Ktima Atsitsa


🌏 Atsitsa Bay, Atsitsa 34007 Greece (View map)

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👆 Mobile ⏳ 22-08-2019

Nature, peace, hospitality

A place with long history and beautiful views. Ideal for resting and feeling peace. Tasty treats. Marianna is a great hostess.
👆 Web ⏳ 30-07-2019

What’s in a NAME?

Κτήμα Ατσίτσα - The Sunset Cafe, Utopia Suites, however you brand this hidden piece of heaven there’s one person responsible for the journey that many people make to Skyros island. "I’ll meet you at Marianna’s". Every summer of her life Marianna Asimenou has been visiting her grandmother’s house on this remote Greek clifftop, overlooking the mighty stone ‘pause button’ in Atsitsa Bay. In 1991, when her grandmother became ill she said to her granddaughter, who had become a bright-eyed young woman, “Marianna I want to leave my house to you but on one condition. My door is always open to the neighbours, it’s never closed. So if I’m giving it to you I would like you to do something that ensures my door stays open”. Marianna thought about it. “A café, but an alternative café”. “Somewhere where people will love to come and chill out", she explains to me over a coffee. "A place where you can relax and be healthy. I wanted to create a place that you never want to leave and I wanted to uphold my grandmother’s dream”. After graduating from university in 2003 Marianna began creating The Sunset Café in 2005 with a European grant to promote tourism. 40% came from her and 60% from them. She opened in July 2007 and for the first five years she was glad to be building the business, feeling connected to the memories of her much-loved grandparents. What she says next was a surprise to her, but it will come as no surprise to her customers. “While I was working at the café I discovered that I really like to talk to people. Hearing stories from new worlds, told by good people with good vibes. And then people were saying, I love it here in the pine forest and by the beach, can I stay here, do you have any rooms? And I was thinking, “Oh no, I do good coffee, nutritious juices and naughty cakes and I try to be good company but I’m disappointing my customers, I have nowhere for them to sleep!” “So that’s how the second idea came, from the customers. I tried suggesting places nearby but they said, “No, we want to stay with you!” Luckily for them Marianna also inherited some land around her grandmother’s house including ‘Goat Beach’ at the base of the cliff. You won’t see it from the road but anyone ‘in the know’ will tell you to take the ankle challenging path through the bushes at the edge of the pine forest to get to some delightfully translucent Aegean waves. Let me try to explain the Greek laws of beach ‘ownership’. You can own the land around a beach but not the beach itself. That depends on the winter waves and how far they crash up the beach when they’re at their fiercest. That line determines the natural boundary and declares the beach as common land to be enjoyed by anyone, including wandering goats. Indeed, on some days, they can be seen there exercising their ancient rights amongst the summer bathers. Back to the anxiety of disappointing her guests. “I had the land and I could easily have built a concrete hotel of 50 rooms but, hey, come on! I wanted to respect the environment so I built just a few boutique rooms hidden in the trees. I love good things, so I decided to make them ’luxury’ so they could be there forever, a long-term legacy that could sustain itself financially. It took eight years”. Sounds like a perfect honeymoon place. So what about weddings? “We do two weddings a year. Only two because I want to respect my neighbours and weddings can be very loud and go on long into the night. You’ve heard of Big Fat Greek Weddings! The first one, the template, was my own in 2009. I met Fotis in Athens in 2000, my daughter Urania was born in 2010, and my son Orpheus came in 2012. “Fotis is half Canadian so we thought, rather than an Athens wedding, why not save money on the venue and spend it on the guests? Everyone likes islands so we invited 300 people and they loved it. But it meant we had to accessorise the whole place. The circular dance floor outside, the wedding arch and all sorts of new things had to be created from scratch. And we invested in lighting the twelve pillars left over from the mining company’s operations here at Atsitsa. We didn’t quite realise at the time but this made a positive difference to the Sunset Café’s brand, showing its authentic origins, its soul.” Marianna’s grandmother saw the arrival of the Skyros Centre’s first guests, just down the road in mid 1980s. Her best friend Anna, who lived very near, had the only one phone in the village and the locals used to gather there to ‘gossip’ about this alternative holiday encampment that had sprung up, one of the first of its kind in a world that was beginning to demand deeper ‘personal development’ holidays. “They didn’t understand the yoga, people with their heads on the ground and their feet in the air. English people were coming here to hug our trees. Why? She understood eventually, she was actually very open minded. The single village telephone acted a bit like a water-cooler in a modern office. People from completely different worlds gathered there and got to know each other” I first heard about Marianna’s in London. A fellow vocal harmony teacher, who had worked at the Skyros Centre in Atsitsa Bay many times, heard I’d been asked to teach there back in the summer of 2011. “It’s all part of the experience of being on the island,” she said excitedly. “Walk out of the main gate and turn left. It’s small but you can’t miss it”. Or was it right? I couldn’t remember. I boarded the ferry from Athens in a panic, not wanting to miss a thing. I needn’t have worried, I think I could have said, “Marianna’s?” to anyone in Greece and got clear instructions. I mention Skyros Holidays just down the road because I’m a big fan of serenading serendipity and singing to chance. There’s a magical symbiosis going on here. People come to Atsitsa Bay to do yoga, learn about comedy, make music, become clowns, immerse themselves in storytelling, perform in the bar, swim, wind-surf and dance under the stars. You can imagine, as people move from their heads into their hearts with fifty like-minded characters, sleeping in bamboo huts and eating and drinking together every day, that they’re keen to stay this way: loved up. Because of the deep transformation that goes on, just by living in community, it’s a heart-opening time. "I want to leave my house to you but on one condition. My door is always open to the neighbours, it’s never closed. So if I’m giving it to you I would like you to do something that ensures my door stays open”. Hearts open. Doors open. You can see where I’m going with this. "I’ll meet you at Marianna’s".
👆 Web ⏳ 20-12-2017

