Villa Santorini I is a historic holiday rental home in a truly outstanding location near the best beaches in the Aegean sea.
How would you describe White Villa in a nutshell?
At White Villa in the village of Pyrgos Kallistis on Santorini island, industrial chic meets local materials, white walls and lots of light. This 15th-century wine factory has two fully-equipped units and a total of 8 bedrooms, 7 full baths and 2 half baths. Stepping outside you’ll find 2 large Jacuzzis, a pool, exterior dining areas and panoramic vistas of almost the whole island. This area has the best of what the island has to offer: wild beauty, picturesque beaches and fresh seafood. All that under clear blue skies, making it the perfect location for weddings or other gatherings.
What was your inspiration to restore the villa and rent it to holiday guests?
Being an architect, I was immediately intrigued by the building’s forms and spaces and in the overall vernacular architecture of the property. The spatial qualities that were there made me want to restore the property and make it into a livable home. The high vaulted ceilings with the thick masonry walls and the exterior spaces with the panoramic vistas of almost the whole island made me want to explore the possibilities of creating a habitation experience in an existing old non-housing building.
What would you describe to be the essence of the villa, your philosophy?
The villa is unique in its location, architectural restoration and embodies my view on creating spaces that respect the traditional architecture while being simple and honest in terms of their materials. The villa is a complex spatial experience that brings guests together while living in a restored wine factory of the 15th century.
How would you like your guests to remember their holiday?
It could be remembered as a warm and pleasant stay, having experienced the beautiful scenery of the island as well as this unique villa in the traditional village of Pyrgos Kallistis.
To you personally, what is so special about this villa rental?
Besides its architectural qualities that will always intrigue me and the effort that was put into completing this restoration project, I always enjoy a relaxing vacation with my family and friends in the environment that the villa creates.
Please tell us a bit about the beaches on Santorini.
The beaches in the northeast, from Monolithos to Vlychada, are the most organized. Those in the north, around Oia, are less crowded. Starting from Akrotiri and the Red Beach, the string of unique beaches which fringe the Caldera become progressively more deserted.
Vlychada has a wild beauty with its fantastically shaped white boulders, which have been sculpted into works of art by the wind. A small snack bar serves fresh juices and light meals.
Ammoudi is a picturesque cove in Oia. Traditional fishing boats remind you of simpler times. This is a place to come to eat fresh seafood.
White Beach is reached by boat from Akrotiri or the Red Beach. Fine black sand, pumice stone and grey-white pebbles in the shadow of the tall white rocks give the beach its name. The most impressive of these gigantic rocks is to be seen from the boat. It is a small beach with crystal clear water and a few sun loungers and umbrellas.
How would your typical day look like on the island?
When we visit the island, we stay at the villa and usually spend most of the day there. We usually take a walk around the winding streets of Pyrgos, go to the beach and possibly have lunch at a tavern by the beach. In the afternoon we visit Fira or Oia. In the evening we usually have dinner at the villa.
To you personally, what has been the biggest reward renting out the villa to holiday guests?
That people from around the world can enjoy our villa and have memorable holidays staying at a space that I designed and restored with great effort and time.