Paper presented at the XXXIII IAHS World Congress on Housing, 27-30 September 2005,"Transforming Housing Environments through Design", University of Pretoria.
ABSTRACT: A unique vernacular architecture has developed in Cyprus through history. The Cypriot house, which has its own peculiarities, bears some differences according to its rural or urban position. While the preferences of the ruling powers influence the urban vernacular, the local characters and values are important in determining the rural ones. The environmental, production and cultural factors gain importance in the shaping of these local identities and divergences.
The richness in the vernacular architecture of Cyprus, as observed in Mediterranean architecture, can be considered as one of the main assets for tourism. Although sometimes, the demands in tourism might be regarded as a threat for the vernacular environment, tourism itself might be based on the local factors as in the case of ecotourism. Under this scope, the Cypriot vernacular architecture bears potential for cultural tourism with its own peculiarities such as environmental, architectural, production and way of life. In this paper, it is aimed to discuss the transformation and adaptation opportunities of the vernacular Cypriot house for the growing potential of cultural and ecotourism in Cyprus.