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Trip Report Oia hotels - Mystique vs Ikies

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Just back (last night) from 2 weeks in Greece. While the full trip report will come later, I wanted to give a side-by-side comparison of two hotels on Santorini – Mystique and Ikies – in case anyone is lucky enough to have an Oia trip pending and can’t decide between the two. We were originally booked for 4 nights at Mystique, but because of a computer glitch and “no room at the inn,” ended up moving hotels for our last night. It may have been the best thing that ever happened to us. Although Mystique is lovely and has its charms, we both agreed that Ikies wins hands down. Their location high on the caldera provides an exceptional view, and I don’t think I can even describe the beauty of their rooms and individual verandas.
Don’t get me wrong – Mystique wasn’t bad, and we would have been very happy to have been there for the entire stay. Mystique is much closer to Oia proper (Mystique is about 3 minutes from the beginning of the marble walks, while Ikies is a 5 minute walk farther down the road). Mystique does not have the classic view toward Oia that you expect because of its location down the cliff, which was initially a disappointment, but then I came to appreciate the advantages of its setup. Because of its location in a crook in the cliffside, your view of the caldera makes the hotel almost seem isolated. The downside of Mystique, however, is that it is 48 irregular cobblestone steps (yes, we counted) down from the main road to the reception, then another 40 or 50 steps down to most of the rooms. While Ikies is also 40 or so steps down from the road to reception, they are “regular” steps created by the hotel, and are much easier to navigate. Plus, because of its location higher on the hillside, you can see sunset from the upper levels of the hotel rather than trekking into Oia every evening.
Both have lovely large rooms, great bathrooms and great mattresses (all very important when you are spending such a ridiculous amount of money for a hotel room). While both are beautiful properties, we found Ikies to be much more charming. The rooms (houses) are so much more welcoming than Mystique, and the outdoor hot tubs on the individual verandas are fabulous (although Mystique has hot tubs in the bathrooms, it isn’t the same). If we had it to do over again, we both agree that Ikies would be our first choice.

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