View from the kitchen, lounge and patio.

Seeped in creative history, the island Hydra in Greece is a pleasant two hour ferry ride from Athens and has drawn artists and writers all over the world for decades. ‘The Painter’s House’ continues this tradition by inviting artists to a working holiday in residence, to feel and be part of the local island fabric. In an idyllic setting, this white traditional Greek house nestles in a beautifully terraced garden brimming with olive, fig and cascading bougainvillea overlooking a picturesque bay.

Sydney artist Desiree P. Opiat, FRAS, AWI, has a wide knowledge of the Greek islands in particular the Saronic Islands where she has painted and exhibited since the 80’s. Desiree lives in the ‘The Painter’s House’ where she paints during the Northern Summers. She guides en plein painting and offers expert tuition in a relaxed atmosphere. During your stay you will meet interesting locals, fishermen, painters and writers, you’ll be introduced to island walks, local tavernas, traditional food and a boat ride or two.

Painters will leave with a valued, satisfying body of work, a knowledge of the island, its creative history, the island’s colourful people and they will feel a part of its colourful history.

The Painter’s House’ opens its doors for the months of May, June, September and October and accommodates four to five people comfortably on the lower level. There is a guest bathroom, laundry facilities, a private terrace and its own entrance. And of course, there is the view. Desiree opens her home and shares her island life with her guests. It is not a regular painting holiday package but a very personal experience.

After a light breakfast the artists are introduced to the island, guided to painterly spots and instructed. Afterwards there is a lunch and siesta break until late afternoon when they work from another vantage point. Before dinner, work will be appraised over drinks.

There are no cars or vehicular transportation on Hydra, supplies are delivered by donkey, islanders get around on foot or by sea taxi and as for painting, it can’t be more inspiring.

Email Desiree for further information on

More about Desiree on her website Bio Page:

Google and read New York Times’ The Cultured Traveller : Latest Stop on Art Circuit. Hydra, Greece.

Youtube, see Rick Steve’s Hydra, Greece: Traffic-free Tranquility