George Houvardas can’t escape Carbo fans

Fans of handsome Greek George Houvardas will have the chance to watch him again in the final episode of “Packed to the Rafters” for this season, tonight on Channel 7. Playing the popular Nick “Carbo” Karantonis, neighbour and mate to the Rafter family, he has won the hearts of the female population including his co-star’s and mate’s Jessica’s Marais.

Although this is his first role out of college, he is already being recognized wherever he goes, even in disguise (he’s grown a beard and he wears sunglasses), whether walking his dog Calypso or just jogging along Balmoral Beach.

Even more so at his family’s restaurant PITO at McMahon’s Point , where his brothers Steven & Anthony–to whom he has incredible resemblance- are often mistaken for him. So, there’s plenty of choice for the girls who he says “end up telling me I haven’t got time for them”, due to his work commitments.

Houvardas lives with his parents who run two restaurants and a function centre in Sydney and describes his family as “natural entertainers’ and “pretty outgoing”. “There’s never a dull moment in a greek family- it’s about good food, good wine, good music” he says. “I’m thinking of moving out this year. I want to live near the beach,” the packed to the Rafters star says. “Mum just stared at me when I told her. She looked shocked. It keeps you grounded being at home still, but I need my space”.

As fortunate as George has been in being cast as “Carbo” in the successful family drama, he says he wants diverse roles and has already appeared in the SBS series East West 101, as a villain.

George , 27, grew up in Sydney and attended Belmore High. He now lives at home in Longueville with his mum Annette (Anastasia), a teacher and dad Michael, an accountant. He ‘s been working part –time since he was 13 ,was a Super Youth League goalkeeper till he was 16. When he left school he worked in construction and began a building diploma at TAFE. At age 24, he took a one- year acting course at the Actors College of Theatre and Television and later another 12-monthe intensive course at Screenwise. He was then spotted by a casting agency for Rafters. It was his very first audition and he got the part. “I’m the least experienced of the cast, so I feel extremely privileged and lucky to be working with such an amazing and talented group of people.” He adds

““I’m pinching myself all the time. Anything is possible. You’ve just got to keep focus and go for it”.