AN ANNUAL EDITION OF THE AMARA, ELYSIUM & MEDITERRANEAN BEACH HOTELS | A STADEMOS PUBLICATION ISSN 2547-9016
Myths & Legends
A full daytrip to
Fascinating tales behind Aphrodite, Adonis, Cinyras and Digenes Akritas
Platres Teenage Language
Acronyms, Gaming Lingo and Memes
ISSUE 7 | 2019
This is your personal copy to take home with our compliments.
Treasures' publication was created for:
Amathus Avenue, P.O. Box 56767, 3310 Limassol, Cyprus T.: +357 2544 2222, F: +357 2544 2000 email@example.com www.amarahotel.com
Queen Verenikis Street, P.O. Box 60701, 8107 Paphos, Cyprus T.: +357 2684 4444 firstname.lastname@example.org www.elysium.com.cy
Amathus Avenue, P.O. Box 56767, 3310 Limassol, Cyprus T.: +357 2555 9999 E: email@example.com www.medbeach.com
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Editorial Editor in Chief | Elina Demetriou Editors | Katerina Panayiotou, Rachel Chrysostom Copy Editing | Eleni Tsangari Art Art Director | Stavros Anastasiou Senior Designers | Avraam Aristocleous, Alexia Odysseos, Andria Andreou Photography Photographers | Christos Chatzihristou (Whiteleaf Pictures) Photo Service | Shutterstock
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Contents Navigate through and enjoy reading.
Our news 2018 was full of exciting moments.
Save the date Some of the highlights you absolutely must not miss.
Platres Take a day trip and discover the hidden treasures of Limassol’s most popular village.
AMARA After much anticipation, this is the year that the AMARA will open its doors to the public.
Teenage Language Acronyms, Gaming Lingo and Memes.
Nobu Matsuhisa The man behind the most paramount modern gastronomic trend joins forces with the AMARA.
Carob and its Syrup The Black Gold of Cyprus.
The Mediterranean Residences Beachside Living at its Finest.
Detailed Perfection Unique services and products that define an exceptional stay.
Dinner for two on the pier Luxuriously luscious private dining.
Mosaics Masterclass Bringing history to life.
Coffee with an ID Latte art to a whole new level.
Cyprus Myths and Legends Exploring fascinating tales.
Wine Villages A fun day of exploring.
Weddings on the Beach The stuff that dreams are made of…
A Child’s Play Fully renovated, state-of-the-art facilities for the little ones.
PlusSea Lifestyle Bar More than just a bar.
exceptional holiday experiences
We are also eagerly anticipating the grand opening of our new, luxury five-star masterpiece, the AMARA, which will open its doors early this year. Designed for the most discerning guests and inspired by Cyprus’ distinctive heritage, the AMARA is set to be a contemporary visual expression of cultural influences and architectural innovation. The hotel will provide a delectable culinary offering, headed by renowned, celebrity chefs, including Nobu Matsuhisa, Giorgio Locatelli, and Armyra by Papaioannou. This year and beyond, Stademos Hotels continues to invest and develop our most important asset; our people. By providing ongoing training and education, we ensure that our team will provide the best possible service to guests that will keep them returning to our properties time and time again.
Stademos Hotels is proud to have fully committed to minimizing our hotels’ environmental footprint.
Dear Guest, The past year has been an extraordinary one for Stademos Hotels, and we are proud of the many exciting new developments that have been unveiled by the hotels in our Group. In keeping with our goal of delivering exceptional holiday experiences to our hotels’ guests, we have undergone upgrades and improvements to our facilities and services. The Mediterranean Beach Hotel has revealed its new facelift and refurbishment, which encompasses a range of new and modern enhancements that aim to provide our guests with elevated comfort and well-being throughout their stay. The Elysium is also gearing up for another round of renovations to some of its accommodations, which will reinforce the property’s distinctive character and unparalleled service offering.
Stademos Hotels is also proud to have fully committed to minimizing our hotels’ environmental footprint, and measuring the impact of our operations on the local economy and the environment. This allows us to become a fair and caring participant within the hospitality industry, the natural environment, and the communities that surround us. By following our underlying philosophy of embodying the innate, heartfelt hospitality of Cyprus and showcasing the island’s many wonders, we strive to offer our guests an environment of tranquility, well-being and hospitality at its best, where our people feel proud to belong. We truly hope you enjoy your stay with us. Sincerely,
Demos Demosthenous Managing Director
exciting year Dear Guest, I am very pleased to welcome you to yet another edition of Treasures Magazine. This issue marks an exciting year ahead for the Elysium. Following the unveiling of our newly-renovated premises last year, and the positive reactions we received from our guests, the Elysium is eagerly anticipating the forthcoming renovations of our accommodation. In the coming year, we will be updating our Royal Garden Villas, our Royal Garden Studios, and our Family Cyprian Maisonettes. These upscale accommodation options will be redesigned and transformed, thus reiterating our hotel’s commitment to quality and to offering our guests the very best in terms of service and facilities.
Upscale accommodation options will be redesigned and transformed, thus reiterating our hotel’s commitment to quality.
Within this spirit, we have headed into 2019 with the same passion and determination, always with the goal of ensuring that our guests are fully satisfied with their stay at the Elysium. We aim to invest continuously in our team through training and educational programs, making sure that they remain abreast of the trends of the hospitality industry and continue to offer guests world-class service. We are also excited to announce the launch of our Treasures Rewards Scheme, which offers additional benefits to our repeat guests, in an effort to show our appreciation for their invaluable support and loyalty. This year, guests will have the pleasure to peruse and admire a series of paintings by Greek Cypriot artist, Sotos Gonios. His paintings starring the Greek character of folklore, Karagiozis, are named ‘Autumn,’ ‘Spring,’ ‘Summer’ and ‘Winter’ and are displayed in the main lobby of the Elysium. Finally, it is with great pleasure that I extend a very warm welcome to our guests at the Elysium. We are honoured to have you with us, and hope you have a memorable stay. Sincerely,
Christos Papamiltiadous General Manager
Mediterranean Beach Hotel
Dear Guest, It is with great pleasure that I welcome you to the Mediterranean Beach Hotel. This past year has truly been a landmark one for us, and we are excited to unveil all that our hotel has in store for our esteemed guests in 2019. We have recently revealed our highly-anticipated renovation project, which has transformed our hotel with new and refreshing contemporary enhancements that aim to elevate our guests’ experience even higher. We have listened carefully to our guests’ feedback, and proceeded with renovations in the front entrance, the lobby and pool bars, and floor corridors and guest rooms, all of which have received upgrades to better cater to our guests’ needs during their stay. The hotel’s façade received its own refresh as well, and you will notice the minimal grey flourishes that now adorn our balconies.
We have listened carefully to our guests’ feedback, and proceeded with a variety of renovations.
We are also proud to announce the establishment of our new Kids Club, which meets the recreational needs of children of ages 2 to 12, and offers a variety of activities for them to enjoy while their parents can sit back and relax on their holiday. In 2019 and beyond, we will continue to invest in the improvement of both our facilities and the services we provide to our valuable guests. One of the ways we do this is through the continuous development of our personnel, in recognition of the fact that it is our people who have the ability to provide you – our guests – with the kind of experience that will have you returning time and time again. We look forward to seeing you at the Mediterranean Beach Hotel, and truly hope you enjoy your stay. Sincerely,
Dear Guest, It is with great pleasure that I introduce myself as the General Manager of the new AMARA Hotel, the latest addition to the Stademos Collection, which opens its doors this year. With this new opening, 2019 is shaping up to be a very significant year for the Stademos Hotel Group. I am delighted to welcome our first guests to this new property, and help them create memories that will last a lifetime.
The AMARA will offer a unique blend of upscale accommodation and services.
The AMARA will offer a unique blend of upscale accommodation and services, and a delectable culinary offering boasting collaborations with world-class chefs, including Nobu Matsuhisa, Locatelli, and Armyra by Papaioannou, all orchestrated by our executive chef Guenael Le Berre. I cherish the tremendously warm welcome I have received from the entire Stademos team in Cyprus, and it is this genuine emotion that I wish to replicate to our guests. Every effort has been made to create a unique experience for all at the AMARA, ensuring that everyone remains satisfied and comfortable throughout their stay. After all, our guests are our mainstay, and are what keeps us vibrating on a daily basis. In this spirit, we can’t wait for you to ‘own the horizon’ at the AMARA, and join us for a truly memorable stay. I look forward to meeting each of you. Sincerely,
News Winners of a Free 3-Night Stay
At the Stademos Hotels, we care about our guests’ feedback. So much so that we encourage every guest to complete our tailored questionnaire which provides us with critical information regarding the quality of our services and facilities, and what can be done to further improve on them. Guests who complete the questionnaire enter a lucky draw, held once a year. The winners of 2018 for Elysium Hotel were the Cornish family – Holly, Dale, and Scott – who won a 3-night stay in a Deluxe bedroom. The winner for the Mediterranean Hotel was Mrs. Brigitte Haegele, a 21-time repeat guest from Germany. The prize also includes airport pick-up, breakfast, a candlelit dinner and a 30-minute treatment at the hotels’ spa.
Treasures Loyalty Reward Scheme
In an effort to show its appreciation for the invaluable support and loyalty of its esteemed guests, Stademos Hotels has launched the Treasures Rewards Scheme, offering additional benefits to repeat guests. These include discounts on food and beverage outlets, discounts on spa treatments, guaranteed upgrade for Deluxe Standard Rooms, early check-in, late checkout, and complimentary dinner for two. All guests need to do is register with the Treasures Rewards Scheme and earn points by staying at any of the Stademos Hotels and enjoying their facilities. There are four different membership levels available, determined by the number of points accumulated, starting with Base all the way up to Platinum.
Stademos Hotels has launched the Treasures Rewards Scheme, offering additional benefits to repeat guests.
News Introducing the Elysium Shuttle Bus
The Elysium Hotel is excited to introduce a dedicated shuttle bus service for its guests that will deliver them to key destinations in Paphos and act as an invaluable aid in their exploration of the vibrant culture and timeless traditions of the seaside town. Easily booked via Guest Services or Reception, and completely free of charge, the new shuttle bus service will run twice daily, making stops at the famed Paphos Harbour – the renowned site of the Medieval Castle and Archaeological Park – and the recently renovated Old Town.
Stademos Hotels is committed to minimizing its hotels’ environmental footprint.
Top Accolades for the Elysium Hotel in 2018
The Elysium Hotel was the recipient of a number of awards in 2018 in recognition of its outstanding levels of service and exceptional hotel facilities. These included the TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence, the Sovereign Luxury Travel Award for Excellence, the FIT Reisen WellBeing 2018 Award, the Fleetway Best Luxury Resort Award, the Hotels.com Most Wanted Award, and the TripAdvisor Traveller’s Choice Award. Elysium was also recognized by TripAdvisor for Five Consecutive Years of Consistently High Rating from Travellers.
Commitment to Sustainability
Stademos Hotels is committed to minimizing its hotels’ environmental footprint and measuring the impact of its operations on the local economy and the environment. As such, the Group ensures that it not only meets the necessary requirements but, where possible, exceeds them. Its conscious efforts to achieve this have been carried out throughout the years by being a fair and caring participant within the hospitality industry, in the natural environment, and the communities surrounding us. As such, Stademos Hotels has achieved a number of milestones, including: • Reducing our carbon footprint by 4.8% and our heat consumption by 8% • Reducing water consumption at the Elysium by nearly 12% • Maintaining a consistently high customer satisfaction level for two years, which in 2017 was at 97.6% Stademos Hotels is currently focusing on further developing its loyalty programs and initiatives for engaging local communities, as well as looking for new, innovative ways to move forward while preserving the natural beauty of Cyprus.
Save the Date Cyprus is known for being a cultural hotspot, with a plethora of events, festivals and fairs taking place each year that are sure to satisfy every taste and preference. So grab your diaries and jot down the dates for some of the upcoming highlights that you absolutely must not miss! By Rachel Chrysostom
By Rachel Chrysostom
Paphos Aphrodite Festival
The event of the year for opera lovers across the island, the Paphos Aphrodite Festival takes place in the coastal city every September. It hosts international opera performances for local audiences and visitors on an open-air stage beneath the stars, against the majestic backdrop of the Paphos Medieval Castle. First introduced in 1999, it has since included such performances as Verdi’s ‘La Traviata’ and ‘Aida,’ Bizet’s ‘Carmen,’ and Puccini’s ‘Turandot’ and has become one of the most popular events in Cyprus. Visit www.pafc.com.cy for more information.
International Pharos Chamber Music Festival
Acknowledged across the world as Cyprus’ most important annual classical music event, the International Pharos Chamber Music Festival is also recognised as one of Europe's pre-eminent music festivals. This week-long festival, which takes place each May, makes chamber music accessible to the general public, bringing music lovers together in its unique setting at the Gothic Hall of The Royal Manor House in Kouklia, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Visit www.pharosartsfoundation.org for more information.
