We chose the Trapezaki Bay Hotel because it has a restaurant which has a gluten free menu and a vegetarian menu in addition to the normal offerings, plus our friends (once we floated the idea) raved about the Greek island of Kefalonia. Once we saw the five star reviews on Trip Advisor that raved about the food too we were hooked. There are also plenty of meat and fish dishes. Food and drink is very reasonably priced. Main courses priced the same as rest of the island. A large glass of house red wine is 2.50 Euros.
The adult only hotel offers the best service one could expect and they bend over backwards to make your stay as wonderful as possible. It is stunning from the location to the food. Beds are huge and incredibly comfortable. Black out curtains and quiet outside apart from the crickets ensuring a great night’s sleep. Even sitting glued to iPad for hours on end (staying out of the baking heat, sorting photos and writing blog) and your bottom doesn’t ache. I really need a bed like this!
We had room 229 at the back which was therefore lovely and cool. You can leave balcony doors open all day. We got a lovely view of the mountain and if we wanted the sea you got that from the public areas anyway. Personally I think those at the front missed out on that majestic mountain and cool air.
It attracts a refined British clientele so you won’t see any football shirts and you can safely dress up for dinner knowing there will not be anyone there in their shorts apart from the friendly owner Niko armed with his catalogue of cheesy dad jokes as he lights the lamp on your table.
Do not be surprised if you feel a tap on your leg when eating as either the cat or dog will be endearing themselves to you in hope of a tasty morsel. Before breakfast why not work up an appetite before it gets hot by taking Rocko, the dog, for a walk. He will be ever so grateful but will not want to head back too soon, sitting down in protest like an immovable anchor. This is when some sausage stolen from the buffet on your way out will encourage him to go the path you favour.
And by the way you need to be fit as all these paths are very hilly and the hotel resides in a magnificent hilltop position. However they also afford spectacular mountain views that made my heart sing.
During the day linger by the pool overlooking the bay or hire a car to explore the beauty of Captain Corelli’s island. There is a pool bar which does lunch and then cocktails.
Dinner on the terrace looking down to the sea and across to the island of Zakynthos is very special. The menu is extensive and dietary needs catered for with ease. Vegetarians are easier but those who are celiacs or wheat free should bring their own gluten free bread mix / ready long life bread. You will need enough for am toast, any lunchtime sandwiches and bread before your dinner if having these meals at the hotel. We also bought some gluten free pasta which is not so ideal as it needs lots of monitoring to take it off at the split second it is ready before it goes too soft. I then felt bad for Madonna on lunch duty as it is quite onerous to watch over the pasta and see to all the other guests’ needs.
Breakfast is great by the way with such a large selection anyone on any diet would find something to eat. I asked if they had mint tea and they went to the capital and got me some. They make their own bread and own olive oil which could be the key to their delicious food which is always expertly flavoured with a delicate balance of herbs. We only ate lunch out of the hotel on three occasions because the food was lovely and we were too lazy to venture away from the oasis of tranquility.
On a week’s sunshine holiday we usually do a mix of self catering and eating out so I had been terribly concerned about not having the freedom of our own kitchen. However it was lovely to have no shopping or cooking to do. In addition gluten free substitutes are nowhere to be found on the island and the local supermarket had a very sparse selection so self catering for my vegetarian celiac husband in Greece we have concluded is not an option. The traditional Greek specials here are to be highly recommended if you eat meat. I was regularly prostrating myself at the kitchen door hailing Sophia and Anna as gods of food. It is worth the flight over that chicken stifado, lamb kleftiko and cheesy aubergine bake.
They really have thought of everything here. Free beach parasol and towels are provided if you want to go down the steep descents to either local small beach i.e. Trapezaki beach or St Thomas for a swim in the sea which is warmer than the pool. At least late September it was. Naturally there are also more separate towels for use by the pool. On your balcony is a washing line with pegs for drying out your swimming gear.
The gorgeous Maria on reception will furnish you with all you need to know re where to go in your hire car and book it for you. Her recommendations are very honest and helpful. I thoroughly enjoyed my girly chats with Maria as I hid inside from the baking hot sun. In the sun by the pool it hit 40c some days with a freak hot streak at the end of the season.
105 euros for the minimum 3 days for a small car with air con. You will need both the air con and the diminutive size as some roads are very narrow for passing with steep drops too. Roads although ‘interesting’ with goats kicking rocks down or hair pin bends are very quiet out of season.
We took the new fast back road up to the North and back as we had plenty of coastal driving to enjoy without cause for squeamishness to Sami / Agia Efimia and to Katelios for a lovely breezy lunch by the sea.
It did make us laugh that sheep were being herded across the fast road and sometimes a dog would be sleeping in the road.
In the North are the must sees of the view down to white/turquoise contrasts of Myrtos Beach (do not leave until late in the day or will be in shadow), Asos harbour which is especially picturesque photographed from the bit of land it adjoins topped with ruins of a castle and finally the shiny new yachts against the lovely old buildings in the busy with tourists fishing village of Fiscardo.
Maria’s mother Soula operates the airport transfer included in your stay. How wonderful to be met with a hug, a cold bottle of water and a moist towel to refresh you on the short journey to the airport. One couple touched down at 6pm and were in their room by 6.30pm!
What can I say? This is a five star experience all round. If you want to totally relax in the sun far from the madding crowd with acres of scenic space around you, this is the place. Open May to September. Book early as the return rate is phenomenal and it is no wonder.