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At a glance

  • You'll love

    Beach and private pool

    Open-air spa and bar

    Romantic dining for two

  • Kids will love

    Soft sand, calm sea

    The outdoor pool

    Snorkelling; boat trips

  • Don’t expect

    Exploring without a car

    Endless facilities

    Adults-only

Overview

Bleach-white sands, azure skies – holidays at Halkidiki’s family-friendly Ekies All Senses Resort are painted Greece’s picture-perfect blues and whites. It’s all about nature here, with a sun-drenched beach, palm-fringed pool, eco spa and low-rise buildings blending into the pines. Chill out in a hammock stretched over aqua seas then sail to an uninhabited island a million miles from the inbox.

Smith Extra

Here's what you get for booking Ekies All Senses Resort with us:

A? free detox massage for the Smith parents and one fresh juice (at the bar or on the beach) and one ice cream for each little Smith, once per stay.

Special offers

Exclusive rates, packages and special offers at Ekies All Senses Resort

Private Island boat trip and 50% off a romantic dinner for two

Non-refundable offer 2017

Parent-approved

‘There aren't a million concessions to children here, but you don't need them: your smallest will love the soft sand shelving into clear, calm, shallow waters; your oldest will keep you fit on forays along the coast’

Smith & Family

Facilities

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Need To Know

Rooms

69, including 39 family-friendly suites.

Check–out

12 noon; earliest check-in, 2pm. Both times are flexible, subject to availability.

Rates

Double rooms from £125.10 (€145), including tax at 13 per cent.

More details

Rates usually include a buffet breakfast featuring fruit, cereals and eggs cooked to order. Children Cots for under-3s and extra beds can be added for free to Superior Double rooms and upwards. 

Also

All public areas have ramps to aid parents with buggies and wheelchair users.

Hotel closed

The resort is closed annually from 9 October until the end of April.

At the hotel

Beach and gardens; swimming pool; open-air spa and gym; restaurants; bars; table tennis, pool table and outdoor playground (unsupervised); book and DVD library; laundry; free WiFi throughout.

In your room

Flatscreen TV, minibar, CD/DVD player, tea and coffee-making facilities, all-natural Coco-Mat mattresses and down-filled pillows, Apivita toiletries, bathrobes, and flip-flops (yours to take away at the end of your stay).

Our favourite rooms

The Junior Suites and Family Suites are closest to the beach, plus they're spacious and child-friendly, sleeping two adults and either one or two little ones. Most have an outdoor space, be it a small terrace or balcony. Some rooms have rainfall showers, others have handheld showers over the bath (better for babies). All are all-white with lots of wood, pebbles and other natural materials, plus quirky contemporary details such as hip recycled bedside lamps, geometric tiling or pops of colour on a feature wall.

Poolside

The crisp outdoor freeform pool is all-white concrete flanked by a little all-white bar shaded by a white straw pergola. There’s a separate Jacuzzi and a little raised pool, perfect for toddlers (the deep part of the main pool is 1.3m). Neither pool is heated but they’re manned by a lifeguard from June to September and open 24/7. You can buy floats and armbands for little swimmers at the mini-market, five minutes away on foot.

Spa

The Ekies Spa is pint-sized and perfect, nestled outdoors among lush green, pine-scented gardens. There are two open-sided treatment cabanas set under white wooden rafters; one is roomy enough for a couples' massage. Book a deep-tissue or hot-stone massage using natural Apivita products before rejuvenating with a blast under the pebble-walled alfresco shower (open 10am-6pm May-Sept and 9am-2pm plus 5pm-9pm June, July and August). Below the pool and hidden behind a little white fence is a basic outdoor gym with treadmills and exercise bikes – or you can join a poolside yoga session (€70 an hour; book on arrival), to complete your all-natural detox.

And…

This stripped-back resort is all about low-key beach life and relaxing as a family; if your kids are all-action adventurers, get a hire car to give you flexibility and independence.

Book ahead

Book everything from babysitting to bicycles, spa treatments to sailboats at least two days in advance (perhaps a little longer in high season, if you don't want to miss out).

Pet-friendly

Small dogs (up to 15kg) are welcome at no extra charge. Just let the hotel know when booking.