Paradise Jazz Festival
Celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, the Paradise Jazz Festival is a beloved cultural event which takes place each August in Polis Chrysohous in Paphos, bringing together jazz lovers from across the island for a weekend of jamming sessions with some of the best jazz musicians from Cyprus and beyond. Visit www.paradisejazzfestival.com for more information.
Logicom Cyprus Marathon
The Logicom Cyprus Marathon takes place every March, and is the oldest Marathon in the history of Cyprus. Professional and amateur runners from across the world visit Cyprus to participate in this spectacular running event, which includes a Full Marathon, Half Marathon, 10K Road Race and 5K Fun Run. The Marathon follows a scenic route that begins at Aphrodite’s Rock, the legendary birthplace of the goddess Aphrodite, and ends at the Paphos Medieval Castle. Visit www.logicomcyprusmarathon.com for more information.
In August of each year, the village of Stroumbi in Paphos hosts a festival in honour of Dionysos, the Greek god of wine and revelry, in celebration of the island’s many fine wines. This three-day festival includes wine exhibits, traditional Cypriot song and dance, games, local arts and crafts, and fruit and flower displays. Contact 26633109 for more information.
Every August, the picturesque village of Kallepeia in Paphos comes alive for the annual Arkadia Festival. This event celebrates the beauty of the area and is a great day for the entire family. Visitors join locals to experience authentic Cypriot hospitality, including live music, folk dancing and the delicious food for which the region is famous.
Cyprus Film Days: An annual festival beloved by cinephiles across the island.
Limassol Limassol Carnival
An explosion of fun and colour, the Limassol Carnival, once described as ‘the coolest Carnival outside of Rio,’ is certainly a sight to behold. It starts 10 days before Lent, when musicians and dancers fill Limassol’s streets and squares, and parties for crazily-attired individuals are hosted across town, and culminates in the big Sunday Parade, a day before the start of Lent. The day-long event takes place all along Makarios Avenue in Limassol, with revelers dancing away all through the night. Visit www.limassolmunicipal.com.cy for more information.
Limassol Wine Festival
This annual 11-day festival is held at the end of August and beginning of September at the Limassol Municipal Gardens, attracting more than 100,000 visitors each year. The four major wineries in Cyprus as well as a number of small independent producers are all present at the Wine Festival, offering visitors a taste of their wares in unlimited amounts. Visitors can also enjoy traditional foods such as kebabs, smoked herring, ‘loukoumades’ and other delicacies, revel in local Cypriot song and dance, and participate in traditional grape-stomping. Visit www.limassolmunicipal.com.cy for more information. / Shutterstock.com
Festival, which takes place every June, aims to celebrate the close relationships between the two cultures. Russian-Cypriot Festival
For the past 12 years, the Russian Embassy in Cyprus, the Limassol Municipality and the Russian newspaper Vestnik Kipra combine forces to organize the biggest event in the EU dedicated to friendship with Russia. The Russian-Cypriot Festival, which takes place every June, aims to celebrate the close relationship between the two cultures, and includes exhibitions from more than 70 companies, as well as performances by Cypriot and Russian dancers, singers and musicians. Visit www.cyprusrussianfestival.com for more information.
Lemesia is one of the island’s biggest annual international sporting events, which takes place every October in Limassol. Though it is focused on professional athleticism, it also aims to promote sports participation to Limassol locals. The 10-day festival brings athletes from around the world to compete in a number of disciplines, such as boxing, karate, triathlon, marathon, shooting, rhythmic gymnastics, and cycling. Other exhibitions, from art to photography, are also held at the same time to showcase Cyprus’ sporting history. Contact 25884300 for more information
Cyprus Film Days
An annual festival beloved by cinephiles across the island, Cyprus Film Days is organized by the Cultural Services of the Ministry of Education and Culture together with the Rialto Theater of Limassol in April of each year. Viewers can watch screenings of internationally acclaimed European and Asian films, as well as Cypriot productions. Visit www.cyprusfilmdays.com for more information.
European Dance Festival
An annual highlight of the European arts and culture scene, the European Dance Festival takes place every May and hosts competitions among dance troupes from Cyprus and other European countries. Each troupe represents their country’s contemporary dance trends with unique choreographies and innovative stage sets. The event is organized by the Ministry of Education and Culture and the Rialto Theater, with the cooperation of the embassies of participating countries. Visit www.rialto.com.cy for more information.
Calendar of 2019 Events for: Mediterranean Beach Hotel, Limassol • 14th February: Special Valentine’s Day package, including dinner and accommodation • 9th March: Carnival Fiesta to celebrate the last night of the Limassol Carnival. Special two-day accommodation packages available • 27th April: Traditional Easter meal following Midnight Mass, which includes ‘magiritsa’ soup and other specialties • 28th April: Easter Sunday Lunch. Watch our chefs roast the traditional Ovelias-style lamb and enjoy a festive aperitif • 24th December: Christmas Eve Gala Dinner • 25th December: Christmas Day Lunch • 31st December: New Year’s Eve Gala Dinner
• 14th February: Special Valentine’s Day package, including a romantic dinner and accommodation with champagne, flowers, chocolates and rose petals • 9th March: Carnival celebration dinner and party with a DJ • 11th March: Green Monday menu with a variety of fasting options • 21st April: Catholic Easter lunch buffet • Orthodox Easter Celebrations: - 26th April: Orthodox Good Friday with Epitaph Procession in Life-Giving Source Chapel - 27th April: Orthodox Holy Saturday Mass (morning and midnight Mass) in Life-Giving Source Chapel - 28th April: Traditional Easter meal following Midnight Mass, which includes ‘magiritsa’ soup and other specialties - 28th April: Easter Sunday Lunch. Watch our chefs roast the traditional Ovelias-style lamb and enjoy a festive aperitif - October (throughout): A special truffle menu served in Ristorante Bacco to celebrate the fresh truffle season of October-November
• 16th November: Enjoy the annual Beaujolais Nouveau Gala Dinner • 24th December: Christmas Eve Gala Dinner • 25th December: Christmas Day Luncheon • 31st December: New Year’s Eve Gala Dinner featuring performances by renowned Greek and Cypriot musicians • 1st January: New Year’s Day Brunch
A special truffle menu served in Ristorante Bacco to celebrate the fresh truffle season.
Behind the Scenes A tribute to the hotels’ unsung heroes.
By Katerina Panayiotou
Mediterranean Beach Hotel Nikolav Nedelchev
e is not just an employee at the hotel; he is part of it!" Nikolav’s colleague comments, demonstrating the immense amount of respect he inspires amongst the people who work with him. Having worked at the Mediterranean Beach Hotel for a decade now, he has become the backbone of the hotel’s kitchen and restaurant equipment inventory. "The list of my duties is long but I enjoy facing the challenges that come with it. I ensure that the hotel is ready to put together any kind of event overlooking the number and general condition of the tableware and equipment before and after their use". Nikolav is an expert in using the right quantities of products to maintain the hotel’s high standards of hygiene as he reports "My finest moments during the day are when through hard work and great communication with my team I can turn and look at a spotless kitchen!" Being an avid supporter of correct organization and prioritizing, he has managed to become one of the hotel’s most trustworthy employees.
Andri Papasolomou Laundry Supervisor
The embodiment of positivity, Andri describes her duties at the hotel as a caring mother would describe her children. She is one of the oldest members of the Mediterranean Beach Hotel's team as she has been working there since 1992 and has vast experience upon which to reflect, and of which she is particularly proud. As she explains, "it is that experience that has made me the stronger person I am today". "I always place particular emphasis on the importance of team-work as my main responsibilities consist of organizing and supervising the entire linen laundry process at the hotel. I make sure that employee uniforms have been thoroughly cleaned, the restaurants are equipped with flawless linen and that guests have been provided with nothing but the cleanest of bed-linen and towels". Should a guest require personal laundry services, Andri is ready to assist with a distinctive, everlasting smile on her face. Commenting on what makes her happy about the nature of her profession she says, "Knowing that everything has been carried out efficiently and I have given this job my all, makes me feel complete!"
Elysium Marios Charalampous Chef Butcher
Marios is one of the restaurants’ most valuable assets since he is a person with great expertise when it comes to checking and confirming that the hotel is being provided with nothing but the best quality of meat and fish, ensuring that everything is in order regarding the stock for the restaurants’ menus and events. "I believe that one of the most crucial factors for culinary success is the importance placed on the high quality of the ingredients, so I perform a very thorough check and I do not hesitate to return something if it does not meet the right qualifications for high-standard cuisine". "I have been working in the hotel sector since 1979 and have been at the Elysium before its doors opened to welcome the first guests. I consider myself lucky to be working amongst such great colleagues and under such ‘democratic’ management. Every moment in the course of my work is special to me; however I find great pleasure when all our events are executed impeccably and with great accuracy".
Nicos Antoniou Head Waiter
He marks thirty-eight years in the hospitality industry and he proudly states "If I had the chance to start my career all over again, I wouldn’t change a thing". A man with pure passion for what he does, Nicos enjoys the direct contact with guests his line of work provides him with. "The utmost reward I receive is when guests communicate with me on a first-name basis and do not hesitate to share and compliment the superior service they receive at our restaurants but also when I manage to please even the most demanding guests through respect and noble manners". Nicos’ day starts at six in the morning and finds him ensuring that everything and everyone is where they are supposed to be for the smooth completion of breakfast at the Lemonia Piazza and ends with him overseeing the dinner preparations and carrying out at the Epicurian Restaurant. Throughout his daily conduct he inspires and greatly values punctuality amongst his colleagues as he believes it is a vital trait in the hotel sector.
Platres Everyone knows that Cyprus is famous for its golden beaches and azure blue waters of the Mediterranean, but did you know that the island is also home to gems like the luscious green forests of Platres? Take a day trip and discover the hidden treasures of Limassol’s most popular village. By Rachel Chrysostom
s you head up towards the towering Troodos Mountains, you will find that the air begins to cool and the sweet smell of pine becomes almost intoxicating. It is there, at approximately 5 kilometres from Troodos Square and at an altitude of 1,100 meters, that the village of Platres lays. This picturesque village is one of the oldest on the island, identified in the past by Pano (Upper) Platres and Kato (Lower) Platres, due to its amphitheatric shape that separated the village into two altitudes. Once a village inhabited mostly by shepherds and vine and produce growers, Platres has today grown to become a popular tourist destination, frequented by the likes of such esteemed celebrities as King Farouk of Egypt and the Nobel Prize-winning poet, Giorgos Seferis. Visitors to Platres can enjoy a variety of nature trails leading to some of the island’s most beautiful landscapes, as well as charming old buildings, a winery, and the highest waterfall in Cyprus.
There is a wealth of natural habitats to discover in Platres and all are carefully mapped out by nature trails of varying degrees of difficulty. The Caledonia Nature Trail is one of the most popular linear trails in the area. Approximately 3 kilometres long, this linear trail begins in Troodos Square and passes through dense forest, alongside the ‘Krios Potamos’ (‘Cold River'), past the Caledonia Waterfalls, before finishing at ‘Psilo Dentro’ (‘Tall Tree’) in Platres. The trail follows an upward route at a 400-metre altitude, and
The Pouziaris Nature Trail is a challenging route which features many uphill and downhill treks that are best suited to more experienced hikers. Discover Glorious Waterfalls
takes approximately one and a half to two hours to complete. The entire trail takes place within a dense forest where hikers will have the opportunity to discover a multitude of endemic plants, and if they’re lucky, catch sight of fauna such as foxes, hares, and a variety of bird species. Another popular trail is the Pouziaris Nature Trail, a circular trail that is the second longest in the area, which starts and ends at ‘Psilo Dentro’ in Platres. This challenging route features many uphill and downhill treks that are best suited to more experienced hikers, but are well worth it for the breathtaking panoramic views at various points on the trail, and the impressive, dense black pine forest that acts as a backdrop to this intense hike. Tip - If you wish to take a dip in the Caledonia Falls, keep in mind that the water is very cold, even in the summer months, and it falls from the rock with great force.
The village of Platres is steeped in history; in fact, it is among the 119 villages of the Limassol district that are said to have existed during the Lusignan Era (1192 – 1489 AD) and the Venetian Era (1489 – 1571 AD). One of its oldest living landmarks that still stands to this day is the Milia Bridge, a beautiful medieval bridge that is located between the villages of Platres and Pera Pedi, nestled amid dense greenery. It once served as a crossing point over the Krios Potamos river, one of the very few rivers in Cyprus that flow year-round. There is a nature trail that leads directly to the bridge, and once there, visitors will immediately feel at peace, as the only thing that can be heard is the chirping of the birds and the sound of the water flowing below. Tip - If you want to dig deeper for a little more history in the village, seek out the two Victorian fountains located in the old neighborhood, built during the rule of Queen Victoria.
