A paradise-like hideaway at a stunning spot of Crete
Τhere are hotels that the mere reference of their names brings to mind a specific image. It’s an image trademark that heralds the exquisite hospitality they offer to their guests. In our daydreaming, we always love to imagine becoming a part of this unique image. Danieli in Venice, for example, automatically makes you think of its majestic staircase. In the case of Daios Cove in Crete, Greece, it’s the signature panoramic view of the resort that has the above effect on mental travellers.
Arriving at Daios Cove
There I am, at a hot September weekend, on the top level of Daios Cove gazing at the aforementioned view, which highlights the unique identity of the resort. When seen from above, one cannot help but notice the triangular shapes that loom in the distance. First, one observes the triangle of the azure sea, then one more of the deep blue infinity pool and last the deck with the elegant striped umbrellas. On the same level, one also finds the reception that looks like a villa taken from a James Bond movie. Floor-to-ceiling glass windows overlook the breathtaking rocky landscape, while the lobby area of the resort, is decorated with hand-picked works of art and contemporary furnishings.
Located in the privacy of a natural amphitheater that ends up to a secluded cove, Daios Cove also features impressive architecture that seamlessly blends in with the rugged surroundings. With uninterrupted views of the deep blue of the Aegean Sea and easy access to its isolated private beach, it is the perfect place to fully unwind.
A weekend about Gastronomy at Daios Cove
The reason I and some other journalists from top Greek media are there is to spend a long weekend devoted to Gastronomy, which has a special place in the core of Daios philosophy and mission. A hotel buggy takes us from the awesome reception area to our junior suite, elegantly decorated with its own private terrace and pool and of course with a mesmerizing view. From everywhere in the suite, you can look not only at the big blue of the sea but also the rough beauty of the rock.
On the bed, we find the itinerary of our Culinary Journey. A few suntan hours later and after a lobster sandwich by the pool, we are ready for the first gastronomic event that kicks off the weekend, taking place at Ocean, the fine dining restaurant of the hotel. Lately, an exciting collaboration with Ducasse Conseil has elevated the restaurant experience to new gastronomic heights.
The menu is meticulously curated by the exceptional team at Ducasse Conseil drawing inspiration from the Greek sea and land. But we are even luckier since our menu is curated and prepared by Michelin-starred Jérôme Lacressonnière himself, the Executive Chef Director of Ducasse Conseil, with a 20-year experience alongside Alain Ducasse. While we are tasting the sublime dishes of Jerome there is also “a wine pairing game” taking place. For each course of the menu, we are given … the hard task to choose between a French and a Greek wine! There is a poll and a debate with endless arguments that end up to even more glass fillings and laughs.
In the next few days, we have the chance to enjoy two more restaurants of the resort, each one offering a completely different but equally awesome experience. Tavernais the place where one can taste a contemporary version of Greek traditional cuisine and fish food with the curation of Zahos Papadakis. A Cretan and Greek à la carte venue overlooking the cove with a serene ambiance, Taverna serves superb local specialties with a fine selection of Greek and international wines. Fish is a must. Here one can taste really exquisite interpretations of classic Greek flavours.
We spend our last evening at the ‘oh so bohemian’ Beach House, which is located on the isolated coastal cove of the resort, inviting guests to indulge in a luxurious yet unpretentious lifestyle. Its cuisine reflects respect for seasonality as well as the grown and sourced ingredients with the culture of the Mediterranean. Best we had there? A delicious dakos salad with mussels and the yummiest dish with bone marrow!
Snacks by the pool are an ode to fine comfort food (if there is no such thing, the inspirational team of chefs at Daios have managed to invent it!) Not to mention the sublime cocktail list and beverages created by the award-winning mixologists of The Clumsies, which has been voted 3rd in The World’s 50 Best Bars!
Life at Daios Cove
Daios Cove is a true 5-star hotel. It is the kind of hotel that has a perfectly choreographed team in every area and every section. Its kind and genuinely friendly staff seem to be omnipresent, always ready to satisfy guests’ needs, before these are even expressed by them! Attention to detail and impeccable aesthetics play an integral role in the Daios Cove philosophy. A high level of services, a tranquil atmosphere, a carefree, leisurely pace make Daios Cove Luxury Resort and Villas in Crete is the absolute choice for travellers seeking 5-star luxury accommodation in Agios Nikolaos, Crete.
As always, there are some true visionaries behind this project, which started with an accidental visit by boat in 70s by a yachtsman who was seeking refuge during a storm and ended up discovering the secluded bay that would become home to Daios Cove. He fell in love with the privacy and the beauty of the spot and became the first owner of the land. He never moved on to build the resort he was dreaming of, though. Enter the Daios family that acquired the place and with Stylianidis architectural firm managed to create from scratch a unique paradise with absolute respect to nature.
Since then the passionate owners have been constantly striving to offer meaningful experiences and inspiration to guests. As for the future, there are even bigger plans like a new spa -clinic offering advanced health and wellness treatments as well as one more restaurant with a unique -like no other on the island of Crete- concept. They promised me all this would be ready by next summer season. And I can’t wait to go back!