Sipping cocktails on a roof terrace overlooking the Aegean, taking a dip in your own private plunge pool and enjoying a breakfast fit for a king or queen in the Greek sunshine – does it get any better than that?
You’d be hard pushed to beat it, I’d say.
I thought I was dreaming when I arrived at Canaves Oia hotel in Santorini, an island dramatically reshaped in the 16th century by a huge volcanic eruption. Its villages, famed for their white-washed buildings and azure blue rooftops, nestle on cliffs that form a half-ring around a submerged crater.
And Canaves Oia offers guests a view across this that must be one of the best in all of Europe.
At the Canaves Oia Boutique Hotel in Santorini guests are treated to a view across the caldera that’s simply stunning
The hotel looks particularly enticing as the sun sets, its white-washed walls have a soothing effect as they glow in the gloaming
At Canaves Oia guests are never far away from a pool – or a place to bask in the sun
Santorini really is a special place.
Open-air swimming pools and sprawling five-star villas burrow into the clifftops and there are stunning views of the Aegean no matter which way you look.
And I was treated to the finest sunset I have ever seen.
But it was our luxurious five-star suite at Canaves Oia that made my time in Santorini extra-special.
With a bed so big and comfortable we nicknamed it ‘The Cloud’, to the villa’s very own swim-up Jacuzzi pool – I couldn’t think of anywhere better to stay when visiting the island.
In fact, the only thing that made me want to leave the plush surroundings of the villa every morning was the blazing Greek sunshine and the opportunity to kick back with some freshly-shaken cocktails on the resort’s roof-top terrace.
Boasting an infinity pool and giant double-bed sized sunloungers, I was in heaven sipping mojitos while taking in the panoramic Aegean views.
Serene: Beyond one of the hotel’s en-suites a cruise ship glows in the bay, with the twinkling lights of the island’s villages surrounding it
That was after tucking into a superb breakfast on the patio outside our bedroom. Delivered to our suite every morning, we enjoyed fresh eggs, homemade granola, American-style pancakes and infinite amounts of fresh tea and orange juice.
And it was the perfect opportunity to soak up the stunning views as the sun rose across the sea.
I couldn’t get enough of the views – they are a world away from the sights many of us face on a daily basis in the London rat race.
Heavenly: The hotel’s villas offer guests the ultimate relaxing experience
With pretty much guaranteed sunshine from April to October, the climate is ideal for sunseekers. And aside from sunbathing, life here doesn’t get much more stressful than exploring Greek cafes, boutique shops, candlelit restaurants and jazzy bars.
Boat excursions here are a winner, too.
Sailing out on the calm Aegean with the sun beaming down on my face, I didn’t want to be anywhere else. And I must say, it’s well worth venturing out onto the sea just to see the stunning backdrop of Santorini from the water.
Seeing the white-washed buildings and famous blue roofs while bobbing around miles out to sea was heavenly, as was the cold complementary beer we were offered to sip as we breezed around the island.
It’s that view again: It’s not likely that guests will ever tire of gazing at this vista
Naomi said: ‘I couldn’t get enough of the views – they are a world away from the sights many of us face on a daily basis in the London rat race’
Grand: Dig a bit deeper and you can luxuriate in true splendour in one of the hotel’s multi-tiered suites
We booked the Santorini Lagoon 560 Sunset Tour – an afternoon catamaran cruise around the coast with stop-offs to enjoy the red-and-white sandy beaches, a volcanic hot spring and the option to snorkel among the crystalline waters. There was also an on-board barbecue featuring typically Greek fare.
Boat trips aside, we spent the rest of our days sunning ourselves around the villa, taking dips in the Instagram-worthy rooftop infinity pool or relaxing in the world-class spa – a 17th century wine cave transformed into a heavenly paradise where your body can be treated to signature treatments using Elemis products.
Each night, after freshening up for dinner, we would wander along the winding path down to the most northern point of Oia village to watch the sun set.
The hotel has what Naomi describes as a ‘world-class spa’, but the bathrooms are also great places for a relaxing scrub
While the views from the hotel are something special – Naomi highly recommends getting out on the water to look back at the island as it’s a ‘stunning backdrop’
Naomi’s bed was so comfortable that she and her travel companion nicknamed it ‘The Cloud’
The rooms at Canaves Oia are simply, but elegantly, furnished
While the island itself never felt too busy, the crowds did build to watch the sunset and it was a bit of a tight-squeeze to nestle in and join the hordes desperately waiting for dusk. But boy was it worth it.
Some say it’s the selling point of Santorini and it’s well worth enduring the hustle and bustle to catch a glimpse of the orange tones settling into the Aegean.
After enjoying this spectacular and eating dinner we’d browse expensive designer goods in the boutique shops dotted along the promenade. Then it was back to the resort to enjoy rooftop cocktails under candlelight at Canaves Oia poolside bar.
It was a life I could certainly get used to.
A Classic Suite with Caldera Sea View room, which includes a la carte or room service American breakfast and complementary bottle of wine and fruits on arrival, start from £450, per room per night.
For more information about the Santorini Lagoon 560 Sunset Tour, where prices start from 145 euros. Visit sailing-santorini.com.