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Villa Idi: pure relaxation in the heart of Crete

Bedrooms 3
Space 1,506 sq. ft.
Property type villa
Minimum Stay 2 - 3 nights


About the property

Serene place in the delightful Amari Valley. An idyllic rural retreat with pool.

Overlooking the terracotta rooftops of the village of Amari, Villa Idi can accommodate up to eight guests comfortably. The two-storey property has an interior area of 140 square metres, a comfortable living room, kitchen and dining areas, three bedrooms (comprising double and single bed options), and two bathrooms.

Villa Idi is a traditional stone-built dwelling and was the former home of the owner’s grandparents. A typical rural residence built in the mid-1800s, today the villa exudes a unique charm, with its sensitive renovation carefully blending original features with contemporary comfort.

Amari village ('Nefs Amari') is a small traditional village in the heart of Rethymno province in central Crete. A 40-minute drive south of Rethymno town, Villa Idi is set on high ground just below village’s Venetian church with marvelous views across the Amari Valley to the highest mountain in Crete - Mount Ida (Psiloritis).

The interior of Villa Idi comprises many traditional furnishings and historical artefacts - including wood-burning fireplace - with a fully-equipped contemporary kitchen, central heating, air-conditioning and modern appliances. Capacity may be extended to nine guests if required. Wi-Fi is available throughout the property and the living room features a flat-screen TV and a device-compatible DVD/CD player/home cinema system.

The villa's terrace comprises a swimming pool and sunbathing area with sunbeds. With superb views to Mount Ida and across the valley, the terrace includes BBQ facilities and a dining area.

Villa Idi is a unique property in the region, combining luxury and comfort unparalleled in the Amari Valley. The village of Amari, located centrally in the Valley, is ideal for hikers and visitors wishing to explore the landscape and surrounding communities.

Equidistant from Crete's north and south coasts, Villa Idi is perfectly placed, allowing guests easy access to the south coast's beautiful (and less-used) beaches, as well as the more developed north coast. The Old Town of Rethymno is less than an hour's drive away, so visiting this popular location - one of the most intact medieval towns in Greece - is easy.

Guest services

The villa is looked after by "Mrs Rumy" (pronounced "roomy") who lives nearby and she is available to take care of any guests’ needs, including changing of linen and cleaning services. As a highly skilled cook, Mrs Rumy also offers guests an exclusive range of authentic Cretan and Mediterranean dishes. All the meals provided are homemade, using fresh seasonal ingredients - all from local suppliers. Prices for meals are available on request.


For youngsters and the young at heart, Villa Idi has a range of toys, games, books and movies to choose from. Baby cots and highchairs are available. The village has a basketball and volleyball court plus open spaces for games, and the lack of traffic in the village offers a safe and friendly environment for children to explore.

Your stay

On your arrival, owner Manolis Papadakis will be there to welcome you. Highly knowledgeable of the property and the area’s rich history, Manolis will be delighted to share with you the story of the house, his family and the Amari.

Villa Idi has belonged to the owner's family for more than 150 years. From the building’s earliest times it was a place where neighbours and the community met for joyful gatherings. Wanting to reflect this valuable heritage, the owner has decorated the villa with unique pieces of embroidery made by his mother and grandmother, and has kept many of the antique objects and furniture of the original house.

These delicate pieces keep alive the traditional character of the house - precious heirlooms that take us back in time, and remind us of the villa’s rich history.

The garden around villa contains many flowers, aromatic herbs and trees. Guests can feel free to pick the garden’s produce which includes almonds, lemons and pomegranates.

Your journey to the Amari

Heraklion and Chania airports are approximately 100 km from the village of Amari, and a journey by car from either will take not much more than 90 minutes. While the Amari valley is serviced by public transport car hire is strongly advised. The owner can provide recommendations for car hire providers at Chania, Heraklion or Rethymno. Pick-ups from either airport can also be arranged.

More Details

About Us

Manolis Papadakis
74061 Rethymnon
E.O.T., MHTE: 1041K910028943
VAT Reg No998802195

Manolis Papadakis
Member since: 2012
Speaks English, Spanish, Greek
Response time:
Within an hour
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
22 July, 2018

About Manolis Papadakis

Manolis is a construction engineer and lives in Rethymno with his wife Roula and two daughters. Fluent in English and Spanish, along with his native Greek, Manolis is delighted to offer his guests the opportunity to contact him at anytime by phone or email for questions and tips, before or during their stay.

