As I walked around the bungalow I imagined my family relaxing there on holiday. I’d spend a lot of time sitting on the terrace reading and looking out to sea. My husband would be off at the gym or going for a run. My son would be either in the pool or finding people to play football with or helping himself to soft drinks from the free mini bar. My daughter would have appropriated one of the two en-suite bathrooms for her exclusive use and would be either checking out the spa or sunbathing at the beach.
I was on a tour of Halkidiki’s new Ikos Olivia luxury resort six days before it was due to open. The resort is near to Thessaloniki in Greece and is owned by the same company as the Ikos Oceania resort. I was staying at the Ikos Oceania on a group press trip and we were being shown around the Olivia on a sunny day in April.
Wherever we went there were people hard at work putting the final touches in place to welcome the guests who would soon be arriving. In the airy kids club there were packages of toys and equipment waiting to be opened. In the spacious beachside buffet restaurant the chairs and tables just needed their plastic coverings taking off. Down at the beach a final coat of something was being applied to the decking.
All of the rooms that we saw looked great but my favourite was this two-bedroom beachside bungalow because it’s the type of accommodation which suits my family best. The kids (16 and 12 years old) are too big for us all to share a bedroom now unless it’s just for one night. And I prefer us to be together in a two-bedroom place or in interconnecting rooms than for us to stay in separate rooms. I filmed the bungalow because I liked it so much:
The Olivia resort is spread out across 22 acres of landscaped gardens next to the Aegean sea. It has a private sandy beach, various swimming pools, a spa, tennis courts, a kids club, 5 restaurants and 295 rooms. Like the Ikos Oceania, the Ikos Olivia is a luxury all-inclusive resort. Guests who stay at these resorts enjoy the Ikos ‘Infinite Lifestyle’ package which includes things like menus created by a Michelin-starred chef, room service, dining out at local restaurants, kids clubs, activities, waiter service to your sun lounger and childcare at the beach.
Naomi Moreno-Molgar is Head of PR for the tour operator Sovereign and she was on the trip with me. That evening our group went to a local taverna for dinner and I asked Naomi what she thought of the Ikos Olivia as a destination for Sovereign customers:
Blogger Alison Perry of Not Another Mummy Blog was also on the trip and this is what she thought about Ikos Olivia:
I was very impressed with Ikos Olivia when I saw it and, if the quality and standards match those of the Ikos Oceania, where I stayed for three nights, then I think that it will be a great place to stay.
Family travel lowdown
The price of staying at Ikos Olivia varies according to when you go. A sample price with Sovereign is £3299.52 for two adults and two children sharing a one-bedroom garden view bungalow suite for seven nights from 6th June 2015 on an all-inclusive basis. For further information on Ikos Resorts please visit www.ikosresorts.com
Have you ever stayed at an all-inclusive hotel? Do you think that this would work for your family?