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Maria_and_Steve
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Vritomartis Hotel and Bungalows in Crete, Greece
      #1424201 - 06/24/12 01:56 PM (94.70.107.194)

We spent 4 days at this naturalist resort on the south coast of Crete. The resort is a naturalist resort which means that the outside facilities in the resort are all nude (required) but for the inside areas of the resort you must be covered.

The setting for the resort is really spectacular. You drive or take a taxi south over the high mountains of Crete and as you descend from the high ridges the resort is near the base of the mountains along the south coast.

The official nudist beach is 3/4 of a mile from the resort and you can either walk from the resort along a semi-private road or take the shuttle bus from the resort that runs every 30 minutes. This beach is maintained by the resort and they have umbrellas, beach chairs and a beach restaurant there. The walk downhill to the beach is very easy but the return is all uphill so it is easier to take the bus back!

There is also a very nice large outdoor pool at the resort with umbrellas and chairs where nude is required.

Then there is a textile beach, separate from the nude beach that is about 3/4 of a mile from the resort too, if you want that. The route there is an easy downhill walk from the resort to the beach.

The nude beach is composed of rounded beach rocks so shoes are pretty much mandatory, unless you have exceptionally strong feet. The snorkeling is very good in the incredibly clear water but the sea-life is typical Mediterranean - meaning that you won't see much sea life. The water tends to be very cold too but a lot of people can snorkel or swim for an hour without any problems. We didn't go in the water very often because it was too cold for our Caribbean tastes!

We met one couple who had been to Club Orient on Orient Beach, St. Martin in March 2012 and we compared notes of course. Club Orient has to be the standard when comparing nudist resorts. In our opinion, Vritomartis is a very nice resort with a great nudist beach and pool. But the beach is rocky and doesn't have the great sand that ClubO has. Other than that, this resort is highly recommended.

Most guests stay at the resort with breakfast and dinner included in the price (this is called half-board). Lunches can be purchased at the resort snack bars or in the nearby town of Sfakia that is 1.25 miles away.

There are about a dozen very nice places to eat in Sfakia, all along the small harbor. Sfakia is a very small remote village that is used by boats who ferry tourists to the other beaches along the coast. There are no ferry boats that go to the Vritomartis beach.

The guests at Vritomartis are a nice cross-section of European nationalities with ages from about 30 to 70. English is used at the resort as the common language, with Greek the first language of course.

Breakfast is good with an assortment of things to fill you up. Dinner is outside on the terrace with a buffet selection of foods to choose from. No, this isn't Grand Case dining but the food is good and there are a variety of things to eat. The menu changes every day too.

The weather at the resort is the same every day. The sky is a cloudless deep blue color with a light breeze. There are no clouds at the resort, at least in June. None. This part of Crete is very arid and stark with huge gorges that bisect the landscape. The temperature was in the high 80's to low 90's when we were there. There are no mosquitos because of the arid climate.

The big gorges that bisect the south coast of Crete provide an opportunity for some interesting hikes. The resort provides tours to the more popular gorges, hikes along the coast and visits to selected beaches. The area around Sfakia was a historic WWII battle ground as well.

If you are looking for a true nudist resort with a great nude beach, spectacular scenery and a very relaxed atmosphere then Vritomartis is an excellent choice.


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tiger79
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Vritomartis Hotel and Bungalows in Crete, Greece
      #1424213 - 06/24/12 03:51 PM (86.158.27.204)

Glad you enjoyed the Vritomaris naturist resort, We stayed in July last year, and certainly didn't enjoy it.

We were looking forward to staying at Vritomartis, and had made an internet booking for a Grand Bungalow, because these rooms have private terraces on 3 sides. When we arrived, the room we were allocated only had 1 terrace, but the receptionist insisted it was a Grand Bungalow, and even suggested that the small area at the top of the communal staircase was a terrace! On escalating the complaint to the manager, and referring him to the floor plan of the 3-terrace Grand Bungalow on the hotel's website, he finally admitted that our room wasn't a Grand Bungalow, and that it should not have been allocated to someone booking one on the internet (which raises a question about people who book one through other means!). As there wasn't a Grand Bungalow available, he offered to credit our account with the additional cost of the Grand Bungalow, and we accepted this. Just unfortunate that the receptionist tried to fob us off with lies.

On our third day, we took the shuttle bus to the beach. We were followed on to the beach by the waiter from the hotel's beach bar, who demanded our room number, wrote out a charge slip for the 7.50 charge for sunbeds, and asked me to sign it, which I did. Later, after lunch, he again came to the beach and demanded payment in cash, which I naturally refused as I'd already signed a hotel charge slip. He stormed off, saying that he'd bring the manager within 5 minutes. This was extremely embarrassing for us. The manager didn't appear, of course, but when we went to board the shuttle bus back to the hotel, I was refused boarding and told I had to speak with some girl who said she was the manager's sister. I repeated that, having signed a charge slip as requested, I would definitely not pay cash. She insisted that all sunbeds should be paid in cash, but I said we'd take our complaint to the manager. Subsequently, my wife complained to the manager, who apologised for our embarrassment and didn't know why we'd been asked to sign a charge slip. We never got a proper explanation.

Vritomartis only sells half-board accommodation. The breakfast buffet is OK, but the dinner buffet is disappointing. The salad bar looks appealing, but flies can be a problem (as in any outside location). The hot food was generally unappealing. My wife is a vegetarian, and virtually lived on salads the whole time we were there. I'm not a big meat eater, and had no appetite for "Rabbit Stew", or even the intriguing "Cock in Wine Sauce". When fish was available, it was generally unappealing, although the "Sole Meuniere" was OK - except that it wasn't Sole Meuniere, it was deep-fried battered fish.

