Photographer's Note

The story begins at the time of the Venetian Occupation. Kapsaliana was then part of the Arkadi Monastery estate, the islandís most emblematic cenobium; which would subsequently play a pivotal- heroic and dramatic- role during the War of Independence. Around 1600, a little chapel dedicated to Archangel Michael is constructed and a hamlet thus begins to develop. In 1763, Filaretos, the Abbot of Arkadi Monastery decides to build an olive oil mill in the area: itís soil and morphology make it ideal for this undertaking.
More and more people come to work at the mill and built their houses around it. The settlement flourishes. At its peak Kapsaliana in Rethymno, Crete boasts 13 families and 50 inhabitants with the monk-steward of the Arkadi monastery in charge.

The settlement however gradually wanes after WW2, as the mill-a source of life for more than 200 years- closes down in 1955. When architect Myron Toupoyannis discovers this place in the 1970ís, only seven residents remain. He falls in love with the place; after all his professional interests lie with the restoration of similar traditional settlements. After visiting many artfully restored villages in Italy and France, he decides to buy a couple of crumbling residences in Kapsaliana.

After vanquishing many obstacles-as well as significant time and money constraints-Toupoyannisí vision eventually acquires a more specific shape and form. Works of restoration at Kapsaliana are painstaking and lengthy. Above all the architectís first and foremost concern is to do justice to the landís legacy and spirit; and to the wisdom of the local, vernacular architecture. In 2008 Kapsaliana Village hotel opens its gates and greets its first visitors.
WS Two more details from the complex

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Additional Photos by Aleksandar Dekanski (dekanski) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 319 W: 129 N: 1335] (8553)
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