Clients looking for a beachside retreat? Laura French picks out the most impressive resorts and villas from the jewel of the Med.
With Cyprus having reopened its borders to Brits on July 6, clients might well be looking to flock to its sunny shores for a beachy escape away from it all – and they won’t be hard-pressed to find one.
The range of accommodation options in this compact country has changed dramatically in recent years, with everything from traditional, rustic villas to blow-the-budget resorts now available for clients wanting a getaway that combines cultural experiences and quaint fishing villages with lively resort towns and those glistening ocean views.
But with so many hotels and villas to choose from, how do you know where to start? We’ve rounded up some of the standouts.
Villa Stella Maris, Pomos
Set at the foothills of the Troodos mountains, this recently-renovated spot gets 10/10 on the scenery front, with views overlooking a dramatic, craggy coastline and steps leading down to a quiet, pebbled cove lapped by glistening blue. It’s handily located, with the remote, authentically Cypriot village of Pomos close by – think laid-back locals and a sleepy harbour where boats bob peacefully on the ripples – and the bigger, livelier resort of Polis a short drive away. The villa itself has three bedrooms, a terrace and private pool, and sits next to sister property Villa Buffavento, which can be booked in tandem for larger families.
“The villa itself has three bedrooms, a terrace and private pool, and sits next to sister property Villa Buffavento, which can be booked in tandem for larger families.”
Book it: A week with Sunvil costs from £540 per person based on six sharing in October, including flights and car hire.
Adams Beach Hotel, Ayia Napa
Nissi Beach has earnt itself a reputation among the partygoers of the world thanks to its central location (next to Ayia Napa) and head-turning views – think pearl-white sand drifting into a stretch of glittering turquoise. Among its crop of deluxe waterfront stays is Adams Beach Hotel, a five-star set among emerald gardens, featuring five freeform swimming pools (with a lazy river and water slides) plus a spa, swim-up bar and nine other bars and restaurants. “It’s a really impressive hotel, fringed by the golden sands of Nissi Bay with an atmosphere of elegance and charm,” says Ricky Wason, product manager for Olympic Holidays. “There are excellent dining options and plenty of family activities to keep younger guests busy too.”
“Nissi Beach has earnt itself a reputation among the partygoers of the world thanks to its central location (next to Ayia Napa) and head-turning views.”
Book it: Olympic Holidays offers a week’s B&B from £667 per person, with flights from Gatwick on May 4, 2021.
Columbia Beach Resort, Pissouri Bay
For a luxury stay in the heart of the action, suggest Columbia Beach Resort, set right in front of Pissouri Bay, where paragliding, windsurfing, sailing and other watersports take place on cerulean shores. Diving, cycling, golf and other pursuits are also on hand in the local area, while the Hebe Spa offers a pool, Jacuzzi and sauna for those who’d rather stay horizontal. Kids clubs and family-friendly activities make it a good bet for those travelling with little ones in tow, while seven bars and restaurants ensure they’re unlikely to go hungry.
“Diving, cycling, golf and other pursuits are also on hand in the local area, while the Hebe Spa offers a pool, Jacuzzi and sauna for those who’d rather stay horizontal.”
Book it: Cyplon Holidays offers a week’s B&B in a Junior Suite Garden View Room from £999 per person, including transfers and flights from Gatwick on May 3, 2021.
Asterias Beach Hotel, Makronissos
Set among 15 acres of landscaped gardens in front of Makronissos Beach, this upscale four-star is a good bet for families or couples wanting to be close to the action without being in the heart of it; Ayia Napa is a 10-minute drive away, but the emphasis is firmly on peace and tranquillity, with a spa, gourmet seafood restaurant and cocktail lounge among the facilities, plus tennis courts, watersports and other activities on hand to keep kids busy. “It occupies a magnificent and secluded location, fringed by one of the island’s finest beaches,” says Harry Kyrillou, commercial and aviation director at Planet Holidays. “It’s family-run and offers an amazing all-inclusive scheme with excellent evening entertainment.”
“Ayia Napa is a 10-minute drive away, but the emphasis is firmly on peace and tranquillity, with a spa, gourmet seafood restaurant and cocktail lounge among the facilities.”
Book it: A week’s all-inclusive with Planet Holidays costs from £1,087 per person, including flights on October 11.
Limni Beach Villa, Polis
For a peaceful, authentically Cypriot town that’s kept its charm without being totally cut off, Polis is an excellent option, with a family-friendly, sandy beach close to the Akamas Peninsula and its crystal-clear blue lagoon. There’s a handful of picturesque properties in the area but for one of the best look to Limni Beach, a stylish, contemporary-design villa that offers direct access to the beach and has its own (sizeable) pool and barbecue area as well as a gym, with four bedrooms spread across two floors. It’s a short stroll from the town centre, and if clients want a bit more buzz, Paphos is easily reachable at under an hour’s drive away.
“For a peaceful, authentically Cypriot town that’s kept its charm without being totally cut off, Polis is an excellent option, with a family-friendly, sandy beach.”
Book it: Oliver’s Travels offers a week from £1,855 (for travel between September 30 and March 24, 2021).
Capo Bay Hotel, Protaras
Direct art-lovers to this design-led retreat on the southeast coast, overlooking the iconic Fig Tree Bay – named among Europe’s best beaches by Tripadvisor, with aquamarine water lapping a stretch of gold. It hosts frequent art exhibitions and boasts a stylish spa with sauna, Jacuzzi, pool, sanarium and more, while five themed bars and restaurants – including Bitter Lemons, which features changing lights and artistic visuals with the aim of helping guests “recharge” – keep guests well-fed. Private candlelit beach dining and other romantic touches add allure for couples.
“Direct art-lovers to this design-led retreat on the southeast coast, overlooking the iconic Fig Tree Bay – named among Europe’s best beaches by Tripadvisor.”
Book it: Tui offers a week’s B&B from £811 per person, based on two sharing with flights from Heathrow airport on June 9, 2021.
Best of the rest
Villa Karavi, Pomos: For a secluded retreat away from it all, Oliver’s Travels recommends this four-bedroom pad on the outskirts of Pomos. It’s surrounded by sweeping mountain scenery and features several unusual quirks, including an underwater bedroom set beneath the pool with portholes looking into it, as well as direct beach access and a spacious private garden.
“Families, honeymooners and couples tying the knot are all catered for at this elegant all-inclusive set in the historic area of Amathus.”
Annabelle Hotel, Paphos: Thanos Hotels’ Annabelle has achieved legendary status and for good reason, with an elegant design that’s all about the serenity, Cypriot touches like local live music, and ample food and drink options – from a rooftop bar overlooking the ocean to gourmet restaurants focused on local produce. For those wanting to go beyond the beach, Paphos’ quaint, cobbled Old Town is a short stroll away.
Elias Beach Hotel, Limassol: Families, honeymooners and couples tying the knot are all catered for at this elegant all-inclusive set in the historic area of Amathus, with kids’ clubs, a children’s pool, cinema nights and plenty more drawing those with younger ones, and couples’ spa treatments, gourmet restaurants and beach weddings adding appeal for romantic types. Limassol is a 15-minute drive away, bringing history, culture and a smattering of local tavernas into the mix.