At a glance

  • You'll love

    Private beach

    Dazzling cliff views

    Indulgent spa

  • Kids will love

    Sandy beach

    Lots of activities

    Delicious food

  • Don’t expect

    Trend-setting design

    The hotel to yourself

    A big beach


Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas in Crete is a family-friendly getaway with its own sandy beach and spacious villas cut into a craggy cliff overlooking Daios bay. Splash around in one of the 129 private saltwater plunge pools; with a trio of restaurants, a glittering spa and a choice of aquatic activities for Smith Junior (even your four-year-old can learn to waterski), water babies won’t want to leave…

Smith Extra

Here's what you get for booking Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas with us:

Welcome champagne and a 2-hour spa session (subject to availability). Children get 4 crèche sessions or 2 hours' babysitting (stays of 5 nights or more, subject to availability, advance booking). For stays of 7 nights or more, children's meals are free.


Every property featured in the Smith & Family collection – including Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas – has been selected and approved by parents.


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Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas – Crete – Greece

Need To Know


300, including 70 suites and 39 villas.


12 noon, but flexible, subject to availability. Earliest check-in, 3pm.


Double rooms from £287.80 (€327), excluding tax at 13 per cent. Please note the hotel charges an additional government tax of €4.00 per room per night on check-out.

More details

Rates usually include generous breakfast (buffet and American). Children Cots are free for under-2s; one extra bed (for under-12s) can be added to most rooms for free – a second bed is charged at 70 per cent of the room rate for each guest. Use of the kids club (4–11-year-olds) is free. If you’re staying in a suite or villa between 15 April and 7 July, or 29 August till 3 November, you’ll automatically be a member of the hotel's Premium All Inclusive Club. The club includes daily breakfast service at Ocean Restaurant, daily lunches and dinners, unlimited drinks and signature cocktails from the bars, one bottle of wine from the specially selected list with every lunch and dinner, free 24-hour room service and minibar spirits. Little Smiths will get a welcome gift and unlimited ice-cream, soft drinks and healthy juices at the pool and beach bar. 


Any of the spa treatments can also be enjoyed from the privacy of your room or villa.


At the hotel

Private beach, water sports, scuba diving centre, sailing and motor yacht rental, spa, yoga, swimming pools, tennis courts, gym, gardens, three restaurants, two bars, crèche, kids club, hairdressers, beauty studio, boutique, DVD library, guest computers, WiFi throughout.

In your room

Flatscreen TV, radio, iPod dock, WiFi, minibar, tea- and coffee-making facilities, slippers, bathrobes, Apivita bath products. Villa residents get a host of extras: an allocation of sun loungers and a gift (water and fruit) at the beach, a bucket and spade for little ones, goggles for older ones, preferential bookings at the spa and restaurant, a pillow and aroma menu (with six choices), and a 100ml bottle of olive oil to take home.


Our favourite rooms

The two- or three-bedroom Family Villas each have a private pool and come kitted out with all the parental paraphernalia you could possibly need: bottle sterilisers, children's crockery and cutlery, cots, baby monitors, a pushchair, a highchair, a changing mat, a potty, a toilet seat for tots, stair gates and pool gates. The Standard rooms are big enough to fit a cot and have a pretty, sunny terrace or balcony; active types will like the Wellness Villas, which have a Finnish sauna, Technogym treadmill and oversized round bath tub. It’s worth noting that the higher the floor, the windier the balconies are. Rooms in the 100s benefit from all-day sun (when it’s sunny, that is).


The glittering saltwater infinity pool surveys the bay: if you tire of notching up laps, you can slope off down to the sandy, child-friendly beach. All the hotel’s pools are unheated. Kids are welcome at the main pool (though it’s unsupervised); there’s also a special kids' pool for little ones. Private pools can be fitted with pool fencing on request (pools in Family Villas are already gated); private pools can also be heated to 25°C (€79 a day in suites, free in villas) on request, if you want warmer waters.


