Discovered 30 years ago by seclusion lovers, Paxos is today the definition of a secretive real estate destination known to a few connoisseurs. Preserved by strict building regulations and by its relative isolation from mass tourism the island's property market grows in an exclusive fashion. Villas for sale are a rarity and when they appear in the market they are quickly purchased by international buyers that see in Paxos both capital appreciation as well the immediate lifestyle benefits of a family holiday home. Prices are currently between €4,000 and €5,000 per square meter for countryside homes, €6,000 - 7,000 for sunset and sea view panoramic house and over €10,000 for the occasional rare waterfront or beachfront villa. Due to the lack of inventory home pricing, currently at a fraction of the cost of established locations in the Mediterranean, will be on the rise for the five years at least. COVID 19 crisis made Paxos an even more attractive property destination due to its relative isolation and privacy.
The quiet main town of Gaios, which has retained its elegant Venetian architecture, acts as the island’s harbour and social centre. The two other villages of note are Loggos and Lakka, with their tiny cluster of houses and cafes. However, the natural beauty of Paxos lies in its charming countryside. Hire a boat and explore the island’s coastline, visit different coves or beaches daily, or hike through the interior’s olive groves and pine forests. Meanwhile, the cliffs around Erimitis Beach are home to a network of caves called ‘blue caves’ due to the vivid colour of the seawater.
Dining on Paxos can rival any great culinary hotspot despite being such a small island. Take a seat at Erimitis, an elegant and upmarket establishment perched high up on cliffs of the West Coast, where fresh grilled octopus and prawn linguine are served alongside unbeatable sunset views. For low-key, beachfront dining, try Ben’s Bar in Loggos, with its boho-chic vibes and menu of wood-fired pizzas and fresh salads from the kitchen garden. Paxos is notable for its distinctive golden olive oil, made from the island’s subtle lianolia olives and, for the most part, organically farmed. Moreover, Paxos’ even smaller neighbour, Antipaxos, is blanketed in vineyards and the home of a selection of rare but celebrated wines.
With no international airport and only a few hotels, Paxos has remained an exclusive island, strictly for those in the know. The island is a particular favourite of high-society Italians – for example, the southernmost tip of Paxos is home to the palatial holiday villa of the FIAT-owning Agnelli family, whilst several leading figures in the arts & culture scene return to holiday on the island every summer.