Villa | 3 bedrooms | sleeps 6
Villa Selene has a private swimming pool which is GATED to help with child safety - and adult peace of mind when looking after toddlers around the swimming pool. The Kitchen/diner opens directly on to the patio area, and there are no stairs to negotiate when bringing out food to the dining area outside.
Located in our St Basil Olive Grove, only 3 minutes drive from the beach at Almirida, on the Apokoronas Peninsular in North West Crete Also nearby, only a 12 minute walk away, is the 1000-year old Greek village of Gavalochori with tavernas & shops.
The villa shares the Olive Grove with only 4 other villas (also owned by us) but is not overlooked by them so your privacy is protected. Unusually for Crete, there is at least 60 metres between each house, and separated by colour full private gardens. The olive grove is huge (4.5 acres, 17,000 sq metres) and is fully fenced and gated. The road to Almyrida has only light traffic during the day and occasional vehicles at night, yet you are never far from civilisation and the bustling cafe culture and nightlife of nearby villages.
|Size||Sleeps up to 6, 3 bedrooms|
|Nearest beach||Almyrida 2 km|
|Will consider||Corporate bookings, Long term lets (over 1 month)|
|Access||Car not necessary, Wheelchair users|
|Nearest Amenities||1 km|
|Nearest travel links||Nearest airport: CHANIA 20 km|
|Family friendly||Great for children of all ages, Suitable for people with restricted mobility|
|Notes||No pets allowed, No smoking at this property|
Features and Facilities
|General||Air conditioning, TV, CD player, Safe, Satellite TV, Wi-Fi available|
|Standard||Kettle, Toaster, Iron, Hair dryer|
|Utilities||Cooker, Microwave, Fridge, Freezer, Washing machine|
|Rooms||3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms of which 2 Family bathrooms|
|Furniture||Single beds (4), Double beds (1), Cots (2), Dining seats for 8, Lounge seats for 8|
|Outdoors||Balcony or terrace, Private garden, BBQ|
|Access||Wheelchair users, Secure parking|
|Further details indoors|
Villa Selene is a large comfortable villa with no stairs. The central open-plan kitchen diner has bedrooms and bathrooms radiating from this 'hub' allowing good privacy.
The Crete region
Crete, blessed with more than 300 days of sunshine every year and has over 25 million olive trees and a population of less than 600,000 living on its 8,300 square kilometers. Crete is the largest of the Greek islands and is the fifth largest island in the Mediterranean that lies at the point where the continents of Europe, Asia and Africa meet. The island has an elongated shape, 260 km long from west to east and is divided into four prefectures Chania, Rethymnon, Iraklio and Lassithi, which are between 15 and 60 km wide. The coastline is over 1000 km long and consists of both sandy beaches and rocky shores. The rest of the island is sparsely populated, with large tracts of mountainous areas frequented only by shepherds.
"Out in the dark blue sea there lies an island called Crete, a rich and lovely land, washed by the waves on every side, densely peopled and boasting ninety cities."
Homer Odyssey 19, 172-174
Together with all the former attractions, the island has a rich archaeological heritage in the prefecture of Heraklio and eastward, are the remains of the palaces and cities (Knossos, Phaistos, Malia, Zakros, etc.) which are of the Minoan settlement, who developed one of the great civilizations of the ancient world, which flourished between 1700 - 1450 B.C. Then with the invasion of the Achaians and later the Dorians (11th century B.C.), new cities were built, such as Aptera (17 km. from Chania) and Lato. Among the remains of Byzantine culture on Crete are the masterful mosaic floors and the churches decorated with frescoes dating from the 10th to the 16th centuries.
Crete fell into the hands of the Arabs In 824 till 961 which was when Handak today known as Iraklio was founded. In 1204 the island was then passed to the Venetians who reinforced older fortresses, such as Koule in Heraklio, and built new ones in places such as Gramvousa (45 km from Chania), Spinalonga (near Aghios Nikolaos 200 km from Chania), Frangokastello (85 km), Lerapetra (250 km), and Paleohora (70 km). We can still admire Venetian edifices such as the great walls of Chania, inside which we find narrow streets with squares, fountains, churches and Venetian houses. In 1645 the Muslim conquered the island for the first time and in 1669 the whole of Crete fell into the hands of Turks, it was not until 1913 when the island of Crete was united with the rest of Greece.
The spirit of Crete is reflected large in the island's landscapes, its soaring mountains and fertile plains, in the palaces of the Minoan area and the castles, mosques and minarets of Venetian and Turkish conquerors. Above all it is in the traditional hospitality of its people with their infectious love of life and enjoyment of simple pleasures. Thus Crete is a land for all temperaments, blending fascinating layers of history with a proud and thriving folklore in a powerfully beautiful setting.
VILLA ASTERIA is situated 2 km inland of the fishing village of Almirida (sometimes spelt Almyrida) on Crete's north west coast. This is to the east of Souda Bay on the Apokoronas peninsular, about 20 kilometres from the city of Chania and its airport.
