During the Venetian occupation (1204 – 1669), the need for a stronger presence of Venetians in Crete, led them to constructing a fair number of “Neoria” (arsenal) in Chania, where the ships would be repaired during winter time. The construction of the first two “Neoria”, was completed in 1526. By 1593, sixteen “Neoria” had been constructed.
In 1599, the south “Neoria” complex had been completed with the construction of the 17th “Neorio”. In 1607, during the expansion of the northeast rampart, the construction of 5 more “Neoria” begins at the heart of the port to the east. Two of them were completed, however the third one was only half completed since only the walls to the arch were constructed. During the Turkish period, the lack of maintenance works in the harbor and the diminished role of “Neoria”, resulted in the alteration of the original purpose of “Neoria”, which were now used as military storage spaces. From the initial “Neoria” complex with 17 “Neoria”, nine were demolished.
Nowadays, a group of 7 continuous domes is preserved, along with another one further to the west, the “Grand Arsenal” (today, the Centre of Mediterranean Architecture). Only two “Neoria” are preserved intact from “Moro” complex, at the heart of the harbor, while in the position of the demolished “Neoria”, the stone building of the new customs of Chania was constructed, which is today surrounded by two squares.
Municipal Unit: Chania
Address: Venetian Port of Chania