People, I’m here to tell you that when it comes to living the luxury lifestyle on holiday, there’s more to Greece than Mykonos and Santorini. Sure, you may already know that, but I’ll be totally up front with you and admit that I hadn’t yet been exposed to anything else in the region, until now. Last weekend I was invited to visit Costa Navarino in the Peloponnese. Before my visit, I had mentioned the trip to a friend who told me that the resort was like the “Las Vegas of Greece.” I couldn’t get that statement out of my head. Of course he, who shall remain unnamed, said he meant that in a good way. There was a little something for everyone on site – beaches, restaurants, special programs and amenities for kids, giant swimming pools and even an American Diner. An American Diner at a five star resort in Greece? I couldn’t picture it.
We arrived on a Friday afternoon at around 6pm in Athens. Ahead of us was a three hour drive to reach Costa Navarino, but, thanks to a partnership with BMW, the transport was comfortable and luxurious, and the scenery helped to pass the time quickly. Once I pulled into the resort itself I was immediately overwhelmed with the size of it all. My pre-trip advisor wasn’t incorrect. This was a place that did seem like a luxury popup in the middle to the most unlikely area. Where all surrounding areas are rich in history and surrounded by natural landscapes, Costa Navarino is almost a luxury oasis of sorts. You truly think you have entered another planet and it is luxury living on another level.
Two hotels make up the Costa Navarino resort – The Westin and The Romanos. You can stay at either and enjoy the facilities of both, but there is a distinct difference between the two – mainly that The Westin seems to cater more towards families on a luxury vacation. Perhaps it was the massive waterpark-like pool area, complete with waterslides, that tipped that off? Or maybe it was the massive kid hotel with a nature learning centre on the side and a bowling alley that had us all thinking ahead to days when our future offspring would need entertaining on holiday.
Here’s what you do need to know about Costa Navarino, the important bits. You will eat. My God, you will eat until none of the clothes you brought with you will button. There are so many options here for food that it is truly unbelieveable. You can stay in the local vein and eat some of the finest Greek cuisine, created with local produce, or you can go full on guilty and indulge in a great steak (American Black Angus). And finish every meal with an Oreo Waffle Cone from the Fro Yo shop. Oh, and not to worry about being able to fit into your clothes. They have what can only be described as a mini mall on site. There are stores galore offering everything from Soludos espadrilles to Juicy Couture track pants. Although, there are plenty of ways to work off the excessive eating while you’re in residence. The activities offered are too extensive to list, but I’ll just say you can be as active or as lazy as you wish. Either way, you have a Costa Navarino BMW courtesy car at your disposal all day to drive and explore neighboring villages. No license? How about snorkeling, biking, cooking or touring? This holiday is as crazy or relaxed as you want it to be, end of story.
Naturally, I went a bit mad with the photos. So without further ado, the joys of Costa Navarino.
First, the resort itself. Beautiful architecture that ties in with the natural colours of its surroundings…
And the restaurants and bars… only a sampling…
The water… beach or pool… take your pick!
And finally, a taste of what’s to discover just outside the resort!
FFG was a guest of Costa Navarino.
Costa Navarino: Rates at the two hotels at Navarino Dunes, start from: The Westin Resort CostaNavarino: from €200, and The Romanos, a Luxury Collection Resort from €310. To book and for further information visit www.costanavarino.com
Aegean Airlines offers daily flights from London Heathrow and London Gatwick to Athens. For more information please visit www.aegeanair.com