Decorating maestro and party planner for the stars, Colin Cowie has been traveling to Mykonos for years. He recently designed the Belvedere Hotel’s Sea Bar, which will be unveiled this week. Below are his island picks.
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FAVORITE RESTAURANTS FOR LUNCH: N’Ammos at Psarou Beach (30-228-902-2440), the Club 55 of Mykonos (30-228-922-440), for Greek salad, grilled octopus, fava bean puree, grilled white eggplant, baked feta cheese, humus, a sashimi plate of local fishes (tuna tartar, in particular), calamari fritti and amazing cheesecake. At Elia Restaurant and Bar at Elia Beach (30-228-907-1204), order the same thing as above. Yanni’s, at Elia Beach, is not to be missed. But Yanni seems only to cook for you if he likes you. (He’s been on Elia Beach since the1960s.) Il Castello di Sabbia (30-228-907-2466) at Ftelia Beach, serves fab simple Italian fare and amazing pizzas. Go to Nikolas Taverna (30-228-902-3566), to Aghia Anna, for real Greek home cooking and to Sol Y Mar (30-228-907-1745) at Kalo Livadi Beach for calamari with pesto, potato-wrapped shrimp and rocket and feta cheese salad.
FAVORITE RESTAURANTS FOR DINNER: Kounelas Fish Tavern (30-228-902-8220), a small and very simple place for grilled fish and shrimp, with courtyard seating located under a very large tree; Chez Katrine (30-228-902-2169), the best dinner spot and most expensive upscale restaurant on the island, for its sole, rack of lamb and stuffed mushrooms; Sea Satin Market-Caprice (30-228-902-4676) for grilled fish and the best locomades; Matsuhisa Mykonos (30-228-902-7362) at the Belvedere.
FAVORITE CAFES: Le Caprice and Veranda for sunset cocktails.
FAVORITE BARS/LOUNGES: Of course, Sea Bar at the Belvedere; El Pecado-Remezzo, to get the night started, Pierro’s, after El Pecado and then off to Cavo Paradiso on Paradise Beach; Cavo Paradiso for the best in late night/early morning fun. It’s a once-a-trip experience that takes two days to recover from.
BEST BEACH: Elia Beach, the location of Elia Restaurant and Bar.
BEST SPA THERAPIST: Sandra Lee at the Belvedere—amazing!
FAVORITE GALLERY: Rarity Gallery (22 Kalogera St.; 2289-025761; www.raity.gr), owned by Vassilis Matsaidonis and the most incredible gallery on the whole island.
FAVORITE SHOPS: Boudoir (30-228-902-7980); Rousounelos Jewelry & Watches (30-228-902-2797) for its swirled gold rings; Ilias Lalaounis (30-228-902-2444), which carries fine Byzantine jewelry of Greek tradition and has great diamond rings.
WHAT I WILL NEVER FORGET: Sunsets in Little Venice, from the balcony at Veranda.
WHAT NOT TO MISS: Gyros from Jimmy’s and Greek wines, particularly Château Nico Lazaridi’s Mriko Boyno 1997 (mriko boyno means “magic mountain” in Greek) and Antonopoulos Vineyard’s Gris de Noir 2001.