Dimitris Mitsios is resident manager and concierge at the Mantis Collection’s
Iconic Santorini boutique cave hotel in the scenic village of Imerovigli, a position he’s held since the hotel’s opening in March 2013. It’s no surprise then that his friends call him the “multitasking man”.
Being located high on the caldera and perched on the edge of a cliff poses its own operational challenges, but Mitsios and his team pride themselves in thorough planning so that guests can “feel at home at one of the most beautiful places on earth”. From revealing the secrets of where locals dine to planning elaborate dream island weddings, the Iconic Santorini team are known as one of best on the island. Fun fact? These premises were the first organised hotel ever built in Imerovigli village and our Iconic Suite was actually the village bakery. We’ve preserved the original wood oven.
Where’s the party? The beach of Perissa and Perivolos in the southeast. At night, clubs in Fira, Santorini’s capital.
Best secret eatery loved by the locals? Metaxi Mas, a hidden tavern on the hillside of Pyrgos, in the settlement of Exo Gonia and Anogi, a restaurant in the main square of Imerovigli village.
A new, high-end restaurant? Selene in Pyrgos is not new but the recent relocation from Fira makes this a restaurant worth mentioning.
Which bars do you recommend? Youngsters should not miss Koo or Town. For the thirty-somethings and the older crowd, Tango bar, Idol café-bar or Charactere café-bar. All are in Fira.
An outdoor activity that’s worth doing? Hiking alongside the volcanic cliff from Fira to Oia (2.5 hours) provides jaw-dropping views. Also, a tour on a catamaran along the volcanic coastline and through the hot springs.
An unmissable piece of architecture? Prehistoric Akrotiri, a Minoan Bronze Age city. After a volcanic eruption 3 500 years ago, houses and artefacts were buried under ash and preserved. For many historians, this is the possible location of the mythical city of Atlantis.
What’s on at the theatre? The White Door Theatre in Fira is a hit with the performance of an old-style Greek wedding, featuring folk dances, breaking plates and traditional food.
Any events we shouldn’t miss? The Ifestia festival (“volcanoes” in Greek), a three-day spectacle of concerts and events. On the last day, fireworks are set up around the volcanic craters to emulate a volcanic eruption. There is a colourful show of light and sound, joined by hundreds of circling boats and yachts.
A local band you should definitely listen to? Where? There are a few small local bands that play traditional folk music on request. Our staff always know when popular Greek bands tour the island.
Any markets you should visit? The market in Fira for souvenirs, jewellery and clothes.
What’s the best locale for shopping for authentic local products? Again, the market in Fira is the place.
What is the signature dish and where can the best example be found? Greek lamb kleftiko baked in foil and tomato keftedes, a Santorini speciality. I can’t think of a better place to taste both than our Pergola Restaurant.
A great spot for a business meeting? The conference centre at Nomikos, Firostefani.
The best contemporary art gallery in the city? Mati and Tzamia-Krystalla, both in Fira, are two of the best. iconicsantorini.com