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Full of character, Bratsera Hotel is a boutique property on the island of Hydra, in close reach of Athens. The hotel resides in a UNESCO-protected building whose history as a sponge factory goes back from the 1970s to the 1860s. The personality and history of the property have been kept alive through the careful preservation of original details and use of traditional materials.
With just 25 rooms, the hotel has a homelike, boutique feel to it, and as a guest you can expect attentive service. Each room is different because it has to fit around the fabric of the original structure but, like the rest of the hotel, maintains the historical charm of the property. Rooms feature rough-hewn, wooden ceiling beams and whitewashed walls, and are decorated with historic maps, woven rugs, and antique furnishings.
Its UNESCO protected status doesn’t by any means leave Bratsera looking dated or tired. It’s the only hotel on Hydra with a pool, which occupies the courtyard, surrounded by loungers and the hotel’s outdoor taverna.
Each of the 25 rooms differs in layout and furnishings, but they all showcase original features that recall the historic nature of the building. Many rooms retain the original vaulted, beamed ceilings, and the soft, earthy smell of cedar wood pervades some of the rooms from cedar staircases leading up to mezzanine levels or cedar floor beams. Decoration comes from antique furnishings and historic pictures of the sponge factory in its heyday. Some rooms feature a small balcony, and they all have modern bathrooms fitted in marble.
You’ll find Bratsera nestled into the winding whitewashed lanes of Hydra Town. As is the case across the island, the hotel isn’t accessible by car. Instead, porters will meet you at the port when you arrive to assist with your bags. Boutique shops and local restaurants surround the hotel, and the port is just a few minutes’ walk away.
Food and Drink
The hotel’s restaurant is a traditional-style taverna with white-cloth-covered tables and wicker chairs set up under a veranda overlooking the pool. Breakfast is served in the same location and there’s an indoor dining room for eating in cooler weather. The bar is a nautically themed affair, and it’s easy to imagine sponge divers holed up on the wood stools a century ago nursing an ouzo after a long day of work.
Facilities and Activities
The hotel lays claim to the only outdoor pool in Hydra, which provides welcome relief in the hot Greek summers. The hotel doesn’t have a spa but will arrange massages on request.
Few hotels we’ve experienced have kept their historic charm like Bratsera, and we love it for this distinctive and characterful feel. The excellent location in Hydra Town and its outdoor swimming pool are added bonuses.
Places & hotels on the map
Alternative places to stay nearby
Where possible, we like to offer a range of accommodation for each stop of your trip, chosen by our specialists as some of their favourite places to stay. To help you make the right choice, we give each property a rating based on its facilities and service, but we also look for hotels with distinct character or a location that can’t be bettered.
Experiences while staying here
The following activities are designed to give you the most authentic experiences of the area where you’re staying. We work with local guides, who use their knowledge and often a resident’s eye to show you the main sights and more out-of-the-way attractions. Our specialists can also suggest outdoor pursuits and activities, such as cooking classes, that will introduce you to the traditions of the area’s inhabitants.