Fermina Hotel

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Fermina Hotel Ltd is a Greek company with an office in Athens and an operational centre on the island of Kythnos where the company's tourism activities are focused. In 2015, Fermina has produced the Kythnos Hiking Guide (published by Terrain Editions - www.terrainmaps.gr) and is selling hiking holidays on Kythnos for April to October. In 2016, Fermina plans to open a 10-room quality hotel on the island. The company is owned and managed by Nigel Tutt, a financial journalist who has worked in London, Brussels and Milan. The company hires professional and support staff on a contract basis in Greece.
Member since: 01 May 2015

How the minimum criteria of the responsible travel standard was met...

Economic responsibility

  • Fermina is in a start-up phase and is committed to heavy financial investment for its hotel, due to be ready in 2016. In 2015 we will be investing in a minibus later in the season.
  • Through the hiking operations we pay guides a proper fee, we also pay for cultural activities, giving many local people jobs for entertainment, mainly in the evening.
  • We hire local people - the principal guide was born and lives on the island. The archeologist for the excavation site visit comes regularly from Athens and is involved closely in the digging on the island. Evening meals are provided by local tavernas using island produce where possible, such as lamb, goat, fish, cheese and vegetables. The evening music is played by musicians living on the island. On other evenings we plan visits to a farm making cheese and a honey-making centre. Cooking lessons are another option. All through the holiday, the emphasis will be on preserving the natural environment, the rural way of life, and the island culture, making sure the money generated from tourism stays there.

Environmental responsibility

  • The Kythnos Hiking Guide, produced by Fermina (published by Terrain Editions - www.terrainmaps.gr) is given to each guest and extols via its descriptions of 11 walking trails the natural beauty of the island countryside, its historical sites, its traditional villages and buildings, its numerous churches, and many unspoilt beaches. The book emphasises the importance of looking after the countryside, protecting wildlife, not dropping rubbish and closing gates.
  • The bilingual, Greek/English, guidebook is the Travellers Code of Conduct. It includes two pages of 'Useful Information' covering the natural sights to see, such as flowers, plants and animals and the best paths to take to ensure the preservation of fragile environments. Mostly we walk on ancient mule tracks, still used by farmers and their mules. In the Spring, the flowers are colourful and on some walks we will meet people picking capers, the little spicy addition to many salads. 
  • All the tavernas visited during the day or in the evenings are chosen for their use of local produce from the island and for their traditional island dishes. With its hiking holidays, the company wants to demonstrate that this ecologically-sensitive form of tourism can help the local economy. The company wants to be an advocate in the local community for preserving the calm and history of the island.
  • Fermina's hotel will retain the 200-year-old buildings' historical features, such as a pigeon house, and design, including interiors.

Social responsibility

  • Kythnos has a lively cultural scene, including many traditional music events linked to religious feast days, particularly Easter and 15 August but also many other saints days. It has a summer festival in July and August which we encourage guests to support.
  • We support local businesses, communities and individuals. We employ a local walking guide who was born on the island. Guests stay in a small hotel in the island capital, the Hora, and eat traditional food, including local meat, fish, cheese, pastries and honey. In the evening, we connect with local musicians playing lyre or fiddles and maybe try and learn a local dance or two. On other evenings we plan visits to a farm making cheese and a honey-making centre. Cooking lessons are an option.
  • Souvenirs, such as pottery, jewellery, and trinkets, plus food products such as jam and honey are made on the island and can be purchased from shops in the Hora, Dryopida, and Merichas villages.

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