Vatoussa's St. Nicholas Chapel and Walking Trails Become a Reality
By HCS Staff
George Sosonides, a leading Greek architect based in Lesvos, has drawn up plans for the entire project, including the construction of a 300-foot-long, hand-crafted masonry retaining wall. For months, villagers and workers scoured old quarries and razing sites for stones suitable for the walls. Because Vatoussa has been designated a traditional village by the Greek government, construction and renovation projects fall under strict guidelines to preserve their traditional architecture and appearance. When the final phase has been completed, the appearance of the grounds and walls will blend in with the existing architecture of the village.
Once the summer retreat of Byzantine royal families and their skilled artisans, the refreshing breezes of Vatoussa still beckon yearly visitors to the mountainous foothills of Lesvos. Built upward along a hillside, Vatoussa draws a loyal, repeat crowd to her pastel-
The St. Nicholas project has been approved and has received the full support of the local Greek Orthodox hierarch, His Eminence Metropolitan Chrysostomos of Mithymna, and the Archdiocese of Greece. Plans call for the completion of this village park sometime within the next 18 months. Estimates place the cost of the entire project at about two hundred thousand dollars. Mr. Christos Stavrakoglou, the President of the Christos and Mary Papoutsy Foundation for the Revitalization of Vatoussa, Lesvos, and the entire foundation board, have been laboring tirelessly to transform this geographically beautiful,
historical area into one of the major attractions of the village. Board members are already discussing plans for inaugural activities and extend preliminary invitations to all visitors and Vatoussans abroad to include the charming, traditional village of Vatoussa in their travel plans and to attend the inaugural festivities. Announcements with additional details will be forthcoming from the foundation board.
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