Design Desk: Vacation Eye Candy From the Island of Cyprus

Cyprus is a Mediterranean island filled with abundant sunshine, unlimited frappés, and beautiful beaches.
Cyprus Cyprus Cyprus Cyprus


Cypriot cuisine is similar to Greek and Turkish-style food with influences from all around . . . French, Italian, Spanish, and the Middle East. Here’s a peek at the local farmer’s market—always my favorite place to visit.

Cyprus Cyprus Cyprus CyprusCyprusGetting some shut-eye.

Cyprus Cyprus

There is plenty of amazing fresh seafood from octopus to spider crab on the island. Most people take pleasure in cooking at home and making foods from scratch without wasting a thing. This seafood feast—homemade kefta and grilled soulva with sieftalies—is compliments of family friends who took great care in feeding me local delicacies.


This is a traditional sweet called soujoukos, made from grape must.

My boyfriend’s father makes his own version from scratch. Here are his almonds drying out on the patio. They were hand-strung with a small needle and thread! Once dried they will be dipped in a mixture of grape juice and corn starch and look like the picture above. Sounds odd, but it has a pleasant taste and interesting texture without being overly sweet.


No meal is complete without Greek coffee.

Street art, typography, and graffiti is always interesting and can reveal so much about a culture.
16-graffiti1The red type says “Love or Nothing.” An anarchist has written in black “Misos Taxiko,” which means hate between social classes. Apparently these quotes are everywhere and even have a Tumblr following.


Translation: “I do not wake.”

street sign in Cyprus

20-sale-signSale sign geared toward the many Russian tourists.

coffee shop in Limassol, CyprusLocal coffeehouse in downtown Limassol.

Arsos, Cyprus

Arsos, Cyprus

Less than an hour from the city is the picturesque and oh-so-charming village of Arsos. The city is built on the slope of Laona Mountain and has beautiful stone streets lined with an array of fruitful trees from pomegranate to lemon.

bakery in Arsos, Cyprus

Village bakery. Hand-lettered sign reads “Fresh bread made daily.”

coffee shop in Arsos, Cyprus

Village coffee shop with one of its daily patrons.

Cyprus raisins

The obligatory grape shot. Not only are grapes used to make wine and candies but they can be simply dried out in the hot sun to make the sweetest raisins you’ve ever tasted. Eat your heart out Sun-Maid!

making wine in Cyprus

making wine in Cyprus

Arsos is one of the biggest wine producing villages in Cyprus. I was fortunate enough to be a part of the wine making process. A man of many talents, my boyfriend’s father makes his own wine with humble tools. Here we are turning the grapes with a tree branch that he hand-crafted into the perfect “claw” to rotate the grapes in their barrel.

We couldn’t resist sticking our hands into the sweet juice. So delicious! Looking forward to sampling that batch of wine on my next visit!

Vanessa Dina
Design Director

Vanessa Dina

Vanessa Dina

Vanessa Dina is a Design Director at Chronicle Books with a passion for all things food and drink. When she’s not designing cookbooks she can be found cooking from them and sharing the results with her family and friends.
Vanessa Dina


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