“Olympios” Tower, Mount Pelion, Greece
Pantazis Tsoussis, Vassiliki Kolovou (Study Assignment)
Photo Source: Tsoussis Archive
Southwest elevation of the complex (Proposal)
General plan of the complex (Proposal)
Monument Architectural and Restoration Survey / Conservation and Reuse
Ifigenia Dimitriou (Architect Engineer), Fotini Chalvantzi (Architect Engineer), Konstantinos Toubakaris (Civil Engineer), Maria Mageirou (Mechanical Engineer)
Olympios Tower (Pirgos Olympiou) stands in the village of Ano Lechonia, located on a flatland at the feet of Mount Pelion in the Prefecture of Magnisia, southeast of the city of Volos and a mere kilometer from the coast. The original core of the Tower is dated in the 17th-18th c. and was built by Alatzas or Atlazas, who was a consul of Russia.
The basic objectives of the project were the conservation and reuse of the Tower complex as a traditional guesthouse and restaurant with emphasis on local enogastronomy. As one of the few extant tower-houses of the early period of vernacular Pelion architecture, it is an important historical structure that should be restored and enhanced. The project is thought of as a holistic conservation with respect for the complex authenticity, preserving the original plan layout and all historical phases.
The Tower itself will be converted into a historical guesthouse with only a few rooms that correspond to the existing ones. There will be the least new infrastructure possible to make the complex functional, and it will be designed in a completely reversible way and without altering the look and feel of the architecture.
The outhouses will host spaces dedicated to local gastronomy and wine-tasting and will be accessible to all, not only to the Tower guests. The surrounding open spaces will preserve existing vegetation. The ovens, water fountains and irrigation canals will be restored to functional status.
The aim is immersing visitors into the unique experience of local hospitality in an authentic example of 19th c. architectural heritage.