Our makeup artist told me about this lovely book shop called Atlantis Books, located in Oia, Santorini. I love the story behind it and would love to spend a day browsing its many shelves! She brought me back the postcards above, and a sweet little short story called “Feuille d’Album” by Katherine Mansfield. Published by Paravion Press, which was founded out of Atlantis Books, it is one of several different stories they print in small booklets that you can mail to a friend or loved one.
“In the spring of 2002, Oliver and Craig spent a week on the island of Santorini. The land inspired them and there was no bookshop, so they drank some wine and decided to open one. Oliver named it Atlantis Books and the two laughed about how their children would run it someday.
We found an empty building facing the sunset, drank some whiskey and signed a lease. We found a dog and cat, opened a bank account, applied for a business license, found some friends, built the shelves, landed a boat on the terrace and filled the place with books. Jenny came in April and painted everything blue.
Atlantis Books opened in the spring of 2004 and lived below the castle for one year. In the winter of 2005 we moved into the center of town and settled nicely into the community. We’ve had food festivals and film festivals, writers reading on the terrace, and a host of cats and dogs.
The bookshop feels like home now and we’re still laughing about how our children will run it someday. As Will says, it’s as easy as that. As you. As that.”
“Paravion Press was born in a bookshop on the cliffs of an island in the south of Greece. The shop swarms with people who love stories and who are far away from loved ones. And it occurred to us that by sending a story in the mail there might, as John Donne put it, be a moment to ‘mingle souls: for thus, friends absent speak.’”
Last week we featured the beautiful island of Santorini, Greece, where our catalog team shot the December book. This book has me longing for a winter vacation, and Santorini seems like an ideal place for just that. Here’s a look at where our team stayed and one of their favorite restaurants!
Our team stayed at the gorgeous Villa Fabrica, a renovated factory space formerly used to produce and store wine, located just below the ruins of the historic Castle of Pyrgos. The villa is sleek and spacious with minimal design and lots of outdoor space, doubling as the location for our catalog shoot. And the views… out of this world!
While in Santorini, our team had dinner at a restaurant called Selene – located near the Villa, in the village of Pyrgos. The restuarant prides itself on serving authentic Greek cuisine made with local produce and wine made from grapes grown right there on the island. In addition to what sounds like an amazing menu, can you imagine dining on a balcony overlooking this?!:
On a small island in the Aegean Sea, sits a paradise of whitewashed buildings and bright blue roofs, so blue they blend in with the sky. The island, officially called Thira, is Santorini – essentially the remains of a volcanic explosion that destroyed the earliest settlements that were once one large single island. The volcano left behind a caldera – a massive lagoon with steep cliffs surrounding it. It was one of the largest eruptions in history, and some believe it may have contributed to the legend of the lost city of Atlantis. An air of mythology settles over the buildings and cliffs, and I can imagine wandering through winding, narrow cobblestone walkways and imagining the stories they hold. Today the island’s economy relies largely on tourism, and it’s easy to see why. The sloping cliffs allow for stunning views at almost any point on the island and the stark white of the architecture creates a clean, cool setting that would be hard not to find relaxing. Just looking at photos of Santorini can make you feel refreshed – it has quickly moved up to the top of my list of places I want to go.
Our December catalog seems to have everything I’m craving right now… breezy dresses, textured knits and denim, soft colors and the beautiful setting of Santorini, Greece. I can’t get over how beautiful this place looks – more on that tomorrow, but for now here’s a peek behind the scenes of our December catalog, featuring model Mona Johannesson and shot by photographer Enric Galceran.