It's been a strange season. Usually Nicos would drive to Kefalonia in April with a car full of goodies for the Lady O, excited to see his partner Dennis and plan for the season ahead. Unfortunately, due to Covid-19 and Nicos’s underlying health conditions, plus the travel restrictions at the time, he decided it was best not to drive to Kefalonia.
The season didn't start on the 1st May and for a while no-one knew if there would be a season or if tourists would be allowed to visit Greece. But Dennis and Nicos spoke on the phone everyday while they waited to hear if the Lady O would be allowed to operate.
On Facebook groups it was the topic of conversation and there were many mixed views from potential holiday makers and businesses alike. In the meantime, Dennis with friends and family got the Lady O ready wondering if it would all be for nothing. It seemed like an eternity before Greece gave the green light to go ahead.
When we received news that Kefalonia would be open for tourism and the Lady O could operate we were overwhelmed with gratitude and appreciation for how fortunate we were. We know many people who have suffered personally and financially from the current situation and we feel very lucky to be able to work even though just covering costs was looking like the best outcome.
The season officially opened on the 1st July. Even then we didn't hold our breath. Just because people could travel didn't mean they would. We had to do everything in our power to ensure that anyone who wanted to book a cruise on the Lady O felt happy and reassured that Covid regulations had been put in place and they would be safe.
The Lady O was required (as were all the boats) to limit the capacity allowed on board to ensure social distancing could be adhered to. Luckily the Lady O is spacious and has three levels so that wasn't a problem.
Guests would have to wear masks if they needed to go inside for the toilet or bar area, otherwise wearing a mask was not essential. Hand sanitiser has been made available on all three levels and signs displayed to remind guests of the expectations.
We are famous for our delicious BBQ on the beach and as soon as the smell hits them, our guests flock round excited with anticipation to get their food and bite into the perfectly cooked, juicy, mouth-watering lunch that melts on their mouth! However now they have to wait a few minutes longer so the Lady O team can serve them the food rather than the ‘buffet style’ we have had in previous years. They don't mind. The wait is worth it!
Everyone has adjusted well to the measures put in place and surprisingly many tourists have taken their holidays and kept us busy.
Thank you, we didn’t expect it and we are very grateful
Of course, Nicos is a little frustrated that he is not in Kefalonia supporting his partner in the usual way. And Dennis is of course missing him, not only because they are a fantastic team, but he is also missing Nicos’s bad jokes and dancing!
Despite Nicos being here in the UK and Dennis in Kefalonia they have found a little system that has worked for them. They speak daily to ensure everything runs smoothly, making it possible for Dennis to concentrate on taking care of our guests while Nicos has deals with administrative duties such as answering enquiries, taking bookings and responding to TripAdvisor reviews.
The Lady O team take pride in the fact that they respond to every single TripAdvisor review. It is our way of showing our appreciation and thanks for the time, effort and support you give to us.
Thank you to everyone who has supported us this year. Whether you are guests that return to us every year or you joined us for the first time this year. We hope your day with us left you having no doubt at all that your decision to have a holiday in Kefalonia despite Covid was the right choice.
We hope to see you again.
Written by Eleni Nicolaou