Some reviewers have noted that there's a bit of a rush to eat when the dinner buffet opens at 1930. That's an understatement! Sometimes, the queue was really impressive. This might be a result of the fact that most of the clients are very elderly, or it might be a reflection on the availability of food later in the service.

The pool bar/taverna was a whole different experience though; good food, freshly prepared, nicely presented. But extra cost of course, and not inexpensive - prices were about the same as I'd expect in the UK. The service however was excellent.

The on-site minimarket was useful for bottles of water, fruit juice, etc. And it was the only source of ice creams too - but bizarrely it closed all afternoon, just when you might yearn for an ice cream!

Similarly, having stayed in many naturist resorts in Europe and the Caribbean, we found it odd that, at Vritomartis, guests have to dress in the hotel buildings at all times.

The rooms were clean and presentable, with aircon and a mini-fridge. Although the bed was comfortable, it's worth noting that all the beds are built on a concrete base next to a wall, so if you're sleeping on the wall side you need to be agile enough to climb in.

The swimming pool is quite large and very clean. The showers next to the pool are plagued by wasps, and we saw one elderly guy stung as he showered. There's a separate shallow children's pool, too, although this can get very noisy as kids jump in and out whilst shouting loudly. There are free sunbeds around the pool and surrounding grass, but they are mainly old and tired and rather uncomfortable. And there are too few of them - to the extent that the hotel even put up signs telling people not to leave their towels on them if they weren't using them! On several days, we saw people having to lie on the grass.

The grounds around the pool are well-maintained; nicely planted, colourful and attractive. There's a little army of housekeepers who sweep the paths early in the morning.

We were hoping to go on a boat trip, but thought that 178 per couple for a short day trip was a bit expensive, so didn't book it. As it happens, I think the trip was cancelled anyway as the sea was too rough.

So, on balance, very disappointing. Was it good value? No. Would we go again? No.


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Maria_and_Steve
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Re: Vritomartis Hotel and Bungalows in Crete, Greece [Re: tiger79]
      #1424275 - 06/25/12 02:00 AM (94.70.116.27)

As pointed out to me, I used the word naturalist and should have used the word naturist. Sorry about that.

Also, yes the beach chairs must be paid for in cash instead of charging them to your room. We found the price half of what ClubO charges so were pleasantly surprised and didn't mind at all.

The second poster mentioned a kids pool. During the time we were there no kids at all at the entire resort. There is also a policy of not reserving any chairs at the resort because of the problems it can cause, as everyone knows.

As I stated, the clientele ranged from 30's to 70's with the average age about 50 - not really hardly elderly at least when we were there.

These two reports illustrate different experiences for different cultures it seems!


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tiger79
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Re: Vritomartis Hotel and Bungalows in Crete, Greece [Re: Maria_and_Steve]
      #1424277 - 06/25/12 03:03 AM (86.158.27.204)

Quote:

Maria_and_Steve said:
These two reports illustrate different experiences for different cultures it seems!




Different cultures? I think one of the biggest cultural problems we experienced at Vritomartis was the tendency of some of the Greeks to be less than honest in their dealings with other nationalities.


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sailn
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Re: Vritomartis Hotel and Bungalows in Crete, Greece [Re: tiger79]
      #1424419 - 06/25/12 01:42 PM (174.56.143.41)

quote
On our third day, we took the shuttle bus to the beach. We were followed on to the beach by the waiter from the hotel's beach bar, who demanded our room number, wrote out a charge slip for the 7.50 charge for sunbeds, and asked me to sign it, which I did. Later, after lunch, he again came to the beach and demanded payment in cash, which I naturally refused as I'd already signed a hotel charge slip. He stormed off, saying that he'd bring the manager within 5 minutes. This was extremely embarrassing for us. The manager didn't appear, of course, but when we went to board the shuttle bus back to the hotel, I was refused boarding and told I had to speak with some girl who said she was the manager's sister. I repeated that, having signed a charge slip as requested, I would definitely not pay cash. She insisted that all sunbeds should be paid in cash, but I said we'd take our complaint to the manager. Subsequently, my wife complained to the manager, who apologised for our embarrassment and didn't know why we'd been asked to sign a charge slip. We never got a proper explanation.
-----

my guess is the manager is well aware of the pay twice scam.

and to me perhaps Braco years ago was the gold standard, club o has no pool/pool bar area and no choice of restaurants less you want to pay cab to and from grand case.


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Carol_HillAdministrator
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Re: Vritomartis Hotel and Bungalows in Crete, Greece [Re: tiger79]
      #1424431 - 06/25/12 02:17 PM (71.101.41.196)

Thanks for this info from both of you regarding this resort. So nice to receive info on something other than Caribbean nude resorts!

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Lar n Shar
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Re: Vritomartis Hotel and Bungalows in Crete, Greece [Re: Maria_and_Steve]
      #1435955 - 08/17/12 10:48 PM (98.245.68.57)

We thought it was wild how different the perspectives were between the first 2 posters. Having been there for only 2 nights this May our experience was definitely more like Maria and Steve's. In fact, exactly so. Maybe it's a matter of expectations but we were so sad to have to leave so soon that we've considered going back for 2 weeks next time. We're sorry to hear the problems the 2nd poster had but want to say how peaceful, accommodating, and all around trouble free was our own experience. Maybe its because of our common locale (we're in Colorado, too) but we could have written Maria and Steve's report exactly the same.

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