The Covid-19 pandemic has brought about unprecedented challenges and disruptions in various industries, including tourism. With travel restrictions and hotel closures, many professionals found themselves at a standstill, searching for new avenues to channel their creativity and expertise. Andria Mitsakos, a seasoned public relations specialist in the luxury hotel sector, seized this opportunity to embark on a remarkable journey, transforming a farmhouse renovation project into a unique hotel-decor venture.
The Background Story: From PR Expert to Farmhouse Enthusiast
Andria Mitsakos boasts an impressive three-decade-long career in the realm of public relations, catering to high-end hotels across Europe and the Caribbean. Having successfully run her own communications firm for almost 20 years, Mitsakos’s expertise and connections were well-established. However, when the pandemic brought tourism to a grinding halt, she found herself stranded in Greece, unable to continue her usual line of work.
The Spark of Inspiration: A Farmhouse on Paros Island
As Mitsakos grappled with the challenges posed by the pandemic, she turned her attention to a farmhouse she owned on the idyllic Cyclades island of Paros. Instead of remaining idle, she saw it as an opportunity to embark on a personal project – renovating the farmhouse to create a haven of beauty and charm. The farmhouse became a canvas for her creative vision, and she poured her energy into transforming it into a place of unique design and aesthetic appeal.
Exploring New Avenues: Collaboration with Local Artisans
With international hotels shutting their doors, Mitsakos sought inspiration from her surroundings and engaged with local artisans. She realized the potential of upcycled materials and saw an opportunity to create handcrafted items that would breathe new life into her farmhouse. Through collaborations with these talented craftsmen, she was able to infuse her renovation project with authenticity and local flavor.
A Journey into Aesthetics: Showcasing Custom Pieces and One-of-a-Kind Finds
As Mitsakos delved deeper into the renovation, she began documenting her progress and sharing photos of the custom pieces and one-of-a-kind finds on social media. The response was overwhelming. Clients and friends were captivated by the unique aesthetic she had curated, which was shaped by her lifetime of collecting crafts and textiles during her extensive travels. Mitsakos had inadvertently stumbled upon a new venture – one that allowed her to express her clients’ stories through meticulously selected objects.
“My hotel clients used the downtime to renovate or redesign. But they needed to find a new way to express their stories through objects.” – Andria Mitsakos
From Farmhouse to Hotel-Decor: A Dream Transformed
Driven by the positive reception of her farmhouse renovation project, Mitsakos recognized the potential to expand her venture beyond her personal space. She envisioned a business that would cater to hotels seeking to revitalize their spaces through unique and curated decor. With her extensive network and deep understanding of the hospitality industry, she set out to establish a hotel-decor consultancy, bridging the gap between design and storytelling.
The Anthologist Showroom: A Hub of Inspiration
To bring her vision to life, Mitsakos transformed her farmhouse into the Anthologist showroom, a space that showcased her handcrafted wares and served as a source of inspiration for hoteliers and interior designers alike. Located in Athens, Greece, the showroom became a hub for creativity, offering a curated selection of objects that told stories and evoked emotions.
Navigating Challenges: Adapting to the New Normal
As with any entrepreneurial journey, Mitsakos faced her fair share of challenges along the way. The pandemic necessitated a shift in approach, with travel restrictions and safety protocols affecting the way she conducted business. However, she embraced these challenges as opportunities for growth and innovation, leveraging technology and virtual platforms to connect with clients and expand her reach.
Empowering Hoteliers: Telling Stories Through Objects
Mitsakos’s unique approach to hotel decor goes beyond mere aesthetics. She understands that every object has a story to tell, and her expertise lies in curating collections that align with a hotel’s brand narrative. By carefully selecting and placing objects that reflect the essence of the hotel, she creates immersive experiences that resonate with guests and elevate their overall stay.
The Future: A Vision of Growth and Inspiration
With her hotel-decor venture gaining momentum, Mitsakos envisions a future filled with growth and expansion. She aims to collaborate with more hotels worldwide, breathing new life into their spaces and helping them forge deeper connections with their guests. Her vision extends beyond physical spaces, as she plans to develop an online platform that offers design inspiration and resources for aspiring hoteliers and interior designers.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. How did Andria Mitsakos transition from PR to farmhouse renovation?
Andria Mitsakos ventured into farmhouse renovation as a personal project when the Covid-19 pandemic brought tourism to a standstill. Stranded in Greece, she saw an opportunity to channel her creativity and connections into transforming her own farmhouse into a haven of beauty and charm.
2. What inspired Mitsakos to start a hotel-decor venture?
The positive response to Mitsakos’s farmhouse renovation project, coupled with her extensive experience in the luxury hotel industry, sparked the idea of a hotel-decor venture. Clients and friends were captivated by the unique aesthetic she had curated, leading her to establish a consultancy that bridges the gap between design and storytelling.
3. How does Mitsakos approach hotel decor?
Mitsakos goes beyond mere aesthetics and focuses on curating collections that align with a hotel’s brand narrative. She believes that every object has a story to tell, and by selecting and placing objects that reflect the essence of the hotel, she creates immersive experiences that resonate with guests and elevate their overall stay.
4. What are Mitsakos’s future plans for her venture?
Mitsakos envisions collaborating with more hotels worldwide, breathing new life into their spaces and helping them forge deeper connections with their guests. She plans to develop an online platform that offers design inspiration and resources for aspiring hoteliers and interior designers, extending her reach beyond physical spaces.
In conclusion, Andria Mitsakos’s experience renovating the farmhouse exemplifies the value of originality and flexibility. Despite the odds, she was able to turn a passion project into a successful business, one that helps hotel owners convey their tales through artifacts displayed in their establishments. Mitsakos has inspired and reshaped the field of hospitality design with her pioneering ideas and unparalleled competence.
First reported on Bloomberg
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