Mr. Zenon, the rumour has it that you are one of the few people who has been associated with Aphrodite Hills for a very long time. Please tell us how you joined the project and what are your current responsibilities?
It has been a beautiful journey here at Aphrodite Hills Resort. I visited the area back in 1992 whilst road tripping and photographing and though the area looked rough, I was drawn to it. Amongst hundreds of olive and carob trees, some of them 200 years old, I photographed rocky fields decorated with colourful anemones and wild orchids. Never would I have guessed that few years later I would return to those same flower-blanketed fields and viewpoint plateaus as Project Manager for one of the most ambitious golf and land development projects in the Mediterranean: Aphrodite Hills Resort.
I was involved in the design long before I became the project manager of this project in Feb 2000. I have witnessed its birth from initial idea to what it has become today. Since the initial 3 showhouses that were completed back in 2002, we have now proudly reached the completion of 850 propertiesand the creation of an admirable community. I am responsible for planning and overseeing ongoing Resort projects and I can reassure you that the future is even brighter.
What improvements are planned for the Resort Facilities and Golf areas, including the new PGA 6-hole golf academy?
After the completion of the 2 courts of the popular Padel Tennis (the 1 st in Cyprus), we have planned a Basketball court also at the tennis area. Its going to be a college size court.
Surely, you all know about the new Cycling Shop located at the Village Square which is the newestaddition to our sports facilities.
The final designs of the 6-hole golf academy which will be located next to Dionysus Greens, are almost ready. The academy will be available in 2022 under Cabell B. Robinson’s watchful eye, the acclaimed golf architect who designed our awarded golf course.
What is the timescale programme for the 72 new properties on the old golf academy course and when is the property development around the 9th golf hole planned to
commence? And with the additional properties planned over the next few years, is the existing water supply and sewage treatment infrastructure able to cope with the new
additional demand? Are there any planned improvements to the systems?
Dionysus Greens (villas, townhouses, and apartments) phase A will begin the 10th of May 2021. Phase B will begin later. The entire project located in the centre of the Resort, will be fully completed in approximately 3 years.
Hermes Villas project located west of hole 9, is going to be the highlight of the entire Resort town planning. 19 exquisite villas 5 of which will belong to the Hotel and only 14 will be available for sale. This is a unique project. Bigger villas, modern and fresh designs (though based on strict specification and guidelines), unique location with stunning uninterrupted views. Single storey, 2-storey with indoor pool, amazing location, and impressive designs and details. We are now in the process of finalizing the promotional material and the development timelines will be based on the demand. If there is a demand for this project, the construction might begin during the construction of Dionysus Greens.
Of course, we still have the Ravine Development (right of hole 13) under study, and these will be created in the longer future, probably in 4-5 years.
Also, in the upcoming developments, we must also mention the East Plateau neighbourhood park. Even though the specific green area is the responsibility of the municipality, we are actively supporting the efforts and procedures of such a development, in close collaboration with AHRA.
Regarding the sewerage system, did you ever think what happens when you pull the toilet flash? Well, there are 12km of sewer pipes and 15 lifting stations collecting and diverting all sewage to the Sewage treatment plant (STP) where it is treated to produce water for irrigation. The treatment is by an extended aeration method utilizing air inflow to add oxygen to the aeration tanks where the biological treatment reduces the organic load before it is filtered to produce clear water. The final water is again filtered and chlorinated and send to the irrigation lake where it is mixed with water from the reservoir for irrigating the golf course and green areas. Tests on the produced water are done regularly to ascertain bug free and safe water before is send for irrigation.
The pumping stations are checked daily, cleared of blockages primarily created by all sorts of materials, cloth, wet wipes, plastic pieces, sometimes huts and shirts, all of which should be disposed in the rubbish bins and not down the WC.
The STP is maintained daily, pumps, screens, circulators, air blowers all work 24 hours a day all the year round, no holidays!
The station has been in continuous operation since 2002, firstly only one stream out of the available 4, as flow increased due to increasing population a second stream was put in service and there are plans to put a third stream in operation as flow at peak reaches 900 m3/day. Two streams can handle 1000m3/day.
Aphrodite Hills Services is responsible for the running of the STP and a specialist contractor is employed for the running and maintenance of the lifting stations and the STP.
Uninterrupted water supply is maintained by Kouklia Municipality though the central water tanks situated at the highest point of the Resort on the western plateau, and water supply pipelines In all roads, providing connections to each plot and village.
The water tanks have a two day design capacity of 3000 m3, and are fed from boreholes designated by the Water Development Department to Kouklia Municipality, where the water is pumped to an intermediate holding tank, supplied to a pumping station situated near the back entrance to the Resort where it is then finally pumped to the central water tanks.
The water in the Paphos area, while potable, is quite hard and can create issues minor and major: Stains on the taps and glass shower enclosures, accumulation of calcium in the kettles, clogging of valves, deposition of calcium in the hot water cylinders and the electric elements, the latter of which cause the electric element to burst particularly if the users switch the electricity continuously to heat the water in winter.
To avoid these issues, together with Kouklia Municipality, a method of treatment was used back in 2010 by adding chemicals to the water to minimise the effect of the high calcium content.
This was then changed in 2016 to utilizing the addition of Zn via a filtration/processing system which run until 2019 when for one or other reason operation by Kouklia did not continue and the plant became idle. The effect of this is evident in the water systems of premises which do not have another form of treatment prior to the use of water.
Only after many discussions and persuasions, Kouklia are currently pursuing in replacing this system and hopefully it will be back in operation very soon.
When is the road marking and pedestrian crossing to the resurfaced road going to be done, been some weeks now since the resurfacing work? The traffic safety concerns of the road through the ravine were to be examined by the Public Works traffic experts, has this happened? What are the recommendations? The road has many very dangerous curves, and we should not wait until an accident to start doing something.
Based on the latest meeting we had with the Paphos District Officer, the horizontal marking of the newly resurfaced roads is being done as we speak, markings for the remaining roads are being discussed with the District Administration Office. This is something we can’t really control even though we often put as much pressure as we can. The same applies for the traffic safety lines and signs. We have been promised by the authorities that these matters will be handled the soonest.
What measures can be taken to prevent contractors from disrespecting neighbouring residents within the environment they are working - times of work, dumping of building materials, placing skips, etc. in public areas, parking vehicles on the pavements?
We are putting a lot of effort to control the disrespectful working methods of other contractors. The regulations require very strict health and safety rules and guidelines that should be followed in this line of business. The authorities have the responsibility to enforce these regulations, and we are in constant communication with the municipality and the DAO for the enforcement of the regulations.
There are designated disposal points in the district for leaving construction waste and designated green points for leaving other large items like old furniture, all contractors and individuals should abide by the regulation and dispose properly. There are bins for PMD, Paper, Glass and Clothing at the STP site for the smaller items.
Regarding the issue of managing the traffic and parking we get assistance form the security and sometimes from the police, the latter being the responsible body for control.
Besides my professional role as the Project Manager of Aphrodite Hills Resort, I am also a resident here and homeowner myself. This is a beautiful place to live in, invest and visit for all sorts of activities. There is something uniquely special about the energy of this place which am sure is the result of the area’s long history.
It is our home. With its ups and downs, its special moments, and much promising future. We must support it and as homeowners, become a proud part of its development and evolution. Rest assured that the Resort is in the capable hands of a very efficient team of people who care, who take their duty very personally and put a lot of effort into making it even better.