The glamorous spa has bright blue ceilings, sleek wooden furniture and a tempting spa menu whose treatments feature salt crystals, essential oils, fruit extracts and ‘pearl essence’. There’s an indoor saltwater infinity pool with sea views, a second pool with hydro jets, a Finnish sauna, chromotherapy showers, a hairdresser’s and a beauty studio.  


Bring your iPod, a few favourite DVDs, binoculars for the ruins and your helicopter licence, so you can arrive in style at the hotel’s helipad. (The hotel also offers a private jet and helicopter service and has a fleet of limousines and chauffeurs.)


Book ahead

Babysitting needs to be booked at least a day in advance. Spa treatments and restaurant reservations should be arranged at check-in.



Small, well-behaved dogs can come too, at no extra charge. Owners are expected to keep them under check.

Food and drink

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Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas – Crete – Greece


Pangaea is the main restaurant, where buffets are served in a setting that’s perfumed with fresh flowers. There’s a pasta bar, salad bar and spread of meat, fish, vegetarian and sweet options. Taverna serves casual Greek and Mediterranean dishes, great salads and delicious seafood for lunch and dinner. For fine dining, there’s the smartly styled Ocean restaurant, which overlooks the pool and serves a creative Italian menu (dinner only) by a Michelin-starred chef. Try the catch of the day, fresh pasta or the delicious desserts.  

Family fare

Highchairs are provided at all three restaurants, and staff will happily heat up milk, provide packed lunches, or ask the chefs to modify menu items according to little ones’ tastes. A kids’ buffet (six daily-changing dishes, with past choices including Margarita pizza, spaghetti Bolognese, soup, fish steak, steamed vegetables and Greek salad) is available at Pangaea between 6pm and 7pm (if you’ve left your ankle-biters at the kids club, staff will shepherd them across). The restaurant also has an à la carte menu, with simple options: mini caprese salad, tomato soup, grilled chicken with chips and salad, apple tart and ice cream.  

Hotel Bar

The acid-green Crystal Box overlooks the bay, and has a soundtrack of lounge music as a relaxed accompaniment to the champagne and cocktails served here. If guests get hungry, they can order from the bar menu, which includes piadas (thin Italian flatbreads), sandwiches and salads. Ocean Wet Bar, by the pool, is even more chilled, with drinks delivered directly to guests’ sun loungers. Children are allowed in both bar areas.  

Last orders

Breakfast is served between 7am and 10.30am in Pangaea; 8:30am–10:30am in Ocean restaurant. The Crystal Box serves drinks and food between 10am and 1am; the Taverna serves food from 12 noon until midnight; the Ocean Bar and Beach Bar serve drinks and nibbles between 12pm and 6.30pm; dinner is served between 8pm and midnight in the Ocean Restaurant.

Smith Insider

  • Top table

    Casual family meals are good at Pangaea, where the buffet spread is.

  • Room service

    Order snacks and light mains – piadas, grilled vegetables, salami, rocket and parmesan salad, beef carpaccio, salmon with tarragon – around the clock. The children’s menu is also available as room service.  


    There are kettles in rooms and bottle sterilisers can be provided. Tea and coffee is provided and minibars are stocked with soft drinks and alcohol. If you want healthy snacks left in your mini-fridge, or have any special dietary requirements, let staff know before you arrive and they’ll leave your chosen groceries waiting for you.  


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Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas – Crete – Greece

Parent approved

Every property featured in the Smith & Family collection – including Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas – has been selected and approved by parents.


The Daios Cove Crèche looks after little ones from four months to four years and is open for morning and afternoon sessions, six days a week (seven in July and August). It's run by a UK company, and all nursery staff are qualified and trained to UK regulatory standards. The crèche has an indoor area stocked with toys and games. There’s also a schedule of organised activities and games, including collage-making and toy races. A little outdoors area with a soft surface is set aside for alfresco games. Prices start at €32 a session. If there’s enough staff to look after children one-on-one, babies will be taken to the pool for a swimming session.  

Kids Club

The Daios Kids Club is for children aged 4–11; it stays open during the same times as the crèche and kids can use it for free. Activities on offer include: cookery classes, face painting, mini Greek lessons (a word of the day) or supervised beach trips. Teenagers get their own special area with billiards and air hockey. Staff organise treasure hunts and tennis lessons; one of the tennis courts is sometimes used for five-aside football.  


