ToyDrop on Tour:
Ammos Hotel, Crete
28th June 2019
Words by Anna whitaker
We’d heard great things about Ammos. So many, actually, that we booked our stay as soon as this year’s rates were revealed last September. With only four suites available, rumour had it you needed to book the moment they went live as the whole season would be fully booked within a week. We got lucky.
Arriving in the dead of nights after a horrible journey was immediately eased by a warm welcome and cheese toastie in our room. It was exactly what we needed and after settling the boys (which for once, wasn’t hard – it was midnight tbf), we crashed out in the supersized, super comfy bed until morning – even getting a little lie in thanks to the late night and two-hour time difference.
The next morning, Arlo and I took a little stroll before breakfast. We found bikes, trikes, a turtle pond, playroom (more on that later) and the swimming pool, where we’d spend almost every waking hour for the next seven days. We needn’t have brought any of the boys’ toys with us as the hotel was fully stocked with everything they wanted the play with and more. The only thing we ended up needing was an extra rubber ring, which we found in the local store. Turns out that was the one thing no one could share.
Breakfast itself was next level: a buffet of Big Fat Greek proportions. From home-made Granola and natural yogurt to hard-boiled eggs and spinach pie, orange cake, marble cake, chocolate cake and strawberries; this was a daily event not to be missed. The staff were always so accommodating of the boys, bringing out plastic plates, cups, cutlery and orange juice for the table. Oh and coffee. Lots of coffee.
During the week, AMMOS opens their crèche in the playroom, which is run by the wonderful Lina. For two hours in the morning and two in the late afternoon, she entertains them with arts and crafts, songs and other fun while you kick back with a beer. Win. Only half a win for us though as Rudi was going through a particularly clingy phase at the time and wouldn’t let us leave him. He napped a lot though too so we did get a bit of reading time.
If Arlo wasn’t in the playroom, the pool was the other hotspot. The kid would spend all day there if he could and thankfully, a shallow, toddler-friendly part meant he could play solo really safely. To be fair, we were in there with him most of the time and only arm’s reach at others. They also had a lifeguard on duty for extra peace of mind.
A few steps down from the pool and you’re at the beach. To be totally honest, we didn’t spend much time there as Rudi kept finding stones and putting them in his mouth or getting sand all over himself and freaking out about it (London kids, hey 😂). the water was really calm though and the tide never seemed to move so it felt really safe and perfect for older toddlers or kids.
I’ve mentioned the breakfast but food was pretty high on the agenda throughout the days and the options were amazing. Aside from the delicious salads, sandwiches and pizzas, they had daily specials which were always local and seasonal. The kids menu was basic but kept the boys happy and again, the staff were always amazingly attentive with every request.
The hotel is about 15 minutes from the gorgeous old town of Chania. We took the bus for a visit one day and, despite getting caught in a tropical storm, it was nice to ‘get out’ so to speak. We never really did resort holidays before the boys and find sitting still for too long does more harm than good so our little jaunt was very much enjoyed. There were loads of beautiful buildings, a maritime museum, archeological museum and plenty of covered streets selling leather goods a felt slippers. I’m still regretting not buying a pair.
We also went out for a couple of adventurous dinners away from the hotel. Nico’s was a delicious and totally authentic little tapas bar about a 20 minute walk into a small hillside village. It was walking back in the darkness that night that it really felt like a holiday, with the stars out, the circadas chirping and the sunburn settling on our noses.
All in all, it was a brilliant week, really made by the amazing staff and delicious food. It was an easy journey from London, which I’m slowly realising should be further up the priorities list, and the childcare situation was brilliant, even if it did only have a 50% success rate with the boys. Would I go back? Of course. But there’s a hell of a lot of world to explore before that.
Check out the adventure below
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