Reflect Festival is coming forcefully to the emerging Tech Hub Limassol/ investments Heart Hotels

This year's Reflect Festival will be more massive and more qualitative than ever. It will take place in Limassol on the 30th and 31st of May and already the festival's website and Instagram are full of relevant posts. As one of its organizers, Stylianos Lambrou, told "Entrepreneurial Limassol", this time it will take place at Kolla: Factory of Culture, in the old Coca Cola factory.

As he explained, it was decided to hold the Reflect Festival in this area (instead of the Old Port) for it to be more compact and due to the infrastructure available in the area; as well as for symbolic reasons, since this this the area where the new Limassol is emerging, where huge growth is well under way. Stylianos Lambrou noted that this year, five stages will operate at the festival and the former factory will be shaped accordingly.  The organizers expect 10,000 delegates during the two days, including 2500 people from abroad, mainly from Europe and the Middle East.  The festival will be attended by investors, company founders, start-ups and government officials.

To promote Cyprus and Limassol Reflect Festival also organizes satellite events such as on February 27 in Saudi Arabia, in which 500 people participated. Stylianos Lambrou pointed out that this is the seventh year that the festival is organized, and it will be more massive but also better, in terms of production and budget. He pointed out that the whole effort does not bring profit for the organizers, since the support from the state is not as expected and there is no support from the Local Authority, for a festival with a budget of over €1 million, one organized to highlight Cyprus and Limassol as a Tech Hub.

The organizers even visited the presidential palace but did not receive the support they expected, Mr. Lambrou told us, although the positive impact on the economy is clear, and in other countries such events are even larger, due to substantial state support and participation. Stylianos Lambrou, one of the founders of the non-profit organization Techisland, which was created with the aim of transforming Cyprus into a technology and innovation hub, said there has been a huge flow of companies and talents in Cyprus due to the war in Ukraine, but he believes that this flow will not stop. He pointed out that new companies are also being created here in Cyprus by members of companies that are creating something new. "We have thousands of talented people in the sector in Cyprus and we see many start-ups being created through this ecosystem and I personally believe that we have not yet seen the peak that is coming," he stressed.  

He also said that tech companies are currently the biggest investors in the real estate market, the biggest donors in the country and their presence helps all sectors of the economy. Stylianos Lambrou, in cooperation with other investors have proceeded with notable investments in real estate in the city center of Limassol, with small boutique hotels or studios for short-term rental.

As he recounted to us, he started investing in 2015 in the center of Limassol (at a time when not many people were investing) and currently has a "portfolio" of 15 properties in the city center, five of which are listed. These investments include the Heart Hotel in a listed building on Zenon Street, while "The Townhall Hotel" will operate opposite the Municipal Hall.  He also told us that in this effort he also experienced problems with the Department of Conservation and Town Planning (more than four years of waiting for permission for the redevelopment of Heart Hotel), pointing out that these are listed buildings with problems, such as the Pavlides mansion, which was recently completely destroyed in a fire. 

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