Why Manolis Papadakis chose Amári

Villa Idi has been in the owner’s family for generations. In his childhood, Manolis spent his summer holidays here with his “papou” and “yiayia” (grandfather and grandmother). Decades later, Manolis restored the building for the sake of those sweet summers and transformed it into one of Crete’s most delightful and sought-after holiday homes.

What makes this villa unique

With spectacular views across the Amari Valley to Mount Ida, and a location that guarantees peace and tranquility, Villa Idi offers guests that most elusive of experiences - a beautiful refuge in which to unwind and recharge, enriched by the traditions of "the real Crete".


Accommodation and facilities for this holiday villa in Amári in Sivritos

Property Type:
  • villa (detached)
  • Catering available
  • Breakfast - Booking Possible
  • Lunch - Booking Possible
  • Dinner - Booking Possible
  • Housekeeper Included
Floor Area:
  • 1506 sq. ft.
House Rules:
  • Check-in: Flexible
  • /
  • Check-out: Flexible
  • Max. occupancy: 8 ...
  • Children welcome ...
  • Parties/events allowed
  • Pets not allowed
  • Non smoking only ...
  • Usual check in/out hours at 4.00pm/10.00am Any other hours possible (no extra cost), depending on current schedule of previous or following bookings
  • This villa might not be suitable for people of restricted mobility. There are stairs, no lift and no wheelchair access. Please, check with the owner
  • The guests are encouraged to put all recyclable materials in the special bins provided at the property. The owner carries them to the collection point
Location Type:
  • beach
  • mountain
  • rural
  • village
  • Adventure
  • Family
  • Farm Holidays
  • Historic
  • Romantic
  • Sports & Activities
  • Tourist Attractions
  • Activities Guide
  • Air Conditioning
  • Basic Soaps
  • Broadband Access ...
  • Fireplace
  • Firewood
  • Hair Dryer
  • Heating
  • Internet ...
  • Iron & Board
  • Laundry Soap
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Room
  • Local Activities Guide
  • Local Maps
  • Local Restaurant Guide
  • Mosquito Magnet
  • Paper Towels
  • Parking
  • Parking Off Street
  • Sunbed
  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels Provided
  • Tumble Dryer
  • Washing Machine
  • Wireless Internet ...
  • Wood Stove
  • Free Wifi
  • 4 Ring Stove
  • Coffee Maker
  • Cooking Utensils
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Dishwasher
  • Freezer
  • Grill
  • Kitchen
  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Hob
  • Toaster
  • Child's Highchair
  • Dining
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 10 people
  • 2 Bathrooms
  • Bathroom 1 - Toilet , Shower Enclosure , Ground floor
    Bathroom 2 - Toilet , Shower Enclosure , Upper floor
  • 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 8
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 Large Double Bed , 1 Cot
    Bedroom 2 - 1 Large Double Bed , 2 Single Bed , 1 Cot
    Bedroom 3 - 1 Large Double Bed
  • Bedroom#1 is double room with 1 double bed. There is also space for a baby cot. Bedroom#2 is a quadruple room with 1 double bed and a wooden attic with 2 single beds. The 2 single beds may be joined together to form another double bed. There is also space for a baby cot. Bedroom#3 is a double room with 1 double bed.
  • Books
  • Books - Fiction / Non-fiction
  • Books for Kids
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player
  • Games
  • Games for Kids
  • Music Library
  • Radio
  • Satellite / Cable
  • Stereo
  • Television
  • Toys
  • Video Library
  • Balcony
  • Deck Chairs
  • Beach Towels
  • Terrace
  • Garden
  • Barbecue
  • Veranda
  • Terrace
  • veranda
  • 10 garden chairs
  • 5 deck chairs
  • Long-term Renters Welcome
  • wheelchair inaccessible ...
Pool / Spa:
  • Outdoor Pool
  • Private Pool
Onsite Services:
  • Private Chef
  • autumn foliage
  • caves
  • churches
  • forests
  • museums
  • naturist beach
  • playground
  • pond
  • restaurants
  • ruins
  • theme parks
  • waterfalls
Leisure Activities:
  • bird watching
  • eco tourism
  • horse riding
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
Local Services & Businesses:
  • ATM/bank
  • groceries
  • medical services
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • hiking
  • mountain biking
  • mountain climbing
  • mountaineering
  • caving
  • swimming


Exceptional! 5/5 -
(30 traveller reviews)

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Villa Idi: pure relaxation in the heart of Crete
average rating of 5.0 based on 30 reviews

Second stay at Villa Idi

  • 5 of 5

This is the second year we have stayed at Villa Idi and as before it was superb.

Manolis and Rula are amazing hosts and made our stay very special, introducing us to local events, giving great recommendations on things to do in the area and beyond and helping with any questions and queries.