There is no greater sound than the powerful gushing of mountain water, and Platres proudly boasts not one, but two famous waterfalls where visitors can cool off and, if they’re feeling brave, maybe even take a dip! The Caledonia Falls are perhaps the most beautiful in the area and reach a height of 12 metres. Though the trail to get to the falls is a beautiful one, it is also quite challenging, so those who prefer an easier stroll can opt for the shortcut along Aedonion road by the Platres Trout Farm. Once there, hikers can catch their breath and enjoy a peaceful oasis where only the sounds of the water and the chirping of the birds can be heard. Though the Caledonia Falls are the area’s most well-known, it is the Myllomeri Falls that have been crowned the highest in the country, falling at a dizzying height of 15 meters. Much like Caledonia, these falls are also surrounded by dense, fragrant pines though this cool spot is much easier to reach than Caledonia, making it perfect for the nonhikers out there. Situated in the Krios Potamos riverbed southeast of Platres, near the Panagia Phaneromeni Church, there is a one-kilometer long nature trail that leads straight to the falls.
Did you know?
The name Caledonia is derived from the sweet sounds of the swallows that frequent the area during the spring and summer months.
What’s in a name?
There are 3 versions as to the origin of the name ‘Platres.’ One version claims that it comes from the ancient Greek word of ‘platra,’ (origin: ‘pratria’) which means a woman who weaves and sells sheets used by farmers. A second version explains that the name comes from the French word ‘plâtres,’ which means white plaster. During Frankish rule, this was the name given to the monks who resided in the monastery in the area where Platres stands today, due to their all-white robes. Finally, it is also often said that the name Platres comes from the Greek Cypriot idiomatic word ‘platsa,’ meaning open area or square.
Did You Know?
Among the village’s most famous visitors are King Farouk of Egypt, Nobel Prize-winning poet Giorgos Seferis, Princess Irene of Greece, Princess Mary of England, Indira Gandhi, author Daphne du Maurier, and actor Telly Savalas. In fact, the island’s well-known Brandy Sour cocktail was first created in Platres for King Farouk, in the late 1930s.
Limoncello at Ristorante Bacco A homemade digestivo by Bacco Maître Luigi Lazzari.
By Katerina Panayiotou
imoncello is a liqueur with an intense lemon flavour, very popular throughout Italy with areas like Sorrento, the Amalfi coast and the island of Capri claiming its ancestry. Even though the exact origins of Limoncello remain shrouded in mystery, with some stories linking it to the beginning of lemon cultivation, one thing is certain; Limoncello is here to stay as it has been gaining immense popularity and has managed to conquer at least half the world’s markets. This delectable Italian liqueur has made its way to Cyprus as guests enjoying their meal at Ristorante Bacco of the Elysium, have the chance to exclusively indulge in a homemade version of it, meticulously prepared by Luigi Lazzari, Maître of the restaurant. Mr. Lazzari had been preparing the liqueur for almost a decade as one of his signature touches on barbeque nights with friends. One night, during a regular dog-walk, he stumbled across a vast field of trees bearing the distinctively large lemons of Cyprus. Since then and with a little push from his friends, he decided to prepare it for the restaurant and it has been a notable part of the Bacco experience for two years now. The Maître describes the production method as simple yet greatly demanding as the ingredients
needed are only zest from Cyprus lemons, alcohol, water and sugar but the preparation takes at least one month and it requires great devotion, resembling that of taking care of a loved one. Mr. Lazzari recommends enjoying Limoncello at the end of a meal, as it aids digestion and it is served in a chilled glass so that it could be appreciated to its fullest. This Italian après-dinner digestivo is the most suitable epilogue to seal a luscious gastronomic journey at Ristorante Bacco, perfect for any occasion. Prepared at home with the professional expertise of Maître Luigi Lazzari, it is a beverage not to be missed!
This Italian après-dinner digestivo is the most suitable epilogue to seal a luscious gastronomic journey at Ristorante Bacco, perfect for any occasion.
The Art of
Pastry By Rachel Chrysostom
Michel Littiere Pastry Chef (Mediterranean Beach Hotel)
ime flies,” says Michele Littiere, the Mediterranean Beach Hotel’s Pastry Chef about his time spent at the Hotel. It is his second time in the role of Pastry Chef, following his two-year run from 2011 to 2013. Whipping up tasty delights using the best quality ingredients is what Chef Littiere does best, and he and his team enjoy getting creative with the finest ingredients in order to produce something truly spectacular. A typical day in his kitchen is a flurry of preparation, flavour tasting, and dealing with unanticipated challenges. But, as Chef Littiere explains, “The pastry team can handle the stress. No day is a typical day for us, as we are always going with the flow of the hotel's business, making sure that we have the pastries and desserts we need for hotel functions, coffee breaks, buffets, the à la carte menus, breakfast – every hour of the day, in fact!” The team handles each of these challenges with aplomb, thanks to the chef’s strict philosophy of mise en place. That means, everyone has an assigned list of tasks in order to ensure that everything is prepared ahead of time. “I like to be ahead of the job, because you never know what may happen at the last minute,” Chef Littiere states. In fact, the chef’s favourite part of his day starts once all the bustle and commotion of the kitchen has died down, when the work is under control, and guests are sampling the very best of the Mediterranean Beach Hotel’s pastry delicacies. “The enjoyment I see on our guests’ faces,” he says with a contented smile, “That is the best satisfaction of all!”
This is the year:
AMARA After much anticipation, this is the year that the AMARA will open its doors to the public. The deluxe hotel is the newest addition to the Stademos luxury hotel chain, joining the 5-star Elysium Hotel in Paphos, and the 4-star Superior Mediterranean Beach Hotel in Limassol.
By Rachel Chrysostom
amed after the ancient Greek word amarandos, which means ‘everlasting,’ the AMARA is an ultra-deluxe, five-star sanctuary, aptly located near the ancient Kingdom of Amathus and inherently steeped in the status and prestige of this revered archaeological site.
The AMARA offers a total of 207 artfully appointed accommodation options.
spacious Junior Suites, Deluxe Suites, Duplex Roof Top Suites with a private pool and Seafront Bungalows, make up the hotels offerings. The standout AMARA suite is the epitome of ultimate indulgence, offering the options of either one or two bedrooms.
Choose Your Sanctuary
Deluxe Bedrooms Smooth modern lines, with curves and soft corners, the Deluxe Bedrooms have been conceived to evoke the gentle lapping of the sea on the shore below the room’s private balcony. The colour scheme has touches of powder blue, green, and off-white for serenity. The room’s Queen or King-sized bed has driftwoodinspired side tables and a vanity chest, a chaise longue and a state-of-the-art smart TV (which can be paired with personal electronic devices). With an overall area spanning 45 square meters, the Deluxe Bedroom offers a large ensuite marble bathroom, complete with a double washbasin, large bathtub, and standalone shower. Deluxe Bedrooms are ideal for couples or young families, and they can comfortably accommodate three persons.
Poised above a 250m bay of golden sand and azure waters, the AMARA offers a host of thoughtfully curated amenities, including a luxurious spa, indulgent restaurants spearheaded by renowned chefs, a chic rooftop bar, grand ballroom and palatial infinity pool, all of which contribute to providing guests with a stay filled with luxury and worldliness.
Deluxe Suites The AMARA’s Deluxe Suites have either one or two bedrooms. White-washed wood, elegant earthy tones, and chic soft furnishings combine to create an elegant atmosphere. The Deluxe Suites have oak parquet flooring and a large en-suite bathroom to ensure utmost comfort and total convenience. They offer Queen or Kingsized beds, a chaise longue and a state-of-theart smart TV (which can be paired with personal electronic devices), as well as automated mood lighting. These suites are the ideal choice for travelling families (as the one-bedroom suite can accommodate two adults and two children, whilst the two-bedroom suite accommodates four adults and two children), or couples who desire optimum space for rest and relaxation.
The AMARA offers a total of 207 artfully appointed accommodation options that boast unobstructed, 180 degree views of the Mediterranean Sea. These range from rooms and suites to one-bedroom residential apartments. Each room has been meticulously conceived and thoughtfully designed to offer a unique way of life. With comfort and convenience at the forefront of each guest’s stay, all types of accommodation enjoy insulated flooring that ensures peace and quiet, atmospheric automated mood lighting,
electrically motorised curtains, a wireless lighting control system and high-quality variable-speed cooling or heating. In keeping with the AMARA’s ambience, accommodation options have all been inspired by Cyprus’ intricate heritage, and steeped in multilayered cultural influences and architectural nuances expressive of the island’s pastoral past. Natural edge wood and marble vanity stations, woven benches, white shutter walls, blue, watercolour-effect features and sliding glass doors allowing for an abundance of natural light, all come together to create a simple, subtle, and sublime sanctuary. A selection of interconnecting Deluxe Bedrooms,
Junior Suites The AMARA’s Junior Suites are a haven of simple charm and modern style. Comprising one bedroom with an en-suite bathroom, a separate living and dining space, and a guest bathroom and shower room, the Junior Suites make for an elegant retreat from everyday life. Whether relaxing on the sofa suite, or on the wide balcony’s sun-loungers, or in the embrace
of the Queen or King-sized bed, guests will feel at home, surrounded by warm wooden dĂŠcor, and soft pearly hues. At 80 square meters, the Junior Suite is able to comfortably accommodate up to four guests, with a maximum occupancy of two adults and two children collectively. Roof Top Duplex Suite with Private Pool A true refuge for rest and contemplation, this exclusive, adults-only, two-level suite is the epitome of refinement. The Duplex Suite has floor-to-ceiling windows, which allows it to be fully illuminated with natural light. Its smooth lines and minimalistic decor is enriched with cream and oatmeal hues. The aim is to combine modern elegance and timeless charm. Measuring almost 110 square meters, the Roof Top Duplex Suite comes complete with a spacious en-suite bathroom with double washbasins, an indulgent bathtub and separate shower stall, and a cosy lounge area equipped with a smart TV (that may be paired with personal electronic devices). A private breathtaking swimming pool in the garden outside is the perfect treat for couples in search of exceptional luxury. The AMARA Suite The hotelâ€™s most exclusive offer, the AMARA Suite is an opulent space layered with comfort, convenience and pure indulgence. It boasts an infinity-edge private pool, with a beautifully manicured outdoor area, textured with
traditional materials such as bamboo shading. The design of the interior of the suite offers two spacious bedrooms (one enhanced with a private seating area), a generous lounge, a dining room for friends, a Jacuzzi room and a private bar. The 230 square meters of the AMARA Suite makes it a genuine home away from home for up to six guests, offering an ultimately beautiful way of life. Seafront Bungalow with Private Pool (One or Two Bedroom) The one bedroom Seafront Bungalow overlooks the sea and has all the charms of traditional Cypriot elegance, from the wide windows and abundant sunlight, to the charcoal and stone
The one bedroom Seafront Bungalow overlooks the sea and has all the charms of traditional Cypriot elegance.
Guests can choose from a variety of food cultures.
whence to explore the coast of Limassol. The two bedroom Bungalow measures 125 square meters, has an ensuite bathroom and shower room, a beautiful living area and state-of-theart amenities. Complete with a large terrace, with private pool, the Seafront Bungalow can comfortably accommodate up to two adults and three children.
Restaurants and Bars
textured details that interplay with the local materials. At a comfortable 55 square meters, this luxurious suite (complete with a private pool) accommodates two adults and two children, and is thus ideally suited for couples seeking a well-earned holiday rest, or for families who are looking for a wonderful setting from
The AMARA’s highly skilled team of chefs express their passion for food every day, using only the freshest of ingredients, fusing delicate flavours with subtle aromas. Guests can choose from a variety of food cultures, in the knowledge that regardless of the menu, a unifying thread runs throughout all of the AMARA’s restaurants: that of meticulous attention to detail and freedom of expression. Each restaurant combines lighting, music, colours and textures to express its own singular sense of place. Superb service is to be expected, because service is the founding ethos of this hotel.
Choose your culinary journey Matsuhisa Limassol World-renowned Chef Nobu Matsuhisa and the AMARA join forces to set new standards for Cyprus’ culinary offering, with the introduction of Matsuhisa Limassol. The space, designed by David Rockwell, includes one-off signature pieces, combining rich hues and soft lighting to create an intimate and elegant atmosphere. Textures and materials have been chosen to reflect Nobu's roots, while also celebrating the Limassol beachfront context. The overall design is sensitive, artful and as thought-provoking as the cuisine itself. The extensive and original menu at Matsuhisa Limassol offers a unique Japanese-Peruvian culinary experience with a bespoke array of Nobu's legendary signature dishes including: Salmon Karashi Su Miso, Black Cod with Miso, White Fish Dry Miso, Rock Shrimp Tempura, New Style Sashimi and Nobu Sushi and Sashimi. An extensive menu of sake and exotic cocktails, designed to blend perfectly with Nobu's culinary journey, complements all the dishes.
