Greeks worldwide are known for their hospitality; in fact, Greek hospitality is deeply rooted in greek culture since antiquity. Ancient Greeks paid homage to Zeus who was the patron God to hospitality and guests. The word ‘Xenios’ refers to the notion of generosity and friendship to people being far from their homes.
Alexandros Alexandrou, the young Lemnian entrepreneur, knows exactly what Greek hospitality means. How could he not, since he owns various businesses on the island of Lemnos and his main aim is to offer not only good services to guests but authentic experiences?
Before I start narrating all the beautiful things Alexandros is managing, let me tell you a few words about the island. Lemnos lies on the northern part of the Aegean Sea and stays away from mass tourism, due to its long distance from Athens. The island is a destination for peaceful holidays and for alternative experiences.
"My aim is to create true experiences for my guests. Everything offered is carefully selected with attention to detail. This is how you make your guests respect you and you develop a good relationship with them", says Alexandros.
Taste Lemnos is more than a typical online travel agency. Besides finding hotel accommodation, plane and ferry tickets and car rentals, guests will find a variety of activities; they will taste Lemnos in many different ways.
What I personally found appealing are the Cooking Classes with Mrs Marika, Alexandros’s mother. “My mother is a typical Greek Mama, who knows all about good food and she loves to share her secrets and skills with our guests. While she cooks together with her guests, she narrates stories from the past. People love it! Then, when the food is ready, we all sit around the table and enjoy our meal”.
Trust me, these kinds of experiences are the ones that stay with you forever; the stories you shared with people you just met while enjoying a tasty meal.
“We also offer Wine and Cheese tasting. Our island is popular for its wine and its delicious local cheeses. Our guests try different Lemnian wine varieties, along with four different kinds of cheese, they learn about their unique characteristics and how to pair these products”.
After all, what is better than knowing a land through its flavours?
“One more experience we offer through Taste Lemnos is the Sunset Picnic. People will visit the Chapel of St. Marina, a peaceful location, from where they will enjoy breathtaking views of Moudros Gulf. Then, we will all taste
local delicacies, cheese, cold cuts and various mezes along with local wine”.
An evening to remember!
Taste Lemnos offers Pottery Classes as well, Horseback Riding and Trekking adventures. Staying true to its name, it’s all about ‘tasting’ Lemnos, it’s all about experiencing unique activities with the locals.
Taste Lemnos the Book
Alexandros went a step further. Together with the Greek chef Alexandros Papandreou, they brought to life the ‘Taste Lemnos the Book’.
"This can be described as an interactive book of gastronomy. It’s like a personal guide, you keep notes with all the things you loved in the island and who knows, maybe you will give it to your friends and children and then they will come to the island looking for everything described in the book. Well, that’s my vision about it; to function as an interactive souvenir full of recipes and hospitality stories from our beautiful island".
Alexandros is also the founder of Pezoula Cafe at Moudros, an all-day cafe offering a few but carefully selected dishes.
"You know, everything here is local and handmade. The milk we use for the cappuccino is local, all our products are handmade and locally sourced. Nothing is prepared from supermarkets or mass production. And this is highly appreciated by our visitors”.
"It’s not easy to be an entrepreneur. You will face many difficulties and everything you do needs to be carefully decided. But staying true to your aim, your vision, being creative, doing what you love and being honest with the people who trust you for their holidays, is what will make you succeed”.
I personally visited the island of Lemnos a few years back during a press trip. Alexandros arranged many of the above-presented activities and I can tell you one thing, he loves what he does and he is the most caring host. All his partners share the same values and after all, this is how you develop long-lasting relationships with your guests or visitors.
So, if you are looking for peaceful holidays, away from mass tourism and if you are curious to discover untouched places and authentic people, then Lemnos is the island for you.