Mrs. Rumy's home cooked food is probably some of the best you will find on the island and the taverna at Meronas is also excellent.

The Villa, outside space and views are fantastic - a perfect place to relax and unwind.

We will be back again I'm sure.

  • Review Submitted: 06-Sep-2017
  • Date of Stay: August 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
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Amari stay

  • 5 of 5

Well designed villa with all facilities. Charming host Manolis provided us with masses of information on the Amari valley and the rest of Crete, which was very useful not only when in Amari but also on our trip around Crete. Great views of the village and surrounding countryside from the outside areas. We were only one couple and so had loads of space and though there were 2 outside seating areas we felt it might have been a bit of a squeeze if you had 6 or 8 people staying. The steps up to the villa are also quite steep and this could be a problem for those with serious mobility issues. Amari village itself is very quiet with no taverna and one very small cafe. There are, however, some great tavernas a few kilometres away. Housekeeper/cook Mrs Rumy was also a great bonus. It was a really great stay in a spectacular area of Crete

  • Review Submitted: 24-Jun-2017
  • Date of Stay: June 2017
  • Source: HomeAway
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Wonderful Villa and hospitality

  • 5 of 5

Amari is a delightful, living, traditional village in the heart of Crete. Although the villa is in the village, it is at the top, away from the main road, with marvellous views from the terrace across the rooftops and away across the valley to the mighty Mount Idi after which it is named. The villa itself has everything you would need for all seasons and is a delightful place to stay. Chief amongst the treasures to be found in the villa is the housekeeper, who unobtrusively looked after the villa better than anywhere we have stayed and also provides excellent meals when and if you require. The owner also showed us outstanding hospitality, spending his time to ensure we were comfortably and showing us around the village area, of which he is justly proud. We thoroughly recommend Villa Idi for families, groups or couples, and remember there is also an adjoining villa if you party is large.

  • Review Submitted: 14-Nov-2016
  • Date of Stay: October 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Great place ,great people

  • 5 of 5

Beautiful place in the mountains. A bit far from the city and all other tourists. Perfect for couple/ family who wants privacy, or group of friends that wants to have fun and.

  • Review Submitted: 08-Oct-2016
  • Date of Stay: September 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Wonderful silent place to relax and simply enjoy!

  • 5 of 5

Beautiful redecorated house in the mountains of Crete! They thought about everything. Very clean, convenient and luxurious. Nice swimming pool. Very warm welcome. All kind of groceries available at arrival. No need to cook! Mrs Rumy is one of the best cooks ever. You taste the love she puts in preparing the dinner.

  • Review Submitted: 03-Oct-2016
  • Date of Stay: July 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Wow - We loved our stay!

  • 5 of 5

We recently spent four nights at Villa Idi. It was one of four properties that we stayed at while touring Crete and Naxos. We travelled with another couple and we all agreed that it was by far our favourite.

From the beginning, Manolis (the owner) was so helpful. His directions and Villa information were thorough and easy to follow and understand. How he got the wild goats to appear at the exact time that he told us to look out for them in the directions is a fun mystery. He was also a great source of information about the local area directing us to some places that we may not have discovered on our own.

The Villa is beautiful and lovingly restored with 3 bedrooms plus a loft, two full bathrooms, a kitchen, living area and an amazing terrace with a pool. It is peacefully surrounded by beautiful mountains. The pictures do not do it justice. When we arrived there was a variety of goodies waiting for us in the kitchen. Such a nice touch. The villa is in a quiet valley centrally located for exploring the beautiful villages and beaches in the surrounding area.

All of this was lovely but the jewel of the villa is Mrs. Rumy. She is the onsite housekeeper who will help you if you have any questions. She is also an amazing cook. Prior to arriving you will receive a menu of the items that she can prepare for you. Before arriving we thought we might have her cook one or two nights. The first night we had the best lamb that we have ever had along with a smoked eggplant salad, potatoes, and yogurt for dessert. That sealed it, we asked her to cook every night for us and they were the best meals of our trip. She has an apartment close by and would help when needed but was careful to respect our privacy. It was wonderful to have a friendly face to greet us with a delicious meal after we returned from exploring each day. We were sad to say goodbye to Mrs. Rumy!

It was such a special experience that we are thinking of returning next year to explore the parts of Crete that we did not get to see this trip. Eight days is not enough on this beautiful island. For sure we will start our next trip by recharging our batteries at this beautiful and peaceful Villa.

