Walking passed Hellas House in the centre of Shanghai would have you believe you were in the upscale Athenian suburb of Kolonaki or Kifissia, however, this stunning Greek Culture and Lifestyle Centre is located in China’s biggest city.
Set on five levels, Hellas House offers a number of spaces for exceptional dining, socialising, corporate gatherings and the opportunity for the Greek community of Shanghai to gather under one elegant roof that houses distinctive designs that are influenced by Ancient Greece and monumental Greek art.
Owners, Greek expatriates Pavlos and Sophia Kontomichalos, have lived in Shanghai for 25 years and are involved in various Greek centered business ventures, including a honey, olive oil, and wine import company, as well as a boutique travel agency.
And although there are only a few hundred Greeks residing in Shanghai, Pavlos and Sophia had a vision of creating a beautiful space that would be used by the small Greek community, as well as offering a venue that would serve as a premises where others could experience “the best Greece has to offer: history, culture, natural products, hospitality, and healthy lifestyle,” says Pavlos.
The five-level centre includes a basement cellar that boasts an array of Greece’s finest wines and spirits, a ground floor open kitchen that serves up mouth-watering Greek dishes, a history gallery featuring replicas of ancient Greek artifacts, as well as a lounge, which backs onto a garden, pool, and dining patio where visitors can sit back and enjoy a full day of R&R; a mezzanine exhibition space; a second-floor dining room, living room, and terrace, and, an attic retreat; giving guests a wide variety of spaces to choose from.
Talented architect Kostas Chatzigiannis, who has called Shanghai home since 2007, worked with Pavlos and Sophia to design Hellas House. Chatzigiannis used materials and colour palettes commonly used by Ancient Greeks: marble, bronze, and wood; black, white, and gold. For floors, walls, and columns, large slabs of raw marble from the Aegean islands of Naxos and Thassos were shipped to China.
The main aim of Hellas House is for “guests to enjoy the best of Greek culture, gastronomy and hospitality,” says Pavlos whose passionate dedication is to bring the very best of Greece to China.