Babysitters are available from €12 an hour. Book a day in advance.


The hotel has baby monitors on loan, but recommends that parents don’t leave little ones in rooms unsupervised.

Other Services

Sitters can also watch your children at the kids club in the evening from 7pm until 9.30pm. For an extra €10 a child, they’ll also provide dinner.

What's there already?

For babies

• Highchairs • Bottle sterilisers • Travel or foldaway cots • Baby bedlinen • Black-out blinds • Socket covers • Baby monitor • Changing mat • Stair gates • Booster seats

For toddlers

• Highchairs • Weaning spoons/kids cutlery • Travel or foldaway cots/crib • Black-out blinds • Baby monitor • Socket covers • Potties • Stair gates • Booster seats

For older children

• Billiards table • Air hockey • Football facilities


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Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas – Crete – Greece

Things to do

Aside from lazing on the sandy beach, splashing around in the 100-plus pools, and trying out the trio of restaurants, there's an indulgent spa, fitness suite and plenty of organised activities, including snorkelling and sailing. Outside the hotel, more of Crete's beautiful beaches beckon...  

Hotel activities

A big draw for parents, the private sandy beach isn't huge but leads into calm, shallow waters of a dazzling hue. There are loungers, umbrellas and beach towels aplenty, and a little beach bar for drinks and snacks (or just wave an arm from your lounger, and a honey mango margarita will be in your hands faster than you can say 'Here's to a happy holiday'). The hotel’s water sports facilities are hard to rival: if you’re 8+, you can have diving lessons; water-skiing lessons can be arranged for four-year-olds and above; laser sailing is available for 10+; there’s wind-surfing for the over-16s. Little ones aged four-plus can board an inflatable banana boat that’s whooshed across the waves by a motorboat. Yogis can sign up to hatha yoga and pilates; there’s also a personal trainer to keep guests in shape: classes include Anti-Cellulite, Body Sculpt, Fitball training, Abs & Legs, Aquagym and Aerobic Hi-low.  

And there's more…

If you’re staying in a villa in April, May or October, you’ll automatically be a member of Diaos Cove’s Resident's Club. The Resident’s Club includes daily breakfast service at Ocean Restaurant, daily lunches and dinners, unlimited drinks and signature cocktails from the bars, one bottle of wine from the specially selected list with every lunch and dinner, free 24-hour room service and minibar spirits. Little Smiths will get a welcome gift and unlimited ice cream, soft drinks and healthy juices at the pool and beach bar.

Local Guide

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Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas – Crete – Greece
Smith tip

Chrisofyllis (+30 2841 022705) is a traditional Greek taverna overlooking the sea at Eleftheriou Venizelou Square in Agios Nikolaos. The mezze are excellent, as is the pork with honey and sundried tomatoes.

Cocktail-making, cookery lessons and more can be arranged on site: there are plenty of fun activities for when you tire of the beach (if that's even possible).

Crete is a great place for kids, thanks to its clean, sandy beaches and calm waters. There are plenty of places of cultural and archaeological interest – such as the Dikteon caves and Knossos – when you tire of days spent horizontal on the sand or ferrying shells around for sand castles.

The Dikteon Andron caves at Psychro, Oropedio Lasithiou, are a stalactite-studded natural palace in the Lasithi Plateau consisting of upper and lower caverns, illuminated to flaunt their calcified wares. Said to be the birthplace of Zeus, over the years it has served as site of worship, a burial chamber and a tourist attraction. (Little ones will need to be up to the steep 20-minute walk up to the cave.) Crete Golf Club (+30 28970 26000;, the island’s only 18-hole course, is right on your doorstep, with a dramatic mountain backdrop and a PGA-approved layout. Practise at the driving range, or tee up a lesson to analyse your putting or swing. Mind-bogglingly old: that’s the chief reason to explore the temple ruins at Knossos, which date back up to 4,000 years ( It’s where the minotaur was conceived (don’t ask) and it’s Crete’s biggest Minoan site, spanning 20,000sq m. And before you get too excited, those pillared temples and pretty mosaics are more recent additions, built to give a sense of the site’s former glory.


