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Reviewed September 29, 2015

It is probably the best place you can stay in Lefkada. The views from the balcony and the upstairs bar at night are impressive. Although our room was on the highest level the view was disrupted. The Hotel is an impressive structure with great views and has the potential to be an amazing 5 star resort. The food was not bad and some dishes were actually quite tasty.

  • Stayed: August 2015, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank StartTourAlbania
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed September 23, 2015

Air conditioning did not work, bath tab did not work, crew unhelpful, the hotel urgently requires maintenance, no air on also at breakfast, we complained for three consecutive days and eventually left without getting refund. Could not stay any longer in rooms with 29-30 deg at night

Room Tip: Never stay here!
  • Stayed: August 2015, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
2  Thank Zvika K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
ΒΑΣΙΛΙΚΗ Ρ, Γενικός Διευθυντής at Ionian Blue Bungalows & Spa Resort, responded to this reviewResponded March 2, 2016

Dear Zvika
Thank you for the time you spent to write a review for our hotel.I made a research for your stay and at that time there was really a small technical problem with the air conditioning but we apologised for that and we did our best to be fixed as fast as possible so that you enjoyed the rest of your stay.Sometimes these things happen but the worst is not to deal with them.
EFSTATHIOS PLATIS
GENERAL MANAGER OF IONIAN BLUE HOTEL AND SPA RESORT.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed September 21, 2015

It is probably the best place you can stay in Lefkada (you can argue for 1 or 2 probably), but on the whole, it is excellent.
I can name many features I liked, but I will concetrate on the view of my room (and I think all the rooms are having a sea vuew); nomatter the time of the day, I couldn't take my eyes off.

Room Tip: If you can afford some extra money, you could get a room with a private pool. It is not big, but it's nice!
  • Stayed: September 2015, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
Thank George_Lyts
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed September 4, 2015

We still went to this hotel despite all the previous reviews as many of our friends recommended it highly anyway. Now that I have had some time to consider what to write I shall try and be as objective as possible.
Firstly I agree with almost all the most recent reviews stating that it does not “feel” like a 5 star hotel, along with the reasons they give, however I believe that it can be fixed.
Warning this is a long review and probably aimed more at the establishment than the traveller. If you are looking for advice look for the word HINT: and see what I advise.
Herewith our experiences as far as I can remember them. We arrived later in the afternoon and struggled to access the hotel lobby as their entrance drive way is a narrow lane which is used as parking. This meant we also struggled to find parking which was never easy to find during our entire stay there. HINT: There is a basement parking but rather send someone down to check if there is a parking before driving down as there is no space to turn around and reversing up that drive way can be challenging.
Despite arriving late in the afternoon our rooms were not ready and we had to wait while 2 cleaning staff did their best to get it done quickly. As we booked late we took the only room we could and our double bed had 2 more beds squeezed next to it. It was tight but it worked.
We could not get the electronic safe to work, and we discovered some gunk on the shelf next to it. The cleaning staff suggested we put a towel over it as they felt it could not be cleaned and was some shoddy repair work. I cleaned it with my thumb as it was simply some dried silicone. They also could not assist with the safe until I realised that the batteries were probably dead. I had to request for the batteries to get it working. Instead of waiting for the technician we decided to go to the pool and took our valuables with us.
We made sure to ask if they had towels which they confirmed. When we got to the pool area and requested the towels they confirmed they had them but could not issue them as the lady who collected the money was not there!! They have a crazy system that one can only get a towel to use at the pool and beach if you pay a 10 Euro deposit in cash per towel – even if you are a resident at the hotel.
To her credit the lady at the front desk did acknowledge that she had heard about the reviews about the bad food. When I asked her if it would be possible to get a reduced rate if we did not eat there she said it probably was but we should try it and if we did not like it we would get feed for free. We therefore went for supper at their weirdly named oriental restaurant which had no oriental food we could ever find.
What we experienced seemed to come straight out of Gordon Ramsey’s Hell kitchen. It was absolute chaos with far too many patrons and not enough staff, tables, cutlery, crockery, food and no smiles. There was a harried restaurant manager who seemed to be more of a skivvy than a manager as he was running around sweating trying to deal with everything as best as he could. As we did not have high expectations and as we were probably not going to pay anyway we found a table that had not been cleared of its previous tenant’s plates yet and made our way to the buffet. HINT: The best tables at night are on the balcony and are in high demand, it’s probably best to arrive early or have someone of your family stakeout a table until they leave.
The buffet area is cramped and with a throng of people can get quite chaotic – especially when the plates and cutlery run out and the staff cram themselves through the crowd with replenishments. I am sure a simple movement of the mobile buffet stands would alleviate this situation and make it more bearable for everyone. Those tables and chairs that would need to be moved to make this extra space could then be placed outside on the lawns.
The food presentation was what one would expect from a buffet and there was a wide selection. However not everything tasted as good as it looked and the cooked vegetables were cold. However the food was not bad and some dishes were actually quite tasty. HINT: Take small portions of everything as a taster and then get more of what you like.
The views from the balcony and the upstairs bar at night are impressive. Although our room was on the highest level the view was disrupted by the roofs of the rooms in front of us and an unkempt garden with litter outside our balcony. However as we booked late we were happy to have a room with even some of the view.
The morning breakfast experience was even more chaotic for all the same reasons mentioned above plus a Breakfast chef making omelettes, fried eggs and pancakes with the same spatula and essentially creating a mash of food that was usually unsightly and then left out to get cold. This time there was hardly enough space inside as outside on the patio was far too hot.
As we undertook an early morning excursion on the third day we were forced to go to breakfast early and the difference in experience was earth shattering. We were the first to arrive for breakfast and everything was neat and tidy and the staff was friendly and attentive and our breakfast chef was even able to make us some good looking and hot fried eggs. HINT: Come early for breakfast and you can even sit outside before it gets too hot.
The pool and beach area are impressive with great views and make for amazing photos to make everyone jealous. HINT: However you need to get to them early enough to secure a sunbed and towels – don’t forget your 10Euro in cash per towel!. The deck at the “beach” is made of wood and one does get the feeling that one might get splinters as the deck needs some maintenance. The beach is no more than 2m and consists of coarse gravel but it is a great area to snorkel with all the surrounding rocks.
The Hotel is an impressive structure with great views and has the potential to be an amazing 5 star resort. It is a typical Greek tragedy where the protagonist (the hotel) has all the greatness and splendour of success but it is let down by it’s weakness.- Management. Despite me asking to see the manager during our 5 day stay we did not see him(her?) once. This could explain why so many things did not work as one would expect in a 5 star establishment. Even the large windows in the hotel lobby and those in the lifts were dirty – even grimy. The Wi-Fi was spotty – even though I was in a room very close to the reception area. Our phone for making outside calls did not work and no-one bothered to check it despite me reporting it. The air conditioner developed a life of it’s own and was eventually controlled most effectively with the off switch. The sheets and towels were not replaced daily but this could be excused by the “Conserve water” policy. The lift in the main building was small and started and stopped with a jolt making everyone weary of using it. The other lift to get to the beach also did not work on one occasion – not a problem for us but an inconvenience for another couple who had to carry their suitcases up the numerous stairs – No porter could be found but as the hotel is on numerous different levels that is not surprising as I only ever meet one.
Many have stated that it is not a 5 star hotel however having reviewed what is required to be considered a 5 star establishment (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hotel_rating )the only faults I could find are:
1) There is no "À la carte"-restaurant
2) There was no Personalized greeting for each guest with fresh flowers or a present in the room
3) There was no Internet-PC in the room
4) We did not experience any Turndown service in the evening

