Thursday, 27 May 2010

First tour of the island this season!

It was time to take a ride around the island today as the roads are very quiet this time of season, Helen hired a jeep and took 2 friends (Trudy & Richard) out with, i decided to follow on my bike as i needed to get back earlier.

It is wonderful to see the island without coaches zooming past you, Quads being driven like maniacs and scooters buzzing everywhere. Whenever i take a ride out it always reeminds me of how lucky i am to live and own a business on this island, the blue skies, the warm sun and the stunning views.

So our first stop was a taverna, now this taverna for you all to visit is past the 2000 year old olive tree, you get to a T-junction where you can either go to Zakynthos town or the Shipwreck viewing platform. On the left hand corner of that T-junction is the Greek version of "The Bates Motel", welcome to "The Bates Taverna". We were met by a lovely dog with a sign around its neck saying " I have Tea, Coffee, Ice Cream, Fresh Tomms but i do not have any money" Why a dog would need money i don't know. On entering this homely Taverna we were met by a little lady of about 80 without any english language, We ordered 3 Nescafe, 2 without milk, and 2 with sugar along with that a frappe with sugar no milk. On her return we were given 2 greek coffees with milk, 2 greek coffees without milk and all with sugar. Although she did repeat the order back to us when we first sat down and placed it. Anyway along with the water she brought a small bottle of water, some greek biscuits both of which weren't asked for but she gestured they were off her, then after all was finished we were presented with orange segments on cocktail sticks, again gestured as free off the sweet little old lady. Then it was time for the bill, OH MY GOD! 14.50 Euro! Its the first time i've ever been mugged in broad daylight by an 80 year old granny LOL. It was worth it just to meet the Dog.

Second stop was the grill restaurant at St. Nicholas port at the north of the island where we all had fish although my plate had that much squid on it i thought they had cooked the contents of an Aqualand squid display tank, bloody piles of it but great value for money. At this point i had to leave to head back but had a nice cruise back through the centre of the island.

I hope the little old lady doesn't read this and come to get me in my shower at some point in time, better take the shower curtain down haha.

Sunday, 23 May 2010

2 Weeks, 3 days and some rain!

Well its been a strange old start to the season, not in a business sense as business is great but in a weather sense, yes folks we've had RAIN! Before you go getting out your Pac-a-mac and wellies it has only been during the night and early hours of the morning for a couple of nights last week. Today is glorious sunshine and my pastey white body actually saw some sun for the first time this season.

So off to the pool which was lovely and quiet, only 2 other people there, a nice glass of frappe and a newly filled pool, the water looked so inviting, the top of the pool was so still it looked like glass, sun was warm and glowing, yes i'll dip myself in and have that first swim. Unfortunately what i didn't think of was the water would be like getting in to a bath of ice, JESUS! i had brain freeze and my gentleman vegetables decided to retreat faster than the French from Russia in 1812 (thats a history lesson for you haha) but after a few very fast lengths it wasn't so bad.

The resort is starting to pick up but there is alot more eastern European this year and the hoteliers seem to be giving less rooms to UK tour companies so they must be getting better deals from the non-UK tour companies which i suppose is the UK tour companies fault for squeezing the prices from the hoteliers and selling the holidays even more expensive year after year even though they are paying less.

The new cocktails i devised are a hit and can't wait for my second blender to be delivered as its a mad rush with only one blender, why don't i make anything easy for myself LOL.

Anywhooo time for a siesta before another fun night in Oceanic, till the next update, night night!

Final pictures of Eleon Grand.

As promised here are the final pictures. I've tried to take them at the same angle each time so you can see the progress.

The Road leading to main block.
Reception and main area of main block

The beach being cleared again and set up.

The grounds of block 2

The family suites.

The sports facility area

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

And so the season begins!

Well its now 5 days since i've opened and can't believe how well its all started in fact its started better than my 3 previous seasons, whether this is a good sign remains to be seen but it ain't bad for the moment. The bar is looking good but just needs a few little improvments which should all be finished by end of May. Still no TV's and if i ever had to put a TV in the bar i'd prefer to close, so if your looking for somewhere that won't be showing the world cup as WHAM once said "i'm your man" LOL.

Prices are still as low as ever and i've had a few human guinea pigs trying out the new style cocktails and they are a big thumbs up (thank god) Still not giving anything away as to what they are so you will pop in and have a taste. I believe a few pics of them have been put on facebook but thats ok the recipes are still secret haha.

Its bloody boiling out here but cold at nights so got me outdoor heaters working so its all nice and cosy also the inside of the bar is like a living room now so its got a nice homely feel to it, i suppose its a bit like my living room back in the UK with the only difference being its full of strangers who pay me for drinks.

Quite a few places closed which is a real shame but the Old Kalamaki looks busier with businesses this year so thats great news.

What will the season bring this year, who knows but i will enjoy it whatever happens, as long as the sun is shining, the pools are cold and i can get out on my motorbike i'll be happy.

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

I'm here and ready to open, YEEHAA!

Well its been a week since i arrived so time to start my crazy scribblings from Zakynthos, so by the time i got to my bed at my apartment i had been awake 38 hours, well i had to go and say hi to my friends and it would be rude not to have the odd vodka or 6.

After a good nights sleep it was time for business, Accountant - PAID, Music Licence - PAID, Taxes - PAID, after getting everyone cleared time to start on the bar, oh my god forgot what a state i left it in HAHA! Never mind, this season the whole bar has had a lick of paint, real trees planted and flowers, please don't faint i have little hope for them to live as i killed the mint i planted. Some new lights and some new decor for inside the bar plus the sofas are all getting a refurb. This season i have got indoor and outdoor seating all year round so it looks really great and has a good vib to relax in.

Having a few days to get settled in and i am open for business from tomorrow evening, no point in rushing to open as its a long season and i'm sure i'll get my fair share of trade so not desperate to get people in from day one.

The bar is fully stocked and looking forward to making my new style cocktails which i've been working on during the winter, put it this way they're healthy but at the same time will get you drunk LOL.

Taken a ride around the resorts and its still very quiet and in some resorts only 50% open at the moment and 25% are working on their bars/restaurants as for the other 25% not sure if they'll open but its good for the resorts if more places are open than closed.

GREEK ECONOMY - nothing has changed over here it seems drinks and food is all the small as last season, now whether that will change in June i don't know but mine will stay the same all season no matter what. The only thing that has gone up is petrol which is now 1.55 per litre which is expensive, time to run cars and bikes on methane i think, make mine a Madras hehe!

Today i lost my Zakynthos tennis champion crown after 10 years unbeaten (although haven't played for 4 years) Thassos from drunk corner beat me in 3 straight sets 6-1 6-4 7-5, time to stop playing silly sports at my age. To be very honest he was very good, plus 12 years younger and 6 inches taller, not making excuses or anything, i'll be back.

Well thats it for now and will keep the updates coming thick and fast as the season continues, here's to a good summer for Zakynthos and all the businesses on the island, YAMMAS!