Where do we find you these days?
At The Alex working on the reopening of the hotel after a long winter lockdown. During this time we had the time to rethink our operations by adding more value to our guests and local community.
Tell us a bit about yourself
If I had to describe myself I would say hotelier, runner and tech enthusiast.
Being a second generation hotelier, i was raised in hotels so my career has always been in the hospitality business since I was a teenager. This hospitality “brainwash” has helped me understand that hotels have guests not customers and spending my summers around guests as a child I could understand the need to create products that have a guest oriented approach.
I am a big fun of running as it’s an easy way to exercise and stay competitive with your personal performance.
Technology has been a big part of my free time, especially exploring the new trends and following the innovative companies. I am a great supporter of blockchain and i believe that it will have a great effect in travel and hospitality.
What’s your favourite food destination(s) in Greece and why?
It’s an easy answer but hard to pick just one. My two favorite destinations are Alonissos and Sifnos.
Alonissos is where my father started the hotel business and i have spend every summer of my childhood. The island is famous for the fish and lobsters as well as the cheese pie. The best part about this island is that every restaurant is owned by a family of fishermen. This guarantees the quality of fish served.
Now Sifnos is my favorite culinary destination in Greece. It’s something about this island that motivates chef’s to create and to innovate. The variety of restaurants from traditional to Michelin star quality is remarkable for such a small destination. I try to visit every year and I must say it never disappoints me.
What’s your favourite travel destination(s) in Greece and why?
I am definitely biased but the Sporades islands are a great destination as it gives you the opportunity to explore the Alonissos marine park islands, dive, eat well but at the same time have the cosmopolitan aspect of Skiathos in your itinerary.
Given that Skiathos and Alonissos are connected with my job i love visiting the smaller islands of the Aegean like Schoinousa and Kimolos or unique islands like Hydra.
Destination or restaurant you can’t wait to get back to?
After a long lockdown i am not very picky on the destination, i just want to be able to walk through the streets of an old town of an island in Greece and have a great dinner with friends. Everywhere destination in Greece is worth visiting.
Tell us a bit about the story behind your hotel
The Alex was a city project that we were looking forward into creating. We felt that the city of Athens was moving towards the water and Piraeus was lacking quality accommodation.
We couldn’t have asked for a better location and view so it was easy for us to start telling our story. We wanted to create a hotel that it’s purpose is to upgrade the services provided to the neighborhood. Our goal is to create a hot spot for the neighborhood to come together and feel like home.
The neighborhood of the hotel, Kastella, is known as the fish culinary hot spot in Athens but up until the end of the 20th century was the home of strong shipping families. This glamourous aspect of the area was what inspired Aristotle Onassis to create a masterplan that would transform Kastella into the Monte Carlo of the East Med but unfortunately the plan was abandoned after the death of his son.
Our effort is to help revive the area and this is why we added Monte Kastella in the hotel name, which was the name that Onassis gave to his dream project.
What’s your favourite spot of the hotel and why?
Nothing compares to the rooftop NEST, it has an 180+ view of the Athens Bay all the way to Egina island.
How has COVID-19 impacted your hotel?
Covid-19 had a great impact to our operations as we had to shut down for a total of 8 months the past year. The combination of reduced traveling for both business and leisure with the shutdown has decreased out revenues. However, we had the time to reflect our operating procedures, create a ghost kitchen within the hotel with 3 different brands and add more services such as an EV charger and moving our breakfast to the rooftop.
What are your current and future plans about the hotel?
We are looking closely the changes that this pandemic has brought to travel. We are working on creating services that will cater them.
The Alex is an open house hotel and as long as this pandemic is ongoing we cannot be that open. We believe that as early as the beginning of next year we will provide the full services planned for both guests and locals.