Cyclades Villa is a charming holiday home on Tinos Island, a quiet retreat and an ideal place if you are seeking a holiday away from the tourist crowds.
How would you describe Onar Andros in a nutshell?
The word Onar translated from Greek means ‘dream’, which is a very accurate expression of what Onar Andros means to me. It is my dream come true, my way of enjoying life in such a beautiful country as Greece.
Onar is built as a meeting point between our guests and nature. We want to protect the natural landscape while creating a settlement of a few vacation homes in complete harmony with its environment.
What was your inspiration to create such a vacation destination?
I was born in London yet grew up in Greece. Every summer my family would go to Andros Island for vacation as we have a beautiful old family house there. Unfortunately as a teenager I was unable to appreciate the beauty of the place and found it rather boring.
However, when I was older I came back here with friends and immediately fell in love with the island. The place had an amazing beach with huge fields, waterfalls, small streaming ponds – it was just something exceptional.
When I decided to move back to Greece I knew that I had to find my own special piece of land on which to build a farm. I wanted to use natural materials to build with and only create few structures on the land. When I started looking for the right place to make my dream come true I remembered Andros at just the right time for me to go back there again.
How would you describe the atmosphere at Onar Andros?
What we try to offer is a mixture of childhood memories of how good life used to be, providing a safe, pure atmosphere like it was in Greece in the 70s & 80s.
This is why such a remote place in the Cyclades was chosen. Onar is about nature in the middle of nowhere. If you want to go out at night and enjoy the bar scene, you might want to choose another destination. Here everything is really relaxed.
What is so special about staying at Onar?
Number one is the amazing location on Andros. It’s one of the completely unspoiled regions of the Cycladic Islands, and in fact of Greece. The land is the same as it was 200 years ago because it’s a protected national park for the wetlands, rare animals and plants that live there.
I try to make my guests feel as if they are my friends staying at my home. It’s very personal and comfortable like a friend’s house.
It’s a small retreat with only a few people there at one time. Visitors are from all around the world and often keep in touch with the people they met here. Many people come back again the next year together with the friends they made here.
What are your recommendations for your guests?
If you are in an adventurous mood, you can rent a Jeep and explore the island. It’s the second biggest island in the Cycladic complex with the longest coastline. This means that there are numerous beautiful beaches. Most of theses remote beaches are accessible by dirt road or by boat.
By car you will also be able to visit the small villages on Andros, the museums, experience the fiestas that happen during different times of the year with traditional music and really nice food. You can also go scuba diving, wind surfing, trekking, and many other things.
It’s a great location for bird watchers because there are many protected areas on the island where you can see rare birds.
We can always organise treks, boating, hiking, and activities like that. Massages are offered upon request.
Looking back since you started, what has been the biggest reward?
If you believe in your dream, decide to follow it and then see it come to fruition, and the people that are sharing that dream with you are also enjoying their stay, that is the utmost satisfaction and the biggest reward.
Plus, six months out of every year I live the life of a tycoon with my own private paradise. What else could I possibly ask for?