An idyllic island holiday is composed of several key aspects – plush, super-comfortable accommodations, delectable, beautifully prepared food, pristine, peaceful beaches, leisurely romantic strolls along picturesque village roads and dynamic adventure activities in stunning landscapes. And then there’s shopping! Exploring local art and design and finding the perfect treasures to bring home with you to travel you back to magical moments, while bringing a fresh, exciting new air to your home or wardrobe is always divine. Especially over the last 20 years many of Greece’s islands have developed sophisticated, elegant and innovative concept stores and galleries that perfectly present the works of new and well established artists and designers. Lose yourself in discovering and relishing local creations using our mini guide to the most unmissable hubs.
Here is a round-up of 14 stellar shops around the islands to score treasured Greek items!
Rarity Gallery, Mykonos showcases local up-and-coming as well as globally acclaimed artists, and is one of the oldest in glamorous Mykonos, catering to its high-brow and wealthy visitors. The progressive space centres on chiefly contemporary sculpture, paintings and photography and hosts several solo exhibitions throughout the year.
YRIA Ceramics, Paros
The minimalist, super-stylish, utilitarian, hand-made clay objects (bowls, plates, pots, saucers) make for an ideal addition to your home collection as well as an elegant great gift with a contemporary Greek aura. The workshop/store also makes customised designs.
Kivo Art Gallery, Skiathos
Located in the Kivo Art and Gourmet Art Hotel, this space presents established as well as new Greek and foreign artists and presents annual solo and group exhibitions.
ART & CONCEPT Stores.
Art Space, Santorini
Actually carved into Santorini’s volcanic pumic rock and once a chamber of an old winery, the gallery itself has a special ambiance, as well as exciting painting, photography, jewellery and sculpture exhibitions by foreign and local artists. Combine your art-grazing with a wine-tasting.
Fish & Olive, Naxos
This gallery / store showcases paintings, lithographs and sculptures made with Naxos marble and metallic olive tree sculptures by a variety of artists as well as handmade ceramic art. Nearby is the Fish & Olive Boutique, which sells olive wood items as well as awarded olive oil from the Peloponnese, clothing and jewellery designs. The boutique stocks the exclusive ceramics of Katharina Bolesch and the jewellery of Alexander Reichardt.
Kapopoulos Fine Arts, Patmos
In a charming home-like space, bold and colourful art by famous classic and contemporary Greek artists adorns the walls and is perched on floors at this gallery space, which has as its primary aim to make art accessible and affordable to everyone. Kapopoulos Galleries are also to be found on Paros, Mykonos and Spetses, as well as in Thessaloniki, Athens and Cyprus.
Anti Art Gallery, Antiparos
This gallery, on a tiny island that has become a Hollywood A’lister’s summer paradise presents enticing and innovative photography, 3D art, ceramics, sculpture, installation and painting exhibitions. Acclaimed artists from Greece and around the world keep the gallery buzzing with events that draw art-lovers throughout the summer.
Atlantis Books, Santorini
Not art or decor but still offering excellent finds to take home with you in a unique environment that has been written and spoken about globally, this bookstore has even been listed as the number one “destination of a lifetime” by National Geographic.
THETA Concept Store, Serifos
Urban chic in a carefree island setting with a pretty courtyard, this concept store presents designer decor items, coffee table books, clothing, beachwear, accessories, memorabilia from Serifos and jewellery as well as homeware by charismatic Greek and international artists and designers.
With the essence of classical Greek aesthetics and culture as its prime design concept, this well known store showcases highly stylised clothing, decor, porcelain homeware and jewellery designs embellished with Greek symbolism, patterns and references.
The Hydra Trading Company, Hydra
This is a classic hotspot on artsy Hydra, which ha been attracting art-lovers for decades with its Hydra School Project group exhibitions and stylish boutique stores and galleries. Apart from solo and group exhibitions by local and global artists, this concept store sells souvenirs – from island-folksy to modern minimalist -as well as accessories, home decor items like embellished cushions, tableware, crockery, vases and clothing.
Greece-inspired romantic dresses, minimalist-folk kaftans, simple yet beautifully crafted sandals, low-key, stylish accessories, clean-smelling, pure cosmetic products are presented in this tranquil, chic concept store in the Chora.
MoreThanThis, Anti Paros
Morethanthis was created to fulfil the personal need of the owner to create her own designs and at the same time to provide a showcase for the works of talented, young Greek designers from fields such as sculpture, fine jewelery, prints, style and beauty. From trending designers like Yannis Sergakis and exclusive cult Greek skincare like Opuntia Luxury Oils , the space provides an appropriate environment for the display of their designs and for the discovery of these Greek products.
Featuring Greek designs only, Speira sells trendy as well as classic clothes, accessories, artworks, homeware, award-winning Greek food products and stylish island memorabilia in a delighfully airy, minimalist “open-air market” inspired space.
By Alexia Amvrazi