Locatelli will be making Ristorante Locatelli Ristorante Locatelli is a revered London-based, Michelin-starred restaurant headed by celebrity chef Giorgio Locatelli. Locatelli will be making its debut in Cyprus with a menu embodying Italy’s spirit of conviviality, whereby the art of cooking is defined as the enjoyment of quality food in good company. From homemade pastas and wood-fired oven pizzas to delectable desserts, guests will delight in dining al fresco, toasting to the charms of Italian tradition.
At Locanda Locatelli in London following the signing of the contract. Pictured from left: Demos Demosthenous, Managing Director, Stademos Hotels PLC | Giorgio Locatelli, Owner, Locanda Locatelli | Rino Bono, Executive Chef | Floros Lyssiotis, Financial Controller, Stademos Hotels PLC
Armyra By Papaioannou The AMARA’s open-air fish tavern is a charming space, with a soundtrack of the sound of the waves gently lapping the shore. The AMARA welcomes the vision and experience of Chef George Papaioannou and his brainchild, Armyra – a dedicated seafood restaurant that first opened its doors in Greece offering the freshest fish, seafood and many more culinary delights prepared with the region’s purest ingredients.
From its unique vantage point poised above the
its debut in Cyprus with a menu embodying Italy’s spirit of conviviality azure waters of the Mediterranean, the AMARA is synonymous with leisure and the pursuit of pleasure. Guests can enjoy a plethora of thoughtfully curated facilities and amenities, aimed at satisfying even the most discerning of holidaymakers. Choose Your Holiday Activities Swimming Pools Sparkling at the heart of the Hotel is the resplendent infinity swimming pool. Sleek and shimmering, with clean lines and accents of greenery from the surrounding gardens, the division between pool and lounge area dissipates, as guests find themselves in an opulent oasis of sheer repose. Moreover, a saltwater pool is available to guests: many prefer saltwater pools as gentle alternatives to traditional pools.
Treatment suites offer stunning views, either of ancient archaeological ruins or the azure coastline, and are available for couples as well as individual bookings.
Spa Guests seeking a sanctuary to rejuvenate body, mind and soul should look no further than the AMARA Wellness Spa, which offers a host of body treatments performed by highly experienced wellness professionals, making use of the elite cosmetic line Carita. Designed to be a holistic haven, the Spa includes a health juice café, open beauty bar, extensive heat and wet bathing facilities, including Roman Baths and Banya, all available for en-suite booking. Treatment suites offer stunning views, either of ancient archaeological ruins or the azure coastline, and are available for couples as well as individual bookings. A hairdressing salon and barbershop, nail bar, indoor pool with sauna, outdoor serviced pool and extensive fitness facilities complete the wellness ensemble. A qualified nutritionist and personal trainer are on hand to support every guest’s personalized journey to well-being.
The AMARA values its young guests as much as their parents, and offers little ones an abundance of entertainment opportunities in the dedicated children’s club, allowing parents a little breather and some time to themselves. Catering to all ages – from toddlers to teens - younger guests will be guided by fully qualified professionals through a series of
both educational and recreational games and activities, creating a multitude of cherished childhood memories and lifelong friendships.
For the traveler seeking some shopping therapy while on vacation, the AMARA is home to a unique selection of boutique outlets. From a designer clothing store brimming with inspired pieces, perfect for both day and night, to a lavish jewellery boutique where guests can find treasured gifts for themselves or their loved ones, and a flower shop bursting with fragrant floral creations for special occasions, guests will be able to find everything their heart desires right at their fingertips. A kiosk is also located in the lower lobby to satisfy guests’ daily necessities.
Language Acronyms, Gaming Lingo and Memes â€“ What are they talking about? By Katerina Panayiotou
or several decades now, teenagers have been the inventors and users of their own unique and vibrant vocabulary. They either masterfully coin new words or they give a whole new meaning to already existing ones. The origins, reasons or appropriate timeframe these words and expressions are used may not be fully comprehensible to us, but they are definitely attention-worthy and... who knows? They might hold the key to a better communication with the adolescents in our lives! The unique usage of language by teens is not a recent phenomenon and it is not only exclusive to English, but as a lingua franca, English is more widely used globally and so is the teen "version" of it. Taking a trip down teen-language lane who can forget the 80s where teens would use gnarly and gag me with a spoon, or the 90s which were da bomb and if you didn't like it, you could simply
talk to the hand? Moving to the early 2000s, teens would remind us that YOLO and then proceed to LOL with their BFF. Nowadays, young people still use their vivid imagination to mold and craft words into their unique language, but when and how they use it has given rise to whole new levels of communication. In the early stages of texting, one could only use 160 characters to express what they wanted to say, thus the need arose to use acronyms, abbreviations formed from the initial letters of other words, pronounced as one. These forms are still widely used by teens in their everyday life!
Nowadays, young people are still using their vivid imagination to mold and craft words into their unique language.
Below are some of the most popular acronyms in 2018: ROFL - Rolling On Floor Laughing BTW - By The Way LMK - Let Me Know ILY - I Love You BAE - Before Anyone Else - used as a term of endearment like ‘babe’ SMH - Shaking My Head - used when something is obvious or to express disappointment MFW - My Face When A very important source of inspiration for these young language crafters is one of their favourite leisure time activities: gaming! Either on their personal computers or on one of their gaming consoles, mobile phones
or tablets, teens communicate while playing. Thus, they have managed to develop a whole new lexical inventory of words and phrases. These are used while playing but have also been adopted outside of the gaming world. Some examples of common gaming terms are: n00b - Short for newbie, refers to new players who lack skills or are clueless about the game. FTW - For The Win! It is used to convey intense enthusiasm. Pwned - A modification of “owned”, used to refer to those times when someone has dominated or been dominated during a game. Lag - This describes a technical problem when your real-life actions take too long to be translated to the actions on screen preventing you from playing. May cause severe irritation! GL and GG - Good Luck and Good Game
Another contemporary trend has been the appearance of memes (pronounced MEEMs). These are often images, GIFs or videos containing words or phrases of a sarcastic or humorous nature found online. They include forms of wordplay such us puns and intentional misuse of traditional grammar and spelling. They are so popular amongst young people that they have many subcategories and kinds. During recent years several meme superstars have occurred who have gained an impressive online following such as Grumpy Cat, the Success Kid, Bad Luck Brian and many more. Comprehensible or not, communication amongst teenagers is manifested in new forms and it is expressed through different media and platforms. Through the years, it evolves, and it carries the social stigma of its era helping us decipher the teen vibes of our time!
Matsuhisa The man behind the most paramount modern gastronomic trend joins forces with the AMARA, putting Limassol on the map of culinary excellence.
By Katerina Panayiotou
Mr Matsuhisa’s culinary empire continues to expand, having finally reached the island of Cyprus and finding its new home within the luxurious premises of AMARA.
t was 1987 in sun-kissed Beverly Hills when world-famous sushi chef Nobuyuki ‘Nobu’ Matsuhisa opened his first namesake restaurant, Matsuhisa Beverly Hills, with a distinctive Peruvian spin on traditional Japanese cuisine, serving his delectable food within a simple yet sleek space. As time went by, his eclectic array of inspired gastronomic creations has been luring millions of hungry diners, including many celebrities.
burning down a short time after its opening. But that did not stop him. He kept on striving, moved to Los Angeles and ten years later he opened the first Matsuhisa in Beverly Hills.
Now, thirty-two years later and with a sum of more than forty restaurants, across all five continents, Mr Matsuhisa’s culinary empire continues to expand, having finally reached the island of Cyprus finding its new home within the luxurious premises of AMARA. The chef shared a bit of his wisdom with us just before the opening of Matsuhisa Limassol with his modest and serene nature admittedly leaving a lasting impression.
Over three decades later, that restaurant remains the forerunner that sparked the opening of more than thirty Nobu restaurants along with numerous boutique Nobu hotels, in partnership, amongst others, with Hollywood actor Robert De Niro. His Matsuhisa restaurant legacy will now mark ten restaurants spread around the globe with Matsuhisa Limassol and the pop-up Matsuhisa Cala Di Volpe in Sardinia as its newest members.
Culinary Roots and Twists
“Nobu and Matsuhisa are not just restaurants they are parts of who I am, they are my children, that is the reason they are named after me. I have been blessed with two families, my wife and children who give me the strength to carry on and my restaurants which allow me to express myself, explore and dream.” Both Matsuhisa and Nobu have the same menu and ideology of Japanese cuisine complemented by Latin American touches but Matsuhisa restaurants are of a more intimate and upscale nature.
Mr Matsuhisa has been masterfully mixing different ingredients while maintaining utmost respect for the roots of Japanese cuisine for more than forty years now and though extremely humble himself, it is safe to say that he is the pioneer of this new-age, flavourblending trend. “My cooking is not what people call ‘fusion’, it is Nobu Style which means Japanese cuisine with some Peruvian influence and ingredients like jalapeño peppers and ceviche,” he clarifies. Every bit of the menu was derived from his experiences and his passion for creation and comes straight from his heart – kokoro in Japanese.
After passing through Argentina, the next stop of his global gastronomic exploration was Alaska where he faced the misfortune of his restaurant
Matsuhisa restaurants are special because as the chef explains, like his cooking, they came from his heart; starting from a small restaurant
Going through the extensive and original menu at Matsuhisa Limassol, we notice a bespoke selection of the legendary signature dishes
The Japanese-born chef set off his journey to discover the flavours of the world by learning the art of sushi-making. When he was twentytwo, one of his customers in Tokyo invited him to open a restaurant in Peru and so he did. “Having never left Japan, it was my dream to travel the world and when I arrived in Lima and tasted the food there, I came to the realization that different cultures meant different foods and that inspired me to experiment with the ingredients I used in my cooking.”
he opened with his wife, they are the result of experimenting with different ideas and of the constant dialogue with the people who choose to dine there.
The Making of a ‘Kokoro’ Driven Menu
Taste Mr Demosthenous and Mr Matsuhisa in London signing the contract for Matsuhisa Limassol, bringing our town closer to culinary excellence!
including: Salmon Karashi Su Miso, Black Cod with Miso, New Style Sashimi and Nobu Sushi and Sashimi. However, the chef insists that his food is to be shared that is why he suggests the Omakase which is a multi-course tasting menu allowing the patrons to have a full Matsuhisa experience. A constant dialogue between cold and hot dishes and a distinctive intensity in flavour are the protagonists in the dining play of the restaurant. The presentation of the dishes remains meticulously calculated so that it is simple, straight-forward and every single element individually contributes to the value of the dish. A broad menu of sake and cocktails has been designed to complement all the dishes. “When we open a new restaurant, while some of the specialty ingredients need to be imported, the chefs and I scavenge the local market for fresh herbs, vegetables, meat and fish. In the Mediterranean region there are many local ingredients I like to use in my cooking and I particularly enjoy using olive oil.” The chef occasionally creates some special dishes inspired by local vibes!
More than Food
Extraordinary food which captures the very soul of the chef is a great foundation for a restaurant but Matsuhisa is not only about the food. Its people are a team who respect themselves and each other and
that is reflected in the way they treat their guests. The idea of sharing is imperative and expressed in the way the chefs welcome diners in unison from behind their counters, all the way to the general design of the menu. “Food should bring people together, the whole process of choosing what to order, sharing it with someone, talking about it, laughing and creating memories, that ambience and priceless vibe of all these things happening at the same time is what Matsuhisa is about”, the chef notes.
“I truly enjoy the Mediterranean temperament of the people in this region and this is one of the reasons we chose Limassol as the latest Matsuhisa location”, Mr Matsuhisa says. When the chef and his business partner, Mr Ioannidis, met Mr Demosthenous for the AMARA they quickly saw eye to eye as the hotel’s classic elegance perfectly complements the Matsuhisa concept. The restaurant’s space was designed by David Rockwell and it is gemmed with one-off signature pieces while rich hues and soft lighting set up a unique, intimate and sleek atmosphere. Matsuhisa's roots combined with the natural grandeur of Limassol’s beachfront are celebrated in the careful selection of textures and materials. The overall design is subtle, artful and as inspiring as the culinary journey the diners are set to embark on there.