Food and drink

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Ekies All Senses Resort hotel – Sithonia – Greece

Dining

The main restaurant, Bubo, is helmed by Dimitris Pamporis and serves an à la carte menu of Greek classics and fresh seafood. It’s under cover but makes the most of the scenery – floor-to-ceiling glass windows bring the beach views in, and the canopy of trees overhead is visible via the glass roof. A modern airy space, it mixes white metro tiles with Tom Dixon pendant lights, pantry-style side tables, marble worktops and all that glass. In the same area is Kuko, a diner-style restaurant inspired by traditional Greek 'mageirio'. The menu is slightly more selective, and is available for breakfast and those on half-board rates. Outside, and falling onto the sands from a whitewashed decked terrace, is the Treehouse: a gourmet restaurant with limited seating of up to 10 people, this private spot serves tasting menus, which are mostly a modern take on Greek food (think ravioli with manouri cheese, or risotto with grilled calamari). The fixtures and fittings mix pops of colour in bright blue and yellow metal chairs with white tablecloths. You can get away with swimwear and sarongs in Bubo; by night, change into laid-back luxe for the Treehouse.

Family fare

The hotel has highchairs, plastic cutlery and beakers aplenty – ask staff if you can't see what you need. There’s no separate kids’ menu but the main restaurant menus list dishes like battered fish, perfect for little appetites; the kitchen can adapt dishes to accommodate fussy toddlers. You can order food for the kids at any time of the day and staff will happily heat up baby bottles and food (baby food and purées can be bought at the mini-market, five minutes' walk from the hotel). Outside, between the bar and the restaurant, are two wooden tables, perfect for parking up with a buggy and letting the kids have a little bit of a runaround without worrying about neighbouring diners.

Hotel Bar

The Loligo beach bar stares out to sea, lost in a chill-out soundtrack (there’s live jazz every Saturday in summer). Prop up the bar and watch the barman mix something zesty involving citrus and rosemary, or take your drinks to the large whitewashed decked terrace and slump into squashy sofas and mismatched chairs. But the jewel in the crown is the ‘wet bar’ area – a little line of bar stools set into the sand right at the water’s edge, providing proper barefoot bar luxury (or ice-cream-eating fun, if you're travelling en famille). There’s even a hammock stretched out over the water, big enough for the two of you (and your drinks). You’ll find a second, sleepy little (licensed) bar at the pool, where you can order an ouzo or organic orange juice as the kids splash about. Kids are allowed in both bars.

Last orders

Drinks are served all day long and until the fat lady sings. Breakfast is 7.30am–11am; the all-day-dining menu is served from 12 noon until 11.30pm.

Smith Insider

  • Top table

    Booked a babysitter? Dine privately on the beach with the stars above you and the sand between your toes, or opt for the treehouse where you can whisper sweet nothings in total seclusion.

  • Room service

    Dishes from the restaurant menus can be brought to your room (or any other spot within the resort that takes your fancy) between midday and 11.30pm. There’s a 20 per cent mark-up on prices if you order to eat in your room or on your balcony.

    Also

    Book a day in advance and the hotel will pack you a little picnic of, say, sandwiches, fruit, juice and water (€5 a person; booze is extra) to take off on a day’s outing, be that by boat or on foot. They can tailor your tuckbox for the kids, too, so just ask.

Childcare

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Ekies All Senses Resort hotel – Sithonia – Greece

Parent approved

‘There aren't a million concessions to children here, but you don't need them: your smallest will love the soft sand shelving into clear, calm, shallow waters; your oldest will keep you fit on forays along the coast’

Smith & Family

Kids Club

Budding seafarers, chefs, explorers, dancers (the list goes on) can enrol in six-day adventure clubs in watersports or creative pursuits. Little ones can take to the ocean waves in groups of four or five to try stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking and sailing with the supervision of experienced, qualified instructors. Landlubbers can take to the stage with an introduction to theatre, make a mess (with none of the clearing up) in art and painting sessions, or pick up gymnastics and yoga, or cookery skills.

The clubs are split into two age groups: five to eight and nine to 13 years. Watersports club takes place in the morning with the creative club scheduled for late afternoon, so if your kids can’t choose there’s always the chance to do both – each session is only 45 minutes long, and snacks are provided. There’s the option to add evening entertainment from 8pm until 10pm with movies and games.

