Standard, Premium, & Luxury Accommodations Available at
“The old queen went to the bedroom, took the bedding off the bedstead, and set a single pea below twenty eider-down mattresses. ‘Now we’ll find out if this is a real princess!’ the old queen then exclaimed”― Hans Christian Anderson
Villa Koukouvayia’s was not envisioned or designed as a hotel, but a home. As a deliberate result, her various bedrooms are as unique as the estate itself. While there is no exception to the fact that all rooms have full & comfortable adult bedding, all rooms have full climate controls and A/C, and all rooms are beautiful additions within a beautiful estate, they are not “hotel” rooms with identical size, location, or views. To simplify room choices and assignments for our guests (and to offer programs hosting paying clients who present a variety of tastes and budgets) we can list two primary categories into which six of the nine accommodation options fall: “Standard” & “Premium.” To these, we must add “Luxury Suite” & “Non-Standard” to address three particularly unique accommodations whose luxury rises beyond a typical Premium room, or whose features lack a characteristic common to Standard rooms.
To ease room selections each category and that category’s bedrooms are described & pictured below, starting with the villa’s three Standard rooms.
Like all Villa Koukouvayia Rooms, Standard rooms are beautifully appointed and comfortable, and only differ from their Premium cousins by lacking some dramatic feature like a balcony, upper view, and/or larger size. The Garden Suite’s “Pheasant Nest” & “Partridge Nest,” and the Guest House’s “Crow’s Nest” (which does have a beautiful balcony & view, but offers only single bedding) are all considered Standard rooms.
The “Pheasant Nest” is the Garden Suite bedroom with the largest floorplan. Her windows look out into the southeast olive groves, and her built-in cabinet beds can be deployed in a simple queen-bed configuration, or in albergue style with four single-beds, set up as two bunks. In fact the Pheasant Nest size allows for both style beds to be deployed at the same time, allowing a young child traveling for the first time to remain in the same room with his/her parents, or to lodge an extra cousin in the family gathering.
The Garden Suite’s second bedroom is the “Partridge Nest.” Adjacent to and similar to the Pheasant Nest, the Partridge Nest also looks into the southeast groves, but adds a wall of high glass-brick and a skylight to keep the room both private and bright. Like all Garden Suite bedrooms, her cabinet beds include a queen that allows the room to serve as private quarters for a couple, or a series of single beds to allow the room to lodge as many as three friends, colleagues or family members. Unlike all other Garden Suite bedrooms, the Partridge Nest’s has 1 instead of 2 double-bed cabinets, but her single-bed cabinet has the neat talent of providing an automatically deployed desk and work area when the bed is closed and hidden. This is a handy feature for those who need to remain in touch with professional responsibilities during their stay.
The Guest House’s second bedroom, the “Crow’s Nest,” earns her name from the way her two single beds, engineered into window casements as wide as the beds are long, provide fantastic views from pillows to sea. Like a ship’s quarters, the Crow’s Nest custom cabinetry includes a host of storage options that join the room’s large closets and increase her effective size. Adding to her space, a large French door opens out onto a lovely coffee or reading balcony for two, with a view of the valley and southern mountains. This is a perfect room for two friends joining a program or traveling together, or siblings in a family group.
Villa Koukouvayia’s Premium rooms have some unique features that make them stand out and offer something extra that many guests find particularly attractive. These features usually include extra size, private exterior balconies or terraces, or extra chambers within a suite. The Guest House’s Hawk’s Nest, and the Main House’s Falcon & Griffon Nests are all considered Premium rooms.
The “Hawk’s Nest” is the Guest House’s master bedroom. Large built-in closets allow guests to settle in quickly and feel immediately at home. The room’s luxurious queen-bed is set among wide windows, and the room’s sliding French doors lead to a large, elevated terrace. Whether you remain in bed reading or sit on the elevated terrace sipping coffee or wine, you’ll enjoy a dramatic, 27o-degree view of the Gramvousa & Rodopou mountain ranges as they frame the Gulf of Kissamos and plunge into the Cretan Sea. The Hawk’s Nest also boasts private access by spiral stairs to a private roof patio, where your 270-degree view will expand to a full 360-degrees. During daylight hours, scan the region’s domain from mountains to sea. Or, after midnight, climb the patio’s spiral stairs to survey the rare spectacle of the sky’s full catalog of constellations and stars.
The Falcon Nest is the Main House’s second bedroom. The smaller footprint is more than balanced by the room’s expansive views up the Tyflos Valley to Crete’s southern mountains, either from the large private balcony embracing the southeast and southwest sides of the Main House, or directly from the room’s antique maple bed through a pair of French balcony doors. With the balcony available for morning coffees or evening glasses of wine, this is a perfect room for an intimate couple or lone traveler who wants to balance time with the larger group against moments where they alone can enjoy the moon or sun rising.
The Griffon’s Nest rests within the Main House’s dramatic hand-hewn stone turret, looking southwest, across an endless series of olive groves, the raw Gramvousa peninsula, and the Aegean Sea. With chambers at two levels, and with a bespoke single bed built into the upper loft’s circle of windows, the room offers the height, views and seclusion preferred by its cliff-dwelling, namesake bird. The lower studio’s wide writing desk, like the bed in the upper chamber, has been built into the turret’s curve of windows, and provides similarly spectacular scenes of sea and sunsets, but is also a perfect space for a student or professional who needs to balance vacation or program time with tasks and work connections. The Griffon’s Nest also has direct access to the Main House’s roof terrace, a perfect place to go before the rest of the house wakes or after all are abed, when the morning light or stars will sparkle and call. The studio level also provides the space and privacy to add a portable bed and double the room’s occupancy—perfect for a close travelling friend, or family sibling.
In addition to the three fully private bedrooms in the Garden Suite, the suite’s living area hides an adult-engineered bed built into the library cabinet of the room. Deploying this bed converts the living area—either each evening or for the duration of your stay—into the “Chaperone’s Quarters.” The Chaperone Quarters has an adjacent bath and is easily separated from the rest of the suite by an available privacy screen. And while this would be a rare choice and unlikely offered to formal program participants, it is a great option for staff, chaperones, or extra family members when needed, increasing the Garden Suite’s capacity from 11 to 13.
The estate does offer one selection, the Koukouvayia Suite, whose features demand its own category, distinct from even the Premium Rooms cited above.
The “Koukouvayia Suite” features a dedicated library and reading area, a hand-carved, Arabian teak king-bed, and in Crete’s colder months can be warmed by the room’s hand-hewn stone fireplace. The bedchambers are quiet and isolated from the other 2nd floor rooms by a long entry hallway. The suite’s exterior walls boast a series of high windows, with sliding French doors that access a wide private balcony that wraps across two sides of the Main House. Both inside and out, the suite affords dramatic 270-degree views of the Gramvousa & Rodopou mountain ranges jutting into the Cretan Sea. The en suite bath continues the motif of simple luxury & integrated natural views. Across from a two-person glass shower, a long soaking tub is set into a wide window whose view encompasses the Tyflos Valley and the mountain opposite, where the charming village of Xarathiana and its night-lit chapel of Saint John frame the moon and sun rising at dusk and dawn. While the Koukouvayia Suite is designed for two, if needed, there is room to add a portable bed for a small child to accompany their parents.