Just returned from a weeks stay at Vanilla Hotel. We booked in February as a package holiday. After a 2am get up, we arrived at Vanilla, where a very unpleasant man on reception (we learned later that he was not Greek) told us we were not staying there that night, but just across the road in hotel Eva. No apology or explanation was given to us. Too tired to argue, we were put in a car and drove to the other end of Ornos, where hotel Eva was situated on a steep hill. We choose our hotels carefully, as my husband has asthma, and does find it difficult to negotiate steep hills. Hotel Eva despite its location and was lovely.
The following day we waited in reception at 11am for transport back to Vanilla as pre arranged when we left, reception staff had to ring them to remind them, and they arrived half an hour later. On arrival at Vanilla the second time, we were told room not ready, we could sit by the pool, the not so nice man on reception said we could have the superior room, and we could leave our cases in it, but not to unpack as it hadn't been cleaned. The room was upstairs, the previous peoples cases were still there, beds unmade, tiny shower room also untidy and not clean, I checked out the balcony, it looked out onto a flat roof, the busy road was to the side, 2 old chairs were propped up, and barely room to move. Not happy about this, I asked for another room, to be told again it was the superior room as it had 3 beds in it. I explained I do not need 3 beds as there's only 2 of us!
I was shown to room no 34, which was a separate annex to the hotel, and had a nice shared courtyard for rooms 32, 33, and 34, close to the pool but not overlooked. We accepted room 34 but was not ready either, we then choose to sit round the pool. A complimentary drink was not offered, and still no apology. We finally got into our room at around 2pm.
Morning breakfast was rubbish every day, no toaster, food not covered up apart from the plastic sausages, scrambled eggs and unappetising mushrooms ( which were in the same compartment as the sausage..... Something a vegetarian notices!) and the processed ham and cheese. the cereals and jams were uncovered and flies continuously landing and crawling on them. The only fruit was tinned peaches!
We did not see any of the staff smiling at breakfast, and we're not sociable with guests, severely lacking in a good atmosphere.
All the balconies were small, and the pool ones, we're very close up to the sunbeds. The white grills around the pool were green with algae.
Having said all this, the location of Vanilla, was good, close to a couple of 24 hour bakeries and a 5 minute flat stroll to the beach and bus stop.
We didn't let this spoil our holiday, Ornos is a lovely place to stay, and if you eat off the beach, it's a lot cheaper. We did not drink in the Vanilla hotel bar is it was always frequented by the local greek people.More
Carole T, Clitheroe, United Kingdom
Seem promising, staff spoiled our visit
I picked this hotel based on proximity to the beach and town and booked well in advanced in March traveling the last week of August. Upon arriving we were told we didn't have a room and we were going to be moved to another hotel Eva, We were taken to the other hotel which was a long walk up the beach in a hill with no view and outdated rooms and we complained and said we wanted our money back if our original room reservation was not honored. In the end they gave us a room and we stayed there. Hotel wise, the room was nice and clean the the pool was ok, the walk to the beach is only a couple of blocks away and stores, bakeries are a short walk away. The shower is tiny but nothing we couldn't deal with.
The worse is when we asked about the "complimentary" shuttle service to catch our boat, they mentioned it was not free but rather 10 euros per person, I gave him the ferry information and he said he knew where we needed to go. He told the driver where to go and the driver took us to the new port. We left with enough time and once we got there I decided to ask the lady at the local store in the port and she told me we were in the wrong port, that I needed to take a bus to the new port, luckily we had time and a taxi stopped by and we were able to make our ferry. I have to doubt he sent that here on purpose based on the stink we raised about our room.More
AbeChicago, Chicago, Illinois, United States
Just for Jenny!!
We stayed at the Vanilla Hotel last month for a fortnight as part of a twin-centre holiday. OK, the room wasn't of the same standard as the one we had on Santorini, where the hotel staff were really friendly - but that hotel didn't have a Jenny who absolutely made our holiday!
As others have said, she is quite a character and if you need anything sorting out, she's your woman! We spent many a happy hour chatting into the night, watching the traffic go by.
As for the hotel: yes, it's small (but that makes it very intimate and friendly). Yes, some days we couldn't get a sunbed in full sun (but it was so hot we needed a bit of a break from sunbathing anyway). Yes, there aren't that many shops nearby (but there's all you need). Yes, the choice at breakfast was limited (but no more so than many of the other Greek hotels we've stayed at, and that's a lot of hotels).
We hired a quad bike (via Jenny for a pretty good price) and that was good fun (though we think someone siphoned off the petrol which is why we ran out, luckily within pushing distance of Ornos) - though as others have said, it can be a little hairy on the roads! Our favourite beach was Agios Ioannis, just up the road, though we did get to most of the beaches on the island. Having said that, we didnt sunbathe once on Ornos beach, though we remembered it from a previous visit when that was our beach of choice. We ate there a lot in the evenings, and had some delicious food.
We did walk it into / back from Mykonos a few times - not a difficult walk even in the heat, if you take it steady. Mykonos itself is a beautiful as it looks on the postcards - it's very busy and vibrant, if a little expensive.
All in all, we had a wonderful time on the island and would recommend it to anyone. We would also recommend the Vanilla Hotel, even if it's not the poshest hotel in the world. Its friendliness and welcome more than make up for it.
I can't end without another mention for Jenny - thanks again for everything, Jenny, and your letter is on the way!!More
Caz1260, Sheffield, United Kingdom
Relax by the pool at Vanilla Hotel
I had a great cultural experience of Mykonos staying at this hotel.
There were both positives and negatives to my stay, but one of the staff members, Jenny, made my stay very worthwhile. She made me feel welcome, was a shoulder to lean upon, and best of all made me laugh.
When I arrived at the hotel at 12pm my room wasn't ready (as check in was at 2pm). I waited out by the pool, but even by 2pm the room still wasn't ready. It wasn't until 3pm I was able to get in. My room did not have a pool view, and looked out over the busy road.
The pool was lovely, it was nice to just sit out there each day and get some beautiful Mykonos sun. I walked into town one of the days - it was about a 40 minute walk - very hot but very good exercise if your up for it :)
My room was standard, with a bed and bathroom, and the breakfast each day was very sufficient.
Each night I walked down to the number of restaurants down at Ornos Beach and chose one to have dinner at - it was great having this so close to the Hotel.
I met some amazing people at this hotel, lots of friendly English people whom made me feel very welcome.
And then there was Jenny, the receptionist on for the night shift. She made me feel so welcome, made me laugh, and when I felt very lonely (I traveled alone) made me feel like I had a friend :) She is everything that Greek culture represents - fun, loud, generous, and kind. She made my Vanilla Hotel experience a very good one!
Overall, I would recommend this hotel to anyone who wants a traditional Greek experience and is interested in meeting other like-minded travelers. I made some lifelong friends at Vanilla Hotel.More
Lease13, Grafton, NSW, Australia.
The pool and close proximity to a few shops is the only bonus for staying here. Reception staff were not the friendliest and the breakfast was crap. Hygiene of the kitchen staff really needs to be reviewed aka smoking while you're cooking for the guests is not on! The whole place smelt of tobacco smoke. Room was clean, had the smallest shower on earth though. I'm wondering if the sewerage trucks that pull up out the back of the hotel might have added to the unusual aroma that was experienced at night times in the rooms? Nicer places to stay within a 5 minute walk.More
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