The village

of Kapsaliana

The history of the village of Kapsaliana and the Kapsaliana Village Hotel is unique. Every single stone, every single inch of land, every single building and tree has its own story to tell to the visitors of the village while they enjoy their stay in a distinctive hotel.

The neighboring Arkadi Monastery, the most important monastery of the island, built the church dedicated to Archangel Michael, which has been since restored and is used until today. In 1763, they built the olive oil mill, which became the heart of the settlement that started being constructed around it. At its peak, fifty people lived in the village.

Architecture. Kapsaliana is a traditional, Cretan village characterized by Presidential Decree as of “High Cultural Value“. Without any architectural distortion, the village remains a characteristic example of Cretan architecture with the clear geometric volumes, of one or two-storey structures connected and combined with courtyards, stone stairs and arches. The image is completed with the characteristic doors, gates and carved stones. The high quality of the walls, doors and paintings indicate the architectural and constructing excellence of every single building.

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The old

olive oil mill

Filaretos, the Abbot of the historical Arkadi Monastery, completed the construction of a very important oil mill at the Kapsaliana village in 1763. At that time, the olive tree was considered to be a sacred tree, thus the olives and the olive oil were the most important element in daily life.

The precious olive seed was the core component for nutrition, lighting, various therapies, heating and religion.

The ideal soil, safe location and easy waste management rendered the village of Kapsaliana the perfect location for installing the oil mill.

At the period of prosperity, roughly thirty women from the neighbouring villages, five millers and many others would get together at Kapsaliana village for the olive harvest. The entire process was controlled and supervised by the monk-steward of the monastery.

The oil mill was a “source of life” for more than 200 years and it was actually because of the oil mill that the settlement of Kapsaliana was built.

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& Present

From the past... Once the church and the olive oil mill were built, in 1600 and 1763 respectively, the area started being gradually populated. When the settlement reached its heyday, roughly 13 families and 50 people had their houses built in Kapsaliana.

The monastery’s olive oil mill closed down in 1955 and moved to another location. The settlement was abandoned but its historical course was not meant to stop at that point. The restoration process lasted 30 years and gave new life and air to this beautiful area. The Kapsaliana Village Hotel was created with full respect to the history and tradition, maintaining the authenticity of the landscape in a totally unique way.

… to the present. A central, open-air paved square full of flowers was created around the new stone buildings in order to connect them to the old complex with the church. The new buildings were built with the same materials as the old one, stone, wooden beams and carved stones on the doors. In these buildings, you will find now the reception, the restaurant, the kitchen, the offices and the utility rooms. Today, these paved paths, the walls, the flowered courtyards create a functional and stylish ensemble which draws inspiration from the tradition and the simplicity of the land and beauty of Cretan nature.

The people here use to lead a simple life respecting nature and its gifts, enjoying the colors and aromas of flowers and herbs, watching the stars while time flowed peacefully.

Today, the visitor of the Kapsaliana Village Hotel has the chance to enjoy these very same ‘gifts’ staying in the rooms, the suites and all premises of the hotel.

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