Greek Ice Cream Parlor by Stamos Hondrodimos Evokes Childhood Nostalgia
Born and raised near the sea, in Kamena Vourla, Greece, Stamos Hondrodimos forged a strong relationship early on with the country’s famed coastline and sun-soaked isles. The light, the landscape, and the architecture—“the good and the bad,” he jokes—inform his aesthetic, as does the region’s history and its people. A graduate of the Technological Educational Institute of Athens, Hondrodimos formed his own firm in 2009 (following a brief gig in fashion designer Lakis Gavalas’s atelier) with the idea of folding his sense of tradition into projects. “My philosophy is to create designs inspired by the local architecture and surroundings,” he says. His portfolio includes a range of residential and commercial properties, luxury hotels among them, as well as set design for H&M.
A few years ago, he teamed up with Paris-trained chef Kriton-Minas Poulis, who had fallen in love with the island of Kythera and decided to open an ice cream shop there. Hondrodimos refurbished an 1860’s two-story building, largely preserving vernacular elements: wood-beam ceiling, built-in benches, mosaic floor with tiles from the isle of Naxos. Unexpected features, including Venetian arches and limestone window frames, lend frisson, but the overall vibe is, well, chill. “I wanted everything,” he says, “to remind customers of their childhood summer ice creams.”