A prestigious mansion built in the 18th century for wealthy Italian owner Matias Barabino, Castro Hotel Syros was intended as a fancy pad to show off to his friends (you can still see his proud initials in the ironwork). And, after a painstaking restoration, Matias’s mansion is now a fabulous addition to Syros’s burgeoning jetsetter scene, setting itself apart with a top-of-the-range cellar spa – an addition we reckon would have thrilled Signore Barabino himself.
Get this when you book through us:
Welcome drink, local delicacies and 20 per cent off spa treatments; GoldSmiths also get a 30-minute facial, plus an early check-in and late check-out (subject to availability)
Castro Hotel Syros has nine guest rooms, including two dreamy suites.
11am, but flexible, subject to availability. Earliest check-in, 3pm.
Double rooms from £102.06 (€115), including tax at 13.5 per cent. Please note the hotel charges an additional government tax of €3.00 per room per night on check-out.
Rates include an à la carte breakfast, served in the stonebound cellar restaurant or on the pretty patio.
At the hotel
Free WiFi, open-air patio with seating. In rooms: air conditioning, free WiFi, Smart TV, tea and coffee facilities, Nespresso coffee machine, minibar, hairdryer, extra towels and linens, bathrobes and slippers, Elaias bath products.
Our favourite rooms
Every room at Castro Hotel Syros is elegantly restored, and fitted with custom-made furniture and fittings that knit the 19th-century bones together with a modern, luxurious sensibility. But the true stage-stealer is, without doubt, the Castro Prestige Suite, a generously proportioned sleeping and living space with an ornamental painted ceiling and huge chandelier. The seating area has a coffee table, white armchair and stylish orange sofa. Tall doors framed with full-length drapery lead out onto a charming balcony, complete with seating, curled wrought-iron railings and a view of the pretty street below. The large bathroom has a freestanding white tub mounted on its own marble step, as well as a separate shower and toilet set behind decorative trellis-style doors.
The hotel spa is a warm and welcoming space, complete with the building’s signature exposed stonework, and offers a Jacuzzi, hammam, steam room and treatment space for stress-busting facials, massages, aromatherapy sessions and more. All products are organic, vegan and Greek, and filled with natural, skin-nourishing ingredients. The spa is open to non-residents, so book your slot in advance.
Sensible shoes for the archeological hike at Kastri; much less sensible ones for drinks on the patio.
There’s lift access to all floors, plus an accessible ensuite bathroom in each room.
Kids of all ages are very welcome here, but there’s no dedicated kids’ club or creche onsite.
A corner banquette by the window for the best people-watching views, or the central dining table if you’re feasting with a group.
Relaxed, but refined.
Cellar 1857 is the hotel’s wine bar and restaurant, where Chef Menelaos Stefanakidis serves up breakfast (8.30–11.30am) and brunch or lunch (11.30am–2pm), crafted with fresh, organic produce from the surrounding area. Breakfast can be anything from banana pancakes with yoghurt, walnuts and honey, to Greek-style scrambled eggs with feta, tomato and oregano. For brunch/lunch, choose from burgers, salads and sandwiches, including vegan options, and maybe a lemon tart for afters. The dining room is a calm space, with original stone walls and atmospheric arches, round-backed seats and warm lighting. Alternatively, you can choose to have your meal up on the colourful Aithrio Lounge patio.
The main restaurant, with its wine-cellar feel, doubles up as a convivial space in which to sample a local wine, ouzo or glass of champagne, or you can move up to the charming Aithrio Lounge patio bar for an open-air glass surrounded by flowers and plants.
The kitchen at Cellar 1857 closes at 2pm, but you can head to sister restaurant Ousyra for dinner (closes midnight).
There’s a room service menu of light Mediterranean meals to enjoy in your room.
Castro Hotel Syros is in the thriving port capital of Hermoupolis on the Greek island of Syros.
Syros Island National Airport is 10 minutes away by car. You can book a hotel transfer in advance for approximately 10 euros each way (max three passengers).
There’s no onsite parking, but the P8 Nisáki car park is about 200 metres from the hotel.
Worth getting out of bed for
The beach scene here is pretty sedate, although you can liven things up a bit with some scuba-diving sessions. Hermoupolis itself is a treat to walk around – check out grand, marbled Miaouli Square, with its imposing town hall, which also houses the Archaeological Museum. Nearby St Nicholas Church is known for its lavish interior and frescoes, while the mansions of Vaporia offer a genteel backdrop to a relaxed stroll, and an indication of the historic wealth of this former shipping centre.
When you’re ready to venture away from the considerable comforts of Castro Hotel Syros, you could do much worse than step into the refined dining room of its sister restaurant Ousyra (located just 100 metres away and open 4.30pm to midnight). Here you can feast on Chef Costas Tsigkas's burratina with roasted peaches and cherry tomatoes, followed by gourmet pizza or prosciutto ravioli. Alternatively, you can take your place in the charming tree-laden terrace at Mazi, with dishes such as octopus carpaccio, smoked eel salad or Iberico pork with mashed potatoes, horseradish, turmeric and haricots.
Every hotel featured is visited personally by members of our team, given the Smith seal of approval, and then anonymously reviewed. As soon as our reviewers have returned from this regal mansion hotel in Syros and unpacked their bright local ceramics, a full account of their Greek island break will be with you. In the meantime, to whet your wanderlust, here's a quick peek inside Castro Hotel Syros in Hermoupolis…
Owner Antigoni wants her guests to be just as impressed as they would have been in the 19th century at this refurbed mansion hotel, the endpoint of a four-year restoration journey. And impressed we were, from the exposed stone arches of the spa and cellar restaurant up to the vertiginous ceilings of the upper floors. Rooms maintain a luxurious feel throughout but range in size, from the Classic Room up to the Honeymoon Suite, with its romantic mountain-view terrace, and the large Castro Prestige Suite, with its astonishing painted ceiling and superstar ensuite. Every fresco has been carefully restored, furniture is all custom-made to fit each space, and lighting design is modern, but respectful of the Neoclassical bones of the building. Bathrooms are tucked behind decorative trellis-style doors, windows are flanked with luxurious floor-length fabric and potted plants provide some vivid splashes alongside the otherwise gentle tones. We were welcomed in like long-lost family members, and warmly urged to return…an offer we can’t refuse.