Art Space Winery of Santorini

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One enters the Art Space Winery of Santorini in Exo Gonia through an underground cavern eight meters below the earth’s surface. Its carved chambers of pumice rock are a work of art and visitors with discriminating eyes will know that the age of this ancient grotto can be seen in the caves and cisterns formed by the island’s unique volcanic ash.

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Art Space Winery is, as its name implies, a place for art and a place for wine. Hundreds of artists from all over the world have exhibited their paintings, photographs, sculptures, and jewelry here. It is a working winery producing more than 10,000 bottles of fine wine each year. Traditional wine making equipment is on display along with artifacts from a winery in the same location dating back to 1861.

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The Museum tells the story of the history of wine making and the craftsmanship employed. The vineyards of Santorini are said to be among “the oldest in the world,” and perhaps its longevity is due to its unique volcanic soil, known to be resistant to the dreaded fungi or insect infestation that have plagued and destroyed many a vineyard.

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The Art Space Winery has several features contributing to the production of high quality wine. First, the grapes are organically grown. Secondly, the walls of the winery are dense layers of pumice, six meters thick, creating insulating material and a perfect environment for maturation and ageing of the wine. Finally, the vinification—the conversion of grape juice into wine through fermentation–takes place on three different levels, thus taking advantage of gravity and natural flow without the use of pumps.

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An old, pre-industrial winery that began operation in 1861 remained in operation until 1952 when its third owner, Nikolaos A. Argyros, closed its doors to establish SantoWines, the largest winery on the island. In 1999 Mr. Argyros’ son, Antonis, brought the old winery back to life and founded Art Space Winery.

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Whether you are interested exclusively in wine or exclusively in art, you should not leave Santorini without visiting Art Space. Where else can you wander through a cave, learn about the history of wine-making, see modern wine making in progress, and be treated to exquisite works of art. Indeed, it is a very special “space.”

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Hellenic Lifestyle extends a special thanks to Art Space for all the photos. Visit them at www.artspace-santorini.com

Aurelia lives on one of the Greek islands for two months of every year. Read more about Aurelia on our About Us page!

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