Ref: GR21b, Syros, Cyclades Islands, Greece, £3500 to £4380 pw
This is a superb neo-classical property renovated, furnished and decorated in traditional style with wonderful antiques. Villa Evangelini is on the edge of the seafront village of Possidonia on the lovely Greek island of Syros, in a charming area with some splendid ornate mansions, and is just a short stroll from a sandy beach and local shops. It has lovely gardens and a fabulous terrace ideal for outdoor meals. The Condé Nast Traveller magazine had described it as such: "The rooms in Villa Evangelini would hold their own in a lifestyle magazine, and are unusual by Greek standards in that they are furnished with antiques."
Living room, dining room/conservatory, kitchen, 4 shower rooms and wc, 1 separate wc, 1 bedroom with 1 double bed and 1 single bed, 3 twin bedrooms
Washing machine, dishwasher, cot available (linen provided), highchair, telephone, WiFi, television, DVD player, CD player, Hi-Fi, video cassette player, electric heaters (included), air conditioning (included), barbecue
Bed linen, bathroom towels, and pool towels are provided, as well as a twice-weekly change (or more frequently if required). Daily housekeeping for four hours per day are included; these hours can be used for whichever services is required (cleaning, food preparation, table service, food shopping, laundry, etc.). Additional hours are possible at a rate of 12€ per hour. There is a gardener who works in the grounds every day for a few hours, as well as a person who looks after the pool. Clients can help themselves to the vegetable garden. Services are payable locally.
Prices quoted are subject to change.
Villa Evangelini enjoys a very private and peaceful setting; the house and grounds are not overlooked, and the pool area is completely secluded. It is situated in beautiful, thoughtfully-designed grounds of about 3,000sqm. There is an extensive range of palm, pine and fruit trees which are lovingly cared for on a daily basis by the gardener, and there are lovely flowers in abundance all around. The entire property is surrounded by walls, with cane barriers for added privacy where required, which is suitable for children. The gardens are extensive and beautifully designed and well maintained.
There are annexes with additional sleeping capacities which will not be occupied when only the main house is rented. Between these buildings and the main house is a lovely gazebo-sheltered fish pond, which has been made child-proof by a metal grille 5cm under the surface of the water. There is a barbecue area near the pond, many shady terraces, including one with a wonderful vine-covered pergola, a perfect spot for al fresco dining. The pool with its roman steps is a little away from the house and set in lovely terraces; it is fed by a private well, and therefore is not prone to water shortages in the height of summer.
The main house is a lovely, honey-coloured, traditional two-storey neoclassic building, originally built in the 19th century and fully renovated in the 90s. It consists on the ground floor of the beautiful glass windowed conservatory, the entrance hall, main sitting and dining room, and the fully-equipped kitchen. There is also a twin bedroom with an en suite shower room and wc on the ground floor. On the first floor there are three more bedrooms: one double bedroom with a four-poster bed and an extra single bed, and two twin bedrooms, all with en suite shower rooms in white marble and wcs. All the bedrooms are air conditioned, and have access to spacious balconies. The entire house is decorated to a very high standard, in contemporary style, with authentic pieces of furniture, antiques and rugs.
EOT (Ellinikos Organismos Tourismou - issued by the Greek tourist board) licence number: 1177K050A0146800
Changeover day: Flexible
Posidonia, also known as Dellagrazia, is a lovely village with some idiosyncratically ornate mansions and an attractive pale blue domed church, just opposite Villa Evangelini. This area is residential and quiet.
There is a small shop, a chemist, a fruit and veg vendor within a very short walk from the house. Clients are welcome to use the private club (the owners are members) a few doors down from the house where meals can be taken and the short tennis court used.
Less than 10 minutes' drive away is the picturesque fishing village of Finikas, which has excellent tavernas, a couple of bars and a hotel, larger supermarkets, and other shops, as well as lively but laid-back nightlife during the high season. There are many caiques and fishing boats as well as larger yachts and chartered yachts moored in the harbour, and the lovely sandy beach is excellent for swimming and watersports. There is also a diving school within easy reach.
Ermoupoli, the busy commercial port and capital, is 11km away known as "The Sovereign of the Aegean", and is a very attractive and sophisticated town and has some very impressive architecture as well as some good restaurants, and a wide range of nightlife, shops, an excellent art gallery and a recently-restored opera house with programmes throughout the year. It is built in the hills that surround the harbour and is well worth a visit, with its elegant neoclassical mansions, marble paved streets, and lively seaside ambience.
Syros, the Island of Hermes, messenger of the gods and the god of trade, has remained unspoilt and traditional, with an old-world sophistication and elegance. Situated in the centre of the Cyclades, it is the capital of this unique group of islands, and in the 19th century was the capital of Greece itself; it has much to offer in terms of historical interest, and the capital Ermoupoli (or Hermoupolis, city of Hermes) is renowned for its architecture. Syros is quite arid but is strikingly beautiful, with a mountainous north and a gentler and more verdant south. It is little known as a tourist destination, as it is not on the package holiday map, and therefore has a wonderfully Greek atmosphere. It is ideal for families with older children and for adult groups, and is mainly popular with Greek tourists. There is a religious feast celebrated by the locals on 27th of July in the honour of Aghios Panteleimonas, which is great fun for visitors.
