The 5* Ixian Grand was built in 1978 and underwent a complete makeover in 2007, which makes it hard to believe that it is over 30 years old! The new incarnation is designed to a contemporary, designer template. Just a few feet from the beach, the hotel has few sports facilities and not much in the way of organised entertainment and activities. It is therefore best suited to couples without children, or families passing through.
Ixia is a small and lively seaside resort in the northern part of Rhodes. There are numerous hotels along its beaches and it is a paradise for windsurfing and other water sports. The wind that blows along the coast probably has something to do with it! The hotel is some 2,800 ft from the restaurants and shops in town, and the same distance from the beaches... Furthermore, the hotel benefits from an excellent location on the coast, which makes an ideal starting point for numerous excursions. The city of Rhodes is only a 5-minute drive away, and it takes about a quarter of an hour to reach the international airport.
The hotel offers 'bed and breakfast' or half-board options. The only organised activities amount to aquagym sessions and shows (mainly Greek music) organised two evenings a week. You are best off asking the way before heading into the gardens in search of your apartment, because the signing is not always very clear!
The big, bright and airy lobby gives you an initial idea of the general style of the hotel. On the side nearest the sea, there are two swimming pools (one infinity pool and one with an area for children), a jacuzzi, cushioned wooden deckchairs and a pretty and impeccably-kept garden. Bear in mind that the hotel has placed two loungers in each room, so you do not have to get up at daybreak to reserve one with your towel. On the side with cottages, you can admire (but unfortunately not try out) a pretty decorative swimming pool. However, don't expect to hone your tennis or beach-volleyball skills on holiday here, because no courts or pitches are provided. Instead, sports addicts must make do with the 18-hole golf course some 16 mi from the hotel.
There are a total of 280 rooms. The luxury and superior rooms are spread over the main building and the large suites and cottages are dotted around the park. All the different types of accommodation have a bed with a mattress and a very comfortable mattress cover made by the Greek brand 'Cocomat' (natural materials), as well as air-conditioning (from May to October), a satellite television with an LCD screen, a DVD player, a direct telephone line, a minibar, a free safe, a balcony (or terrace) and a bathroom with toiletry kits, a hair-dryer, a bathtub (or shower) and dressing gowns. Luxury rooms have the added bonus of a jacuzzi bathtub on the balcony, and suites have direct access to the main swimming pool or an individual pool on their own terrace!
The main restaurant is near the lobby and stretches all the way to the pool, but owing to the popularity of the terrace, to ensure you get a table out there you will need to arrive at the start of mealtimes or hope to be in the right place at the right time. Guests staying in suites can also eat at the 'A la Zonia' private restaurant. It is open exclusively for them at breakfast and dinner, serving up a menu of delicate and tasty dishes in an intimate atmosphere under soft lighting. A restaurant opens at the poolside at lunchtime, serving up snacks and grilled meat. Finally, for an extra charge, a gourmet restaurant prepares a tasty menu which consists of 7 Mediterranean dishes with their accompanying wines. The bar options are restricted to a lounge area with a terrace and a cocktail bar on the beach.
The beach in front of the hotel is covered in black sand and pebbles, so sandals are strongly recommended here! The sea is a little choppy around this part of the island, but is a lovely turquoise colour. It is the perfect place to play around in the waves, bask in the sun on one of the cushioned wooden deckchairs or choose one of the water sports that takes your fancy - at an extra charge, because as in many other resorts, the water sports facilities are separate from the hotel.
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