The overall design of Matsuhisa Limassol is subtle, artful and as inspiring as the culinary journey the diners are set to embark on there.
never stop turning Christiana Lambrou Executive Secretary (Mediterranean Beach Hotel) By Rachel Chrysostom
ehind the scenes of every smoothrunning operation, there is always one person who makes sure that the wheels never stop turning. At the Mediterranean Beach Hotel, this person is Executive Secretary Christiana Lambrou. As the right-hand person of the General Manager, there is very little that Christiana doesn’t do; from handling and distributing incoming correspondence and answering incoming calls for all departments, to updating the filing system and making sure all meetings and sales trips take place without a hitch. Christiana received a Hotel & Catering Management Diploma, and boasts a wealth of experience in hospitality, frequently attending seminars and conferences relating to the industry to ensure she remains abreast of all the current hospitality trends. Of course, the best experience comes from everyday interaction with the hotel’s various departments and the guests themselves, and this is what she considers to be her favourite part of her job. “I love interacting with people on a daily basis. Anticipating their needs, finding solutions to make sure that their holidays are memorable
and everything that they hoped; it all feels like putting together a big puzzle. The best part is that my work is never repetitive; you never know what new challenge each day will bring, and this is always exciting.” Christiana is a strong advocate of the importance of teamwork, and she lives by her motto that TEAM stands for Together Everyone Achieves More. Nowhere is this more apparent than at the Mediterranean Beach Hotel, where everyone comes together to ensure that their guests’ every need is met. After all, as Christiana points out, guests at the Mediterranean Beach Hotel are treated like family, and this is what keeps them coming back again and again.
The best part is that my work is never repetitive.
and its Syrup The Black Gold of Cyprus
By Katerina Panayiotou
Carob trees are native to the Mediterranean region, exceptionally precious to the island and highly cherished by superfood enthusiasts.
The cultivation of carob trees is believed to be over four thousand years old and carob has been used as a food and fuel resource, particularly during times of drought, by the Greeks, Egyptians and Romans. There is also a popular legend claiming that St John the Baptist fed on raw carob pods during his ascetic life in the desert. During the twentieth century in Cyprus, carobs were one of the island’s main agricultural exports and a significant source of income for people in many villages. As a result, carobs and their products were often referred to as the Black Gold of Cyprus. Carobs are highly versatile and are used to produce several edible goods including carob powder, syrup and flour. They now enjoy a resurgence in popularity due to their classification as superfood as they contain antioxidants and are greatly beneficial in health-related issues. Carob syrup or Charoupomelo is no exception as it is rich in natural fibers and an excellent source of vitamins and minerals.
ravelling through Cyprus, regardless of the destination, you are bound to come across some proud, wide, bush-like trees. These are the carob trees, native to the Mediterranean region, exceptionally precious to the island and highly cherished by superfood enthusiasts. These trees generously grant us their fruit, from which the renowned carob syrup is produced, and bear great stories and legends amongst their broad leaves and brownish pod-shaped fruit.
Their scientific name, Ceratonia siliqua, is derived from the Ancient Greek word keras ‘horn’ which led to kerátion ‘fruit of the carob tree’. The carat and karat measuring units, used for gemstones such as diamonds and gold respectively, come from kerátion and allude to the ancient practice of weighing them against carob seeds. In Roman times, a pure gold coin weighed the equivalent of twenty-four carob seeds thus 24-karat gold denotes 100% gold purity.
This delicious, all-natural syrup is traditionally made by the thorough grinding of carob pods and their boiling in hot water. The strained, extracted syrup is then boiled for hours with meticulous, constant stirring in large bronze cauldrons until most of the water is evaporated. This process results in the thick, distinctively sweet carob syrup which is stored in retail-sized bottles after cooling down. Farmers, in older times, would dissolve it in cold water before heading to work as a natural energy drink. Nowadays, carob syrup is used to drizzle over yoghurt or other snacks to give them that sweet but healthy twist or as a sweetener in baked goods such as cakes, biscuits and many more. Added to the long list of its uses are marinades, salad dressings and sauces to replace sugar or honey. In Cyprus, it is the main ingredient of the traditional carob toffee called Pastelli. Carob has a vast presence on the island which is undoubtedly noteworthy with its syrup being one of the latest trends in healthy eating. So, next time you have a craving for something sweet, why not enrich your dessert with a generous drizzle of thick, delicious carob syrup?
The Mediterranean Residences:
Beachside Living at its Finest The Stademos Hotels has embarked upon another ambitious project, set to be unveiled at the end of 2019. The 14-storey luxury Mediterranean Residential Tower will feature nine 3-bedroom, four 2-bedroom and one 1-bedroom apartments, as well as a duplex with its own private pool, and reflect the gorgeous aesthetic of the iconic Mediterranean coastline right below it.
By Rachel Chrysostom
ky-high views of the Limassol seafront
Seemingly emerging from the azure waters of the Limassol seafront, the Mediterranean Residential Tower is an eye-catching high-rise building adjacent to the Mediterranean Beach Hotel, offering sweeping views of the coast and sprawling cityscape. Designed by Alexandros N. Tombazis and Associates Architects S.A., this 14-floor reinforced concrete structure features a thoroughly modern geometric faรงade clad in timber and stone. Its close proximity to the Hotel and its facilities allow residents to enjoy the exclusivity of beachfront living with the convenience of having all necessities within reach.
Luxury beachfront living
The 14 floors of the Mediterranean Beach Residence hold a total of 15 apartments of varying sizes, all carefully arranged to ensure generous proportions and utmost privacy. The top floor boasts its own penthouse duplex, with a private rooftop pool. Each apartment promises uninterrupted views of the coastline, thanks to the deep balconies that provide ample space for residents to create their own beachside oasis. Every apartment includes an en-suite master bedroom, guest washroom, and underground parking and storage space.
A home away from home
Upon entering the building, guests and residents alike will be greeted by an elegant, well-lit lobby and comfortable seating area. Apartments are carefully constructed and fitted with high-quality materials that are designed with aesthetic functionality and with residentsâ€™ comfort and convenience in mind. Marble floors gleam, and comfortable open plan living areas extend into ample kitchens fitted with granite countertops and high-end appliances, offering plenty of space to satisfy even the most demanding of chefs. Large floor-to-ceiling windows offer up a steady view of the Limassol coastline, and open up onto generous balconies where one can enjoy the refreshing sea breeze. The Mediterranean Beach Residences are all fully furnished, featuring contemporary dĂŠcor that allows for ultimate comfort without sacrificing style. Residents can also rest easy with the knowledge that a secure, gated entrance adds an extra layer of safety and security to the premises.
A wealth of amenities
Residents of the Mediterranean Tower Residence can enjoy full access to the facilities of the Mediterranean Beach Hotel and enjoy luxury living at its finest. Whether relaxing and
The 14 floors of the Mediterranean Beach Residence hold a total of 15 apartments of varying sizes.
unwinding at the hotel pools, or working up a sweat at the state-of-the-art gym, sauna and tennis courts, residents will find themselves truly spoilt for choice. Apartment owners will also have the option of renting out their apartments to the hotel for use as hotel suites. For more information on purchasing an apartment in the Mediterranean Tower Residence, prospective buyers may contact Dimitris Tontinidis, Sales Representative at 25 821010.
Perfection Unique services and products that define an exceptional stay. By Katerina Panayiotou
will be available as many guests prefer saltwater to traditional pools as a more natural alternative. Absolute relaxation and convenience form the base on which the AMARA services team has built its operation plan so as to be able to mark a seamless stay for each of their guests. The highlights of those services are twenty-four hour room service, the availability of foreign exchange, limousine transfer, golf bookings, and luggage weighing services. Interpreter and international courier services are included with the access to the carefully designed Business Centre. A helipad is also to be included in the hotelâ€™s vast amenities list.
uxury hotels, by definition, are meant to provide their guests with outstanding services and a wide selection of items which make their stay memorable and exceedingly personal. Stademos Hotels pays particular attention to detail as the AMARA, Elysium and Mediterranean offer their guests uniquely and meticulously considered services and products set to elevate their stay to one of the utmost comfort and convenience and ensure that they satisfy even the most arduous need ever to occur.
The lavishly deluxe AMARA is destined to open a whole new dimension in the field of luxury stay in Limassol. Amongst many others, the hotel offers delightful comforts including a signature spa, an ĂŠlite rooftop bar with awe-inspiring views and a magnificent infinity-edge pool. Amidst its vast dining options, Matsuhisa Limassol will be introduced as world-renowned Chef Nobu Matsuhisa and the AMARA, embark on setting new standards in the culinary life of Cyprus. Taking a closer look at what the AMARA has to
offer, comes to bolster its absolute grandeur as all two hundred and seven guest-rooms offer a clear 180Â° panoramic view of the Mediterranean Sea as well as atmospheric, automated mood lighting with a wireless control system and electrically motorised curtains. An additional saltwater pool
The Elysium and an exquisite, memorable and highly contenting stay are no strangers! The hotel is established in providing highstandard services and products drawing on years of ceaseless strive to please its guests. All the rooms are furnished with automated inroom mood lighting and night light, a double wardrobe with an illuminated hanging rail and an electronic ‘Do not disturb’ function. For the guests’ absolute relaxation and wellbeing, a pillow menu is available in all rooms enabling them to personalize their sleeping regime along with thick bathrobes of the finest quality and the renowned Molton Brown toiletries. Apart from its high-end Spa facilities, the magnificent outdoor and the serene, heated indoor pools, the sunken Royal Pool is a central feature solely available to adults to ensure absolute tranquility.
During the summer season, guests around the pool are offered cold face-towels and there is a sunglasses-cleaning service. Complimentary fitness classes are available every morning in addition to Yoga classes with a certified instructor twice a week. The already luscious breakfast at the hotel has been upgraded with a fresh juice station offering freshly made fruit and vegetable juices with ingredients of the guests’ choice. The Elysium also offers its guests the chance to take part in excursions like a Mosaic Master Class through which they visit the studio of the talented artist Sharen Taylor and are given the chance to partake in Mosaic-art classes and a wine tour through traditional wine-villages whence guests are escorted by the hotel’s
For the guests’ absolute relaxation and wellbeing, a pillow menu is available in all rooms of the Elysium enabling Head Sommelier while being provided with the opportunity to sample local wines and delicacies. A complimentary shuttle bus service also runs with two stops along its way to central locations in Paphos.
them to personalize their sleeping regime. 53
Mediterranean Beach hotel
Though it is a 4-star hotel, the Mediterranean Beach Hotel exudes the essence of a 5-star one, as it never ceases to evolve towards perfection. All of its deluxe rooms are spacious and offer a wide variety of amenities along with the spectacular view of the Mediterranean Sea. Complimentary high-speed Wi-Fi internet connection and brand new USB outlets enable technology inclined guests to always stay connected. In addition to the outstanding multi-level outdoor swimming pool and the tranquil, heated indoor swimming pool, the beach in front of the hotel’s grounds is awarded with a Blue Flag. This is the ultimate certification for the quality and cleanliness of its water granting its guests the exceptional opportunity to experience swimming in the Mediterranean Sea at its best. The Health Club at the hotel offers a Pilates and Aerobics Studio and a high-tech gym furnished with the latest cardiovascular and strengthtraining equipment, with the option of a certified trainer on site devising personalized fitness schedules. A unique leisure activity to try at the Mediterranean is scuba diving as a PADI 5 Star Instructor Development Centre has a dedicated Dive Centre located inside the grounds of the hotel ideal for beginner or advanced divers.
Special emphasis is placed on the personnel’s training as they take part in local and international seminars evoking constant knowledge.
However, the most important asset of the hotel is its people, portrayed in the way they are able to perform as a unit, providing guests with exemplary service. Special emphasis is placed on the personnel’s training as they take part in local and international seminars evoking constant knowledge. This is reflected in their effort to turn the hotel to a ‘home away from home’ always practising its motto ‘where friendship begins’.
You are provided with your very own private butler that tends to your every need.
Dinner for two
on the pier Luxuriously luscious private dining. By Katerina Panayiotou
he Elysium has set the bar for luxury dining sky-high, being the only 5-star resort in Cyprus to offer couples the chance to experience one of the most memorable nights of their lives. A unique, tailor-made to match the breathtaking natural beauty, intimate setting for two, on the Elysium’s private pier accompanied by the hotel’s culinary excellence, marks the ideal venue for any special occasion you may wish to celebrate with that special someone. Imagine a pier idyllically located above the Mediterranean Sea with the sounds of the waves below lapping onto the beach and the sky painted in the transcendent colours of the sunset, providing the perfect backdrop for your
date. You and your loved one enjoy a delectable, candle-lit, five-course meal while clinking your champagne-filled glasses, toasting to a happily joint future. This quintessentially romantic dinner takes place in a beautiful marquee with the option of closing its curtains for your ultimate privacy. You are provided with your very own private butler that tends to your every need. Create and customize this experience as the night is exclusively yours and you are the one to add the final touches. You may customize the menu as there is a vast selection to choose from ranging from mouthwatering sushi to juicy steaks, always in accordance with the hotel restaurants’ high standards. The default music is subtle in nature; however you may prefer to be serenaded by your own playlist or even a private musician. This unique and absolutely private service may be booked no later than twenty-four hours in advance and is subject to availability. It has already been favoured by many, as you are bound to create unforgettable memories when either ‘popping the question’, celebrating an anniversary or a birthday, or just simply turning a date into an extraordinary one.