  • Review Submitted: 28-Sep-2016
  • Date of Stay: September 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Nearest Airport
100 Kilometres
Heraklion (HER) or Chania (CHQ)
Nearest Barpub
50 Metres
Teziaki Cafe in Amari Village Square
Nearest Ferry
37 Kilometres
Nearest Motorway
30 Kilometres
Nearest Restaurant
2 Kilometres
Klados & Panakron
Nearest Beach
30 Kilometres
Car: necessary


The Amari Valley lies between two mountain ranges - Mount Ida to its east and the Kedros range to the west. The Valley is one of a few regions of Crete where the traditional Cretan rural way of life is still present. It is a place of unique nature and of cultural traditions which are central to the lives of its people today.

The village of Amari is set on the eastern slope of Samitos mountain. Peaceful and with little traffic entering this tiny hamlet (average resident population 200), the only sounds likely to break the silence are the tinkling of goat bells and the ringing of the village’s church bells.

Surrounded by ancient olive groves, vineyards and citrus orchards, the area is a gentle hiker’s paradise. The nearby landscape, dotted with tiny, often hidden, byzantine chapels, is a joy to explore by foot, while the Amari Valley lends itself to lazy exploration by car along its latticework of beautiful tree-shaded lanes and mountain paths.

Numerous paths starting from Amari and nearby villages guide you to magnificent natural and historically important sites. For the more adventurous, there is of course Mount Ida to scale at 2456 metres, Crete’s most sacred peak. The E4 walking path runs through the village of Amari.

The area surrounding the village of Amari is rich in history with several sites dating to Minoan and Byzantine times. Important locations include the ancient town of Syvritos, near the village of Thronos (7 km), and excavations of a Minoan palace in the village of Monastiraki (2 km).

Famed for its breathtaking gorges, some of Crete’s most beautiful are close to the Amari Valley. They include the gorge of Agios Antonios, near Patsos (14 km); and Platania Gorge (7 km) on the western edge of Mount Ida. The towering Kourtaliotiko Gorge, 32 km west of Amari, provides the most direct route to Plakias and the south coast.

Many significant archaeological and religious sites are within a one-hour drive, including Arkadi Monastery (13 km), Ancient Eleftherna (21 km), Festos Minoan Palace, (38 km) and Preveli Monastery (40 km).


Prices & Availability

Prices for this holiday villa in Amári, Crete

Rental Basis:
per property
Owner accepts payment in:
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Rental Period Minimum Price Additional Nights Weekend Night Weekly Monthly * Event Price
High Season
30 Jun 2018 - 29 Aug 2018
2 night minimum stay
for 2 nights
Notes: Rates are based on 4 guests; add £11 per night, per additional guest
Mid Season
30 Aug 2018 - 30 Sep 2018
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Notes: Rates are based on 4 guests; add £11 per night, per additional guest
Low Season
1 Oct 2018 - 31 Oct 2018
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Notes: Rates are based on 4 guests; add £8 per night, per additional guest
Low Season
1 Nov 2018 - 30 Nov 2018
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Notes: Rates are based on 4 guests; add £7 per night, per additional guest
Low Season
1 Dec 2018 - 21 Dec 2018
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
High Season
22 Dec 2018 - 6 Jan 2019
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Low Season
7 Jan 2019 - 31 Mar 2019
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Low Season
1 Apr 2019 - 30 Apr 2019
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Low Season
1 May 2019 - 31 May 2019
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Mid Season
1 Jun 2019 - 30 Jun 2019
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
High Season
1 Jul 2019 - 31 Aug 2019
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Mid Season
1 Sep 2019 - 30 Sep 2019
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Low Season
1 Oct 2019 - 31 Oct 2019
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Low Season
1 Nov 2019 - 30 Nov 2019
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
Low Season
1 Dec 2019 - 23 Dec 2019
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
High Season
24 Dec 2019 - 5 Jan 2020
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights
My Standard Rate
3 night minimum stay
for 3 nights

Additional pricing information

Fees No additional mandatory fees

- Minimum stay 3 nights.
- Long stay policy : A 7 night discount has been already included in the price, where applicable. Please contact us for longer stay discounts (15 nights or more).
- The prices show the Total Cost of the villa, including full air-conditioning, internet access (Wi-Fi), a welcome basket with local goods upon arrival, all taxes, all cleaning services, beach towels and change of linen/ towels. Also, central heating is included for the winter period.

Owner's Cancellation Policy

  • 50% refund for cancellations more than 30 days before check-in date.
  • 100% refund for cancellations more than 60 days before check-in date.
  • Service Fee fully refunded on cancellations that qualify for 100% refund.
Ask Owner a Question

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