Over the past 12 months at The Greek Foundation, we’ve been trying to showcase some of the best projects related to Greek design, architecture, photography, the arts and cultural production in general. Our aim has been to bring our readers articles that will interest and inspire them, but also to connect artists to the world and bring the world closer to them, too. In this context, we have compiled a list of the most popular articles of 2019, which essentially offers an opportunity to go through some of the most impressive projects of the year, step by step.

Of course, this list would not have been possible without the support and contribution of our readers, and most important of all, the architects, photographers, designers, painters and all the other artists who shared with us the outcomes of their efforts, talent, imagination and vision. So, on behalf of the Greek Foundation, a big thank you to you all and we wish you a happy and creative New Year!

 

Ergon House: The first ever foodie hotel in the heart of Athens

Situated at the foot of the Acropolis in the historical heart of Athens, ERGON House is a seventh heaven for food enthusiasts, complete with ‘rooms above the inn’.

ERGON has been bringing people together over simple pleasures under the ERGON name since 2011. They have curated a community of artisans by selecting the finest products from Greece’s native soil, supporting small producers and time-honoured traditions. They’ve designed beautiful spaces across the world in which to share our passion for Greek cuisine and inspired an international following. As true believers in the positive power of food to transform moments and moods, they’re now doing away with the boundaries between a great meal and sweet dreams. It’s a bit like a night in the museum.

 

“Rhoeco” fine organic goods

Rhoeco is an organic herbal tea company based in Thessaloniki, Greece.

“With respect to our principles of fair trade, ethical and organic food production, we have developed a network of certified organic smallholder family farms all over Greece which supply us with raw dried herbs.

Each of our products is produced and packed by hand with honesty and integrity in our certified facilities in Thessaloniki. We are a team of professionals in the fields of organic agriculture, food production systems and ecological management.

Having the expertise, we guarantee that our products meet the global high quality standards. All of our operations, from the production practices to the packaging we choose to use, are in line with our aim to respect and protect the environment. We commit to offer a unique brewing experience, hoping to inspire a conscious, slow living.”

 

Dexamenes seaside hotel by K-Studio

The history of Dexamenes dates back to the “Era of Currants”. Since the liberation of Greece in 1830, the cultivation of currants took on impressive dimensions and currants were the main export product of the Greek Kingdom.

But when the “Currants’ Crisis” broke out in 1910 in Greece, the trade of currants collapsed and there was the need to convert the unsold stock of currants into alternative products, such as wine. It was when the first wineries and distilleries were created. Dexamenes was built literally on the sea, so that the ships could be loaded with wine via pipes that were built as a platform on the beach of Kourouta, and then set sail for the major overseas markets.

The derelict, industrial structures that characterize the site have been left relatively untouched since the 1920’s, sitting quietly on a site that literally dips its toes in the water of one of the most unspoiled and beautiful stretches of coastline in the western Peloponnese. It is a naturally ideal location for a hotel.

 

Kantharos Gatherings artist-designed wine tastings in Dexamenes Seaside Hotel

Kantharos Gatherings is an artistic concept intertwining with Dexamenes Seaside Hotel’s original story as a century-old wine factory turned into a barefoot luxury resort.

During summer 2019, emerging visual artists are invited to explore Dexamenes as residents, discover the local wineries of Ilia, and stage site-based wine tasting experiences, informed by space, hospitality, the viticulture, the role of a hotel as a community hub as well as a place of transformation. On June 29 and on July 13, resident artists Panos Profitis and Despina Charitonidi presented Spit, a carnal wine tasting performance relating to the body and oscillating between the individual and the collective.

 

Parilio – A member of Design Hotels by Interior Design Laboratorium

Interior Design Laboratorium discovers the island of Paros and presents a holistic design for Parilio, a member of Design Hotels, a project inspired by the stripped splendor of Cycladic architecture, the pure land of Paros island and the unique light of the sun.

Located among the green meadows and the island reeds, next to the famous Kolympithres beach, Parilio – “the sun’s aura” – gets its name from the bright, sunlike optical illusion, often on a luminous ring or halo, caused by sunlight passing through ice crystals in the upper atmosphere.

The overwhelming feeling that is provoked by the enchanting spectacle of sunlight falling on the Cycladic architecture volume inspired Interior Design Laboratorium to design an accommodation experience that seems to decelerate time.

 

“Το Λοκάλι / Lo-ka-lee” Artistic gift shop in Kardamili Western Mani

“How is an Athenian, who has decided to leave the city and live in a village from where she is not originated from, called? “τo λοκάλι/ lo-ka-lee (pronounced)”.

The word is known for years in Athenian slang conversations. “Ask lokalee (the local person), she knows” / “When did you get to know everybody? You’ve become a lokalee (a local person)!” How is the centre of Athens connected to a village in West Mani, Kardamili? Through a project.  The purpose of the project is to accent all the artists and Greek companies who create and promote tradition and art crafts of Greece.It started in June of 2016 and it’s about a personal brand which transforms and evolves as man crosses over into the decades of his life. Greek brands, independent artists from Greece and abroad who live and work in Greece with domestic production. “το λοκάλι / lo-ka-lee” and its friends develop, explore, discover and create unique items which have a story to tell.