Dedication Employees who define devotion and determination through years of hard work.
By Katerina Panayiotou
Mediterranean Beach Hotel Andys Christodoulou Head Waiter
ndys Christodoulou is the Head Waiter at the Mediterranean Beach Hotel as he is the person in charge of the waiting personnel and the smooth carrying out of breakfast and lunch. His career dawned in 1981 and he has built his exceptional skills working for several 5-star hotels in Sydney, Australia and in Cyprus. He is a person of great inner strength as well as sensitivity as he cultivates a particular passion for creating Mosaic art in his free time. Being part of the Mediterranean team for twelve years now, he places extra emphasis on the continuous betterment of each work-day through positivity while being genuine is one of the main values he abides by and instills into his colleagues daily. "The hotelâ€™s motto Where friendship beginsâ€Ś is something that represents me and my team, as our goal is to achieve ultimate customer satisfaction and create a long lasting relationship with them. I take particular pride in seeing familiar faces return to the hotel over the course of time.
My day starts at 7 am with the most demanding yet rewarding part of it; breakfast. I insist on doing everything to accommodate all the clientsâ€™ individual needs as no demand or request is to be ignored or overlooked. I believe that paying attention to detail and making sure that you have a well-functioning team who perform with great respect towards each other as well as towards the client, is the key to maintaining high levels of service. I genuinely love what I do and that has made me feel professionally and personally content but also drives me to never think twice when it comes to going the extra mile. I constantly try to use my experience to inspire the same love I have for the job in others too".
His career dawned in 1981 and he has built his exceptional skills working for a several 5-star hotels in Sydney, Australia as well as in Cyprus.
Every aspect of my job is equally enjoyable to me as I love making a hot cup of aromatic coffee as much as preparing the funkiest cocktail.
Elysium Nelli Karakatcheva Bartender (Elysium) Nelli’s relationship with the Elysium was that of love at first sight! After completing her studies in Business and Finance and having worked in Dubai for several years, she came to Cyprus and knew she wanted to work at the Elysium as soon as she had laid eyes on it! She describes it as ‘a resort designed to meet the highest international standards’. "I have been working for the Elysium since 2004 and I have enjoyed every moment of it. I currently work as a bartender during the day shift so my day starts quite early. I open up the bar and perform the appropriate checks to see if everything is in order. Then I start preparing the orders for the guests, creating beverages that fit everyone’s needs. Every aspect of my job is equally enjoyable to me as I love making a hot cup of aromatic coffee as much as preparing the funkiest cocktail. For me, working behind the bar is not just another job… It is part of who I am, it is a way of expression and something that makes me feel absolutely content!
The people who work with me, my team, are the best and I believe that it is very important to be and to feel part of a well-functioning group. One of the moments down my career path I take pride in is when I train new employees to enter the team and they are able to reach the high levels of the rest of the members quite fast. Through the course of briefing, I like to ensure
that everyone is in the know constantly. The best thing about this line of work is definitely the close contact we have with the guests. When we see people returning to the hotel year after year, looking for us and we witness the growth of their families, the emotions that are awakened are priceless."
Mosaics Masterclass: Bringing history to life
The Paphos Mosaics are considered to be among the finest in the eastern Mediterranean, and form part of the Archaeological Park of Kato Paphos, itself a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1980. Through the Mosaics Masterclass, the Elysium is offering guests the opportunity to explore this impressively meticulous craft, under the guidance of highly experienced and talented mosaic artist, Sharen Taylor. By Rachel Chrysostom
Artist and Educator
ancashire-born artist Sharen Taylor attended Exeter College of Art and Design, where she received her BA (Hons) in Fine Art. Her real passion grew a few years later, however, when she trained in archaeological conservation at The Institute of Archaeology, London University and began working in the department of ceramics, glass and mosaics at The British Museum, London. We spoke to her about her love for this unique method of creating art, and how she ended up teaching the Mosaics Masterclass in Cyprus. How did your interest in mosaics begin, and what made you decide to cultivate this aspect of your art? At the British Museum, I was involved in the cleaning and documentation prior to the lifting of the Hinton St. Mary Mosaic, a large, almost complete Roman mosaic discovered at Hinton St. Mary in Dorset, England. After that, I spent three years as the coordinator between The John Paul Getty Institute and The Department of Antiquities, Cyprus for 3 major international courses. These courses focused on the World Heritage Site of Kato Paphos, which is rich in ancient mosaics. I grew fascinated by the in-site conservation methods, techniques of lifting and how these came together to create an art form. This inspired me to continue the cultural heritage of mosaic making through the use of modern materials. What inspired your move to Cyprus? During my time at the British Museum, I spent three months at an archaeological excavation in Cyprus alongside Dr. Eddie Peltenberg from the University of Edinburgh. We worked on conserving and restoring chalcolithic pottery for an exhibition in the local archaeological museum of Paphos and Nicosia. The Director of Antiquities at the time offered me a work permit to begin freelance archaeological conservation work for foreign missions as well as small museums and private collectors in Cyprus, and I have been doing this ever since. Over the years, I have worked with medieval pottery restoration and historical metal work at the Leventis Museum, and on the historical wall paintings in the Casino of Kritou Terra. This was technically the first casino to operate in Cyprus, from 1878 until approximately the start of the 20th century.
Elysium is offering guests the opportunity to explore the impressively meticulous craft of mosaic making. What do you love most about creating art? I love spending time in my studio, cutting, netting, grouting, the entire process that is involved in creating a beautiful piece of mosaic art. But most rewarding is witnessing the pleasure my designs bringing to people who appreciate and invest in them. Sharen utilizes her vast experience and skills to create beautiful designs of utmost quality. Her well-equipped workshop allows her to design and complete her own work as well as commissions, and her enthusiasm for her work is infectious, shining through in each of her finished pieces. Every art piece Sharen creates is a true collectable. Through her Mosaics Masterclass, Sharen helps students create their very own pieces, offering advice on shading, colour considerations and a unique approach to each project. Her classes are offered at Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced Levels. Guests of all ages are welcome to attend her classes, and she offers family sessions as well as separate classes for adults and children.
These superbly preserved mosaic remains date back to the 3rd to the 5th century A.D. They are located in a vast archaeological area, with remains of villas, palaces, theaters, fortresses and tombs. The mosaics in these sites depict an illuminated album of ancient Greek mythology,
with representations of Greek gods, goddesses and heroes, as well as activities of their everyday life. The mosaics of Paphos are extremely rare, and are considered to be among the finest specimens in the world, covering the Hellenistic period to the Byzantine period.
Coffee with an ID
Have you wondered what your selfie would look like on your cappuccino? How about a love note for your date emblazoned on their cup of coffee? With the fun new concept, Coffee with an ID, the Elysium takes latte art to a whole new level!
By Rachel Chrysostom
More than 26,000 cups of coffee are consumed around the world each second.
he Elysium is putting a smile on its guests’ faces by adding fun, personalized images to their foamy, caffeinated beverages. Each time a guest orders a cappuccino, they get to choose from an impressive selection of designs – or can even create their own – to be printed directly onto the foam of their drink. This is done through the nifty Ripple Maker, a patented device that prints fully customizable designs onto foam-topped drinks. Guests can choose from an extensive catalog of designs, or they can let their imagination run wild by creating their own through a simple app when placing an order. Selfies? Sure! Photos of your beloved pet? Why not! Anything can be turned into a unique artistic reproduction so delightful that you may find yourself wanting to frame your drink rather than sipping it! Every cup of coffee is made with premium, natural ingredients that guests can decorate to their heart’s delight. So next time you find yourself craving a caffeine jolt, get creative and enjoy a cup of coffee that’s truly personalized, and ultra-Instagrammable! Turn ordinary coffee into an extraordinary experience! More than 26,000 cups of coffee are consumed around the world each second. Why not make yours stand out?
Local Flavours With a Twist An Interview with Sous Chef Stelios Theodorou. By Katerina Panayiotou
he open-air Mediterraneo restaurant is located just a few steps away from the sea and it serves a mouth-watering selection of Cypriot and Mediterranean dishes. The restaurant possesses an inviting local character and is open daily for lunch and dinner. Stelios Theodorou who has been the sous chef at the restaurant for six years now, shares with us some of his wisdom and dreams. What is the general culinary direction of Mediterraneo? At Mediterraneo we follow a unique approach to Cypriot cuisine with traditional recipes to which we have added a few interesting twists. Also, at our restaurant we ensure that only fresh ingredients from Cyprus are used in the most creative way possible! Which local ingredients have you chosen to include in your dishes? I particularly favour using herbs and spices from Cyprus such as thyme, oregano, mint which elevate the flavour in every dish, especially because they are used fresh. We also use original Cypriot Halloumi exclusively made for the restaurant, pure olive oil, Cypriot Trahana and, of course, carob syrup. In the restaurantâ€™s menu, there is definitely some experimenting with the boundaries of traditional cuisine. Do you believe there is evolution in traditional cooking? I do believe there is evolution in traditional cooking as long as there is the will and the ideas to sustain it. Cypriot cuisine is by nature very versatile in the sense that it uses a wide variety of ingredients, herbs
and spices which grant us the opportunity to try out different techniques with eventually great results. This year at Mediterraneo, we took the challenge to take traditional to a brand new level and it has proven to be greatly embraced by our guests. What are the local dishes at Mediterraneo one must absolutely try? Mediterraneo Salad is definitely a dish not to be missed as it is a modified version of a traditional Cypriot salad, along with our special interpretation of the Moussaka, a nice slow-cooked Lamb Kleftiko and of course the Pastichio Steliosâ€™ Style which is mainly our traditional fresh pasta bake from an old, gradmaâ€™s recipe, fused with traces of another traditional dish called Stifado. What are your hopes for the future of Mediterraneo? I believe that this year was just the beginning and there is a lot to expect from Mediterraneo as with our great managerial support, we can aim very high. Our goal for the future is to establish Mediterraneo as a local destination for high-standard Cypriot cuisine in Paphos and to strive to remain different so that our guests enjoy indulgent new flavours and always leave with the best of impressions.
Our goal for the future is to establish Mediterraneo as a local destination for high-standard Cypriot cuisine in Paphos.
Myths & Legends
Myths and Legends Exploring the fascinating tales behind Aphrodite, Adonis, Cinyras and Digenes Akritas.
By Katerina Panayiotou
Aphrodite, interpreted as ‘risen from foam’, from the Greek word ‘aphros’ (foam) drifted at sea,
finally reaching the shore in Cyprus.
he island of Cyprus has a long, rich history and it is renowned for the plethora of myths and legends that so inventively surround it. Often, there are many different variations of the same tale claiming authenticity but, regardless of the one that finally reaches you, they are all undoubtedly fascinating!
It would be erroneous not to start this ‘mythical’ journey from the quintessence of legends on the island, Aphrodite. The goddess is said to have been born here, with Cyprus often being referred to as the ‘island of Aphrodite’. The legend says that she arose from the sea where Aphrodite’s Rock (‘Petra tou Romiou’) stands today. Located on the southwest coast of the Paphos district, along one of the most beautiful coastlines of the island, it consists of an interesting geological formation of gigantic rocks emerging from the depths of the sea. According to the legend, which is as instilled with imagination as Greek Mythology demands, Gaia (Earth) had asked one of her sons, Cronus, to mutilate their father Uranus (Sky). Thus, Cronus trapped his father and cut him below the waist using a scythe. Uranus then tried to flee losing parts of his body as they plummeted into the sea where the water started bubbling and foaming. It was from that white foam that a maiden of exquisite beauty was created. She was named Aphrodite, interpreted as ‘risen from foam’, from the Greek word for foam, ‘aphros’. She drifted at sea, finally reaching the shore in Cyprus. The goddess had several sanctuaries on the island with the most famous being in Kouklia, Paphos often referred to by poets as ‘omphalos of the Earth’ which translates to the ‘bellybutton’ of the Earth!
Another myth, closely related to Aphrodite is that of her mortal lover, Adonis. According to Ovid, Aphrodite cursed Adonis’ mother Myrrha by making her lust after her own father, King Cinyras of Cyprus. Beguiled by Aphrodite’s spell, Myrrha had intercourse with her father without revealing her identity which led to her being chased by him with a sword as soon as he found out. As they would often do, the gods interfered by transforming her into a myrrh tree and, in that form, she gave birth to her son. Aphrodite found the infant and handed him to Persephone, the queen of the Underworld, to be raised. Adonis flourished into an astoundingly handsome young man, causing Aphrodite and Persephone to quarrel over him. The head of the Olympian Gods, Zeus, resolved the issue having Adonis spend one third of the year with Persephone, one third of the year with Aphrodite and the remaining time of the year with whomever he chose. Adonis’ choice was to spend it with Aphrodite. One day, during a hunting excursion, Adonis was attacked by a wild boar and passed away in Aphrodite's arms as she wept. His blood intertwined with her tears turned into the beautiful anemone flower. Aphrodite, to commemorate his tragic passing, declared the Adonia festival, an annual midsummer celebration.
