GREEK ARCHITECTURAL HERITAGE: OLD PRACTICES IN NEW PROCEDURES FOR TOURISM DEVELOPMENT

 

 

Zoe Georgiadou

Department of Interior Architecture, Design and Interior Architecture Laboratory – Faculty of Applied Arts and Culture, University of West Attica, Aegaleo, Athens, Greece

 

ABSTRACT

The carrying capacity[1] of places during periods with ever-increasing numbers of visitors represents an aspect that in recent years has become an indicator to evaluate sustainable development. Areas where the inhabitants now refuse to receive extremely large number of tourists have been transformed, due to over-capacity of the places, into touristic villages where the cultural environment is degraded, the natural resources are wasted and tourist satisfaction is frustrated or becomes an established stereotype. The tourist model of opulence and luxury imposes a wide use of accommodations with specific design characteristics.

The built environment, which is connected to the material heritage of the place, is one of the most important aspects to contribute to the construction of the cultural experience and the authenticity of this experience. Under this point of view, built space is the most vulnerable part in this procedure, and many critical reviews have been verbalized, concerning its ability to retain its authentic local characteristics during a tourist development procedure. In Greece where the landscape is so rich in history, cultural continuity has become a dynamic emblem for cultural tourism development, which was incorporated in the state’s economic policies, shyly during the pre-war period and as a national goal during the post war period.

This paper focuses on the study of cases based on practices used in Greece during the past decades, and that could contribute with new perspectives in the improvement of the tourist cultural experience. The study refers to the attempt of Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO) between 1975-1992 at exploiting traditional Greek settlements, as a vital part of residential areas, which were meant to play a significant role in the touristic exploitation and the economic development of the country. Since 1975 the pilot application of the programme and the experienced results were drastically differentiated in settlements, such as Oia on the island of Santorini, where the carrying capacity of the settlement is exceeded and Mesta in Chios island where new practices provided support to the island’s culture and nature. The research methodology is based on a critical comparison of the tourism development procedure and its evolution in the two settlements, pointing out the similarities and the differences concerning their built environment evolution and carrying capacity.

Key Words: Tourism development, traditional settlements, cultural heritage, carrying capacity, Oia Santorini, Mesta Chios, GNTO programme.

 

1INTRODUCTION

Greece, with its landscape so rich in history, has seen its cultural continuity become a dynamic emblem for cultural tourism development, which was incorporated in the state’s economic policies[2], shyly during the pre-war period, and as a national goal during the post war period[3]. Many districts both on the mainland and the islands, which were characterized by their vernacular architectural heritage, were suggested as settlements for tourism development. Through the programme “Preservation and Development of Traditional Settlements in Greece” (1975-1995) the Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO) succeeded in restoring many local houses for tourist accommodation. During the first period of this programme, six traditional settlements were included: Vathia (Mani –Peloponnese), Byzitsa (Pelion- Thessaly), Mesta (Chios Island), Oia (Santorini island), Papigko (Zagorochoria Epiros) and Fiskardo (Kefalonia Island). These settlements were selected for the quality of their architectural heritage and housing structure, their integration into the natural environment, their representation concerning different forms of local and regional architecture and housing typology, and the availability of sufficient un-inhabited buildings, and their potential for development. Until 1991, 16 settlements and 119 buildings were preserved and turned into tourist accommodation. The GNTO received, for this programme, international recognition and prizes: Europa Nostra 1980 for Oia, 1989 for Papigko, 1986 Biennale Prize for Oia, an Award of the International Association of Tourism Journalists for Pelion.

The preservation of the local houses and the architectural configurations followed the vernacular architectural characteristics of the buildings, and used the same local materials, with the least possible interventions. The GNTO programme was appreciated by the local communities where it was applied, for it created the ideal tourist accommodations, improved the life quality of the inhabitants with the installation of modern infrastructures, offered several work positions and supported the economic development. At the residential level, small units for tourist accommodation were established, restraining negative implications on the natural and cultural supply, while quality standards relating to architectural preservation were introduced to the locals.

Today, these first six settlements and their preserved buildings have evolved very differently. Some, such as Vathia have been abandoned. Others have kept their style and original dynamic, such as Mesta, Vyzitsa and Papigo, while Sandorini and Fiskardo have developed to their fullest capacity as tourist destinations. It would be useful, at this point, to mention that the greatest part of the over developed settlements are situated on islands.

