Stavros G. Livanos

Stavros George Livanos (Greek: Σταύρος Λιβανός; 1891– May 28, 1963), was a Greek shipowner, native of Chios, and the founder of the Livanos shipping empire. He was also a rival as well as father-in-law to billionaire Greek shipping tycoons Aristotle Onassis and Stavros Niarchos.

Early life

Livanos was born on Chios, a third-generation sailor.[1] The third of four sons of steamship owner George Livanos, he turned the outbreak of the First World War into opportunities.[1] Even during the postwar demise of the shipping boom, Livanos managed to stay on top by investing only with cash instead of credit.[1] He was notoriously tight with his money, a claim that the late Stavros Niarchos remembered as accurate.,[1][2] Confirming his reputation for high cash-investment in his ships, Livanos once said, "I have no money. I have ships."[3]

Marriage and descendants

In 1924, he married Arietta Zafirakis (1909–1986) and had three children:[1]

The Livanos family lived in London most of the time. It was in London during the First World War that Livanos built the foundation of his empire. Yet they also had a lavish villa, known as Bella Vista, on Chios.[1]

He is the great-grandfather of Athina Roussel Onassis and of Stavros Niarchos III the ex-boyfriend of Paris Hilton


  1. Gage, Nicholas: Greek Fire: The Story of Maria Callas and Aristotle Onassis, ISBN 978-0-446-61076-6
  2. The Life of Stavros Livanos
  3. Hadjipateras, Costas N.: The Greek Maritime Spirit: "The Creek Shipowner"
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