 

Babysitting

Experienced, English-speaking babysitters are available for €20 an hour (minimum two hours); book at least a day in advance.

Baby-listening

The hotel doesn’t provide its own services or equipment. If you’ve brought a baby monitor from home it should reach the restaurant and the beach from any of the junior and loft suites nearest the beach. The pool is set further back from the sea, so if you think you’ll prefer to be poolside while your little one has a nap, book a room in the building where reception is.

What's there already?

For babies

• Highchairs • Beakers/sippy cups • Travel cot • Cot bedlinen • Black-out blinds • Soft toys • Board books

For toddlers

• Highchairs • Cutlery • Beakers/sippy cups • Cot beds • Cot bedlinen • Black-out blinds • Picture books • A few toys • U-rated DVDs

For older children

• DVD library • Table tennis • Pool table • DVDs • Board games

Activities

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Ekies All Senses Resort hotel – Sithonia – Greece

Things to do

Stays at Ekies are all about checking in and chilling out. Crash out with a paperback then take turns to splash about with the kids on the little beach, with its coral-white sands and aquamarine water. If sand is not your thing, the peaceful outdoor pool is perfect for a refreshing dip while a small-but-perfectly formed outdoor spa and gym provide space to breathe and stretch tired limbs while breathing the sea air. Holidays here focus on nature, whether that means a day out on the water, exploring nearby beaches, a trek with a picnic through pine forests – or nothing more than lounging on the sand listening to sea breezes gently rock the trees while waves lap languidly back and forth.

Sunny days

A hammock hanging out on two poles over the water, powdery soft sand, glistening sea, high sun and cloudless skies – Ekies’ little beach is made for grown-up, crowd-free sun-seeking. But it’s perfect for little ones too: it’s sheltered, equipped with a handful of loungers and parasols (for guest use only), the waters are safe and shallow and you can walk for metres before it gets deep. There are no difficult stairs to navigate with buggies, plus there are three jaunty blue-and-white striped beach huts for changing them out of their sandy stuff in privacy and comfort (without covering them in more sand). Plus you're not short of other options: just 300 metres away is Karidi beach, one of Halkidiki’s most beautiful, and also perfect for paddling and splashing with the smallest of Smiths. If little ones tire of the seaside, there’s also an outdoor playground with swings and a little wooden playhouse. It's not covered, so slap on the sunscreen. There's also outdoor table tennis for older children (and competitive parents).

Rainy days

If storm clouds loom large, there’s a pool table in reception where the teens can take on Mr Smith in a tournament. Just off the lobby, the library has a Mac for the kind of surfing you don’t do in the water, plus floor-to-ceiling shelves stocked with a books (for all ages) and toys for rainy days. You’ll find a large communal kitchen table here plus kiddie chairs and beanbags – perfect for storytime, colouring in or beating their top score on the Nintendo DS.

And there's more…

The hotel has a couple of adult mountain bikes, yours free to borrow for a lolling circuit among the pine trees (staff can arrange cycle hire for kids’ bikes too: book a day in advance, €12 a day). Want to get out on the water? Rent a (family-friendly) fishing boat with your own personal captain for the whole day (€70–€100). Or, take it up a notch and hire a speedboat with a captain for five hours (€550), including a picnic; staff can suggest day trips to nearby uninhabited islands.

Local Guide

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Ekies All Senses Resort hotel – Sithonia – Greece
Smith tip

The Aristos Fish Tavern (+30 (0)2375 031420), down the road from the resort in the little port of Ormos Panagias, is bustling, informal and turns out generous portions of family-friendly fresh fish.

Don't miss…

Protected by the archipelago, the waters around Diaporos Island are particularly warm and calm; sea doesn’t get more accommodating for little mermaids.

Bright blue skies, deep blue seas, pure white sands and lush green forests: Halkidi is a strikingly colourful, all-natural playground and Ekies All Senses Resort is perfectly placed to explore it. Tweens and teens will be in their element in nearby Vourvourou Bay, snorkelling and finding Greek Nemo among captivating coral reefs or turning their hand to surfing, windsurfing or jetskiing. Further afield, a simple fisherman’s boat will take you to picture-postcard beaches or uninhabited islands, while chartered cruises coast over to holy mountain and Unesco World Heritage Site, Mount Athos.

