My name is Andreas-Thodoris Papadopoulos-Work, I come from Folegandros where I have lived nearly all my life and I am the Manager of Ampelos Hotel. I finished high school on Folegandros and graduated from the ‘Iasmos’ Acting School, in Athens.
My mother’s name is Anna and she was born in Denmark while my father, Fotis, is Greek. My parents began in 1984 to run various activities on Folegandros, our beloved island, such as painting, sailing, yoga or philosophy workshops among others.
In 2001, my uncle Peter together with my aunt Rebecca, who produce some of the best wines in the world and live in California, built Ampelos Hotel as a base and countryhouse for themselves. Visit their website.
My parents took over management and maintenance of the hotel; they still help around even though my father, for years now, creates and sells jewellery at his shop in Chora, Folegandros.
December 2013, my wife, Areti, and I took over running the hotel. Areti has done hotel and restaurant management related studies. Our hobbies include fishing, DJ-ing but most of all we like to meet people, talk with them and relish our lives in this beautiful place on earth, with you...
My father Fotis’ grandfather, a poet and poor farmer, left Folegandros in 1910 because of a love story. He went to Alexandria in Egypt never to return. My father was born there. My mother was born in Copenhagen, Denmark. Her father was a teacher of Ancient Greek and because of that, and her studies, he came to Greece in 1979.
Anna and Fotis were dreamers. They dreamt of a life on Folegandros, of putting together a business that has to do with tourist activities and match the vibe of the island. This is how the story begins...
Anna and Fotis returned to their beloved island in 1984 and started a new life with a new concept. Initially by holding painting classes and later sailing, local history classes and a bunch of other summer activities. Little by little these workshops included yoga, dances, diving, pottery, mask making, theatre and more that had to do with Greece and Folegandros.
Our teachers came from different countries, as did the students. That is how the School kicked off... I was 2 at the time. Later I partook myself in teaching Greek. My element was the sea, right in front of my house, so I started teaching diving to the kids on holiday and year after year I began to teach older people as well. The classroom for all the rest of the classes was under a tree in our front yard, on the beach. Everyone participating stayed in private lodgings, as there were no hotels at the time. Almost the lot of us ate and danced at Laomi, while other times at Kritikos’ taverna or the port of Margarita.
When my grandmother in Denmark died in 1997, my uncle Peter suggested it would be nice to meet, all of us, at some place like Folegandros that was in everyone’s heart. So, my aunt Kirsten, who taught painting classes on Folegandros, built a house behind Ampelos.
My uncle Peter and my aunt Rebecca, who had just begun producing their own wine in California –among the finest the world over– were very passionate about all of us getting together in Folegandros. So they decided to invest in Ampelos. A place for them to live and a place to lodge everyone taking part in the workshops. And when there would be no classes the place could run as a hotel. This is how Ampelos started out...
The name Ampelos was given by my father, Fotis, the namesake of the Grek word for vine. It is worth noting that vines were brought to Greece by the God of wine, dance and spirit, Dionysos. We all thought this was the right name both for the hotel in Folegandros and for the winery in California.
My parents, Fotis and Anna, designed on an aquarelle what they imagined Ampelos should be. Peter and Rebecca liked the drawing. The concept was to look like a small village around a lake. And that’s how it was done...
Small structures flanking the pool. Every room being different, whitewashed, some with coloured windows and doors and each with private verandas. Next to the pool, a small amphitheatre for rehearsals and meetings, painting evaluation, a drink or just sunbathing.
Small gardens and yards at the back, too. An ample parking space at the front.
The old stables were turned into the reception hall and extra toilettes. Finally, next to the entrance, a nice small two-storey house for Peter and Rebecca.
This was a very happy moment for us. My parents and I, run Ampelos, Peter and Rebecca were investing and helped out wherever there was a need, after coming from America.
I took over running the hotel in 2013, the same year I married Areti. So, we welcome you to Folegandros and hope to grant pleasant moments here at Ampelos.
Of course, my parents still lend a helping hand. Fotis has always a story to tell about Greece and Egypt. Anna is still our main gardener. You will find her amidst the plants and can ask her almost anything regarding Folegandros and its history.
In 2007 Fotis opened his shop and jewellery workshop, where he creates all jewellery by hand. For instance, he has made a collection inspired by egyptian Fayums, over 2000 years old. You may, if you wish, visit his shop, ‘Made in Folegandros’. He can create something specially designed for you. Above all, though, you are welcome to join in just for a chat or some serious history debate.
Today, most of our guests come to beautiful Folegandros to enjoy their holidays, in the finest of moods. Some of them are dreamers, others are hikers or divers. Some have families, young or old. Some paint and some write a book. It’s nice, nonetheless, to make new friends on a hot day over a drink by the pool.
In the morning before setting about your day you can get a few good tips on trekking across small beaches during breakfast.
You can participate in one of the yoga or painting classes run by us.
Maybe you want to set up a workshop or class, or form a group that maybe wants to make use of our facilities. You can contact my mother, Anna, as she was the first ever to organise all activities.
You can contact Anna by calling 00306942615160 or emailing at: