Nestled on a private 72-acre private peninsula along the Athens Riviera, the Grand Resort Lagonissi offers stunning views over the Saronic Gulf.
The resort, visited by royals and celebrities, is considered to be an almost-secret celebrity haven which boasts sixteen private hotel beaches, eight additional private beaches, 24-hour butler service, its own private gyms, and a picturesque white church, as well as saunas and salons.
The resort even provides its own helipad for its VIP guests.
Notable guests there have included Leonardo DiCaprio, Shakira, J.Lo, Meryl Streep and Amanda Seyfried, who visited with the cast of “Mamma Mia” while they filmed the musical romantic comedy in 2008. Seyfried even says she had some of the “most fantastic days of my life” there during the Mama Mia filming.
Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler said that the Grand Resort Lagonissi was “The best there is,” while supermodel Gisele Bundchen, actor Mel Gibson and football player Cristiano Ronaldo are among the celebrities who have written tributes in its guestbook.
The resort offers affordable single rooms and suites as well. However, its luxury villas reportedly cost £10,000 a stay, and that sum includes the most spectacular views — with celebrity services to match.
A favorite among the stars is the resort’s “Royal Villa,” set on the east coast of the peninsula, a dwelling which was designed by Greek architects and interior designers. The Villa even boasts its own private beach.
The Royal Villa provides 400 square meters (4305 square feet) of indoor space, including two suites complete with walk-in closets, a spacious living room with fireplace, staff quarters with a separate entrance, a dining area, a fully equipped kitchen and a bar.
The villa’s two marble bathrooms have sea views past the huge outdoor swimming pool, and there is a separate room for spa or beauty treatments as well as a fully equipped gym and a heated indoor swimming pool.
The resort’s coveted toiletries are by Bvlgari. All the furnishings are provided by Ralph Lauren, Camerich, Villa Lumi and Murano, and all the resort’s works of art were made by Greek artists.
Past the 62-square meter (667-square foot) outdoor pool (which can be heated upon request) lies the real masterpiece, the 600-square meter (6,458 square foot) outdoor terrace with its breathtaking views across the Saronic Gulf.
Huge parties are rumored to have been held on the lush garden terrace by visiting celebrities, with services provided by a chef and a personal butler.
The Grand Lagonissi staff are known to provide their special guests with any request they desire.
Speaking to the British fashion magazine FEMAIL, a source revealed that one guest was so adamant that prying eyes across the sea be kept away from her villa that ten cypress trees were planted at the edge of her terrace in one day — for her fortnight-long stay.
Unfortunately, the next special guest staying in the suite was not happy that the view to the sea, which is one of the resort’s main selling points, had been blocked. The huge trees were then duly removed and replanted in other parts of the resort by the staff.
Another guest requested a spa treatment at 3 AM, while another romantic VIP guest hired a helicopter to throw rose petals onto his terrace as he proposed to his girlfriend.
One particularly selective guest asked the concierge to find him a specific pair of “Golden Turtle” swim trunks by the designer Vilebrequin. The swimwear, including 24-carat gold thread, is made from a special material known as Piana Clerico.
A staff member was dispatched to Mykonos to bring the luxury item to the resort, since the only such swim trunks sold in Greece at the time were at a boutique on Mykonos.
“We’ve had fireworks and pool parties in our cliffside gardens which have lasted into the early hours of the morning,” a spokesperson said about the lavish parties thrown at the resort’s top villas.
“Usually guests staying at the Royal Villa ask for traditional Greek food, and the restaurant has done barbecues with a whole lamb, or seafood barbecue with lobster and sushi platters, always accompanied with very traditional Greek salad, pita and olives, the spokesperson said.
“This is what travelers come to Greece for in their majority, and guests staying at the resort are not the exception,” the official added.