Arillas History

An article which was inspired from our forum's topic about whether Arillas is an authentic place or not.
During the middle age, Corfu was full of small communities that lived on the hills away from the coasts, as there was always a fear of foreign attacks like pirates etc. that would come in to the island to robe and destroy what ever they found.

clay houseThat is why you will not see as many old houses near the beachfront like in other Greek islands.
Life in Arillas started during the 1850-70 where a few people moved here from the mountains and slowly they built houses made of clay, olive-wood and pebbles from the beach.
During the 2cond world war, there was about 10 families in the surroundings of Arillas including ours.
Some of them are the family of Graziella Taverna the Kaloudis village and Alex supermarket.
All of them used to be farmers and fishermen, they would eat only what was growing in their garden and they would wear hand made clothes. Trade was not being done with money but with  items and products exchange.
The families would have to have a lot of children for three reasons:
1, not all of them where going to survive
2, the family needed a lot of hand for labor work, (especially men)
3, There was no television.!!!
After the war the population of Arillas became smaller as many young boys left their families and went to find work in other parts of Greece, in Germany, in America even in Australia. Some others went to work in Greek merchant ships.
Finally in 1973 ( the year that I was born) the cables of  electric power arrived in Arillas and the first refrigerators televisions and Jukeboxes came with that too.
The money that had been earned from the Greek immigrants gave the power to build the first hotel, ( Marina and Akti )  and the first Greek tourists came for the weekend from Corfu town and had the best fresh fish that was caught by the restaurant owners in the morning. ( and it was also a lot cheaper than today).
The first tourists of a foreign country was some Swiss Hippies that lived the life of their dreams in Arillas by renting an old farm house for a few years in the middle of no were but still near the beach and near the 5 Tavernas of Arillas (Kostas, Graziella ArillaInn, Marina and Brouklis.
There was direct flight from Geneva to Corfu with Olympic airways  at that time but it stopped after 1984.
after the 1980 people have made money with tourism and they built  more apartments and more establishments  as the Big Tour Operators was pushing everyone to make as many rooms as possible.
They would give you the rend in advance for the next two to five years in order that you guarantee that in the next season you will increase your capacity of rooms in to 10 times more than the ones you have..
I was always wandering why they do this; I finally realized what it was during the latest years. Obviously they new that if one has 4 apartments or a small hotel, it would be easy for him one day to fill them up with his own customers with out the need of a tour operator. but if you have 40 to 100 rooms, then you are hooked to the Tour Operators with no doubt.
Today the population in Arillas has reached 450 to 500 including the few people that have moved from other countries to live permanently here.

All the establishments are owned by locals who are doing their best for the quality and service and have achieved to have a returning clientele for the last 20 years.
During the latest years, many returning customers choose to come back to Arillas by dealing direct with the accommodation owners by using the internet or other media,helping the local economy and development.
Arillas has stayed away from commercialization in contrast with other resorts just because the people who work here also live and have their families growing up in the same resort as well as they are owners of the properties.
We will never like to live in A place like Sidari or Kavos today….

Sorry for the grammar mistakes I just had some inspiration that I did not wand it to be lost,




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