House Hunting in Greece: A Custom-Built Perch on the Aegean Coast

House Hunting in Greece: A Custom-Built Perch on the Aegean Coast

A Modern Five-Story Villa Outside Athens, Greece$3.37 MILLION ($2.875 MILLION EUROS)Built into a mountain on the craggy coastline of Dikastika Bay, this five-level home is in Dikastika, a tiny city in the Attica region of Greece, about 30 miles northeast of Athens.Custom-built for the sellers in 2015, the 5,920-square-foot house offers sweeping vistas across the Petalioi Gulf, in the Aegean Sea, from every floor. “It’s a terrific offering on an exceptional property with stunning views,” said Theo Bosdas of Engel & Volkers MMC Greece, the listing agent. “A home like this on the Athens Riviera, in the southern suburbs, would go for twice the price.”Along with a hilly quarter-acre lot, the home’s landscaped grounds encompass adjacent public parkland where the sellers planted palm trees and other greenery, with permission from local authorities. “It doesn’t belong to them, but they wanted to extend the feeling of the land they have,” Mr. Bosdas said. “It adds to the home’s opulent feeling.”From the road, a sculpted steel gate opens to a short driveway and a three-car garage. One level up, a pair of guest bedrooms with en suite bathrooms share the level with a tiled outdoor deck and kidney-shaped pool. The owners built the pool as an extension of the house rather than in-ground; the facade is covered in rough-hewed rock salvaged from the home’s construction.The main bedroom suite occupies the third floor, with an expansive bathroom and walk-in closet with custom cabinetry. “Everything is large in there,” Mr. Bosdas said. A private staircase reaches the main bedroom from the pool level. An elevator also services all floors.On the fourth level, a great room has living and dining areas, and a fireplace. The room’s 26-foot ceiling soars past the fifth floor. An oak spiral staircase, the room’s centerpiece, wraps around a sculpted floor-to-ceiling oak panel.Off the dining room, the kitchen has a horseshoe-shaped breakfast bar, along with custom Italian cabinetry, SMEG appliances and Grohe fixtures. Just opposite, a covered outdoor lounge area includes a pizza oven and barbecue pit. A triangular white canopy juts from the house to cover the lounge area. “Some of the décor is Art Deco-inspired, mixed with these modern elements,” Mr. Bosdas said.The fifth floor, called “the captain’s room,” offers unobstructed sea views and has its own bar and kitchen, fireplace and built-in sofa. “You can see both the sunset and sunrise because of the home’s location,” Mr. Bosdas said.The furniture, imported from the United States, is negotiable. An “American, Asian or Russian” would be the most likely buyer for the home, Mr. Bosdas said. “It’s quite flamboyant.” And while the home “might feel distant for a Greek buyer,” he said, “it’s perfect for people who want to be a bit isolated. It’s one of the two or three best properties in the area.”About an hour from the center of Athens, Dikastika borders Schinias-Marathon National Park, a five-square-mile protected patch of wetlands and forests. While “not quite on the map” for foreign luxury buyers, Dikastika is “a beautiful area, and the beach is wonderful,” said Yannis Ploumis, managing director of Ploumis Sotiropoulos/Christie’s International Real Estate in Athens. “Home values are moderate, and you can live close to nature.”A large convenience store serves Dikastika; retail, hospitals and professional services are available in the town of Nea Makri, about 10 miles south, Mr. Bosdas said. Athens International Airport is about 25 miles south.Market OverviewWhile Greece has long been popular with foreign buyers, the Greek government has enacted policies designed to keep the market competitive. A residency-by-investment program, known as the Golden Visa, launched in 2013 and ties a residency visa to a 250,000-euro ($293,000) property investment or 400,000-euro ($470,000) financial investment in Greece.In 2019, the property market got another boost from a plan aimed at luring retirees and high-net-worth buyers: Investors who park 500,000 euros ($586,000) in Greece receive Greek tax residency, with a 100,000-euro ($117,000) annual flat tax on worldwide income from any of 57 countries with which Greece has a tax treaty.Both programs have helped property prices gradually recover from their nadir following the last decade’s debt crisis, which left Greece nearly bankrupt. “There’s almost a total market recovery…

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