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Aphrodite’s Hideaway

BRIDGE VIEW DELOS.TIF  TWOOf all the unique architectural features that distinguish St. John Mykonos Hotel, the stunning five-star luxury resort on Mykonos, none is more iconic than the graceful, chalk-white bridge that begins at poolside and takes you into the Aegean Sea. Through the morning mist, I could see the figure of a slim young woman in white standing on the crescent-shaped overpass. Like Aphrodite, she seemed to be rising from the foam of the sea. She was framed against the rosy-fingered dawn, rising in slender waves of orange and purple ribbons, tossed across the sky.09-2_st_john (16).jpgThus was the serene view that greeted me on my first morning in my commodious suite at St. John, the relatively young resort hotel that is the jewel in the crown of luxury accommodation on Mykonos, the most cosmopolitan of the Cycladic islands in Greece. Its location, accommodations, spa, cuisine and services are the best the island has to offer.

Surely, the gods have smiled upon me, I thought. Mykonos is my favorite of all the islands and here I was on a hillside where the land cascades into the sea. The location provides a panoramic view of both Agios Ioannis and the Aegean; it is flawless. The hotel’s beach was chosen as the setting for the cult classic movie, Shirley Valentine, one of the most endearing films about Greece. It is the story of a bored woman from a dreary town in England who comes to Mykonos and discovers sunshine, living in and relishing the moment, and love.

Each morning, the view from my balcony was distinctive, and on my second day I saw a shadowy outline in the sea’s deep vista. As the morning mist rose, the grey outline of the sacred island of Delos was revealed and it beckoned me. I learned I could arrange a private tour of both Delos, the sacred island where warriors fought heroic battles centuries ago, and also of Rhinia, its sister island, where the bones of the warriors are buried. By Greek law, no one is allowed to build on either of these islands.

The boat trips sounded appealing, but I was feeling mellow and decided that after breakfast, I would spend at least the morning at the Aphrodite Spa and Beauty Center, the tranquil space that is the very heart of the hotel. After studying the list of the spa’s extensive services, I promised myself a day of relaxation and revitalization and was not disappointed.

The spa is a gathering spot, especially for female guests. They come to use the sauna, Jacuzzi, steam bath, and heated pool, and to enjoy invigorating massages, mud baths, aromatherapy, thalassotherapy and the beauty services. They assemble, also, to   have conversations with the “hostess” of the spa, the most personable Evgenia Rather Kosathanas. She is lovely wife of Thanasis Kousathanas and daughter-in-law of Yiannis Kousathanas, founder and owner of St. John Mykonos. The spa has a soothing, welcoming atmosphere and guests soon become aware that the ambiance reflects Evgenia’s thoughtful and tranquil personality and genial hospitality.

Over the course of my one-week stay, I visited the spa daily and had a variety of treatments, including relaxing massages and the most perfect pedicure I have ever enjoyed. It was pleasurable to splash about in the09_st_john (41).jpgsoothing warm waters of the indoor pool and then relax on a lounge chair, listen to soft music, and read my books of Greek poetry. Bliss.

In the evenings, I was in “Seventh Heaven”—literally.  This is the hotel’s premier gourmet restaurant where dining is an art. I chose entrees recommended by the chef and my palate was always pleasantly delighted. The Greek wines never disappointed and were chosen from the hotel’s exclusive cellar. Indeed, my days were serene and my evenings mellow.

The location of St. John Mykonos is dramatic. It is perched on a hillside on Agios Ioannis, one of the most desirable locations on the island, offering stunning views of the setting sun, the Aegean Sea and Delos Island. It is an architectural masterpiece created to offer guests the finest in luxury travel.   Accommodations range from executive rooms and junior and family suites to secluded villas with private pools. The hotel’s private beach extends over 200 meters and a tennis court is available for guests desiring stimulating physical activity. There are seven restaurant and bars, including areas for casual, poolside dining and fine dining.st_john 179.jpgThe reputation of St. John Mykonos as an ideal location for conferences is growing and it now has two indoor halls that can accommodate 450 delegates. These are The Pelagos Conference room, accommodating 100 persons theatre-style or 60 persons classroom style. The larger Zeus meeting room is for larger groups up to 350.

All equipment needed for professional presentations is available, allowing guests to relax with the knowledge that all is in good hands.

Professional organizations from all over the world have chosen to hold their conferences at St. John Mykonos and its desirability has spread by the time-honored method of “word of mouth.”

Guests come from far and wide, also, to hold their weddings in a spectacular setting that will be unforgettable. All planning, from the catering, seating, floral arrangements and photography is done by the hotel’s professional event-planning staff. Arrangements can be made for a local priest to perform the ceremony; most guests choose to include the final touch, which is a brilliant display of fireworks.St.John 084.jpgUnfortunately, there was no wedding during my stay and I did not get to see the fireworks, but I did see the sunset, I swam in the sea and in the pool, I had lunch by the pool bar and dinner in Seventh Heaven, I had luxurious days at the Aphrodite Spa, I felt the energy radiating from the sacred island of Delos, and I had my photo taken on the chalk-white bridge. I pretended I was the goddess Aphrodite, rising from the foam of the Aegean Sea. Why not? At St. John Mykonos Hotel, all things are possible.

Please visit the hotel’s website at and contact the hotel by sending an email to

All images are courtesy of St. John Mykonos Hotel

About The Author


She lives on one of the Greek islands for two months of every year, and in Pittsburgh, PA., for the remaining months. Aurelia specializes in writing articles and vignettes about Greece and has been published in all of the major Greek American publications in the United States, including The National Herald and The Hellenic News of America. Her articles have appeared, also, in Odyssey Magazine, The Athens News, and Stigmes, the magazine of the Minoan Lines. Her first novel, A Lone Red Apple, is set on Mykonos and is about life and love on that island. Aurelia calls it her love song to Sappho and her valentine to Mykonos. It is now available in a kindle version and has an "insider's guide" to the very best in dining and entertainment on the island. While reading the kindle version, you may click on links that will take you to the websites of the restaurants, bars, and tavernas.

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