 

  1. THE SETTLEMENTS
    1. Oia in Santorini island

The Cycladic island Santorini[4] gradually became a primary tourist destination, and the traditional settlement of Oia a prominent option. The island is affected by its active volcano, which provides certain constructive materials such as Thiraic volcanic earth, pumice, red and black stone, as well as by its lack of wood. Santorini flourished during the modern period, at the end of 19th century, through viticulture and transit shipping. The traditional architecture of Oia gained its specific characteristics based on social hierarchy: the lower classes continued to live in cave constructions with features of “picturesque” and “organic” configuration, as these are defined by Filippidis (2010)[5], while the upper classes lived in monumental buildings that carried neoclassical elements. In 1956 a large earthquake changed the island’s prospects of development: the state aimed at rebuilding the destroyed settlements (1958-63) but the natives seemed to reject the pre-existing traditional forms. This fact changed the development orientation in Santorini and converted the island into a primary tourist destination. Filippidis (2010) claims that this transformation “is materialized under the same conditions of all Greek territories, that is to exploit the historical past as a illustrative construction, connected with the unique landscape”.[6] During this procedure the sight of the Caldera surpassed the cave houses, to acquire the primary tourist value, something reflected in the contemporary environment.

Pictures 1, 2, 3, 4: Oia Santorini, preserved houses through the programme “Preservation and Development of Traditional Settlements in Greece” (1975-1995) GNTO. Source: Collective, (1984). GNTO Programme 1975-1985. Athens: GNTO publications, pp. 145 & 147 (up) and 144 & 145.

The traditional cave house of Oia was based on a primitive construction of the 19th century, integrated into the extrusive rock, greenless and treeless natural environment. The difficulties in construction and the lack of water modulated these primitive houses to be built inside the rock- that was easy to burrow, and the use of supplementary building parts coming out of the cave construction, depended on the economic conditions. The poorest the house was, the most cave–like it was. The part of the settlement consisting of simple cave houses was located on the cliff of the Caldera, and in order to be protected by the south wind, high walls built at the house’s façade. The caves housed mostly sailors and the crew in general, while the captains lived bigger houses in the inner part of the settlement, which were protected by the winds. The houses hanging in the Caldera were based on space economy in order to serve basic human needs. They were characterized by plain decoration, environmental sustainability, collection of water into underground tanks, use of local materials and limited use of precious rare materials such as wood. The cave functions as regulator for the local climate conditions-wind, hot and cold weather. The cave functions as a regulator for the local climate conditions- wind, hot and cold weather. The rocky ground and the steep cliff made the houses follow the ground’s curves, in a linear manner, and produced the required harmonic co-existence, based on the respect of the inhabitants for their natural environment. The typology is based on space succession: from the main room-“sala” to the back where the bedroom is, which is lit and ventilated by the front room. The wall between them has the same openings, as the façade. The kitchen is a small room connected to the sala and the toilet is outside the house, in the yard. Concerning the interior spaces, Varveris (1981)[7] refers to the absence of adornment, attributing it to the lack of wood, and characterizes the cave house “without ornaments” and “plain”. “There is not fireplace in the room that is filled with plates and other decoration. There is no elevated wooden bed -or “onta” which decorates so beautifully the sleeping corner. So the cave house of Santorini has its own form and expression. Its acquaintance does not give the impression of picturesque or charming, but rather surprises and obtrudes the visitor with its simplicity and peculiarity”. Thus it is not only the lack of wood, but also poverty that gave locals only the very basics. Everything else was curved in the volcanic rock, fixed and integrated in the plasticity of the structure.

Picture 5: Oia Santorini, preserved house through the programme “Preservation and Development of Traditional Settlements in Greece” (1975-1995) GNTO. Source: Collective, (1984). GNTO Programme 1975-1985. Athens: GNTO publications, p. 145.

 

The configuration of the settlement of Oia is based on the aesthetic content of “picturesque” with irregular and incomplete forms, open to intervention, and that have evolved as part of their surroundings. In the traditional architecture of Oia we can recognize all these factors connected with the climate conditions, as described by Amos Rapoport (2010): the adaptation of the local conditions and natural environment, social and human needs, structure and culture of the local community, materials and constructive techniques based on the land.

 

  1. Mesta in Chios island

Chios[8] is one of the islands of the Northeastern Aegean, with many traditional, well-preserved settlements. We can distinguish three main architectural types among them, based on the economical and social situation of the locals: the wealthy, large houses of Kampos and the capital Chora, the medieval, southern villages with their peculiar urban planning and fortification, and the poor, northern villages with their characteristic, vernacular architecture[9]. Mesta is a traditional medieval village situated in the Southern part of Chios’ island. It is one of the fortified settlements of Chios, which was constructed inland for protection against pirates’ attacks, and to safeguard the economic exploitation of the mastic, which is an exclusively local product. The village of Mesta, although provided by with a safe port, was built at a distance from it in order not to be assailed by sudden attacks.. The defensive wall of the fortress was formed by the exterior walls of the houses, without a single opening, whilst at its corners were small, round towers for control and observation.

