In the heart of Leros, you will find a mid-19th Century summer home, which has been beautifully renovated to become one of the most authentic and cozy places to stay at this under-the-radar Dodecanese island.
If you are looking for a getaway that will enable you to feel like a local, Casa Leros 1850 is the perfect place to stay; just footsteps from the stunning Aegean Sea, this charming home allows guests to capture Greek island life in all its glory.
IN+SIGHTS GREECE recently spoke with owner Dimitris Georgiou, who tells us about what makes the home so unique and he also shares travel tips on the best things to see and do while visiting Leros island.
Tell us about the renovations you made and how would you describe the look/feel of Casa Leros 1850?
It’s a traditional island home nestled under a tree in the bay of Alinda on the island of Leros. While renovating, we wanted to maintain its initial structure dating back to the 19th Century, characterised by thick stone walls, and petite window sizes, used by locals in the past for best protection against any form of threat from foreign enemies trying to invade the island. The renovations we made have allowed the house to keep its old traditional charm. It’s a place that encourages guests to walk barefoot, feel the summer breeze, and ultimately feel at home.
It features two bedrooms and two bathrooms. What other main indoor/outdoor spaces are there?
The house also features a fully equipped kitchen, a laundry with a washing machine, and ample outdoor space with a seating area, two dining areas, a hammock, and a garden.
What makes Casa Leros 1850 such a special place to stay at?
We think the uniqueness comes from the particular character it exudes. The property highlights traditional Greek island architecture and design. When staying at Casa Leros you instantly feel like a local who is travelling back in time. The house is also privileged to be nestled under a large tree providing great natural shade or light (depending on the time of day), it allows total privacy and is a stone’s throw from the sea (80 meters). It offers a truly relaxing setup for guests while maintaining its local charm.
Who is your summer home most suitable for?
Every year we have all sorts of guests stay at Casa Leros. From couples to families, that range from young ages through to older visitors. One thing is for sure – they are all looking for something authentic. An “experience” as opposed to your typical accommodation. And we think that’s what they are getting.
Tell us about the location of the house, what is close by?
As mentioned, it’s on the bay of Alinda in Leros, 80 meters from the sea, so it’s ideal for those looking for a spontaneous morning or afternoon swim. It’s also close to several picturesque seafront fish taverns and bars, offering amazing Greek delicacies and carefree evening strolls by the sea. While walking on the bay of Alinda, you also get to enjoy a great view of the Medieval Castle of Leros sitting opposite the bay.
Do you personally greet your guests upon arrival?
We commute back and forth between Leros and Athens. There are times when we greet our guests ourselves, and times when our wonderful partners do. There is always a local point of contact available at all times for whatever our guests might need regarding their stay, the island, or anything else they require.
Is the home available for rent all year round?
Casa Leros is available from March through to November.
When is the perfect time to visit Leros?
Leros is an unpretentious island, untouched by mass tourism which helps you see its true colours and character. There is not really a “best month” to visit as it typically comes down to what it is you are looking for. May and June are typically more quiet months, while July through to September tends to get busier. For those seeking a quiet stay away from crowded restaurants and beaches, any period beyond the end of July/August is great. We have guests who come as early as April and others in October, where you can also enjoy a swim in the sea.
What makes Leros unique?
For those looking for a traditional, authentic island life, Leros should be on the top of your list. Anyone looking for an off-the-beaten-path summer destination, something unpretentious, to get a feel for Greek island life, Leros is your place. If you wish to get away from the hustle and bustle of city life, travel back in time, Leros is it.
Can you please share a few of your favourite local eateries?
Mylos Fish Tavern in Agia Marina, Prima Aneplora in Alinda, El Greco in Panteli, Skipper’s in Lakki, View Restaurant (by the windmills on the way to the castle). For coffee and sweets, I recommend Paradosiako Patisserie in Agia Marina and Lime Beach Bar in Lakki.
Are there any local dishes/delicacies people should try when visiting Leros?
Anything fish-related as Leros is famous for its top-quality fish. Also taste ‘Patsavouropita,’ it’s a local dessert and it’s delicious.
Best beaches in Leros?
Agia Kioura, Vromolithos, Dia Liskaria are beautiful. Boat trips to Aspronisia, Lipsi, and Tiganakia are also highly recommended.
What historical sites are a must-see for first-time visitors to Leros?
The Medieval Castle of Leros, the War Museum of Leros, plus the Archaeological Museum of Leros. And for those into scuba-diving, you have the opportunity to see a shipwreck from WWII.
One thing people should not miss when visiting Leros?
Walk or drive up to the Medieval Castle of Leros to witness a 360-degree view of Leros and a breathtaking sunset.
Finally, what do you think is the most memorable experience when staying at Casa Leros?
The opportunity to live in a house that truly embodies the island’s character. The opportunity to feel like a local. The opportunity to connect with nature while blending in seamlessly with the local environment. The opportunity to live with less; but it feels like more.