"There are two qualities every jeweler needs to possess in order to win over a client: good manners and discretion". Costas Kessaris certainly knows a thing or two about success, yet he still refuses to rest on his laurels. His grandfather had spent his youth sweeping jewelry stores and dreaming of gold. By the end of his life he had gotten both. Costas however, never quite managed to make his own dream of becoming a diplomat come true. He did excel at public relations though, which greatly helped his first jewelry business find its footing in the industry in 1965. After 18 lucrative years in wholesale, he decided to explore the uncharted waters of retail and rented the legendary Orfanidis café with the intention of renovating it. But personal friend and Culture Minister Melina Merkouri got in the way, and convinced him not to tamper with the building’s original character. The result was the first café/jewelry store in the country and, quite possibly, the world. His boundless creativity and innovative approach transformed KESSARIS into a legend, where mahogany boiserie and shiny silverware made his clientele feel like kings – if they weren’t royalty already! Its fortuitous location, a stone’s throw away from the Hotel Grande Bretagne, guaranteed a steady flow of big spenders and eventually propelled the brand to unimaginable heights. A lot of water has run under the proverbial bridge since then, yet the Kessaris legacy remains.
The flagship store has bred many satellite locations and exclusive collaborations, starting with Bulgari, the first global luxury brand to put down roots in little old Athens in 1992. Costas’ son, Vassilis Kessaris, an innovative thinker with a passion for precision, broke new ground with ORA Kessaris – exclusively focused on timepieces - that turned out to be a significant contribution to the brand. His youngest sister Anastasia Kessaris has recently joined the fold, an interior designer who spent seven years honing her craft under subversive French designer Philippe Starck. The two siblings combine a cosmopolitan background with a strict work ethic and a fine jewelry DNA that could push the family empire into a whole new direction. Only time will tell what the two will come up with to keep the family jewels shining!