 

The Caravan Bed and Breakfast in the heart of Thessaloniki

In the historical neighborhood of travelers and caravans of Thessaloniki, a modern inn opened its doors to the great adventure of Greek hospitality some time ago.

The aim was to become a living cell of hospitality in the heart of the city center. A new meeting point for the residents and travelers was born in order to become a mingling space of cultures, history, pictures and experiences between locals and visitors. The renovated neoclassical building located in 1 Rempelou str. was built in 1929 and originally was used as a small “seragio”. The seragios were inns that hosted travelers. In 1998 with a governmental decision, the building was designated as a listed property. Later, in 2001, it was leased and restored by the National Bank of Greece. In the late 2015, the building would operate as the city’s modern bed and breakfast, standing respectfully towards its history throughout centuries.All in all, everything ends up the way they started.

A modern seragio.

 

Seafront apartment in Thessaloniki by Aspasia Taka Architects

A brand-new refurbished apartment located in a seafront residential complex in Thessaloniki. The 135 m2 refurbishment responds to the needs of a family of three.

The scheme includes: living room, kitchen, visitors’ WC, master bedroom, kids room and bathroom. The existing marble flooring is the linking point of a residential setup with distinctive functions in one spatial composition. The living room holds an exceptional view of the city’s seaside. The sea view was the stimulus to flesh out the space as a family lounge room including a dining area and an office, as well. Wood paneling, large format tile paneling, metallic details and colour integration narrate a space tale.

 

Mary Katrantzou SS 2020 fashion show at the Temple of Poseidon

The Spring/Summer 2020 Mary Katrantzou show is a celebration of Greek heritage, history and culture, exceptionally shown against the breathtaking backdrop of the ancient Temple of Poseidon on Cape Sounion to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the founding of ELPIDA, the Association of Friends of Children with Cancer, established by Mrs. Marianna V. Vardinoyannis.

A show in the present, celebrating a past, for a charity which gives hope for the future for thousands of children.The collection is inspired by Greece, and it is staged in Greece, taking place in and around the Temple of Poseidon, built between 444–440 BC, whose Doric columns quarried from white marble still stand, defying the passage of Millennia. On a promontory 200 feet above the Aegean Sea, the Temple of Poseidon is one of the major monuments of the Golden Age of Athens, visited by million of people from around the world every year.

 

Monsieur Didot: A neoclassical Athens boutique hotel by Babatchas Design Studio

Monsieur Didot welcomes his friends to an astounding Athenian neoclassical house, renovated to be a boutique hotel. Built in the early 20th century, in the beating heart of Athens, Kolonaki.

‘Here is where I’ll make my home’, Monsieur Didot said. ‘What would it be worth, though, unless you share it with esteemed friends?’, a hospitable god whispered. And so he put his tools to work…Athenian culture, Greek hospitality, discreet luxury and sustainable development; it was with this set of values with which his vision was built.

Monsieur of the house, a family of French printers, a typeface and an Athenian street, all share the same name and, in a manner that can only be magical, they meet in a single unique spot: Monsieur Didot – The Residence – Athens!

 

“Pendulum” Photobook by Stefania Orfanidou


The project Pendulum is the approach of a return journey to the city of L’Aquila in central Italy.
“My relationship with this place started 12 years before I was born, when my parents met each other accidentally there. I grew up listening to their narrations about this city, I visited it with them as a child, and I molded their story in my mind. I moved there, only a few years after the earthquake, in order to work as an architect in the reconstruction of the city, but in reality it was a return to my fictitious roots. During my stay, I experienced the post-seismic terrain in a very bizarre way. The sense of familiarity I had developed in my fainted childhood memory collided with the uncanny new condition the city was in. The natural disaster caused a violent change at the body and the life of this place and led to the displacement of its citizens towards the suburbs.”

 

Small Hotel in Oia by Kapsimalis architects

The small hotel is located in the northwest part of the traditional village of Oia in Santorini, just below the borders of its old medieval castle, overlooking the sea, the island of Thirasia and the famous sunset of Santorini. The access to the building is via a main stepped path that connects the old Castle with Ammoudi, its old harbor.

The hotel complex consists of three hotel rooms on the ground floor and two ones on the first floor, each one with its independent entrance/yard and its open sitting/bedroom/dressing space and bathroom. On the top of the building a common lounge area for the hotel guests takes place. The white plasticity of the former ground floor cave houses has been preserved and supplemented by new hand-made built furniture. On the contrary, the sharp lines of the interior space of the old residence on the upper floor have been brought out and the addition of hand- made wooden deep-colored furniture and the use of wide coal-grey wooden boards as a floor are selected in terms of a plain neoclassical style quest.