 

Pictures 6, 7: Mesta Chios, preserved houses through the programme “Preservation and Development of Traditional Settlements in Greece” (1975-1995) GNTO. Source: Collective, (1984). GNTO Programme 1975-1985. Athens: GNTO publications, pp. 115, 114.

 

The roads and communal public spaces were limited and irregular, without trees[10]. The settlement was densely constructed with morphological homogeneity, which was reflected in the size and style of the buildings, and in many occasions their interiors were extended over the narrow roads with a vaulted stone construction. The houses’ configuration was affected by the little available space, with neither courtyards nor outdoor staircases[11]. The access to the upper level was by stone, interior staircases. At the ground floor were the auxiliary spaces: stables, storage rooms, kitchen and spaces for the agricultural production. On the first floor were the main rooms of the house, and sometimes the kitchen with a central atrium (agerto or pounti), which gave access to the roof in order to escape in case of attacks. So the houses’ roofs were all built consecutively, at the same level, forming a sort of mega-construction[12] of the settlement. The house’s flooring on the ground level was made of stones, and on the first level was covered with a strong hydraulic plaster. In many houses, the façades were decorated with scratched, geometrical patterns in horizontal rows, called “xisto”[13]. Besides xisto the façades in Mesta have many decorative elements, such as free standing arches in rows, columns, ornamental double doors with decorated door-heads, skylights with plaster framework and pieces of glass in decorative patterns.

Pictures 8, 9: Mesta Chios, preserved guest house of Kasternoudi. Source: Collective, (1984). GNTO Programme 1975-1985. Athens: GNTO publications, pp. 120, 121.

 

When Mesta was included in the GNTO’s programme, 7 houses were preserved as guesthouses for tourists, as well as a tourist bureau (1977-79), while a coffee shop and restaurant, the main village square and 15 more houses were preserved during the next period (1981-85). The programme included 27 guesthouses and 9 commercial buildings (except the above mentioned launderette, shop for hand woven textiles, communal WC, water and sewerage systems). The interventions on the local buildings “were made with respect for the exterior façades of the buildings and minimum possible interventions on their interiors, without altering the simplicity of the architectural style of the spaces. After the ruined and/ or demolished spaces were restored where necessary, their interior spaces were transformed into establishments for hygienic spaces and small communal kitchens, preserving and repairing all the individual constructive elements (ovens, wooden attics), while the eventual, newer extensions were demolished. The external façades without plaster were kept untouched. Fanlights were added based on the local characteristic standards. New wooden windows and doors were used, designed in the local simple style, and cement tiles were placed on the floors. The newly designed furnishing consisted of simple wooden forms. Traditional woven fabrics made in Oia’s workshop were used»[14].

Pictures 10, 11: Mesta Chios, preserved guest house of Kasternoudi. Source: Collective, (1984). GNTO Programme 1975-1985. Athens: GNTO publications, pp. 120, 121.

 

3.THE CARRYING CAPACITY OF THE PLACE

The carrying capacity of space is an important issue that has been connected with environmental sustainability and tourism development of a place since the 1970s and 1980s. Researchers on tourism management and environmental sciences have produced voluminous literature, introducing the term TCC (Tourism Carrying Capacity) and defining the different aspects connected to it, in qualitative and quantitative terms depending on the special characteristics of the spaces. In a brief review, we can follow the evolution of the concept concerning tourism development and environmental impacts in the works of Schneider (1978)[15], Washburne(1982)[16], Stankey and Mc Cool (1984)[17], O’ Reilly (1986)[18], Coccosis and Parpairis (1992)[19] Stewart[20], Simpson (1993)[21], Glasson and al.,[22] (1995), Champerlain[23] , Lindberg and al.[24] (1997), Cooper and al.,[25] Middleton and Hawkins (1998)[26], McCool and Lime (2001)[27], University of the Aegean (2002)[28], Coccosis and Mexa (2004)[29], and many others.

