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FLOATING: fishing villages back to life

GreeceAthens, Greece
Year Founded:
Organization type: 
Project Stage:
$10,000 - $50,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

One in a hundred Greek families resides along the coastline, lives exclusively from fishing and is threatened with extinction. The project attempts to bring back to life hundreds of fishing villages along the 15,000 kilometers of the Greek coastline.

WHAT IF - Inspiration: Write one sentence that describes a way that your project dares to ask, "WHAT IF?"

Boatels in the Greek Coasts
About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

Within the European Fisheries Policy addressing the overfishing problem, many fishermen were offered financial incentives for the total destruction of their fishing boat. So far, 979 vessels have been "cut" many of them old but solid. Meanwhile, hundreds of villages are dying, the shipyards are closing and fishing related jobs are lost. Hundreds of people are led to unemployment in times of economic crisis.

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

The project aims to help fishermen who are interested, to change the use of their fishing boats and convert them into floating hostels that will operate anchored in the bays of the Greek coastline.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

A related example, regarding the structure of its management, is the operation of the Greek National Tourist Organization, which during the period from 1975 to 1985, undertook the renovation of traditional dilapidated houses. After having operated as hostels for a number of years, were returned to their owners for further exploitation. Corresponding examples of floating holiday villages are located in Amsterdam, Phuket, Saigon etc.

Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.

Apart from the fishermen themselves, professionals from related disciplines, captains, shipwrights, sailors, workers in shipyards, merchants, restaurateurs and their families, the whole community will benefit from new jobs in to leisure and transport in this mild form of tourism that will help villages survive. Meanwhile, the fishing boats, true masterpieces of an art that has its roots in Greek antiquity may continue to adorn the Greek bays and maintain and promote the tradition of shipbuilding.

Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?

The traditional fishing villages maintain in their agony, a peaceful pace and a remarkable architecture in a beautiful environment. Although, often located near famous tourist destinations, few people know about them and visit. From Simi, Gytheio and Galaxidi to Messologi, Limeni and Plomari throughout South Crete and the Ionian islands, floating villages could be the alternative for tourists prioritizing respect for the environment and tradition and looking for a quiet shelter near the sea. A new tourist institution could be created in our country.

Financial Sustainability Plan: What is this solution’s plan to ensure financial sustainability?

The project could be financed by the new European Maritime and Fisheries Fund (EFF), 2014-2020, by any national or EU funding program for tourist development in Greece or by individuals and institutions that would be interested in investing in this mild form of tourism. At a later stage, the project could even include iron vessels scheduled to be withdrawn in 2014-2020.

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

The investment cost depend on the ability to persuade ship owners to grant their boats for the project.The first pilot project will need money for reconstructing the boats and converting them to floating shelters but also money for basic infrastructure projects related to the floating village installation.An economic study will determine the benefits of the project, considering the budget needed.Greece's touristic advantage is coastline and sea. We believe that there is a big target group with interest to lodge on the sea and have direct contact with the water during summer vacations.

Founding Story

The idea was born in a nearly deserted shipyard of Leros Island once full of life. As an architect, granddaughter of a fisherman from Crete, who raised his children working hard in his fishing boat during his lifetime, watching the “cut” by the bulldozer, beyond the fishing boat carcass, I could only but see the perspective of a new life.


As the proposed plan is currently in its introductory phase, a working group has not been fully put together yet. In collaboration with local shipbuilders, the team will design the reconstruction of the boats, and handle legal, managerial and promotional procedures.
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, Athens

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I think it’s a fabulous idea.
Saving traditionally built hulls and using innovation and design to convert them in attractive floating habitats... As a marine engineer it would make me very happy to see this come to life.
This project will help sustain the art of traditional hull maintenance and will promote innovation to related to boat design through the conversion process.
Jobs for the traditional shipyards, jobs for young designers, development of related shore facilities, small fishing ports / marinas, tourism….
A project that has applicability all over Greece.
I would love to be involved in it.

E. Marangakis
Ship Surveyor