I’m besotted with Greece, the azure blue seas, the white washed buildings, the ancient gnarled olive trees, oh, the history and the monuments and the healthy delectable cuisine – did i forget anything?! Greece is truly a place to return and return.
Live in the comfort and seclusion of a Greek God or Goddess at one of the two largest on property Villas at Amanzoe in Porto Heli, Greece. Villa life can be enjoyed with all the outstanding amenities of the luscious Aman property, a few hours by car from Athens or a brisk 45 min heli transport. Some of the most distinctive welcome ceremonies are practiced by the Aman resorts; I’ve been transfixed by prayers and blessings, thrilled by scented towels representing multiple fragrances created by an Aman hotel, they have perfected the welcome. Setting the stage for the remainder of the visit.
Aman junkies will be deliriously happy in the land of myths and legends, amid the rocky rolling Argolid hillsides of the Peloponnese. According to ancient Greek mythology the Peloponnese is where the gods walked the earth. The elegant breathtaking resort, like the Acropolis, is situated on a hilltop surrounded by olive groves, underplanted rows of fragrant lavender and spectacular views of the deep blue Aegean Sea. Oh, did I mention the soundtrack of the cicada summer symphony?
Amanzoe, surrounded by undulating olive groves and overlooking the turquoise Aegean Sea, is a ten-minute drive from the tavernas and cosmopolitan stirrings of Porto Heli, Greece. The isles of Spetses and Hydra are nearby, as are countless ancient ruins, from millennia-old amphitheaters to Byzantine monasteries.
The two largest options on property are perched high on the Peloponnese peninsula like a modern-day acropolis, Villa 20 is a masterpiece of elegant indoor-outdoor living. Designed by Ed Tuttle and Marios Angelopoulos to meld with the landscape, Villa 20 enjoys sweeping views of rolling hills, the Aegean Sea and the Peloponnese.
With a private spa, six pools and a multitude of dining spaces, including two outside barbecue areas and a typical Greek taverna under the olive trees, Villa 20 is the perfect retreat for groups of friends and families alike.
Large scale sculptures are creatively placed throughout the property, and the owners’ carefully curated selection of art, books from their personal library and artefacts gathered over their years of travel, creates the mood of a private home.Nature is central to the design of villa 20; reflection pools lined in green marble capture sea and sky; fragrant gardens sooth the senses; and natural materials reinforce a connection to the ancient landscape.
The ultimate private retreat, Villa 20 accommodates 18 guests in five 100m2 suites and four luxury studio bedrooms, all opening onto private terraces and some featuring plunge pools. Guests of Villa 20 also enjoy access to a dedicated Beach Cabana at the Amanzoe Beach Club, ensuring maximum privacy and comfort. The one-bedroom Cabana has a private terrace and 10-meter pool, with direct access to the sea 30 meters away.
A private spa & gym in the Villa offers a wide range of facilities, including treatment rooms, sauna, steam room, water massage bed, whirlpool, 15-metre indoor pool and cold plunge pool. The state of the art gym features Technogym equipment and is complemented by spacious outdoor yoga and training terraces enjoying beautiful views.
Villa 20 is the perfect retreat for friends and families seeking valuable, quality time in a home away from home, whilst enjoying all that Amanzoe has to offer. Dining venues are spacious and include an alfresco fire ring, BBQ, gardens and a Greek Taverna under ancient olive trees. Multiple living and meeting areas, alongside a billiard room and a library, allow all guests’ needs to be met in the comfort of Villa 20. Villa 20 is the perfect retreat for friends and families seeking valuable, quality time in a home away from home, whilst enjoying all that Amanzoe has to offer.
Amenities and luxury features: panoramic views of the Aegean Sea. Sleeps up to 18 guests. Fragrant gardens. 131ft infinity pool on 6th level. A 98.5ft infinity pool on 2nd level. Five 100m2 suites and four luxury studio bedrooms (three of them have their own private pools). A private Beach Cabana. 18 members of staff, including a dedicated chef. Formal living-dining room with terrace on 2nd level. Covered indoor-outdoor living-dining room with terrace on 6th level. Living-meeting room on 5th level ideal for business meetings. BBQ area with dining table for 18. Fire ring set within the gardens with a rustic wooden table for 18. Typical Greek taverna under olive trees. Spa with traditional double treatment room, waterbed treatment room, steam room, hammam, cold plunge pool, 49ft lap pool, whirlpool. Gym with Technogym equipment. Yoga platform. Fully equipped Library and games room, ideal for families. Five kitchens / laundry / staff quarters. Extensive garage space. Wi-Fi throughout all indoor and outdoor areas. Can you see yourself here for a few weeks? Olive oil tastings can be arranged for you and your guests.
Not inclined to take all of your friends and family? There is a six-bedroom Villa, a Five Bedroom Villa and a Four Bedroom Villa on property. Something for everyone! Safe, serene and idyllic.
Art aficionados can revel in a one bedroom Villa with world-renowned artist James Turrell Amanzoe’s, Villa 31, which features an immersive art installation entitled ‘Sky Plain’. The immersive light installation, known as Skyspace, takes the form of a cubic structure with a large ceiling aperture, open to the Peloponnese sky above Amanzoe.
If inclined to tour the area, I would opt for renting a car or at least hiring a driver for one way to appreciate the picturesque views spanning the eastern Peloponnese peninsula. If you desire day trips from the resort, a car is important, or you use a driver for exploration; perhaps once you see the stunning resort, you may not be inclined to leave your luminous pavilion perch or the elegant beach club, I can imagine both scenarios.
The setting and the architecture is majestic, 360-degree views take in the coast, the rocky coves and the shimmering seas. Dotted across the hillside, Amanzoe’s luxurious white Villas are classically inspired and contemporary in attitude.
Villa life can be enhanced with speed boats, day trips to deserted islands. Sightseeing nearby: the pine tree forest area of Spetses is close by- iconic fishing ports and traditional white washed stucco villages. Accessible via water taxi, the car-free Spetses is known for its sea-faring traditions, neoclassical mansions and horse-drawn carriages. Quaint villages and verdant pine forests can be explored by scooter, quad bike or bicycle.
The wealth of nearby archaeological sites includes the sanctuary of Asklepios at Epidaurus. This vast masterpiece of Greek architecture, dedicated to the gods of Epidaurus, is a UNESCO World Heritage site and home to temples and an amphitheater. The starkly beautiful Peloponnese landscape suits treks of all kinds. Visit Byzantine chapels and Mycenaean tombs or discover the verdant peninsula of the Bisti Forest at Ermioni – all are within easy reach
Hydra, to the east, is popular with the private and charter yacht peeps. Exploring the hilly island without cars, is best done by foot or donkey or by boat. Just over an hour inland, don’t miss Epidaurus, an ancient, Unesco-protected amphitheater flanked by a wealth of Hellenic ruins.
For a more back-to-nature day trip, make a stop at Dokos, a rocky outcrop populated primarily by monks and resident sheep-herders. Divers will want to seek out the world’s oldest shipwreck, a cargo vessel from the early Helladic period that lies just off the Dokos coast.
Amanzoe derives from the Sanskrit word for peace, Aman, and the Greek word for life, zoe. You may arrive with goals and purpose to explore the area; be forewarned, you may succumb to the peerless panoramic views, lulled by the rhythm of the cicada symphony.
The pure white structures unabashedly conjure the classic Parthenon, the grounds include numerous water features, olive groves and an amphitheater. Ancient architecture meets modern amenities.
The ‘Aman way’, utter devotion and dedication to beautiful settings, tranquility and perfect service is a deliberate nod to the Greek gods.
I’ve visited and Highly Recommend!