OUR LOCATION is ideal if you want a quiet family holiday with plenty of sun and sea, yet you are never far from civilisation and the bustling cafe culture and nightlife of nearby villages.
Nearby ALMIRIDA VILLAGE has around a dozen restaurants and tavernas, mostly along the seafront, so you can enjoy your meal just a few metres from the waves. We have personally eaten at every restaurant and have never had a poor meal, although perhaps some of the local village wine is a acquired taste! Cooking is invariably home-made Cretan (according to long-handed down family recipies) so you will find that the same dish will differ between restaurants. Variety is everywhere. Nightlife - there are several quite trendy bars open until silly hours, and there is often a disco in Nikita's bar on a Sunday night. You can also expect impromptu musicians to turn up at any time and entertain you with traditional Cretan music and dancing.
GAVALOCHORI VILLAGE, only 12 minutes walk away, dates back over 1000 years and offers your closest restaurants and minimarkets - plus interesting attactions such as the ancient Roman Wells.
BEACHES are sandy and safe, with crystal waters, and offer good opportunities for swimming, fishing, snorkelling and scuba (PADI) diving. You can also hire wind surfers and pedaloes - even a large sailing boat for day trips around the peninsular
Nearby KALIVES is a working town as well as being a tourist destination. So in addition to the beaches, tavernas, bars and tourist shops there are local shops plus a good-sized supermarket. Banking, post office and petrol station are available.
CHANIA, the second city of Crete, is a cosmopolitan city voted the most beautiful on Crete. With the White Mountains as a backdrop, it has a Venetian harbour, museums, a fascinating indoor market and an old quarter of narrow streets packed with interesting shops. It is a vibrant place steeped in Byzantine, Venetian and Turkish history. The harbour area is a great place to sit and watch the world go by at one of the sea-front tavernas. You can take a boat trip, visit the nautical museum, or just wander around the narrow back streets. The Agora market has fish, meat, bakers and fruit stalls. The Saturday street market which runs down towards the sea, close to the Agora is the best place to find produce straight from the fields.
WALKING/HIKING. The famous Samaria gorge is just to the south and there are also many more peaceful gorges such as Imbros Gorge, which runs parallel to Samaria. The Apokoronas area is wonderful for walking & cycling, especially in the Spring & Autumn. Inland, the countryside offers spectacular hills and winding valleys. May and June are the ideal months to see an astonishing display of wild flowers - including huge carnivorous plants growing wild! An ideal way to explore on foot is with local walking experts Faragi Tours, a family-run company of enthusiasts who specialise in offering walks of various length and difficulty, from beginner to expert. They are based in nearby Vamos, only 5 km (3 miles) from our villas.
KNOSSOS PALACE - famous dwelling of the Minoans and the Minotaur
PHAISTOS was one of the most important centres of Minoan civilization, and the most wealthy and powerful city in southern Crete. It was inhabited from the Neolithic period until the foundation and development of the Minoan palaces in the 15th century B.C.
ALLIED WAR CEMETARY
In a beautiful location at the head of Souda bay, a poignant memorial to the young lives lost in World War 2. A lovely garden and a very peaceful place.
GERMAN WAR CEMETARY
It is a tribute to the people of Crete that they help to maintain the cemetery of those who invaded them in the May of 1941. Like the Allied cemetery, this is also beautifully maintained, but totally different in design. To find it you drive out to Maleme, and look for the turning on your left as you drive West. It is on one of the hills over-looking Maleme airfield, where many of them died as they came in by parachute. More than 4000 German troops are buried here. The headstones are in fact tablets laid flat on the ground, one tablet for two men. At intervals there are also small stone crosses. There is also a small visitor centre on the path up to the cemetery. When he was alive George Psychoundakis (The Cretan Runner) tended the graves at the cemetery
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17 Oct 2013
This house could comfortably accommodate eight people in good weather. (I'm not sure if it might feel a bit cramped for 8 if the weather was too cool to sit outside.) There is plenty of storage space - lots of drawers and hanging space. The beds were comfortable and sheets were changed twice a week. The kitchen is fairly well-equipped, but we didn't do much cooking - I think I might have struggled to cook for 8 with the pans that were there. Also there is no dishwasher - not a problem for us, but for 8? The pool was great - a good size, and very well-maintained, with 4 sun-loungers and 4 deckchairs. In addition, there was a large, shady terrace with a table seating 8 to 10 people, and two more small terraces with bistro-size tables - perfect for us.
We didn't spend a lot of time in Almirida, which we thought was a bit touristy and overrun with Brits. However, it has a nice beach with sailing dinghies and windsurfers for hire (but not in October!). We had a hire car and enjoyed touring the local countryside, where we found more traditional and attractive villages. We walked to Gavalachori nearly everyday, either up the hill past the Venetian wells, or by the more direct route when we were in a hurry to eat. The ethnography museum there is small but very good.
