When you drive up into the hills, the views open and the trees and rocks become interesting. As all traces of the city, the town, and finally even the nearby village vanish, Villa Kerasia quietly greets you with its pleasing country house standing on the hillside. Even on the first visit it feels like you are seeing a trusted old friend.

Villa Kerasia  offers a welcoming face that only a building of this quality provides, in an ideal setting, with the beauty of the hills rolling into the distance. Clinging to the hillsides are several villages you might visit. The countryside around beckons – a lush green much of the year, arable and tree-lined, rocky outcrops, colorful boxes of beehives in the distance, and the vineyards beyond.

This is a busy wine-making area and the vintages on offer are growing in appeal and quality. Kerasia is here to tempt you. A grand country house. A fine small inn.

The building has been completely re-established, constructed out of old stones salvaged from the original house. Bedrooms are a perfect blend of light-colored stone and wood finishes – most have wood-beamed ceilings. Doors and window frames are a near-white bleached wood, adding to the light, airy feel created by the modern architecture abutting the ancient stones of this country house.

The air is clear. Morning mists miss you and dampen only those in the valleys below, leaving you and the few lucky guests at Kerasia to enjoy a drier more palatable climate, rarely too hot, always relaxing.

At Villa Kerasia, the lobby and dining area for guests has a discreet, intimate small back room for quiet corner conversations. (It includes the old olive press mill stones.) Breakfast (included in the price) in the main hall is a delight and evening meals can be enjoyed at Kerasia when previously requested the same morning. An evening meal is 12 or 15 euros per person (vegetarian or with meat dish, excluding drinks).

Wonderful estate-produced wine and other drinks are available when you wish. There is a basic bar selection from which to choose.

The L-shaped pool (50 m2) is large enough for morning laps and well-suited for floating and gazing across the beautiful vistas from its cooling waters, which seem to continue on into the infinity of the arable landscape beyond and below.

The drive from Heraklion airport is surprisingly short for such a welcome rural retreat – about 35-50 minutes, depending on traffic. At Villa Kerasia, you are just walking distance from the nearest village via a very pretty walking-route.

Should you choose to explore further, the archaeological site of Rizinia affords spectacular views if you walk to it up the small road which passes Kerasia towards Asites. Drive down towards the main road to Vernerato, just 5 minutes away, and there are several places to eat.

More? Then drive south to discover Gortyna, Phaestos, and Zaros. Or the southern coastal waters lapping the shore at Lentas. Or the cave-surrounded beach of Matala. The scenic drive via time-worn villages to Amari is also within your reach.

  • Hotel Name: Villa Kerasia Inn
  • Area: Heraklion, Vlahiana
  • Why Go: Countryside,Elegant,Food & Wine,Peaceful Rural Setting in Village,Relaxed,Romantic,Quality of service

Why we like it

  • There are many good places and among them are a few, usually hard to find, that are exceptional. This is one. So close to Crete's main city and yet emotionally separate, calm, and totally attractive. Therapy!
  • Villa Kerasia offers a welcoming face that only a building of this quality provides, in an ideal setting, with the beauty of the hills rolling into the distance.
  • Babis, the owner, and his staff are incredibly welcoming and helpful and offer superb hospitality.
  • Kerasia is an ideal starting point for exploring the northern and southern side of Crete and the most significant archaeological sites.
  • This beautiful house, with its own characteristics and its hospitable table for guests, is an ideal choice.

What to know

  • Not suitable for families with more than two children.
  • We recommend that you rent a car as other means of transport are limited and/or infrequent. (You cannot reach Villa Kerasia by public transport).
Hotel Information Recommended For
Type: Small Hotels & Inns Family hospitality :
Rooms: 7 Quality of service :
Pool: Yes Architecture & style :
Dining: Yes on request Village Atmosphere :
Children: Welcome Mountain :
Closed: November to 17 March Young Couples :

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