Skim across the passage between the islands of Diaporos and Agios Isidoros (20 minutes on a boat from Vourvourou; hire your own from Circuit Rent). Drop anchor at a deserted cove and dive in: the Aegean here, nicknamed the Blue Lagoon, is so calm and clear it’s a deep turquoisey green, and on Diaporos’ eastern side, Mirsini Beach, known locally as Hawaii Beach, is among the area’s most camera-pleasing.

Just over 5km down the road from Vourvourou is Ormos Panagias, from where daily cruises depart to the holy Mount Athos, set on a promontory in the middle of the Aegean. An Orthodox spiritual centre dotted with monasteries, the Mount is currently home to some 1,400 monks. Women and children are forbidden on the mount itself (and Mr Smiths need to jump through inordinate hoops and paperwork to gain access to the walking trails) but Mount Athos cruises pass by several monasteries from the water and many stop afterwards at villages on the mainland, where you can step onto dry soil for a traditional Greek salad and to pick up postcards. All boats are family-friendly with ramps to wheel up the buggy and life jackets for all ages (including babies). However, the round trip runs from 9am–4pm, so bring plenty of supplies.

Set right on Nikiti beach, Arsanas restaurant (+30 (0)2375 023235) has a crisp contemporary feel and a sun-soaked wooden terrace falling directly onto the sand. Its menus focus on modern Mediterranean/Greek fusion (think crab salad with cucumber and sesame, or stuffed aubergine). There’s seating inside, and if you’re having lunch with little ones you’ll need it: the sundeck is uncovered and pretty unforgiving.

Booked a babysitter? It may have a slightly unpromising name but The Squirrel (+30 (0)2375 020400), at the heart of the opulent Danai Beach Resort in Nikiti, is very elegant, and one of the best restaurants in Greece. Herve Pronzato’s modern Mediterranean degustation menu has won Michelin stars, and a night on the terrace here, perched above the sea, under inky starred skies, is made for lingering looks and chinking champagne flutes together.

+ Enlarge
Ekies All Senses Resort
Vourvourou, Sithonia, Halkidiki, 63078
Hotel setting

Sithonian seaside

Getting There

Surrounded by sandy beaches and coral waters, the hotel sits on pine forest-backed Vourvourou Bay in Sithonia, Halkidiki (a peninsula on the northern Greek mainland). Sithonia’s main town of Nikiti is 15 minutes by car.

Planes

Thessaloniki 'Macedonia' International Airport (www.thessalonikiairport.com) is a 70-minute drive away; there are plenty of budget options from all of London's major airports, as well as direct flights with British Airways and Turkish Airlines.

Automobiles

If you want to do some exploring independently, you'll want a hire car. From the airport, follow the signs for Halkidiki, after about half an hour you’ll come to Nea Moudania; take the right turn signposted to Sithonia. Stay on that road for another 30 minutes until you hit the village of Nikiti. Drive straight through the village, following the signs for Vourvourou. After a further 10 minutes you’ll see a turning to the left with a green sign for Ekies Resort. There’s free parking at the (shaded) carpark right outside the hotel.

Parent travel tip

If you’re hiring a car, don’t forget to get baby or booster seats and car blinds for the back seats. Either get air-con, or consider a windscreen sun protector so that your steering wheel doesn’t melt in the Greek sun while you’re parked up at the beach. No-one likes returning to a roasting car with an overheated toddler.

Reviews

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Smith & Family  Parent Panel reviews

Every property featured in the Smith & Family collection – including Ekies All Senses Resort – has been selected and approved by parents.

