An international center for hosting culture and education
On October 19, 2019, the official inauguration of Patrick Leigh Fermor’s house was held in Kardamili. The President of the Republic, the Prime Minister, the Minister of Culture, members of the Greek Parliament and the Mayor of Kardamili were present in the ceremony.
Patrick Leigh Fermor
The house was built in the 1960s by the traveler, writer and one of the most charismatic and adventurous personalities of the last century Patrick Leigh Fermor or ‘Paddy’. Patrick crossed Europe during the Interwar period, arriving at Constantinople and then in Greece. He fought alongside the Cretans in the Battle of Crete and during the British retreat, he passed from Kardamili. After the war, he returned to Kardamili where he built his beautiful house in the bay of Kalamitsi. He lived in this house with his wife, Joan Leigh Fermor, until his death.
Patrick and Joan Fermor House
In 1996, Patrick and Joan Leigh Fermor donated their home in Kardamili to the Benaki Museum. In 2017 the Benaki Museum began the restoration work of the house. Various sponsors with Stavros Niarchos Foundation as a lead donor, have helped fund the venture. Work was completed 2 years later and is open to visitors from June 2019.
The work was carried out without altering the uniqueness of the house, crafted by the Mani’s stone technique. The surrounding area of the house is a magical garden, without any English garden features. It has been incorporated into the landscape and had a timeless approach. That is why the architect chooses small interventions with respect to the history of space.
Available to the public
From now on, the Patrick & Joan Leigh Fermor’s House will serve as a venue for important intellectuals and scholars. In addition, it will contribute to the promotion of Greece abroad as an educational center with the cooperation of international educational institutions. Finally, it is expected to assist in the cultural, economic and tourism development of Kardamili and the greater Mani region.