All posts tagged: building

renovation and innovation @ philos

ATHENS is full of beautiful neoclassical buildings that have been abandoned and left to rot. Some of them belong to the state, others to families that were once rich but today cannot afford to refurbish them, or who are still wrangling on ownership rights over what they inherited from their ancestors, among other reasons. Fortunately, one of those beautiful buildings, standing on 32 Solonos St in Kolonaki, was “rescued” by a couple who have what they describe as an “obsession for old buildings”, and transformed into a space that can be visited and enjoyed by all.        The building in question is a 300 square metre, three storey house that has been registered in architectural records since circa 1937 (but is thought by some to have existed since before 1900), that once belonged to an art collector from the island of Mytilini called Evripidis Koutlidis. “It was love at first sight,” the female member of the couple, who prefer to remain anonymous to the press, told us.  After years of searching for “the one”, the pair found the …

blue skies and black olives

  IN BLUE Skies and Black Olives: A Survivor’s Tale of Housebuilding and Peacock Chasing in Greece (2009), Britain’s legendary BBC journalist / “national treasure” John Humphrys writes a  first person account along with his son Christopher about his frightful, and often hysterically funny adventure of setting up a holiday home in Greece. The father-son team write in turn, each giving the story their own individual colour and texture with their very different voices. As the true story evolves, the reader gains an insight into their individual characters and lives, the sometimes complex meanderings of their father-son rapport, as well as a fly on the wall perspective of their exciting but often intensely daunting task of getting John Humphry’s Greek home away from home standing upright. I’ve had the pleasure of knowing Christopher since the ’90s and have admired his talent as an acclaimed cellist with the Athens Camerata (Friends of Music Orchestra), the Athens Concert Hall’s multi-award winning ensemble of talented musicians. He is witty, down to earth, and often far too modest about his many …