What we love
Danai is a dreamy combination of homely and luxurious. The vast suites and villas are so relaxing, with fantastic attention to detail; while the gorgeous surroundings - woods, olive groves and deep blue sea as far as the eye can see - will have you relaxed in no time.
Setting the scene
Danai Beach Resort is a small 55 bedroom gem hidden in the forests running down to the sands of the unspoilt Sithonia Peninsula in Halkidiki. Surrounded by the Aegean Sea in one direction and gardens, forests and olive groves in the other, it has a peaceful, secluded feel - perfect if you want to get away from it all. Each of the interior spaces is uniquely decorated, with designer touches and unique artworks, lending the sort of soul and character that many beach hotels lack.
No expense has been spared: Bulgari, Missoni, Bose and Bang & Olufsen are the order of the day, and luxurious touches include four poster beds, luxuriant fabrics, mellow lighting and large marble bathrooms. The suites vary in design; some have upstairs bedrooms; others have second-floor balconies looking out over the gardens or sea; while Pool Suites provide the added benefit of a private terrace with heated pool. You'll be spoilt for space if you opt for one of Danai's opulent villas, which have two, three or four bedrooms as well as large, sumptuous living areas and private gardens or terraces. A couple also have kitchenettes and lamp-lit outside dining areas for those evenings you prefer to stay 'at home'.
Considering its size, Danai has a good range of options - and all are near the sea. The Squirrel has a reputation for smart surroundings, slick service and delicious, high quality food, with tasting menus designed by chef Herve Pronzato that shouldn't be missed. Andromeda has a similar a la carte vibe, with a lovely atmosphere thanks to candle-lit tables and the shelter of pine trees. Sea Horse Grill serves grilled meats, fish and vegetables with fresh Greek salads and good local wines; Greek nights featuring local music and dancing are a regular occurrence. We loved Sea Side Bar as a retreat from the midday heat or for cocktails at sundown, and we recommend the private dining experience for the tasty creations of Herve Pranzano and white glove service in a secret spot. Danai has a vast wine cellar with nearly 1,000 international wines - including a healthy selection from Greece and The Med. If you're intrigued, the team will be delighted to take you on a wine-tasting journey around the world - just say the word.
Generally speaking The Danai has a restful, slow paced ambience, though adventure junkies can head out for watersports, water aerobics, tennis, golf and mountain biking - all organised by the hotel. The hotel also offers two boat trips around the bay - a smaller charter covering the western coast of Sithonia, and a larger vessel which will take you as far as Mount Athos' ancient monasteries. Facilities at the hotel itself include an indulgent spa offering a range of therapies and beauty treatments as well as daily yoga and pilates classes; private lessons can also be arranged. We recommend booking the sun deck for your treatment if it's available - so you can relax into your pampering session to the sound of the waves. The swimming pool at Danai is particularly pleasant, positioned overlooking the sea, under the shade of the pine trees.
Danai is rather isolated, but the fantastic creche and children's clubs are sure to keep your youngsters occupied. The creche is open to children under four, and opens for two sessions each day: 10am-2pm and 5pm-9pm. The Danai Kids Club is a complimentary service for children aged between 4 and 11 offering a range of inspiring activities with highly qualified staff. Places are in high demand, so we recommend booking as early as possible. Babysitting is also available in the evenings should you feel like a night off.
The Danai is 50 minutes from Thessaloniki Airport by road; or alternatively you could arrive in style and charter a helicopter, which will take a mere 15 minutes to reach the resort.
Prices on request