Put your hands up if you're in this position: it's April, the sun is starting to shine more and more which means summer is on its way. The increasing temperature is acting as a friendly reminder that you still haven't got your summer holiday booked yet. Hotel room availability is filling up, flights are getting pricier, those bikinis you have in your saved basked on ASOS keep going out of stock then back in stock, then out of stock.... your single friends are trying to rally the girls for a weekend to Marbella or Tenerife, but truthfully you'd rather jet somewhere a little less TOWIE (no hate, I do love the show) and go somewhere a little more, well, I'm going to say it: #goals. Is your hand still in the air? Okay cool, so let me introduce you to your new best friend, the Almyra hotel.
If you follow me on Instagram, you'll know all too well I jetted off to sunny Cyprus for a few days of luxury at the Almyra. Set in stunning Paphos, sat overlooking the sea, this insanely sleek, contemporary hotel offers the best taste of the Mediterranean (seriously, wait until I get on to the food!) For 2017, they upgraded the facilities with a sparkling aquamarine infinity pool, bringing its already impressive pool total up to 3 (so you'll never be short of taking an Instagram-worthy bikini shot...) As a first-time visitor to Cyprus, the Almyra hotel truly captured the essence of what the country is about with its stunning architecture, delicious food, and impeccable service.
The Rooms - With rooms for couples and families, there's plenty for everyone at the Almyra. I was lucky enough to stay in one of the smartly-named sea-front Kyma suites (kyma means lapping of the waves, which I can attest you'll find yourself dozing off to and waking up to!) Open the sliding doors and look out upon the glittering teal sea. The suites are decked out with the largest bed I've ever come across (you can never have too much room) a television, lounge area, and refreshment table. The walk-through wardrobe leads you into a bathroom you could only wish you had, fitted out with marble interiors, a rain shower, and Acqua Di Parma toiletries, naturally.
I was practically ready to make the call to my parents to tell them to arrange for all of my things from London to be moved here instantly, when I was shown up to the suites' roof terraces. Yes, if waking up in your extra large cloud of a bed each morning to gaze out on the beautiful sea wasn't enough for you, each of the kyma suites has a roof terrace with the exact same view. The staff are kind enough to arrange private barbecues and cocktails on your terrace for the sunset if you ask far enough in advance - something I can't recommend enough!
Also, it has to be said, the kyma suite rooftops played the perfect back drop for a whole host of photos...
The Food - Perched right next to the sea, and having such a strong focus on health and wellness, it came as no surprise that the Almyra's food offering was incredibly fresh, healthy, and delicious. I'm talking catches straight from the sea, traditional Cypriot dishes, and they are incredibly hot on catering to those with food intolerances. Gluten free girls and boys - you will not go hungry. And with 5 different restaurants, you're certainly spoilt for choice. On our first night, the manager organised a delicious Asian-inspired three-course menu, with salmon, chicken and steak for the main. For all of us. As you can imagine (if you're not vegetarian/ vegan - although they cater for you guys too!) it was heaven.
For breakfast, we dined at the Mosaics morning buffet, with everything from cheese (anywhere that serves cheese for breakfast will already gain 5* from me), fresh yoghurts, to pastries, to traditional fry-up favourites bacon & sausage, and an egg station so all of you health nuts can get a nutritious protein fix. We ate here once more, in the evening on our final night. Rightfully putting all previous hotel buffet reputations to shame, Mosaics had the most incredible choices, from classic Mediterranean dishes to freshly grilled fish and meats.
Lunch the next day was put on at Notios - a delicious Japanese-Med fusion with sushi, grilled fish, noodle salads, all eaten with a view to match, overlooking the sea.
For evening, we went down to the coast front once more to the Ouzeri restaurant for classic Greek-Cypriot dishes. Nestled against the rocks and set in candlelight, it's a totally relaxing atmosphere. The team put on a special three course menu of classic dips (all hail hummus!) and fresh seafood.
You can't mention food without the drink. If you love Espresso Martinis and frozen Margaritas, you'll fit right in here.
The Pools - You can't go on holiday without having a #goals worthy pool for a photo for the 'gram. We can pretend like it's not true, but why else did you bring 8 bikinis for your 5 day holiday? So with three pools to choose from, you're in luck at the Almyra. Not quite one for each bikini, but there's plenty of angles to work it from! And if that's not quite enough, head down to the jetty to get some shots on the sea as well. All of the pools are surrounded by loungers, but make sure you're up early to nab the sunniest spot!
Spa, Sports & Wellness
Spa, Sports & Wellness - So let's say that your gym membership gets the same pounding all year round as it does prior to your holiday, and you're not the kind of person that likes skipping a workout even when you're on holiday. Well, the Almyra knows that relaxation and a hard workout goes hand in hand, with a fully-equipped gym (also overlooking the sea - talk about a treadmill view!) with the spa. We were tested with a 2 hour PT session - aka the perfect opportunity to burn off all the calories we'd been eating/drinking, and a deep tissue massage to rejuvenate our bodies. If you book in advance, the spa also does hair and nails so you'll be looking perfect all holiday long.
Paphos - Paphos won the international competition to become the European Capital of Culture for 2017. To celebrate, throughout 2017 different cultural events featuring the best of Paphos, Europe, and even from across the globe, will be brought together. So if you really needed an excuse to leave the stunning hotel grounds, I think this is a pretty good one.
So, if I haven't convinced you yet that you need to get yourself booked into this gem, these are my final takeaways. It's a 4.5 hour flight away - and the flights aren't even that expensive compared to neighbouring countries. It's going to be hot hot hot all summer, but if you fancy cooler days (and by that I mean, early/mid twenties) it'll be perfect for you up until the end of October time - which is out of season and definitely more affordable. Santorini is overdone, and like I said, Tenerife is too Towie. Everything you truly need, and more, is within this stunning hotel, but if you want to explore there's so much worth looking at beyond the walls of the Almyra.
A huge thank you to the Almyra for the truly incredible service your teams gave, the wonderful hospitality, and the opportunity to experience your hotel.