Kyrenia’s Legend: The life and time of Costas Catsellis


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This deeply engaging biography, accompanied by a wealth of archival photographic material, recounts the story of Costas Catsellis, a man whose achievements will be forever etched upon the history of Kyrenia, Cyprus. From his humble beginning in this forgotten corner of the vast British Empire, to his ambitious journeys across the Atlantic Ocean to the land that promises everything: America.

There he learns the art of cooking and gambles away a fortune in the stock market, before volunteering in the US Army during WWI. His journey continues with his return to Cyprus with dreams of having a family and leaving his mark on his beloved Mediterranean coastal town of Kyrenia.

After the Asia Minor Catastrophe of 1922, progress for Kyrenia ground to a halt. Everyone lost hope for a recovery except for one man, who knew that his fate and Kyrenia’s were intertwined. Catsellis’ determination to develop the Sea View and Dome hotels transformed the town into a booming tourist centre, lifting the town out of economic decline.

Fate, however, was not finished with Costas Catsellis. He lost everything once more and became a refugee in his own country after the 1974 Turkish invasion. Although the fruits of his labour remain under occupation to this day, he will remain known in history as the Legend of Kyrenia.

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