A general conclusion could be that the carrying capacity of a place connected with tourism development is neither defined nor calculated under the same criteria, since it represents “a fluid and dynamic concept, according to the evolution of the environmental and socioeconomic conditions of the destination[30]. In many works (as in Middleton and Hawkins, Coccosis and Parpairis, Champerlain, and others) carrying capacity is connected with quantitative aspects, such as the scale of infrastructures, numerical estimations and the ability of a certain place to contain or accommodate a certain number of visitors, without degrading the natural resources, or causing negative impacts due to overuse. Others (like O Reilly) distinguish two qualitative concepts in evaluating carrying capacity: one that has the host community impacts as a priority, and the other that argues for the tourists’ satisfaction, which may decline as a destination becomes commercialized and looses its charm and authentic qualities. The World Tourism Organization (UNWTO)[31] gave, in 1981, the following definition of tourism carrying capacity: the maximum number of tourists that may visit a destination at the same time without causing destruction of the physical, economical, social and cultural environment and an unacceptable decrease in the quality of visitors’ satisfaction. In 1989, Pearce[32] introduced two more issues concerning the carrying capacity concept: an environmental, perceptual or psychological point of view, and defined the term as the maximum acceptable situation of tourism development. In this manner, carrying capacity was developed either in measurable practical indexes that relied in a variety of assumptions, or as a qualitative perception. We can see, through these theories, that depending on the circumstances in each region, carrying capacity is mainly empirical based on evaluation and comparison between similar cases. According to this point of view, several researchers argue that carrying capacity can be quantified since many of these issues are subjective and mutable (McCool and Lime), producing theories that are impossible to apply in real circumstances (Sandoro 2012)[33]. As Pederson (2002[34]) notices, Unesco warns that the practical application of the concept of tourism capacity can give the wrong signal, pointing out that that the whole site may be below the carrying capacity, while a part of it may be crowded. Consequently, there are places that cannot be studied under the same conditions of carrying capacities. Yang, and al. (1998)[35] notice that “if the demand of tourism is growing and the carrying capacity of tourist resorts are ignored, small scale development as well as large scale development will equally lead to deterioration, despite that small scale development might be more socially and culturally friendly to local host communities”.

Concerning the calculation of the carrying capacity of spaces within cultural tradition, and taking in consideration their main characteristics, site and size, as well as economical, cultural and psychological aspects within the goal of tourism development, and without commercialization of the cultural resources, Serraos (2013)[36] refers to the quantitative ratio between tourist and inhabitants in preserved historical and traditional settlements. He defines this ratio from 1 to 2 up to 1 to 4, depending on the size, and for very small settlements, he increases this ratio to 1 to 1. Additionally he defines the ratio of tourist beds for each inhabitant between 2 to 4 per 100 inhabitants.

 

  1. THE RESEARCH: COMPARATIVE STUDY OF THE SETTLEMENTS OF OIA AND MESTA

When Mesta (with a population of 400 inhabitants) was included in the GNTO’s programme “Preservation and Development of Traditional Settlements in Greece” 7 houses were preserved as guesthouses and 1 as a tourist bureau, during the first phase (1977-79), whilst a café-restaurant and the central square of the village, as well as 15 more houses were restored during the next period (1981-85). Upon completion of the programme, 27 guesthouses and 9 commercial buildings were in operation (except for the previously mentioned laundries, weaving workshop, public WC as well as water supply and sewerage systems), offering a total of 110 beds. In Oia (with a population of 306 inhabitants) the programme started in 1976, and by 1977 10 guesthouses operated, as well as the weaving workshop and the marine museum, which was established in a monumental building. In 1980, 15 more guesthouses and a restaurant were added to these buildings, while in 1991 (by which time the population was of 450 inhabitants) at the completion of the programme, 40 more houses were attributed and usufruct extension contracts were approved for the buildings that had previously been preserved, offering a total of 200 beds.

For both traditional settlements, tourism development was achieved through the preserved traditional houses, under the supervision of the GNTO[37]. In this first period we find out that «the goal of the architectural intervention was the re-habitation, promotion, and restoration of the settlement and selected buildings with their initial picturesque and authentic vitality”. The attempt was focused on evaluated, abandoned houses, that had worthwhile folk architectural characteristics, and were preserved in order to be used as host spaces, and also accompaniment buildings with supportive functions, that could motivate the settlement’s re-habitation (for example weaving workshops in cooperation with ΕΟΜΜΕΧ) and construction of infrastructures (water tanks, sewerage systems). During this procedure the public and the private space continued to operate as a unified entity, preserving the local identity of the settlements that first served its inhabitants, and second its visitors, who could experience a genuine, temporal inhabitation. The GNTO’s advertising posters with the title Hellas, used pictures of everyday life, paintings by well-known painters (such as Spyros Vasileiou and Panayiotis Tetsis), or graphic representations of traditional settlements. The Greek culture, the sea entrancement, the whitewashed geometry of the Cycladic islands or the medieval fortress configuration and characteristic scratched plasterwork of Mesta, represented the main asset of tourist development of these small islands, without putting them apart from everyday qualities and their authentic expression.

