Bellonias Villas, Santorini, Greece

Bellonias Villas, Santorini, Greece

It turns out there are some places in Santorini that are not teeming with fedora-wearing influencers taking “unposed” pictures on vertiginous steps against whitewashed backdrops.

you’re looking for a low-key stay on what is perhaps one of
the most Instagrammed islands in the world, Kamari should be your
port of call. It’s a seaside village in the southeast of Santorini
at the foot of the Mesa Vouno mountain, meaning that, unlike most
places on the island, you’re beside a (black-sand) beach instead of
perched atop the caldera (the volcanic rim).

Bellonias Villas is by far the most beautiful hotel in Kamari.
On the quieter end of the beachfront promenade, it has all the
trappings of luxury while being entirely unpretentious. Serenity
prevails here, thanks to the judicious use of natural wood and
stone throughout, with muted colours picking up the tones of the
surrounding landscape and lanterns decorating the pool area.

It’s the staff that make the place, though – gentle, welcoming
and unobtrusive at every turn. This is clearly noticed, as the
volumes of returning guests attest.


Bellonias Villas offers a villa-style stay within a hotel
housing 26 modern suites of varying sizes complete with
kitchenettes. White walls and clean lines mean even the smaller
options feel airy and spacious, while you’ll find traditional
Cycladic elements throughout, from curved, cavernous ceilings to
soft linen.

Some of the duplex villas have terraces with sea views and none
of them ever feel cluttered – a result of the carefully chosen
furniture and cool stone floors. Beds are so comfortable, you’ll
have to drag yourself to the pool, and that’s not something we ever
thought we’d say.

What’s for breakfast?

A lot. The menu is extensive and the portions generous. Think
American-style pancakes dripping with local honey, traditional
kayana eggs with smoky feta cheese and, for more virtuous guests,
acai bowls, fresh fruit platters and porridge swirled with

How about lunch and dinner?

Beachfront Elia restaurant dishes up modern Greek fare featuring
the usual suspects (octopus, calamari, Greek salad) but with a
twist. We loved the local fava-bean purée with caramelised onions
so much that we ordered it three times. The unquestionable
highlight, however, has got to be the lobster orzo – a creamy
delight and one of the best dishes we tasted in Santorini. A
helpful sommelier will guide you through the wine list, but we say,
go local; Greek wine is fantastic.

Is there a bar?

For more buzz, you’ll have to wander further down the coast
road, but Bellonias’ poolside bar is the perfect spot for a quiet
nightcap after a day on the beach. It’s relaxed and peaceful enough
so that you can hear the waves, and the staff will happily chat to
guests over an exquisitely mixed Old Fashioned.


The pool is the best part of a stay here. Even though the beach
is on your doorstep, you’ll find it easy to while away hours on
reposeful loungers under the chalky-green olive trees, occasionally
summoning the eternally polite staff for poolside snacks and local
rosé. This is one of those spots that looks exactly like it does in
the pictures.

Within a short walk I can find…

Plenty. Bellonias Villas is situated on the main “strip”, but
don’t let that conjure up any images of lairy teens and vodka-jelly
shots. It’s a bustling promenade with traditional tavernas,
gelaterias, gift shops and a few lively café-cum-bars in which to
sit and watch the world go by.

Things I should know

As a guest you have access to the private beach area. Trot down
early to get a spot and order drinks and snacks right to your sun

It’s also close to the airport. Enjoy the spectacle of planes
landing and taking off over the sea, while being far away enough
that it isn’t a noise disturbance.

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