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Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas
Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas, Crete, 72100
Hotel setting

Cloudless Cretan cove

Getting There

The hotel is perched by its own private cove in Vathi, near Agios Nikolaos, on Crete’s arid, rugged north-east coast.


The closest international airport is Heraklion (, 75km away (a 50-minute drive); Thomas Cook, Monarch and EasyJet run flights. Chania is 300km from the hotel (around a three-hour drive).


Driving in Crete is less stressful than driving on the Greek mainland, but be prepared for dirt roads and narrow bends on the south of the island. The hotel has plenty of free parking; a valet will take charge when you arrive at the top of the cliff. Agios Nikolaos, the nearest town, is a 12-minute drive from the hotel. If you’re driving from Heraklion airport, follow the signs to Agios Nikolaos for 70–75km. At the first traffic lights before Agios Nikolaos, turn right and follow signs to Ierapetra. Go straight on at the next set of traffic lights. After 10–12km, you’ll see a sign for the hotel on the left-hand side of the road; take the turning by the sign.


Alternatively, hop on the hotel’s posh minibus from the airport (€165 for up to five people, €200 for up to 19; book a week in advance). Or, fly into the hotel’s helipad.

Parent travel tip

Don’t be afraid to hop on a bus or two – most of them are nifty modern coaches, with plenty of space for storing luggage and shopping under the main cabin. A collective called Ktel runs services across the island; the driver and his family often own their coach, which seems to result in an excellent service. Handy information and timetables can be found online (


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Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas – Crete – Greece

Smith & Family  Parent Panel reviews

Every property featured in the Smith & Family collection – including Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas – has been selected and approved by parents.

If your little ones get excited at the words ‘swimming pool’ and ‘beach towel’, they’ll think they’ve landed up in heaven when they clap eyes on Daios Cove Luxury Resort & Villas, a cliff-top escape with its own private beach and more saltwater pools than you can realistically splash about in. This family-friendly Greek boutique hotel has everything you could need for a blissful summer getaway: a choice of indulgent restaurants, a spa for frazzled mums and dads, expert babysitters on hand, some brilliant kids’ areas, and a wealth of aquatic activities. You can all get involved, too: adults can take to the sea on jet skis, canoes or pedalos, or whirl around the waves on a banana boat; Smith Junior can go scuba diving, sailing or hop on an inflatable sofa attached to a motor boat and scream with laughter whilst you watch from the shore, cocktails in hand. To make things even better, the hotel lets you travel light, providing parents with all the essentials – from pushchairs to pool gates to highchairs to baby-listening equipment. Every detail has been considered. Book a Family Villa and you could feasibly turn up empty-handed, armed with just your passport, a smile and your brood in tow.

Smith & Family

Azure sea, periwinkle skies and golden sun – the rocks at this corner of Crete host an entire village devoted to enjoying all three. As we were welcomed to Daios Cove, there was a feeling we might have checked into heaven. Infinity pools, posh spas, futuristic stairs and a fleet of electric buggies that whisk you around… It’s as though the modern world had evaporated – not that the resort lacks contemporary spirit.
20 minutes after arriving, all four of us were naked and splashing around in our private saltwater pool, only to get out to soak up the sunshine and enjoy the chilled champagne left for us in our villa. What's not to love? Food is bountiful and the eating and drinking is delicious – but for our two water babies, time not spent wet is time wasted. They were not disappointed. With four pools plus a private one attached to our villa and the brilliantly organised beach facilities, they practically left Daios cove with gills.

The little ones were also exhausted by 7pm which meant that Mrs Smith and I were free to have an evening together. Make the most of fantastic babysitters to visit the resort’s taverna (word of advice: make sure to book a table in their Italian restaurant well in advance), or just dine under the stars at your own private perch. Daios Cove: an incredible place to arrive at, and as we also discovered, an impossible place to leave.

Anonymously reviewed by Rufus Hound, Comedian

The Guestbook  Smith member reviews

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