Architectural interventions in the interiors were based on the conservation of the building’s envelope authentic elements as well as the functional configuration with the least possible modifications: mainly the transformation of small storage rooms into bathrooms. The destroyed parts were restored to their previous forms using documentation in the form of oral testimonies, photographic or other archival material. The image of these guesthouses is completed by a series of wooden furniture items designed with the simplicity of traditional Greek pieces as iron or wooden beds, stools and chairs. These wooden elements stand humbly, besides traditional structural elements such as the whitewashed or stone walls and domes, semicircular window arches, alcoves, armoires, semi-enclosed transitive open spaces, etc. The evident interventions concern confined electricity and lighting installations. The sense of “authentic reproduction” and its “authentication”[38] by the GNTO services is supported by the evaluation of various information sources that included the use and function, tradition and techniques, spirit and sensation and other internal and external aspects[39].

The two settlements although different, have many architectural similarities concerning scale, form and density of the buildings, irregular roads and limited public spaces, constructions with features of “picturesque” and “organic” configuration. Both islands have a rich cultural environment with voluminous building infrastructures, which support the attraction of their natural environment. Concerning the local agricultural production, both islands have a long history that dates back to ancient years in the production of well-known products such as: Vinsanto wine, mastic, etc. In both villages the GNTO programme planned to promote tourism development and to motivate the settlement’s re-habitation with its authentic life. Today, after about 40 years, the two settlements seem to have followed a different path concerning the number of inhabitants and of tourists, the number of beds for tourist accommodation and their orientation in local production. The main difference appears to be that Oia has focused on a mono-cultivated tourism evolution, while Mesta appears to have kept a balance between its traditional production and a mild tourism development, which is often connected with eco-tourism activities. Looking at statistics, we can deduct that today, in Mesta, 9 tourist settlements are functioning (4 hotels, 3 guest rooms and 2 furnished houses) with a total number of 115 beds. In Oia, 389 tourist settlements are functioning (39 hotels, 147 guest rooms and 211 furnished houses and mansions) with a total number of 3.996 beds[40]. The population census of 2011[41]gives the village of Mesta 337 people, and the settlement of Oia 665 people. Concerning the carrying capacity, and more specifically according to Serraos references, the quantitative ratio between tourist and inhabitants in preserved historical and traditional settlements is for Oia 6 tourists for every single inhabitant, and for Mesta it 1 tourist for 3 inhabitants. Additionally the ratio for the number of tourist beds for per 100 inhabitants is 601 beds per 100 inhabitants in Oia, and 34 beds per 100 inhabitants in Mesta.

Pictures 12, 13: Mesta Chios, preserved guest house Lida Mary Hotel (left) and Oia Santorini Anemi Lovers House. Source: http://www.lidamary.gr/en/ ,https://www.anemivillas.com/el/villas-and-houses/63-anemi-lovers-house.

 

However carrying capacity is also connected with quantitative aspects, such as the ability of a certain place to contain or accommodate certain number of visitors without degrading the natural resources, or causing negative impacts due to overuse. And this also affects the qualitative architectural characteristics of the settlement and their authentic form[42]. Mesta, possibly because of its productive orientation (as a mastic village) and because it has not become a prominent tourist destination, hosts a low to middle tourist development “which should further be supported compatibly to the agricultural production and the local way of life and cultural assets. This type of tourism should be adapted to the local space characteristics of the island”[43].The Guardian[44] referring to Santorini island and the estimations that about 2.000.000 tourists will be visiting the island during the peak season of 2018, asks if tourism threatens the inhabitants of the place. The reason is that, today, there are more than 1.000 beds per 1km2 and 700 hundreds restaurants, cafes, bakeries and bars, situated into an area of 70 km2. The infrastructures cannot support the constantly increasing numbers of tourists, and natural sources as water are wasted. Although Santorini and the Caldera are favorable destinations and hotel accommodation is satisfied by boutique hotels or luxury guest houses, it seems that the visitors are not aware of authenticity, and the indigenous people are focused on presenting the heritage of the host community as an illusion. So even if tourism benefits financially the host community and encourages local employment, it does not seem to improve development and does neither protect nor enhance natural environment and cultural heritage characteristics. Community’s everyday life as vivid culture is absent.

 

  1. CONCLUSION

Tourism has been, for many years now, a huge global industry, which can offer enormous economic benefits. But at the same time it can have enormous environmental, social and psychological consequences onto the local communities. According to ICOMOS[45], the principles for promoting and managing tourism in ways that respect and enhance the heritage and living cultures of the host communities, so as to encourage a dialogue between conservation interests and the tourism industry, are that “conservation should provide well-managed opportunities for tourists and members of the host community to experience and understand the local heritage and culture at first hand; the relationship between heritage places and tourism is dynamic and should be managed in a sustainable way for present and future generations; conservation and tourism planning should create a visitor experience that is enjoyable, respectful, and educational; host communities and indigenous people should be involved in planning for conservation and tourism; tourism and conservation activities should benefit the host community, improving development and encouraging local employment; tourism programmes should protect and enhance natural and cultural heritage characteristics[46]. Authenticity is a key element for the application of these principles and the designation of local identities. During the last thirty five years, the transition to the post modern period, globalization, the international life-style, the changes in the means of transportation and the domination of the internet and social nets have homogenized the tourist product, and led to a different phase in tourist development, to become the preponderant option of Greece’s economical policies, that however seems to navigate to a sort of underdevelopment or to a “tourist paradox” as aptly noticed by Nikolakakis (2015)[47].

