Text Cesare Cunaccia
Panas Group, in Athens, but also throughout Greece and on the international scene, means a definition of high hospitality and quality of unique locations from both an aesthetic and a qualitative standpoint. A constantly growing reality that counts Aficionados A List such as the couturier Valentino – whose is dedicated a special dessert by Zonars – with Giancarlo Giammetti, from Mariah Carey and Tommy Hilfiger, to the stars of the Greek song, Anna Vissi and Sakis Rouvas. Then artists like Jack Pierson and the collector and contemporary patron Dakis Joannou. Crisanthos Panas, with his brother Spyros, is the figure who launched this adventure that has been enriched over the years with different and significant pieces.
These are the Panas and their peculiar vision, those that lie behind true institutions of the Hellenic capital, such as the Salon de Bricolage in Kolonaki or the iconic Zonars, the favorite bar/restaurant of the local intelligentsia and the more cultured bourgeoisie in the first half of the twentieth century, recently reinvented with sophisticated taste and updated design in a transversal side of the city heart, Syntagma Square. Chrisantos, a young art collector, always smiling and cosmopolitan, with his wife Elena Syraka, an established jewellery designer, has become one of the true hosts of contemporary Athens and a supporter of cultural events such as Manifesta.
With Spyros, his brother, he was among the major proponents of the revival of the Athens Riviera, a marvelous coast just a few kilometres from the Hellenic capital. Here, overlooking the sea of Attica in Varkiza, he gave life to the club-bar-restaurant Island twenty years ago, a perfect place for a drink at sunset, for a dinner sushi, Greek or fusion cuisine, or to spend a summer night immersed in a wonderful soundtrack. It is the Athenian summer, for sure, it seems it never ends and spreads to a good part of our fall.