STILL the best place in Skyros.

I want to travel to Skyros once and pass each and everyday like this: - wake up, - go to Ktima Atsitsa - have a taste of the food, the snacks, the deserts, the spirits and everything else they offer - stay there until the place closes for the night - go home to sleep - repeat.
👆 Mobile ⏳ 25-08-2017

Paradise in the middle of nowhere

It's like an oasis in the middle of nowhere, where have rest, delicious food and relax while having a beautiful sunset view. The guys working there are cooking fresh ingredient according local old recipes. Pies are super delicious, must try!
👆 Web ⏳ 10-12-2016

Small oasis

This is one of the best places to visit in Skyros to have a coffee with a piece of homemade orange pie, a brunch or a glass of wine while enjoying a spectacular sunset.
👆 Mobile ⏳ 22-08-2016

The Sunset Cafe

Had lunch here twice this week, returned for the second time because the first was so good! The setting is wonderful, high up on the cliff overlooking the sea on two sides, some shade offered by the pine trees. The idea of being self-service works well. The owner and chef Marianna is very friendly and adaptable, nothing was too much trouble in our menu requests. You can have a full meal or coffee and cake.
Tina M
👆 Web ⏳ 01-08-2016

Marianna is simply lovely, and this is a brilliant little spot

Fantastic views, great cake and coffee, and fab views. And a reasonable selection of drinks (as in alcoholic ones). I don't haven't eaten a full meal here, but have enjoyed the wonderful hospitality and relaxed atmosphere many times. Looking forward to going back this summer!
Chris A
👆 Web ⏳ 26-07-2016

Sunset Cafe

Marianna’s Sunset Cafe, as it is also known, is a beautifully situated cafe among the pines of the rocky seashore. Marianna is an excellent host and I have been back many times for a coffee and an icecream. Atsitsa has wonderful sunsets out over the sea and this is the place to sit and watch them.
Dina D
👆 Web ⏳ 02-09-2015

Great place

Liked: Food for vegans, snacks with fantasy, really big salads, local & many tea recipes, greek deserts, very quiet place, beautiful scenery, the owners are very friendly and willing to explain you whatever you ask, etc. etc. etc!! Disliked: No wifi.
👆 Mobile ⏳ 23-08-2015

One of the best places to visit in skyros

We were really amazed by the exceptional service there . Friendly owners breathtaking view over the sea and pine trees till the seashore . The owners transformed an old mine transportation site to this beautiful cafe snack bar . Open from 10.00-21.00 absolutely try fresh juices , rice pudding and everyday handmade sweets . Variety of sandwiches .Near there beautiful small coves with crystals blue water to swim .

View map go to Ktima Atsitsa

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