Looking at the two reference cases of Oia and Mesta, the intensive tourism development of Sandorini and the mild development of Chios have led to different situations concerning tourists and host communities. Spatial planning and the reuse of buildings as proposed by the GNTO programme, in connection with tourism, re-habitation and local farming productions represented a progressive ambitious plan to be led under public auspice. A constructive critique of this plan for the selected traditional settlements in Greece, is that although the materialization of the programme was done under the supervision of the organization, it’s further development lacked the care that should have focused not only on the preserved buildings, even after their were returned to their owners, but also on the local settlements, something that could have contributed towards avoiding touristic over-exploitation. The pressure that Oia, on the island of Santorini, endured, resulted in a change of land uses and redirected the local community to a dominant tourist sector, allowing for arbitrary interventions and the deterioration of the authentic architectural environment. On the contrary, Mesta in Chios, remained within the limits of its spatial capacity, protected its natural and cultural environmental assets and products, giving it the possibility to enhance its attractiveness as a tourist destination in the future.

To conclude, we could make the point for a model of tourist development based on the exploitation of the natural and cultural Greek environment. In many cases, famous tourist destinations exclude the local way of life, aiming for bare economic profits. Thus the fragmental and blurry tourist policy following the GNTO’s Grant Plans, led to susceptible conditions, which could affect disastrously preferred chosen destinations. Whilst the architectural space plays a crucial role in tourist satisfaction (in tourism destinations), it becomes the most vulnerable vehicle for portraying an inauthentic identity, creating visual stereotypes. What we could keep from the GNTO’s programme is its aim to support tourism development while keeping it connected with the local way of life and the authentic spatial characteristics of the traditional settlements though their preservation. Also these were scheduled through a general holistic plan of tourism development, which it was not only supervised but also materialized by public bodies. Perhaps the vision for tourism could be a return to the idea of Xenios Zeus’s “ethical model of compensating hospitality”[48].

 

 

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The Guardian (28-08-2017).Santorini’s Popularity soars, but the locals say it has hit saturation point. http://the Guardian.com/world/2017/Aug/28/santorini-popularity-soars-but-locals-say-it-has-hit-saturation-point, accessed 30-04-2018.

Trilling, L., (1972). Sincerity and Authenticity. London: Oxford University Press.

Tsoumas, J., (2017). “The configuration of the tourism product significance through the print advertising  communication technique: then and now” Journal of Tourism Research, ISSN 2241-7931.Vol. 16/2017. Pp. 131-143.

University of the Aegean– Department of Environmental Studies, Laboratory of Environmental Planning(2002). “Defining, Measuring and Evaluating Carrying Capacity in European Tourism Destinations”. Material for a Document. Commissioned by the European Commission, Directorate-General for Environment, Nuclear Safety and Civil Protection. Athens.

Varveris, G., (1954-55). “Houses of Santorini”, in Michelis, P., A., (edit.) (1981). The Greek Folk House: Student projects. Athens: NTUA Publications. P.p. 41-60.

Washburne, R., F., (1982). “Wilderness Recreation Carrying Capacity: Are Numbers Necessary?” Journal of Forestry, No. 80, November 1982. Pp. 726-728.

Yang, S., Pennington –Gray, L., and Holececk, D., F., (1998). Scale Issues in tourism Development. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/255614402_Scale_issues_in_tourism_development.

 

[1] The term is used to describe the ability to contain or accommodate according to O’ Reilly, A., M., (1986). “Tourism Carrying Capacity: Concept and Issues”. Tourism Management (7) December 1986, Butterworth & Co Publishers Ltd, pp. 254-258.

[2]Tourism Bureau was established in 1914. The Greek National Tourism Organization in its primary form was founded in 1929 under the supervision of the Finance Ministry. In 1936, there was the Sub- Ministry of Press and Tourism, in 1941 the Directory of Spa- Towns and Tourism, and in 1945 the General Secretariat of Tourism. In 1950 and up to our days, the Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO) was established, in 2004 it became part of the Ministry for Tourism Development, and from 2010 onwards, part of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. Two large projects were developed by the GNTO. The first one, known as the “Xenia Project”, took place from 1950 to 1974. The second one “Preservation and Development of Traditional Settlements in Greece” took place from 1975 to 1995.

[3]For a long period, tourism evolution was limited by the insufficiency of the transportation’s network and of quality host facilities for the accommodation of high economic status visitors at sites of great archaeological interest. Georgiadou, Z., Fragkou, D., & Chatzopoulos, P., (2015). The development of the tourist model in luxury hotels: the case of Amalia Hotels in Greece, in the Proceedings of the International Conference, on Changing Cities II: Spatial, Design, Landscape & Socio-economic Dimensions, Porto Heli, Peloponnese, Greece, June 22-26 2015, pp. 1531-1542. After World War II the economical reconstruction of the country was focused on tourism evolution with a severe nation-wide attempt, within projects that were financed by public and private resources. During the seven years of the dictatorship (1967-74) mass tourism altered the spirit of these efforts. Georgiadou, Z., Fragkou, D., & Marnellos, D., (2015). Xenia Hotels in Greece: Modern Cultural Heritage, A Holistic Approach. Journal of Civil Engeeniring and Architecture, February 2015, Volume 9, No 2, pp. 130-141. Recently the economic crisis started to destroy any form of qualitative protection focused on the goal of unconditional development.

[4] Santorini is in the south of the Cycladic complex, located 130 miles from Piraeus and 70 miles from Crete, with  total polulation 19.000 people. It has 13 settlements and two parts of ground formation- a part with plane ground and bays, and a cliff part, the Caldera, formed by the massive volcanic explosion that blew the center out of the island about 3,600 years ago. Oia is one of the settlements built partly in a linear formation along the cliff heights.

[5] Rapoport, A., & Filippidis, D., (2010). House Form and Culture. Athens: Melissa Publications. Pp 218-235.

[6] Rapoport, A, & Filippidis, D., (2010). Ibid p. 232.

[7] Varveris, G., (1954-55). Houses of Santorini, in Michelis, P., A., (edit.) (1981). The Greek Folk House: Student projects. Athens: NTUA Publications. P.p. 41-60.

[8] Chios is located 121 miles from Piraeus and 216 miles from Crete. It has 66 settlements with total polulation 52.700 people.

[9]Bouras, Ch., (1982). Chios in Philippidis, D.,(edit.), Greek Vernacular Architecture: East Aegean, Sporades, Eptanisa, Vol.1. Athens: Melissa publications, pp 141-182, p.143.

[10]Michelis, P.,A., (1981). Student Projects A: The Greek Vernacular House. Athens: NTUA publications, p.p.5-40, p.10.

[11]Smith, A., C., (1962).The Architecture of Chios. London: Alec Tiranti, p.62

[12]Bouras, Ch., (1982). Ibid, pp. 172-174.

[13]Smith, A., C., (1962). Ibid, pp. 63, 70.

[14]Collective, (1984). Preservation and Development of Traditional Settlements in Greece -GNTO programme (1975-1992). Athens: GNTO Publication, pp.109-110.

[15]Schneider, D., (1978). Carrying Capacity as a Planning Tool. Chicago: American Planning Association.

[16]Washburne, R.,F., (1982). “Wilderness Recreation Carrying Capacity: Are Numbers Necessary?” Journal of Forestry, No. 80, November 1982. Pp. 726-728.

[17]Stankey, G., H., Mc Cool, S., F., (1984). “Carrying Capacity in Recreational Settings, Evolution, Appraisal and Application”. Leisure Studies, 6 (4), pp. 453-473.

[18]O’ Reilly, A., M., (1986). Ibid.

[19] Coccosis, H., N., and Parpairis, A., (1992).”Tourism and the environment: Some observations on the concept of tourism capacity”. In Briassoulis, H., Van Der Straaten, J., (eds), Tourism and the environment, Environment & Assesment, Vol. 6, Springer, Dordrecht, pp. 99-105.

[20] Stewart, C., J., (1993). “Recreation and Developmental Carrying Capacities of Coastal Environments: A Review of Relevant Literature and Research”. Report prepared for Atria Engineering Hydraulics, Inc., November 30.

[21]Simpson, K., (1993). How much is too much? A review of Literature Concerning the Management of Visitors to National Parks and Protected Areas. A presentation to “Taking Tourism to the Limits”, Waikato University, Hamilton, N. Zealand, 8-11 December 1993.

[22]Glasson, J., Godfrey, K., Goodey, B., Absalom, H., & Van Der Borg, J. (1995). Towards Visitor Impact Management: Visitor Impacts, Carrying Capacity and Management Responses in Europe’s Historic Towns and Cities. Aldershot: Avebury.

