Culture Trip selects five unique places to stay in Cyprus, from Mongolian yurts to an alternative literary hotel.
With its temperate climate, Mediterranean coastlines and rich history, there is something for everyone in Cyprus. This goes for accommodation, too – more and more unusual places to stay have been popping up in recent years, offering unforgettable experiences and one-of-a-kind designs. Yurts have recently become very popular on the island, and there are many other alternative places to stay on offer, too.
For a truly unique holiday, stay at Yurts in Cyprus, located in a valley in Simou village, Paphos. The three yurts (traditional tents) will make you forget you’re on a Mediterranean island, as all the rooms are built in authentic Mongolian style. They all feature hammocks and outdoor seating areas. Running since 2013, the site is open all year round and is also a bed and breakfast and a concert venue, with a focus on permaculture and sustainability. They’ve built water management systems and produce their own electricity, as well as using composting toilets. The site is suitable for all seasons: you can enjoy the yurts in the summer under the starry sky, or in the winter as you curl up in front of the fireplace. Yurts are also good places to bring pets, and there are many outdoor activities on offer, from biking and horse riding to hiking in the valley’s hills.
The newest addition to the island’s alternative accommodation list is the very colourful Euphoria Art Land. Stepping in is like entering a dreamland, as you’re surrounded by brightly coloured mosaics and lively vegetation. There are three houses, which all blend multicultural design characteristics and recycled architecture to fit the climate. The houses embody cultural features from around the world: the Earth House incorporates Ethiopian designs and natural wood, the Colour House pays tribute to Colombia’s vibrant palette and includes Mayan designs from Mexico, while the Blue House includes peacock-inspired turquoise tones and mosaics influenced by Morocco and India. Surrounding them is a lush green garden with ponds, water lilies and eucalyptus trees, which set the relaxing mood for a massage in the outdoor Balinese-style gazebo. The houses, sculptures and exotic garden with mosaic pathways were designed by local artist Anthos Myrianthous from recycled materials. The artist aims to finance underprivileged schools in the countries that inspired him. It’s an arts and culture centre as well, so you might spot cultural events and workshops taking place as well. Breakfast is only served on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays and it’s best to order it a day in advance.
Bookworms rejoice – this hotel, in a stone-built 19th century mansion, is a literary haven. As its name suggests, the Library Hotel & Wellness Resort is dedicated to the book world, with suites named after important poets, writers and thinkers. If staying in the Oscar Wilde room doesn’t get you inspired, head down to the library lounge – the hotel’s main attraction – and browse through the vast collection of books. Most of them have an emphasis on history, philosophy, culture and civilisation. Step outside into the courtyard for a panoramic view of Kalavassos village, or enjoy a mud steam bath and a massage in the Wellness Baths. All of the rooms in the Library Hotel & Wellness Resort are equipped with mosaic floors, a Jacuzzi, a private balcony and underfloor heating.
If you like camping but want something more luxurious than a yurt, Cyprus Glamping Park offers just that. Glamorous camping has taken off in Cyprus thanks to this park just outside Larnaca, which offers five cottages. Three of them are brand new as they opened in March 2018 and all include a kitchen, a bathroom, a living room and air conditioning. The park is owned by seven siblings and they have embedded elements of each of their lives in the park by naming each cottage after a city important to them. Despite the luxurious atmosphere, the park encourages visitors to connect with nature through their eco garden; guests are encouraged to pick their vegetables and cook them on the barbecue. You can also order homemade breakfasts or early dinners.
This loft is hidden behind a supermarket banner on a quiet street in the heart of Old Nicosia. Quirky, artsy and with an urban feel, this little spot gives an insight into the creative development currently taking place in the capital’s old town. Mixing a traditional layout that includes the indoor arches old Cypriot homes are known for, with a modern splash of quirky furniture, you find hints of the local old architecture with the host’s touches. Spacious and with a lot of natural light, it has all the amenities visitors may need to feel at home. This Airbnb is not only a cheaper option, it’s well-located, too – you’ll save money by walking everywhere in the old town, which is home to dozens of restaurants, bars, cafés and shops. Explore the house’s corners to discover the mosaics in the bathroom and the musical instruments that you may find lying around.