Both traditional houses constitute a very significant part of the folklore sections of Arolithos, since they represent rural dwellings of the 19th century. Their architectural style and decoration refer to houses one could come across in the mountainous areas of Crete.
The first house encompasses the basic features of a rural dwelling. The entire building is of stone with two chambers, which are imaginably divided into separate rooms, where different activities take place. For instance, in the first chamber there is a loom, a sofa (a rudimentary living room) and a cooking stove.
Nearby, there is a wine press, which can be converted into a bed, a separate children’s bedroom, a cellar and a crib for the animals. In the house, one can see a fireplace, a rest for pitchers, large jars of oil and grains, hope chests, farming tools and other items that decorate the place.
The second house may be considered as the dwelling of the village’s notable. Its walls are plastered and there is no animal crib or warehouse inside.
There is a wooden bed and photos feature on the walls. Moreover, the walls are decorated with linen textiles, which denote nobility. A typical architectural feature of such houses is the arch in the middle of the house, which separates and demarcates the portego from the bedroom and kitchen. A portego used to be what we mean by a “living room” nowadays.
Both houses are used by the Museum as visiting areas, show rooms for exhibits as well as halls where experiential activities take place.