The Marbella Beach Hotel, Corfu

LOCATION: The Marbella Beach is on the South Eastern coast of Corfu near the village of Agios Ionnis.

LOCATION: The Marbella Beach is on the South Eastern coast of Corfu near the village of Agios Ionnis. Its an easy place to get to and from. The airport is 16 kilometres away and Corfu town and port about the same. The hotel has its own private, blue flag, beach with access through an underpass.  It is also one of the best locations on the island in terms of the sea in front of the hotel.  Home to dolphins, sea turtles and other wonderful wildlife it has been designated a Unesco site.  FIRST IMPRESSIONS: When it first opened in 1974, it was meant to be the best luxury hotel in Greece. But modern five star hotels today tend not to be so big and it takes a while to get your head around the geography of the vast site. Sensibly as soon as we arrived we went straight to the terrace for coffee and champagne. Sited just beyond the reception area, it has stunning panoramic views over the Med. There was no better way of saying ‘goodbye London, hello Greece.’ 

THE FACTS: Now is the time to go.  The inspirational current owner, Vassilis Dracopoulis, refused to join the rest of Greece in panicking about the economy and  a two year investment programme  has seen  more than €12 million poured into renovations. Every bedroom has been redecorated from top to bottom with new beds and new furniture. A system has been brought into play so that the main block with its 212 bedrooms will be used mainly for couples. The cluster blocks and cottages will be for families. There is now a dedicated children’s area with its own pool, an attractive spa, and four restaurants so that guests can have romantic dinners or a practical family buffet.

A GOOD BASE FOR: Great for boat trips and diving, and also for supping up Greek culture. It is close both to fun lively tavernas and to all that Corfu town has to offer with its medieval streets and Byzantine fortress.

WOW: It's great value for money. As a grandparent we like to treat the whole family to an annual holiday. This is a hotel where it is affordable and every member would be catered for. 

HOW MUCH: Classic Collection Holidays ( offers seven nights from £1,544 in August. Price based on two adults sharing a deluxe suite sea view room on an ultra inclusive basis and includes return flights from Gatwick to Corfu and private transfers.