By Maria Athanasopoulou
Considered to be one of the most beautiful five-star hotels in all of Greece, the magnificent Epirus Palace Hotel Ioannina is a must-stay for those looking for world-class luxury travel experience. Named after its location in the country’s Epirus region – and, more specifically, after its largest city, Ioannina, a popular holiday destination for Greek and foreign visitors alike – the hotel serves as a perfect base from which to explore the area’s spectacular landscape, as well as its rich history.
The Epirus Palace Hotel Ioannina is especially popular for hikers and adventure seekers as it sits in the very heart of an area often referred to as the ‘Greek Alps’. Outdoor activities on offer include hiking and biking adventures, as well as rock climbing and river rafting. Those seeking more sedate experiences can enjoy wildlife watching – the area is popular among birdwatchers, and has a large deer population – as well as enjoying the regional flora. A highlight of any stay is spending time walking along the shores of beautiful, Lake Ioannina (or better still, grab a kayak and paddle its length), or exploring the ‘Grand Canyon’ of Vikos.
For those not able to pull themselves away from their luxurious accommodations, there’s no shortage of things to see and do at the hotel. Highlights include relaxing in its impressive outdoor spaces, catching some sun before taking a dip in the large swimming pool that refreshes guests when the weather is hot. A nice feature is the large pool bar, ensuring a refreshing beverage or cocktail is always close at hand.
Dining, Drinking… Sleeping
The hotel also boasts two first-rate restaurants serving tasty local and internationally inspired dishes. The a la carte I Capuccini – overseen by the hotel’s Michelin starred chef, Ettore Botrini – specializes in contemporary Mediterranean cuisine, while the aptly named Mediterranen (also a la carte) is popular for its cozy atmosphere and expansive wine cellar. If light snacks and a good drink are what you’re looking for, then head to the elegant Café Alegro. Breakfasts are a special treat. Rich and hearty, they consist of local fresh products and traditional recipes.
As for the hotel’s rooms? Well, you won’t be disappointed. Modern, spacious, and very nicely furnished, it’s very apparent that a great deal of special attention has been paid to ensure the relaxation and comfort of the visitor. And to the hotel’s credit, the same can be said for the attentive staff, very well trained and ready to serve… and always with a smile. If you can swing it, opt for the Grand Deluxe Suite, which includes a spacious living area in addition to the bedroom, plus a large balcony overlooking the pool area.
The hotel also features a brand new spa, and given the property’s location just a few kilometers away from the city center, it’s in a quiet area guaranteed to help guests relax and rejuvenate themselves.
To learn more about this wonderful luxury resort property, visit the Epirus Palace Hotel Ioannina’s website at http://www.epiruspalace.gr/homepage-eng_4644.htm
Maria Athanasopoulou is Founder of Respond on Demand, a company promoting Greek tourism to travel agents abroad and co-founder of Top Tourism , a non-profit company promoting Greek tourism and culture. She is also ambassador for Greece to the World Food Travel Association.