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Gill’s Blog: My Travel Counsellors Gold Trip to Crete

After working my wee socks off over the past year since joining Travel Counsellors, I’m thrilled to have retained my “Gold” status - achieving the top sales threshold! 😊

With this achievement comes a recognition trip, and I chose to join around 40 fellow Gold Travel Counsellors on the beautiful island of Crete.

Grecotel LUXME White Palace

We stayed at the magnificent LUXME White Palace on the stunning north coast for three days of sheer luxury, all-inclusive indulgence, and refined service. Honestly, it wasn’t a tough decision!

The hotel is owned by Grecotel, a family-run business established more than 40 years ago, that offers some of Greece’s most wonderful hotels and resorts in beautiful, historic locations.

They boast 40 hotels across the Greek mainland and islands, and I was lucky enough to experience three of the seven in their Crete portfolio.

Each of these hotels offers programmes available to guests, including 'Kids Go Free' up to age 12 and a dedication to minimising their environmental footprint. Plus, the superb Agreco Farm is open to guests staying at any of the seven properties on the island.

The farm is located on a hill near Rethymnon, surrounded by vineyards and olive trees overlooking the sea. Olive oil, wine, cheese, honey, eggs and meat are all produced and prepared here for use in the hotel’s restaurants and body care products.

We began our visit with a guided tour around the estate, followed by a stunning Cretan dinner at the on-site taverna while watching the sunset. The Agreco Farm Taverna is also included in the LUXME all-inclusive dining package.

The three-day trip was a perfect mix of insight, education and celebration. It was especially wonderful to spend time with my dear friend and colleague, Jo, with whom I've shared many memorable experiences over the years.

The White Palace, where we spent most of our time, provided incredible hospitality. The warmth of the staff and the quality of service were outstanding. Every team member we met was friendly, chatty and smiley, and nothing was a problem - even the 5pm daily call for a bucket of ice!

The LUXME label is described as upscale all-inclusive, and they most certainly deliver on that promise. The vibe is all about relaxation, making the hotel perfect for couples or families who simply want to chill on their holiday.

For additional peace, tranquillity and romance, the Swim Up Pool rooms are ideal, and the Sunset Lounge Bar is an utterly divine setting to watch the setting sun with a cocktail in hand.

Grecotel Creta Palace

The Creta Palace Hotel was the second of the Grecotel Crete properties we visited, falling under their 'Luxury Beach Resort' label. It’s a traditional luxury family resort overlooking the Cretan Sea, near the charming Rethymno Old Town with its cobbled alleyways and narrow streets.

The top highlights here included:

  • 3km of Blue Flag Beach

  • Their own miniature Cretan village square, featuring a church, a traditional kafenion (Greek coffee house), a monastery souvenir shop and retro retail outlets.

  • The sushi at the Barbarossa Fish Restaurant – unbelievably good!

Amirandes Grecotel Boutique Resort

For those seeking a bit more privacy, Amirandes falls under the Grecotel 'boutique resort' label.

It's an incredible and unique property styled after the water palaces of the Minoan kings and Venetian nobles who once ruled Crete.

I was blown away by our home for the day spent here. The Royal Residence is probably the most stunning hotel villa I have ever seen - and I've seen quite a few!

The olympic-sized Sea Water Pool left me speechless - seriously, just look at it!

Sea Water Pool

And then there's the sanctuary of the Elixir Alchemy Spa, offering signature treatments using organic plants and extracts from Crete's rare and aromatic herbs.

Facilities include an indoor pool, sauna, a beauty salon, private massage rooms and a seafront beach massage area.

I could have happily whiled away several hours at this hotel! 😊

The Dolli at Acropolis

And finally, I must mention a hidden gem from Grecotel for an Athens city break. The Dolli at Acropolis, nestled in the heart of the city, overlooks the Parthenon. It’s a boutique hotel-maison with luxurious rooms and a one-of-a-kind view of the ancient world.

As you may be able to tell, I am now a Grecotel convert. I've always been cautious about all-inclusive resorts in Europe, but I can confidently say they have mastered it to perfection.

Thanks to them and to Travel Counsellors, this mix of authentic Greek hospitality and the finest food and wine made for a perfect reward trip away.

Please feel free to get in touch with any enquiries.


Gillian x


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