Syros shares the usual historical milestones of the Cyclades, from its early Bronze Age settlements, through occupation and influence by the Phoenicians, Egyptians, Romans, to the predations of the Ottoman pirates. Under the Venetians the Christian community on the island grew in size and importance, as can be seen in its Cathedral San Giorgio behind Venetian battlements on the top of Ano Syros, or Upper Syros, which gazes over the lower town of Ermoupoli to the magnificent blue and gold dome of the Greek Orthodox cathedral perched on the hill opposite. Ermoupouli was founded during the War of Independence in 1824, mainly by Orthodox refugees and Greek revolutionaries escaping from the Turks, and became a chief port and shipbuilding centre in the 19th Century. Syros has long been a model for the peaceful coexistence of the Catholic and Orthodox communities.
Ermoupoli, with its neoclassical mansions, marble paved streets, and elegant plazas, offers much of interest and charm. The grand Town Hall was designed by the Bavarian architect Ziller, one of many European architects who contributed to the design and building of Ermoupoli; it was finished in 1898 and presides over the magnificent Miaouli Square, one of the most attractive plazas in all of Greece, where graceful palm trees shelter cozy cafes and restaurants. The Archaeological Museum is worth a visit, and an ornate marble bandstand on the square often presents lively local concerts. By night the city is beautifully illuminated, and the smartly dressed locals stroll to meet friends and enjoy the cool of the evening. As well as traditional charm, there are many good nightclubs and bars, and thus plenty of lively entertainment. Ano Syros, overlooking Ermoupoli and the Aegean, is the charming Venetian quarter, the oldest and highest point in the town. Possidonia, also known as Dellagrazzia, is the favourite summer resort of the Syrians, and has many ornate and flamboyant neo-classical villas surrounded by beautiful gardens. This is the area where our villas are located, and countryside blooms with vineyards and greenhouses.
Yacht and motor cruiser hire can be arranged in advance. There is windsurfing and water skiing available on the island.
The closest beach (Fetouris) is about 10 minutes away by foot via a small lane within the village - a fun walk for children of all ages. This is a small sandy beach (with low incline, good swimming and lovely sunsets) close the pretty harbour. A larger beach (lovely, safe sandy beach with a small islet offshore) at Agathopes is another 10 minutes further down the coast, so also easily reached by foot; you can walk beyond the beach to Komito, the end of the peninsula, where beautiful walks can be taken and another nice beach Voulgari. There are many other sandy beaches further up the coast, Kokkina and Psachno.
There are numerous unspoilt and uncrowded bays and coves to explore on Syros, as well as some more commercial beaches, and most can be reached by bus from Ermoupoli. Kini is a fine beach, with plenty of fresh seafood on offer, and is known for the best sunsets on the island. More secluded and sandy beaches can be found in the north such as Delfini, Varvaroussa and Grammata. Galissas is a great sandy beach but is very popular, its shores lined by beach bars; you can however scramble over some rocks to the nearby naturist beach of Armeos, which is much quieter. From the village of Possidonia there are some lovely sandy beaches such as Agathopes, Komito, and Ampela.
There is a domestic airport on Syros, so it is possible to fly to Athens and then take an internal flight over to the island. Alternatively, from Athens you can take the ferry from Rafina or Pireus Port. A high speed hydrofoil takes about 2 hours; during the peak season there are normally a couple of these a day. The regular ferry service is slower, taking about 4.5 hours.
EasyJet fly direct from the UK to Mykonos and Santorini and ferries run regularly to Syros from both these islands.
"Thank you for all your help in organising our holiday. Villa Evangelini is a jewel and Syros is a delightful island. This is the best holiday we have had in many years. We loved the beaches, the privacy, Dimitri's welcome and that wonderful blue sea. The two things that stood out were your willingness to help with all the little arrangements after we had booked and Elsa, the wonderful housekeeper. She could not have been more welcoming and helpful."
"We had an excellent holiday...Elsa, the housekeeper, was exceptionally helpful throughout. All in all, highly recommended. Thank you!"
"The owner was a pleasure to meet and work with and his employees at the villa were very helpful in making our vacation trip a success. The villa facilities were good and all of our group were pleased with my choice of the island of Syros for our excursion."
Please note that the comments given above were taken from letters and holiday questionnaires from our clients over the years. We cannot acccept responsibility for any misleading information but the comments are given by us in good faith.
We have not always been able to obtain written comments from clients so the number of comments does not necessarily reflect the quality or the popularity of the villa.
This is elegance on a grand scale, a lovely period home with beautiful, private gardens, but close to the lively seaside. Syros is a fascinating island, with so much to see and do.