[23]Champerlain, K., (1997). “Carrying Capacity”. UNEP Industry and Environment 8. Paris: UNEP.

[24]Lindberg, K., Mc Cool, S., F., and Stankey, G., (1997). “Rethinking Carrying Capacity”. Annals of Tourism Research, 24, pp. 461-65.

[25]Cooper, C., Fletcher, J., Gilbert, D., Shepherd, R., and Wanhill, S., (1998). Tourism Principles and Practice, (2nded). Harlow: Longman.

[26]Middleton, V.,C., and Hawkins, R.,(1998). Sustainable Tourism: A Marketing Perspective. Oxford: Butterworth-Heinemann.

[27]McCool, S.,F., and Lime, D.,W.,(2001). “Tourism Carrying Capacity: Tempting Fantasy or Useful Reality?”.Journal of Sustainable Tourism, Vol. 9, No. 5.

[28]University of the Aegean– Department of Environmental Studies, Laboratory of Environmental Planning (2002). Defining, Measuring and Evaluating Carrying Capacity in European Tourism Destinations.Material for a Document. Commissioned by the European Commission, Directorate-General for Environment, Nuclear Safety and Civil Protection. Athens.

[29]Coccosis, H., Mexa, A.,(2004). The Challenge of Tourism Carrying Capacity Assessment. Theory and Practice. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing Limited.

[30] Maggi, E., Fredella, F., L., (2011). “The Carrying Capacity of a Tourist Destination. The case of Coastal Italian City”. In ERSA conference papers, ersa10p.576, European Regional Science Association.

[31]UNWTO is a United Nations agency responsible for the promotion of responsible, sustainable and universally accessible tourism.http://mkt.unwto.org/publication/unwto-tourism-highlights, 20-2-2018.

[32]Pearce D., G., (1989). Tourist development. London: Longman Scientific & Technical.

[33]Massiani, J., and Sandoro, G., (2012). “Notion of Capacity in Tourism”, Rivista Italiana di Economia, Demografia e Statistica, Vol. LXVI (2), April Gugnio 2012, pp 141-157.

[34]Pederson, A., (2002). Managing Tourism at World Heritage Sites. Paris: UNESCO.

[35]Yang, S., Pennington –Gray, L., and Holececk, D., F., (1998). Scale Issues in tourism Development.https://www.researchgate.net/publication/255614402_Scale_issues_in_tourism_development.

[36]Serraos, C., (2013). Design Approaches in Greece. Notes for the lesson of the IMSc (2013-14), Department of Architects- Engineers, NTUA.

[37]Architects Paraskevi Bozeniki- Didoni and Nikos Agriantonnis (Oia) and Maria Xyda (Mesta).

[38]Bruner, E., M., (1994). Ibid.

[39]Nara Document on Authenticity, (1994). Ibid.                                                                                       

[40]The numbers of tourist accommodations and beds were kindly provided by Thanasis Siganos member of GNTO (2018).

[41]Published in 2014, FEK 698 (20-3-2014), issue 2.

[42]Georgiadou, Z., (2017). “The Motion of Greek Picturesque of Interior Spaces in Tourism Facilities: Stereotype or Authentic Image?”  Journal of Tourism Research, ISSN 2241-7931.Vol. 17/2017. Pp. 324-338.

[43]GNTO, Theorima Development Consultants, (2002).Study for Tourism Development of the North Aegean Sea Islands, p.63.

[44] The Guardian (28-08-2017).Santorini’s Popularity soars, but the locals say it has hit saturation point. http://the Guardian.com/world/2017/Aug/28/santorini-popularity-soars-but-locals-say-it-has-hit-saturation-point, accessed 30-04-2018.

[45]International Council on Monuments and Sites.

[46]ICOMOS. (1999). International Cultural Tourism Charter: Managing Tourism at Places of Heritage Significance. ICOMOS. Accessed October 25, 1999.http://www.international.icomos.org/charters/tourism_e.pdf.

[47]Nikolakakis, M., (2015). “The tourist paradox: On the history of Tourism in Greece, from 1950 to the Present Day” in Aesopos, Y., (edit.), (2nd edit.). Tourism Landscapes, Remaking Greece. Athens: Domes editions. Pp. 38-51.

[48] The term is suggested by Panagiotis Ilias. According to Greek Mythology, Xenios Zeus was as the god protector of the laws, also protector of the visitors asking for hospitality. This institution has been continued through the Greek tradition. A premise for this is the mutual respect between the host and the visitor. This term is connected with a tourism model that is based on equal respect and economical benefits for both sides, and not in the low side of money earning. Georgiadou, Z., Fragkou, D., & Marnellos, D., (2015). Ibid p. 138.