King Cinyras of Cyprus, Adonis’ father, was a man of exceptional beauty himself and he is mentioned in several literary works as the creator of arts
and musical instruments. Upon his arrival on the island, he founded the town of Paphos and married Metharme, the daughter of Pygmalion, the king of Cyprus. Cinyras was a friend of Agamemnon to whom he promised fifty ships as assistance for the Trojan War. However, instead of sending fifty ships he only sent one, while the rest of them, ships and crew, were figures sculpted from earth! Agamemnon then asked the gods to punish him for breaking his promise and Apollo challenged him to a musical lyre contest which Cyniras lost resulting in his death. Following this tragic event Cinyras' fifty daughters threw themselves into the sea and were turned into sea birds, the alcyones.
Digenes Akritas is a medieval Greek hero of popular folk literature, the Akritic Ballads. He was depicted as the boldest and strongest of the warriors of the Euphrates front, protecting the Byzantine Empire. The legend says that he came to the island to capture a Saracen invader and during the manhunt he hand-gripped the mountain of Pentadaktylos to get out of the sea, leaving his handprint on the mountain. Pentadaktylos (five-fingered) as suggested by its name, resembles five knuckles sprouting from the ground. Other stories also place the legendary hero in Cyprus, stating that he threw a huge rock across the island in pursuit of some Saracen ships which landed where Aphrodite’s Rock (Petra Tou Romiou) stands today. He is also said to have had a love affair with Queen Rigena, a beautiful, mysterious woman of medieval Cyprus. These captivating tales derive from the core of the local history, traditions, beliefs and imagination. Exploring an island such as Cyprus grants you the opportunity to encounter and discover hundreds of these myths and legends that will leave you in awe!
Discovering the Paphos
Wine Villages Cyprus has a longstanding tradition of winemaking, and produces a wide variety of wines ranging from the ancient sweet-tasting Commandaria, to more well-known global varieties, including Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Shiraz. While the islandâ€™s wine industry has been thoroughly modernized and greatly expanded, there are still many villages that produce wine in the old traditional ways, and these make for a fun day of exploring.
By Rachel Chrysostom
hether you are a connoisseur, or a simple lover of the drink that locals once worshipped as the ‘nectar of the gods,’ you will delight in discovering a host of charming wineries and wine-growing regions in some of the island’s lesser-known corners of Paphos.
takes you through a spectacular region of rugged coastlines and charming villages.
Diarizos Valley Wine Route
This route takes you on a fascinating journey along the Diarizos River, through beautifully unspoiled green landscapes dotted with picturesque vineyards, where you will discover the lesser-known wine-producing region of the Diarizos Valley, located east of Paphos. Unassuming in status, but breathtakingly lush, the route passes 14 hilly villages, with the opportunity to visit two significant wineries that have placed the area firmly on the island’s wine-producing map.
Vouni Panagias – Ambelitis
This panoramic excursion takes you through a glorious inland landscape amid the mountainous regions of Paphos, unfolding at an altitude of 800 meters, to offer an unparalleled wine experience.
Due to the area’s lower altitude, the wines produced here are remarkable, and include 18 different types of vine, with the most prominent being the local Mavro (red) grape variety.
The route stops at 10 different wineries, all of which are diverse and produce white wines of particular finesse in aroma and lightness of body, thanks to the local Xynisteri (white) grape variety that predominantly grows here.
This route passes through the villages of Acheleia, Kouklia, Nikokleia, Choletria, Stavrokonnou, Kelokedara, Salamiou, Mesana, Arminou, Filousa, Agios Nikolaos, Praitori, Kedares, Agios Georgios, Mamonia and Fasoula
You will discover 27 varieties of grape vine, including an impressive showing of Carignan Noir and Cabernet Sauvignon. The villages on this route also produce some of the best wines of the indigenous Mavro (red) variety, thanks to their relatively high altitude and mild climate.
Laona – Akamas Wine Route
Travel through a spectacular region of rugged coastlines and charming villages where you will discover the indigenous Xynisteri (white) grape variety that grows in a climate tempered by the sea breeze. This route takes you on a visit to four wineries, and offers a host of traditional taverns, elevated views and intense natural beauty along the way. It is a great opportunity to visit the stunning Akamas Peninsula, and try some local tipple along the way. The wines produced in this region are cool yet solid, with a fine aroma and considered to be among the best white wines produced on the island. The region also produces the rare and ancient grape variety of Maratheftiko, which makes for a delicious red. This route passes through the villages of Mesogi, Tsada, Stroumbi, Kathikas, Akourdaleia, Pano Arodes, Kato Arodes, Ineia, Drouseia, Polis and Pegeia.
This route offers two alternative end points, and passes through the villages of Mesogi, Tsada, Stroumbi, Polemi, Psathi, Kannaviou, Asprogia, Pano Panagia, Chrysorrogiatissa, Agia Moni, Statos-Agios Fotios, Koilineia, Galataria, Pentalia, Amargeti, Eledio, Agia Varvara and Acheleia or Choulou, Lemona, Kourdaka, Letymvou and Kallepeia.
Discover the Cyprus Wine Routes with the Elysium
The Elysium takes its guests on a special journey, escorted by the hotel’s Head Sommelier, to a local winery. There, guests will have the opportunity to taste a variety of local wines accompanied by delicious bites and nibbles of homegrown nuts, olives and halloumi cheese. A traditional meze lunch will follow, rounded off with fresh fruits and coffee. On the way to the winery, the tour takes a short detour to the must-visit Chrysorogiatissa Monastery. Founded in 1152 AD, the Monastery houses a collection of important icons and treasures, and is also home to an old winery, which maintains its own vineyards and produces its own very interesting wines.
Weddings on the Beach The stuff that dreams are made ofâ€Ś
By Katerina Panayiotou
As we are a 5-star resort, guests do not have to compromise on the service or quality of the food to have a beach front
inding the one, the person you long to share your hopes, fear and dreams with, your eternal partner, is undoubtedly a reason to celebrate! Some dream of their wedding day as the fairytale ending coming to seal their everlasting love and mark the beginning of their intertwined future, some see it as a declaration of devotion to their kindred soul while some see it as the most befitting chance to throw the party of a lifetime with their close friends truly taking in every minute of it. No matter what your vision of that special day is, the Elysium’s new Sea Front Venue is beyond ideal to make every single one of your expectations become an idyllic reality! Magical, ethereal, otherworldly are just a few of the words fit to describe the natural beauty that generously embraces the venue especially as the sun sinks into the sea during the sunset, with the décor, music and high-standard services ensuring that your day will be absolutely one of a kind. The Elysium’s wedding team, who have been in the field of wedding planning for years, are proud to include the latest addition of weddings on the beach at their Sea Front Venue as the ultimate highlight of their packages and have provided us with every detail about it.
Given the chance to have the reception of your wedding day, literally a stone’s throw away from where the waves meet the shore as the sun goes down is an experience only a few are lucky enough to have. The Sea Front Venue is situated on a lovely wooden deck only a few steps away from the water above the level of the sand so as not only to be truly able to have an interrupted view of the Mediterranean Sea, but also to maintain the relevant formality the day requires and the appropriate practicality for the couple and their guests.
Coming to prove that the wedding-planning team of the Elysium have truly thought of every little detail to ensure that you get everything you could ever wish for, are the two main tailor-made packages they have devised.
The ‘Rustic Charm’ package gives, as the name suggests, a more traditional rural ambience to the venue as it includes large wooden tables, natural colour bistro chairs and linen sand napkins. A hint of sparkle subtly exists in the gold-detailed wine glasses, gold cutlery and candles. Natural style greenery and neutral shades in flowers are used to elevate and complete the picturesque setting. The ‘Shades of Blue’ package forms the epitome of table-setting luxury as gold and blue shades are beautifully blended in the details of the porcelain dinner set, glasses, cutlery and ornamental geometric glasses. The gold Napoleon chairs seat the guests to the view of a table outstandingly and abundantly decorated with orchids, hydrangeas, Monstera leaves, candles and more, creating a symphony of art de la table!
Your wedding day reception, literally a stoneâ€™s throw away from where the waves meet the shore as the sun goes down.
Both packages include every little detail from table numbers to napkin holders and everything in between, always in accordance with the decoration. The floral designer working on site is creative and talented so she appreciates the uniqueness of each wedding, as each couple expresses their own interpretation of the ideal setting. She works hard to comprehend and ensure that all the requests, requirements and suggestions that couples may have are met in the way they have envisioned them.
The exquisite four-course sharing-style menu for the reception includes a mouth-watering array of starters including gourmet salads and seafood, a meticulously put together main course of beef tenderloin with truffle sauce and a selection of desserts that is set to please all your guests ranging from rum-flavoured mango smoothie to bitter chocolate tart. Unlimited classic beverages such as house wines, local beers, soft drinks complement the food. There is an option of upgrading to a fivecourse menu and unlimited premium beverages for even higher culinary standards and finesse on your nuptials.
The experienced DJ of the Elysium has been working his magic for weddings and events at the hotelâ€™s premises for many years thus he will also be performing at the new Sea Front Venue. The music is chosen by the couple who remain in full communication with the DJ before the wedding to make sure the music is to their liking at each stage of the evening. If the couple requires live music, the wedding coordinators see their preferences and find a performer suitable for them.
No matter what your vision of that special day is, the Elysiumâ€™s new Sea Front Venue is beyond ideal to make every single
A Few Lines from the Wedding Coordinator
one of your expectations
Wedding coordinator at the Elysium, Elizabeth Murray, has provided us with a few essential details on their newest wedding reception venue. "Weddings planned from abroad can be tricky and stressful at times but I and the team here, are always available for them and treat every wedding individually, with passion and dedication. As we are a 5-star resort, guests do not have to compromise on the service or quality of the food to have a beach front setting. The magical Sea Front Venue is suitable for weddings between twenty-four and sixty-four people that take place between May and October and can be used as a dinner, or dinner and party venue until midnight. It is booked privately for the wedding party on the day and can be set up in a choice of styles.
The ceremony, which can be civil, religious or symbolic, takes place at the hotel should the couple wish it to, either on the Sunset Pier, in the Life-Giving Source Chapel or the Orpheus Amphitheatre. The Pier venue is also available for smaller wedding dinners on the beach. As a wedding coordinator, I am always in constant contact with the couple from the initial enquiry right up to the day itself, either by phone or email. When the couple arrives before the wedding, we arrange a meeting in person to visit the town hall or church office to take care of the legalities if necessary and then run through the day step by step, to make sure everything is perfect and nothing has been forgotten".
become an idyllic reality!
Play Fully renovated, state-of-the-art facilities for the little ones. By Katerina Panayiotou
ravelling with children makes your journey a thousand times more memorable and it is of great importance as not only do they get to visit new places, but they also get to experience new cultures and boost their social skills. As for those moments that parents and guardians may be otherwise engaged, the AMARA, Elysium and Mediterranean are fully equipped with stateof-the-art facilities and enthusiastic professionals to cater for their younger guests’ needs.
Many parents and guardians consider a kids’ club to be an essential element in their search for the ideal retreat for the whole family thus the newest member of Stademos Hotels, five-star architectural masterpiece AMARA, is set to include a variety of fun childcare options. The Kids’ Club located at its high-end premises will provide younger guests of a wide age spectrum with the opportunities to participate in a series of both entertaining and educational activities, always under the supervision of fully qualified instructors.
Following its ground-breaking renovation, the Mediterranean Beach Hotel now welcomes its young guests to its brand-new Angels Kids’ Club which is conveniently located only a short distance from its family rooms making it easily accessible to both parents and guardians and their little companions. It comprises of two different parts with one being furnished with creative stations for crafts and colouring and the other being equipped with toys to evoke creative playtime. The space the Kids’ Club is
situated is bright and colourful with a modern design. Whilst being at the Kids’ Club, the young guests of the Mediterranean Beach Hotel participate in activities which are designed to stimulate their creative and critical thinking skills such as puzzle and domino time, fancy decorating, board and word-formation games, arts and crafts and kids pottery. The equipment the children interact with includes all sorts of traditional toys as well as a football table, a puppet theatre, puzzles of different sizes, large building blocks, doll houses and a high-definition Smart TV for the special previews of educational and entertaining films. The Kids’ Club is staffed with fun-loving, creative professionals in the fields of childcare and education with excellent knowledge of the English language supervising the children at all times. Young guests of ages four to twelve years old are welcome to join the fun as well as toddlers under the age of four who must be accompanied by their parents.
