Travel Secrets

The story behind Conte Marino Villas: Interview at

The story behind Conte Marino Villas: Interview at

Kontomari village in Chania is an historic village since there the first mass execution of civilians on 2 June 1941 took place, which is considered one of the most deadly moments of the Battle of Crete in Nazi Europe.

In this village, Despina Sivaropoulou, together with her husband, decided to create CONTE MARINO VILLAS. The name emerged from the history of the village. During the Renaissance years in Crete (16th century), Conte Marino was the lord of the area. The village of Kontomari was named after him. For this reason, the owners decided to use the historical name CONTE MARINO to promote the village's history, as the villas are strategically located in Kontomari.

The names of the villas are female names of the respective era, named after the fruit trees of the estate: ALIVIA, MANDARINA and ORANGIA.

Despina and her husband are Engineers. They grew up in Crete. Later, they lived in different places because of studies. In Greece and abroad. Their first professional steps began in Athens. After a few years, they decided to move abroad to open new horizons and gain more professional experience, mainly in management, working in different European countries. Germany, Sweden, Ireland and finally Italy for several years.

"We liked to travel a lot. To discover new places and, above all, learn and understand the culture of each country. Anyway, because of our work, cooperation with people of different nationalities was necessary." But after fifteen successful years abroad, Nostalgia came... Nostalgia for the homeland, nostalgia for the family. This word brought them back to Crete. Their heart and mind were always there. They felt that they needed their place and their place needed them... "Of course we often returned there for holidays, but that was not enough for us. We wanted to create something new. Something unique and lead our land one step further! "

So they started to dream. They wanted to create an authentic living space, inspired by modern Cretan architecture, aiming at quality and detail. A real home for their guests, in one of the most enchanting parts of the world, Chania, Crete. Their primary purpose was to stay closely connected with gastronomy, modern Greek art and high-level personalized services.

To promote the place and to enhance the local community, through the quality experience of accommodation and services, combined with the unmistakable concept of Cretan hospitality. "We wanted to live the unusual feelings born out of hospitality and the passion for philoxenia, that in Crete is a way of life." And they make this happen through their personal presence and support to every guest’s need and desire. "The needs and conditions of quality accommodation, as well as the way we communicate with different cultures, was something very familiar for us because of our work and our travel experience. Gradually, this dream became our life target."

The dream came true with the help of Aristomenis and George Varoudakis, two visionary architects of Crete.

The villas perfectly combine the beauties of the Cretan landscape with the contemporary architectural design. The design of the houses is influenced by the deep roots of the Cretan architectural tradition, enriched with the values of modern Greek culture. The colored stone, the marble, the wood, the transparency of the glass surfaces, the harmonious coexistence of the metal with the earth element, create an absolute balance and "dialogue" of the natural environment with the villas.

Partially translated from

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From: Anthi Sasmatzoglou