walk 15 minutes west to get to the center of Oia, where you’ll find an endless choice of restaurants, shops, and attractions, as well as the bus terminal. Head east to find the traditional village Finikia, which has a couple of great restaurants and Sigalas winery. The Oia Castle ruins are just 23 minutes away, while Ammoudi Bay is just 5 more minutes past the castle at the bottom of the caldera.
- Bus: The hotel is right in between 2 bus stops. The closer of the two is at the entrance to Finikia village, a 13-minute walk east on the main street in front of Alonistra Oia Houses. The Oia Bus Terminal is 16 minutes west of the hotel. All buses that go through Finikia also serve Oia, but the Baxedes bus to Oia does not pass through Finikia. Buses here serve all of the major villages and beaches on the island, often with a change in Fira. 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. Because of this, it’s better to catch the bus at the Oia Bus Terminal, which is the first stop, if you are leaving the hotel to explore. Coming back, get off the bus in Finikia, so you have a shorter walk to the hotel.
- Taxis: The nearest taxi stand is at Stathmos Taxi, near the Oia Bus Terminal. 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, plus you can have them meet you directly at the hotel near the parking area. 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 €20, and from Oia to the airport runs about €35 to €40.
- 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.
Ikies – What’s Nearby?
Best Nearby Restaurants
- Anemomilos Restaurant: Located next to their hotel; refreshingly local vibe, not touristy at all. Great food, friendly atmosphere.
- Lefkes: Lefkes: Cozy, romantic restaurant in a converted wine cellar in the charming Finikia village.
- Melitini: 100% Greek menu using local Santorinian, Cycladic, and Greek ingredients only. Quaint, cozy interior and stellar caldera views from the rooftop terrace.
- PitoGyros: Hands-down, the best gyros in Oia. Seating is limited.
- Candouni: Cozy, family-owned restaurant with live Greek music and absolutely delicious food.
- Lotza: Simple, honest Greek comfort food with stunning caldera views.
- Ammoudi Bay Restaurants: Each of these waterfront restaurants is phenomenal, offering the freshest fish on the island. The steep half-hour walk down takes longer coming back up, but your waiter will be happy to call you a cab.
Best Nearby Bars and Breweries
- Fino Cocktail Bar & Restaurant: The best cocktails in Santorini. Plus, inspired Mediterranean food and an extensive wine list.
- Sunset Sangria Bar: Chill spot for sangria, cocktails, and tapas with excellent sunset views (though not of the caldera).
- Marykay’s Bar/Hassapiko: The only nightlife in Oia, this is where to go for dancing, as they regularly host live bands and DJs.
Best Nearby Cafes
- Mes Amis: Amazing little spot on a covered patio looking over the caldera. Super casual, fantastic views, and great food.
- Meteor: Excellent coffee and breakfast with sweeping caldera views, though a little on the pricey side. Turns into a bar at night.
Nearby Shopping and Cool Shops
- BLOW by Labro: High-end designer boutique with unique pieces.
- Bligaki: Santorinian accessories, especially jewelry and bags, mostly handmade.
- It’s a Beautiful Day: Greek-designed clothing and luxury-brand accessories.
- B.Loose: Greek-made, casual linens for men and women.
- Steps to Art: Truly unique metal sculptures, replicas inspired by Akrotiri, and jewelry made with volcanic sand and watch parts.
- Spilia Cave Greek Clothing: Handmade, leather sandals, cotton and linen Greek clothes, located in one of the original living caves of Oia.
- Oia-Fira Hiking Trail: 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 south to Fira, the full length of the path from the Byzantine Castle Ruins takes from 2 to 5 hours; Add about an hour for a detour at Skaros Rock in Imerovigli. 1-minute walk from the hotel.
- Church of Panagia of Platsani: The most iconic church in Santorini, beautiful inside and out.
- Museum of Ancient, Byzantine Musical Instruments: Faithful replicas of Greek instruments dating from the prehistoric through Byzantine eras.
- Maritime Museum: Small museum focused on Greek Naval and Santorinian seafaring history. Only €3 to enter.
- Domaine Sigalas: Santorini’s best vineyard, offering tastings, tapas, and full tours.
- Castle of Agios Nikolaos (aka Oia Castle aka Byzantine Castle Ruins): The medieval castle ruins are the most popular sunset viewpoint on the island.
- Ammoudi Bay: Best known for its fresh fish restaurants, Ammoudi is the rocky port of Oia; boats sail to Thirassia and cruise the caldera from here. It’s an incredibly popular spot for cliff diving, and is one of the best places to swim on the island.
Nearby Markets or Grocery Stores
- Perivolas Market: Small store with a decent selection of drinks, wine, and bread.
- Village Super Market: Good selection of staples at a fair price (for Santorini).
- 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.
- Proton Supermarket: Small market, but usually has the best prices. This is where most locals shop in the area.
Ikies – The Hotel
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