The location is very quiet, so not so good if you want a bit of night life, but perfect for relaxing in peace. We enjoyed sitting by the pool and watching the sun go down behind the mountains.
I would not recommend the location for people with disabilities, even though the house itself would be great - all on one level and with wide doors. The problem would be getting someone down the steps and across the uneven gravel to a car. Someone with a walking frame would struggle, and a wheelchair would be possible, but hard work.
3 Sep 2013
"Ideal holiday venue for a young family."
Villa Selene is in a very quiet and picturesque setting. It is an ideal villa for young children being all on one level and also has a gated pool. A few minutes drive to a safe sandy beach.
28 Aug 2013
"Great villa in a quiet location but not far from local facilities"
We've just spent 2 weeks at Villa Selene and had a great time. We were a party of 4 adults and 4 teenagers (15/16) and found the accommodation had plenty of room for us in the 4 bedrooms, lounge/… More
12 Aug 2013
"Gorgeous restful villa set in backdrop of stunning olive grove"
Absolutely wonderful week - and I advise to book 2 - this is just a fantastic place to spend time retreating from the busy world and relaxing fully with a view to envy. Congrats to Basil Olive Grove for offering competitive prices but not compromising quality. Thank you
29 Jul 2013
"Couldn't recommend the location & villa enough, but do hire a car when its hot!"
This was the perfect villa for a medlded family - the young people at one and andseperated from the adults by the living space. The pool was the perfect size for 5 people who aren't good swimmers and there was plenty of shade for when it got too hot or for those with sensitive skin. The nearby village of Gavalochori had some fabulous and very reasonable taverna, locally made ice creams and a lovely bakery and Almyrida is quite lively at night, though a long way from being dangerous or disgusting like say Faliraki. Although there are quite a lot of historic sites within easy distance, a trip to Knosssos in the summer may be easier (if you have children) by taking a room there for the night. Otherwise you will spend a great deal of a day (and have to be up horribly early) in the car. There is a good supermarket at Kalves that is worth a stop when you come of the major road on the way to the villa. It is hidden from the road but near the Shell garage. This will give you a better choice & prices than available locally.
27 Jul 2013
"Fantastic location to explore West Crete"
We spent 2 weeks at this lovely Villa, which we found to be clean, and in excellent repair. Mark and his team kept the pool and Villa clean during our stay so we had little to do other than relax and enjoy the views and the pool.
John who managed the booking provided lots of help and advise before the trip to exnsure we got good value for money, and provided recomendations on some of the local Taverna's. "Rosemary" in Gavalochori ws one we eat in many times.
The area around the Villa is great. The beach, restaurants and shops in Almyrida are just 5 minus drive away. We especially liked the nearby village of Gavalochori with its Tavernas which offered excellent food at very reasobable prices, and was within an easy walk.
There is plenty in the west of Crete to see and I'd recommend trips to Chania Old town, Lake Kouma for the turtles, Agias Triados Monastry, and the Elafonissi beach.
19 Jun 2013
This is the 3rd time we have visited Saint Basil Olive Grove villas - 2 previous stays in Villa Angelos and this time in Villa Selene and we wil definately be visiting again.
The location of the villas is perfect, private without feeling isolated and close enough to the many bars and restaurants in Almyrida but far enough away not to be distirbed by them.
I couldn't recommend this holiday highly enough for sunshine and relaxation!
13 Mar 2013
"A perfect place to relax, explore and soak up the real Crete"
The instructions provided for driving to the villa were very good and we arrived relatively stress free from the drive. The accomodation is set out well, a central kitchen / living space easily big enough for the 8 of us, with well appointed bathrooms and bedrooms on each side, providing a good degree of privacy. The owners provide a file full of information on the villa and the surrounds, and their restaurant recommendations are worth trying out!
The bedrooms are simple, with lovely matching wooden furniture, and we slept most comfortably. The kitchen and bathrooms are well appointed, with a microwave (great if you have a baby) and good sized fridge / freezer. There is a bath as well as two showers / loos so there is never a long queue!
The fantastic feature of the villa is the swimming pool. With 6 children we wanted a great pool with safety in mind as well. The pool is gated, has plenty of sun loungers and umbrellas, is exceptionally clean and larger than many we saw in the vicinity.
There are lots of lovely villages to walk / drive to, and to get the most out of your stay, a car is strongly recommended. The hire company we used provided a virtually brand new car, impressive! Local restaurants serve a great variety of food - one or two were excellent, and all were welcoming and child friendly.
As a family holiday, it was really relaxing, with space enough for all the kids to do their own thing (the DVD player was great too when it got very hot outside). We ate lunch around the huge table on the patio - fantastic salads and local cheeses and meats, which could be found in the nearest village, 10 minutes walk away, and ate out for dinner - typically 10-20 euros per (adult) head for a feast including wine.
Would definitely recommend the villa, the location and also the customer service - English ex-pats I think!
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