They have numerous national flags outside and I noticed that the German National flag was upside down. I mentioned this on at least 3 different days but it was never rectified. I’m not sure if this was due to inefficiencies or a subtle hint for Germans to stay away as they probably would not accept this level of service. At least 90% of the guests were Greek and there were a few Italians and the hotel was full. I am therefore guessing that Management won’t care much about these reviews as they were full to capacity. However just like a typical Greek tragedy at some stage even the Greeks will be feed up with what they are receiving and they too will stay away. I sincerely hope that this does not happen and that this wonderful building in this great location receives the management it deserves.
I would be a fool to not acknowledge the crisis in Greece but I do not believe that is justification for what I have experienced. With full occupancy and widespread unemployment I do not understand how it is possible to not budget accordingly and hire appropriately. Despite there being some disasters I feel I need to praise the afternoon front desk lady and porter who were friendly and willing to help –( I am sorry that I did not make a note of their names). We also had at least 2 good waiters in Christos and another white haired gentleman in the dining area. I feel that with more staff that was properly managed and motivated this could truly become a five star establishment.
I probably will go back there next year if the reviews have improved and not worsened as I believe it can be much better with a little bit of effort. I do not believe or trust any of the reviews given by contributors who have no other contributions at any other establishments and suspect they are friends of the management. Hopefully they won’t need to embellish the truth as experienced travellers will read through them.
I sincerely hope that this has helped and assisted everyone who has taken the time to read this.

Room Tip: Those on the First floor are easiest to access when you arrive and leave the hotel - but the views are a bit obstructed.
  • Stayed: August 2015, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8  Thank LookingforGood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed September 1, 2015

Fantastic location, spacious room with panoramic view. The bathroom was a little tatty but we found the beds and pillows very comfy. The staff was friendly and several were professional. However, most were simply poorly trained and not up to the standards of a so-called 5 star hotel. Buffet restaurant was alright, we mainly stuck to salads with the cold meat and cheeses as the cooked meat and fish was always either under or over done. We sometimes struggled to find anything worth eating. Drink prices were extortionate, which would be acceptable in a genuine top class hotel but could not be justified given the average.
Good hotel but certainly not 5 star.

Room Tip: Higher floors have fantastic view!!!
  • Stayed: August 2015, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
1  Thank PanosK638
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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