Why you need to visit Abaton Island Resort & Spa - the Cretan paradise loved by Jake Quickenden and Lucy Mecklenburgh
30 May 2019, 16:01 | Updated: 12 August 2019, 10:59
Abaton Island Resort & Spa is located in Crete, Greece.
The Greek Islands have long been a favoured holiday destination of Brits, and pretty much every famous face ever has been photographed sunning it up in Mykonos over the past year.
But the latest celebrity hotspot is hidden away in neighbouring Crete - which, thanks to Abaton Island Resort & Spa, is giving its rival destinations a run for their money.
The resort is built more like a magical other-worldly paradise than a hotel - and provides provides the perfect long weekend escape.
Despite only opening last year, it's already favoured by stars such as Lucy Mecklenburgh, Ryan Thomas, Jake Quickenden, and Oliver Proudlock - and the launch of its very own Buddha Bar this year means its celeb clientele is only set to skyrocket.
Where is Abaton Island Resort & Spa?
Abaton is located in Crete, which is the largest of the Greek islands. It was built on a beautiful stretch of private coastline, meaning it it boasts its very own private beaches.
Given its location, the resort is perfectly secluded - but is also a short walk away from the main town, so you really do get the best of both worlds.
It's rare that you'll come across a resort that will make you unwilling to leave the premises, let alone the bedrooms, but Abaton (almost) succeeds in doing just that.
There are 152 rooms in total, with a number of pricing options available - but none of the rooms are in any way less than perfect.
Ours had a sea view and private pool, and waking up has never felt better.
The two-storey(!) room boasted high ceilings, an upstairs chill out area, and private garden and pool.
All rooms come with a fully furnished balcony, and most have a sea view. In addition, 17 have their own private jacuzzi.
Families and larger groups can also choose to stay in a villa, one of which comes complete with private butler.
As well as private pools, guests can also make use of one of two main pools at the resort.
One, informally dubbed the 'Instagram pool', is the most aesthetically pleasing pool we've ever seen. In the evening, it's set against the backdrop of a stunning sunset, and guests can enjoy a cocktail while watching the sun go down.
The other main pool comes complete with sun loungers and its own bar - it also provides a stunning view of the sea.
There is also a luxury indoor pool in the spa.
Restaurants and nightlife
The resort has four diverse a la carte restaurants (plus the main restaurant) with everything from local Cretan cuisine to expertly crafted sushi.
During our stay there, we dined at all four - a particular highlight being WOW Steak & Sushi. The staff there were more than happy to accommodate any dietary requirements (in our case, vegan), and were extremely understanding of these. So anyone who has ever felt nervous that they'll struggle with their diet abroad need not worry at all.
Elemes is the go-to for anyone wanting to sample local Greek cuisine - and the restaurant (which is practically on the beach) also boasts amazing sea views.
A new addition to the nightlife is the recent opening of Buddha Bar, which is the first of the chain to arrive in Crete.
After dining at one of the three of the four a la carte restaurants, guests are now able to drink and let their hair down at the bar - which boasts excellent cocktails as well as a world-renowned DJ.
As the name suggests, the resort's world class spa is one of the main attractions.
As well as the usual massage, nail and hair services and body scrubs, the spa also features the innovative ELEMIS BIOTEC Technology Facials - which uses a (quite scary-looking, but very effective) heated mask that aims to tackle things like ant-ageing. After trying one out, we can confirm that our skin was left soft, glowing - and this was hands down the best facial we've ever had.
How to get the Abaton Island Resort & Spa
The easiest way to get there is to fly to Crete’s Heraklion airport, and the resort can arrange an airport transfer to drive you the 20 minute journey.
Rooms start at just £205 a night (and trust us - that's a VERY good deal). You can find out more information on prices on the Abaton website.