Vilnius is a multicultural city where everyone can find their place
Ana is the Administrator for IH Vilnius and the person who greets all our customers with a big smile on her face. She is a true vilnietė,1 born and raised in Lithuania’s capital, which she wouldn’t trade for any other city. "Living in Vilnius feels great,” she says. “Every day I can see how fast my city is changing and developing." According to Ana, who has worked in the tourism sector for many years, Vilnius is a great place not only for work, but also for taking time off. "What could be more wonderful than a Sunday stroll in Europe’s most beautiful old town, full of cosy cafes, happy and beautiful people, and being surrounded by beautiful nature?" she wonders. When Ana has visitors from abroad, Vilnius Old Town is the place where they spend most of their time. Foreigners are mostly impressed by the contrast between old and new architecture. "I suggest visiting the Old Town without a map or a smart phone – don't be afraid to wander the narrow streets, get lost and discover something new, but charming,” she says.
Residents of Vilnius are only cold at first glance
Ana has been working at the recently opened International House Vilnius service centre for almost half a year now. In the office, Ana is unofficially named “the good fairy" because she not only greets each client, but also answers their questions and shares recommendations that make them feel like real residents of Vilnius. It’s difficult for Ana to describe the “typical” IH Vilnius client. “They represent various occupations, but all of them are interesting conversationalists with whom I like to discuss both practical matters related to relocation, as well as the Vilnius’ image and the recent changes the city has undergone,” she says. Ana invites newcomers to take the time to discover Vilnius and its residents. This means travelling as much as possible, making friends with the locals and participating in the day-to-day life of the city. As she puts it, "Although residents of Vilnius may seem a little cold at first glance, in their hearts they are curious and joyful people. All you have to do is break the ice."