The young guests of the Mediterranean Beach Hotel
Interview with Rachel Demetriou Kids’ Club Supervisor (Elysium)
participate in activities which are designed to stimulate
We met with Ms. Rachel Demetriou the supervisor at the Elysium’s Kids’ Club who thoroughly explained why children love taking part in their activities and how they make unforgettable memories, cultivate their creativity, expand their thinking boundaries and form unexpected friendships.
"We are located on the ground floor at the side of the sunken courtyard. Both rooms are spacious and well set out for good flow and ease of play, located away from guest rooms giving us the chance to be a little noisier. We have natural light in both rooms which are fully air-conditioned to provide comfortable temperatures all year round".
their creative and critical thinking skills.
The Activities and Equipment
"Angels Kids’ Club has a weekly schedule of events which include theme mornings such as Under the Sea, Pirate, Cowboy and Indian, and Cyprus with crafts, games etc. Taking part in the kids’ club programme is optional, and kids are welcome to free play. We avoid things that are not conducive to group play, so electronic devices are not allowed. We have a two-floor
soft play, an EyeClick beam interactive game, lots of card and board games, a doll-house, puzzles, books in multiple languages and a plethora of other toys".
"The Angels Crèche is a new facility launched in 2018, welcoming children between the ages of four and thirty-five months. Our qualified and experienced staff take care of up to three young
The Angels Crèche at the Elysium is a new facility launched in 2018, welcoming children between the ages of four and thirty-five months.
guests each, in the purpose-built room which has age-appropriate toys as well as cots for nap time and highchairs for snacks. Parents may drop off their little ones for either a morning session from ten to one or an afternoon session from two to six. Pre-booking is essential and advisable prior to arrival".
Attention to Detail
"Both the Crèche and Kids' Club are kept at a high level of cleanliness in accordance with the health and safety regulations. I make sure to keep abreast of the latest kids’ shows and games so as to remain current, while also introducing some young guests to traditional games they may not have played before. I won’t let children feel left out and I encourage or even facilitate friendships for the children who seem a little shyer".
Important Notes for Parents
"Both I and my team are committed to providing a fun and safe place for kids to play. We have a sign in and out procedure, so parents can relax that only they or nominated persons by them can pick their children up. Our staff consists of qualified nursery nurses or play-workers that are multilingual as well as enthusiastic, fun-loving, patient, kind and ready to overcome the challenges we may face daily. If you are accompanied by a teenager, even though there are no organized activities, we have a video-games room, table tennis, billiards, tennis courts where they can spend time and meet new friends".
In every sip, one experiences a vast spectrum of sweet, mouth-warming flavours that perfectly blend with an explosion of unique aromas.
and its legacy The wine with the oldest label in the world.
By Katerina Panayiotou
to Europe’s royal courts and to pilgrims who stopped by Cyprus on their way to the Holy Land, making Commandaria the oldest wine ever labeled!
A unique production method
ommandaria is a wine of divine nature emerging from the depths of Cypriot history often described as a dessert wine. In every sip, one experiences a vast spectrum of sweet, mouth-warming flavours that perfectly blend with an explosion of unique aromas leading to a distinctive fruit and caramel aftertaste, sealing an extraordinary drinking journey. However, its exceptional taste is not the only reason it possesses its legendary status as it is also the wine with the oldest label in the world still in production today.
Steeped in history
Commandaria is first cited in the works of the Greek poet Hesiod in 800 BC who mentions the wine itself as well as its production methods. As its history unfolds, Commandaria
is often referred to as ‘Cyprus Manna’ and it is closely connected to the island’s Byzantine Period when it becomes the wine of the Holy Communion, symbolizing the blood of Jesus Christ. In 1191, it is served during the wedding of King Richard the Lionheart who pronounces it ‘the king of wines and the wine of kings’. According to the poem La Bataille des Vins (the Battle of the Wines) by Henry d'Andeli, Commandaria won a very eclectic wine tasting in 1224 and possibly the first one ever held, organized by the French King Philip Augustus. During this tasting, over seventy wines from all over Europe were sampled and Commandaria prevailed, receiving the ultimate title of ‘Apostle’.
What's in a name
The island of Cyprus was later sold to the Knights Templar who then resold it but kept a large feudal estate in Kolossi area located in the outskirts of Limassol. This area was referred to as ‘La Grande Commanderie’ and later, under the control of the Knights Hospitaller, it became known as Commandaria. The wine assumed the name of this region when the knights began trading large quantities of it
The way the wine is produced equally matches its rich history. It is exclusively made from two local grape varieties: Xynisteri and Mavro which are left to overripe and are harvested only when their sugar levels are acceptable. They are then carefully laid in the sun with the extraction of their juice following. Fermentation is the next step of production which takes place in reservoirs achieving alcohol levels of 15%; however the wine’s total alcoholic strength may reach up to 20%. It is important to note that the initial steps of production of this unique, amber-coloured wine only take place within the precinct of fourteen designated villages of the Commandaria Region, the first vine region in Cyprus to receive AOC (Appellation d’ Origine Contrôlée) status. By law, Commandaria must be aged in oak barrels for a minimum of four years, though this can be conducted outside the aforementioned area but within Cyprus, under strict control and conditions in accordance with Cypriot legislation. Having merely scratched the surface of everything there is to be written about this wine, words seem minuscule compared to its grandeur so if your desire is to sip a bit of history and perhaps feel like royalty yourself, fill your glass with Commandaria and surrender to its legendary scent and taste.
Evolution Renovations towards the future.
By Katerina Panayiotou
enovations are an essential repetitive process for the maintenance and evolution of any high-end establishment, let alone that of an iconic hotel for the town of Limassol which welcomed its first guests more than twenty years ago. For a short period of time during the past year, the Mediterranean Beach Hotel closed its doors and ceased operations in order for one more series of remarkable changes to take place on its grounds. From the hotel’s fresh new façade to the elaborate interior revamp, guests can now enjoy a fully upgraded and up-to-date version of what was already set to be a superb stay.
A place of vital importance, the entrance of the hotel, has been reinvented as it is where the hotel’s invaluable guests take their first steps towards their memorable stay or reflect upon it as they wait for their transport, or they simply
just happened to relax there. A waiting area has been added with modern seating spaces along with soothing visual enhancements in the form of plants.
The colourful balconies of the Mediterranean were once the talk of the town, as they were in complete accordance with their contemporary design trends. As the hotel is synonymous with constant change and keeps up with the latest fashions, its new look follows a fresher and more minimalistic approach replacing the multicoloured balcony dividers’ paint with one in the shades of grey. The overall exterior of the hotel has also been given a boost with a fresh coat of paint.
The backbone of the hotel, its interior spaces, have been thoroughly refurbished as great emphasis is placed on their maintenance. All hallways have had their carpets removed and replaced with brand-new ones which abide with the hotel’s overall ambience.
All guest-rooms have been considerably upgraded
with the addition of new black-out curtains and the installation of reading lights and USB outlets, enabling the guests to have a more relaxing time without having to look for or carry adapters to charge those essential electronic devices. The furniture of each room has been reupholstered with high quality new fabric and the inland rooms have been equipped with double-glazed, soundproof windows.
Clouds Lounge Bar
The Clouds Lounge bar, the heart of the main lobby and what the guests first lay eyes upon as soon as they enter the hotel, has undergone a full renovation. Inviting leather furniture accompanied by touches of marble and wood, and a partially suspended ceiling resembling the clouds exquisitely illuminated during the evening hours, compose its stunning new look.
Lagoon Pool Bar
Adjacent to the magnificent multi-level outdoor swimming pool, the Lagoon Pool Bar has been completely renovated to meet all its guests’ needs. It features a swim-up bar area with underwater stools and designer sofas and armchairs under the shade of a beautiful pergola.
PlusSea Lifestyle Bar: Sunrise to Sunset
PlusSea is more than just a bar. For locals and tourists alike, it has become a lifestyle, eponymous with beachside living at its finest, and a place where one can spend an entire day, enjoying some of the best food, drinks, and beachside views that Limassol has to offer.
By Rachel Chrysostom
PlusSea offers a plethora of All Day
PlusSea in the Morning
Snacks to its patrons
hat better way to start your day than by grabbing your beach towel and a pair of sunnies, and heading down to the beach? PlusSea Lifestyle Bar welcomes its early bird guests with a jolt of caffeine or a zesty, freshly-squeezed juice to jumpstart their morning. The athletically-inclined can then take advantage of the smooth sandy beach and go for a run, while the rest can lay back and relax on comfortable sunbeds, enjoying the gorgeous view under the shade of the umbrellas. If you start to feel peckish during the day, PlusSea offers a plethora of All Day Snacks to its patrons on the beach, from the Cyprus Special sandwich loaded with halloumi and lounzta, to the classics such as club sandwiches, burgers, and fish and chips.
on the beach.
PlusSea in the Afternoon
Once you’ve had enough of the morning sun, make your way to the restaurant for lunch, where you will be greeted by an airy ambience with exotic flourishes. Handcrafted, imposing wooden furniture offers comfortable seating that is shaded by a thatched roof, with palisade vertical motion fans keeping you cool in the summer heat. The menu selection ranges from refreshing salads and sumptuous appetizers, to delicious pasta, meat and fish dishes, available daily. For a lighter lunch, opt for some of the tempting seafood dishes on offer, from the fresh catch of the day to salmon, steamed mussels, salmon Dijon, or Mediterranean-style grilled octopus. On Sundays, PlusSea’s resident DJ gets the party started, spinning contemporary Greek and English hits all afternoon long.
PlusSea in the Evening
As the sun begins to set, setting the sky on fire with its dazzling gold and crimson hues, guests are invited to kick back with a drink and simply enjoy the view. The expert team of PlusSea’s mixologists will whip up an array of deliciously cooling, exotic cocktails. Choose from classics such as the Mojito or Pina Colada, or try something with an exotic twist, such as the Matador, which consists of a sweet and sour mix of Havana and Aperol shaken with lemon juice and beautifully served in a martini glass. Of course, don’t forget to save room for dinner! The lobster pasta, chicken skewers or Black Angus steaks grilled to perfection are just some of the mouthwatering dinner options on the menu.
PlusSea at Night
After you’ve enjoyed your meal, PlusSea invites you to linger and revel in the ambience, savouring the last of your bottle of wine, selected from an eclectic wine list that is sure to please even the most discerning of wine connoisseurs. Enjoy the chill beats of the resident DJ’s lounge tunes, or the funky rhythms of the live jazz band which jams every other Thursday from 9pm until 11pm. After all, the concept is simple: escape the mundane of the everyday and indulge in real island living from morning to night, accompanied always by the sound of the waves lapping at your feet. Contact PlusSea Lifestyle Bar is located on 95 Amathus Avenue in Limassol. Tel: +357 2563 4995 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
through the Seasons
Cypriot-born artist Sotos Gonios takes visitors on a cultural journey through the Greek tradition of Shadow Theater, and its protagonist, Karagiozis, with four paintings prominently displayed in the lower lobby of the Elysium Hotel.
By Rachel Chrysostom
series of four mixed media paintings by Sotos Gonios depict the Greek character of folklore, Karagiozis, through the various stages of the seasons, aptly titled Autumn, Spring, Summer and Winter. Goniosâ€™ paintings are characterized by their intensity, with bold colours and seemingly exaggerated figures appearing to leap from the canvas. This technique befits the character portrayed in this series of paintings, as Karagiozis was well-known for amplifying the problems facing the oppression faced by the Greek population during the time of the Ottoman Empire. The fictional character and shadow puppet, Karagiozis, is a precious part of the Greek
inheritance. A satirical model of the impoverished Greek man, Karagozis renounces every care and responsibility in the world, preferring to simply enjoy the happy moments in life. He is a trickster whose sole interest is eating and sleeping, and must use mischievous ways to find money to feed his family. He is often depicted with a large arm, used in Shadow Theater performances to gesticulate wildly and beat his adversaries, as he faces every misfortune with sarcastic good humour. The Shadow Theater plays of Karagiozis often dealt with social issues and the institutions of justice, freedom, and wealth. While the cheeky puppet is not as popular a choice for the recreation of young children today, and the number of skilled shadow theater puppeteers has diminished, Karagiozis nevertheless remains a significant and well-known folkloric figure, with deep roots in Greek history and mythology. Sotos Gonios was born in Famagusta, Cyprus. His affinity for art was apparent from a young age, when painting took on a major role in his life. After the Turkish invasion in 1974, however, Goniosâ€™ artistic journey was put on pause, as he enrolled in the Aristotelio University of Thessaloniki Law School. Upon his return to Cyprus, however, Sotos Gonios completely abandoned any and all legal ambitions, instead returning to his love of art, creating his own cultural space where he performs concerts, theatrical shows and exhibitions. He has since devoted himself exclusively to painting in a professional capacity, and from 1997 onwards he has been traveling and exhibiting across Europe. His works have been exhibited in Greece, France, Cyprus, England, and Portugal, and have appeared on the covers of books and CDs and in many commercial spaces.