Ekies is a dream for nature lovers and sunseekers: it’s every bit the aquamarine sky, turquoise water, white-sand fantasy you want from Greece, without a hint of the nasty neon – this place is properly hip, with crisply designed suites and a wet bar facing the waves. It likes to tread lightly, too, which means a kitchen garden, organic products and tree trunks sprouting through floors. There’s a little beach, yoga by a palm-fringed pool, ouzo with the sand between your toes. You can lounge together in a hammock strung out to sea, unwind over massage for two at the open-air spa and then dine after dark in a candlelit treehouse. But the crowning glory? You can do all this as parents thanks to a solid babysitting service plus a genius layout that means your baby monitor (bring it from home) will stretch from your suite to the pool, your suite to the beach or your suite to the bar and restaurants, depending which side of the property you're on. There aren't a million concessions to children here, but you don't need them: your smallest will love the soft sand shelving into clear, calm, shallow waters; your oldest will keep you fit on forays along the coast for snorkelling, windsurfing or forest-walking expeditions. And with a hire car or a chartered boat, the whole peninsula can be your family's playground…

Smith & Family

Small but perfectly formed, Ekies feels like a well-kept secret: a child-friendly holiday destination that won’t break the bank. Styled and stylish, but not at all pretentious, we loved the fact that they just let us get on with our time as a family. While Ekies welcomes kids, it doesn’t feel as though you’re holidaying in a crèche and the hotel retains a grown-up feeling that comes to life after the sun goes down and the giant white plant pots around the bar light up. We’ll always remember our 10-month-old’s first word: when she shouted ‘ca!’ as one of the resident felines passed by. Our 4-year-old loved clambering over the rocks in search of adventures, and still asks mournfully when we’re going back. Memories of the four of us happily relaxing across two double daybeds heaped with cushions, enjoying the dappled afternoon sunshine and listening to the sea, will keep us all going until our next escape…

Anonymously reviewed by Amber Spencer-Holmes, Smith Hotels

The Guestbook  Smith member reviews

Whenever you book a stay at a Smith & Family hotel, we'll invite you to review it when you get back. Read what real-life family guests had to say about Ekies All Senses Resort in the Guestbook below.

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

The staff! So welcoming, nothing was too much trouble. The hotel is beautifully designed, but still really relaxed. And the breakfast buffet is excellent and definitely take a boat trip. Drive around the peninsula, it only takes a couple of hours. There's a lovely taverna at Elia beach, and the beach at Kalamitsi is stunning!

Don’t expect

Total quiet; the hotel is family friendly and tends towards young families. We went at the end of the season so the hotel was a bit quieter generally. On the upside though the bar and restaurant are really quiet in the evenings as everybody has gone to bed already!

Rating: 9/10 stars

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

The room, the staff, the food, the setting the lovely small designer details. Nice local beach cafes, local boat hire.

Don’t expect

Cheap drinks.

Rating: 8/10 stars

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

The room, the beach, the spa therapist (and massages) and the bar! Kids are completely welcome! Lovely beach bar and BBQ places along the beach (don't stick to the closest restaurants they are not the greatest), follow the locals or hotel's recommendations.

Don’t expect

Kids club (not great when the weather is not at its best).

Rating: 10/10 stars

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

Child friendly facilities, sun sets on the beach, leisurely walks along the beach

Don’t expect

Complete peace and quiet

Rating: 8/10 stars

SilverSmith

Stayed on

We loved

Design look and decoration, spacious balcony of junior suite room. On the beach, a few meters from the hotel there is a boat rental service, nice to go explore the islands.

Don’t expect

A calm and relaxing holiday, it is not a suitable place for a romantic couple gettaway.

Rating: 1/10 stars

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

The service, the design concept of the hotel, the friendliness, the comfort, best massage ever

Don’t expect

Peace and quiet by the pool, huge amount of very young kids.

Rating: 10/10 stars

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

The location, the décor, the pool, the food, but best of all the staff - especially Kelly and Nansi.

Don’t expect

Peace and quiet as it is very popular with families with young children

Rating: 10/10 stars

BlackSmith

Stayed on

We loved

The decor, the beach, the friendly/helpful staff.

Don’t expect

A quiet snooze by the pool or beach, or a romantic getaway. It's definitely for families.

Rating: 9/10 stars

SilverSmith

Stayed on

We loved

Excellent accommodation and food.

Don’t expect

It's a quiet resort.

Rating: 8/10 stars

BlackSmith

Stayed on 1 toddler.

We loved

Our lovely rustic large suite, the shallow beach with still shallow waters (perfect for little ones), the design, layout and decor. Coco mat comfy beds and furniture, waiter service at the beach, how intimate the whole place was, the view!

Don’t expect

A great menu choice, particularly for kids.

Rating: 10/10 stars