Phoenix began building the Hockleys home on April 3, 2006 and it was completed October 31, in just 7 months.
Brian and Shirley Hockley come from an area near Bath and made the decision to move abroad about 18 months ago. They originally came to Crete because Shirleys sister was having a house built here and they helped her move in. Not unlike many in their position, they looked at various countries to retire to and said, We looked at Spain & France, but when we came here we fell in love with Crete, as simple as that.
We were very careful to pick the plot. We have moved lots of times even in England and we have always been very careful with what we have bought. We always think of resale and long-term issues. After narrowing it down to Crete, the Hockleys made an extensive plot search, from Vrises and around Vamos to Georgioupolis and Lake Kournas – basically the whole of the Apokoronas area. The Hockleys envisioned a plot with olives but after seeing the Seashore Plot in Kokkino Horio with sweeping views of Souda Bay described it as, just lovely. The Hockleys added, we did look at lots of plots before we decided and Phoenix definitely had the best plots.
You need to gel with someone and I just felt very comfortable with people at Phoenix Real Estate. I don’t know why but I go by inner feelings and just instinct really and the plot was good. I felt very comfortable with people and the information they gave us and we just went for it.
The Hockley home is a traditional stone, single-storey house which they custom-designed with our company architect. It has 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms, a swimming pool, fireplace and enclosed garage all built on a private plot of 2,350m2.
Initially, the Hockleys considered buying an old property that they could fix up themselves as Brian renovated stone houses in the UK, but said, after much delving we realised that there are a lot of problems with old properties so we went for a traditionally built one . So we have got the best of both worlds really.
We love it, we really do, especially the raki but we wont go into that (laughter) .Weve settled in really well and we have made so many friends … Its a very social community here, although you can fall into that trap of being out all the time but we are quite happy to just chill out in our new house and do the garden.
Do they miss the UK? We don’t miss anything about the UK except being able to go down the road to see your family that’s all. I think family is the main thing, especially the grandchildren. The Hockleys have already booked their flight for March and are planning to go back every 3 or 4 months to visit.
Words of Wisdom I would say look very, very carefully where you are going to have your house built. And also to meet the culture a bit more, I think anyone ought to do that and maybe indulge in a few Greek lessons or at least do a bit of homework on where you want to be living. We asked the Hockleys how their Greek is coming along. Slowly, but we are trying to learn a new word or two every day. But we are trying, yes very trying (laughter).
Phoenix Real Estate asked the Hockleys if they are happy with their house and what they like the most about it. We really love it, we are so happy here, we wouldn’t go into a concrete house, we just wanted something more individual and we certainly got it. We love the view and the wooden ceilings in here. We also love how it all comes together, it all blends so well. There is nothing we don’t like about it at all.