I have been considering a trip to Greece since the beginning of last summer and I especially felt pleased with myself after coming across Condé Nast Traveler’s top places to visit in 2017. Athens is there at #5! Following a challenging period in my life, I now crave, more than any other time, to travel to the other side of the world — just let all worries go — and be surrounded by the warmth and inner peace that my family brings me. And something tells me we will get there sooner rather than later. Looking for a place to inspire me, I conclude that the Greek capital is an excellent candidate and here I delineate some of the reasons why:
Athens is a modern city with an ancient past. This contrast is exceptionally attractive, especially considering that it is ancient history is all in plain sight! The Acropolis dominates the city center and rightfully so. All around its foundations lie a myriad of treasures. A world of fascinating architectural ruins that tell a story that has survived through eras. Athens city center expertly integrates the classic aesthetics with modern functionality.
Selecting accommodation can be tricky if you do not do your research well, as you want a place that can offer a view, is pleasing aesthetically, and can give you a genuine, local experience. Located in the beating heart of Athens, along the ancient paths of the city on a wide pedestrian street, lies a luxuriously honest, haute design hotel. AthensWas is designed in a way that it accentuates all the class and elegance of the Athens that was. A proud member of the Design Hotels™, together with its sister hotel, Anemi Hotel Folegandros in Folegandros island, AthensWas is characterised by a rare classical elegance that is up to par with gracefulness of the Acropolis that stands opposite it.
Classical modernism best describes the style of the interiors, which is also so fitting with its poignant surroundings. Clean lines and uncluttered spaces create a certain sleekness that is wanting in a lot of hotels, that appear to be heavy on the eyes. I love the discreet use of Greek natural materials such as marble and walnut wood, while furniture pieces are all considered modern classics.
A few other traits that caught my attention are the stunning Modern Rooftop Restaurant with direct views of the Acropolis while you lunch or dine and the fact that all the rooms have their own private veranda, which means you could relax in the privacy of your suite midst becoming engrossed in the fabulously riveting and perennial monument that stands before you; that already counts centuries of existence. The hotel has very good reviews and ratings too, and provides a perfect base for experiencing the most genuine side of the city.
If you stay at such a central point in Athens, it is safe to say that all the top ancient attractions are literally at your feet. You can easily explore your immediate surroundings and be immersed in the cultural heritage almost instantly. However, a little bit of professional knowledge is always welcome to make your experience even more compelling. Instead of roaming around the city and discovering the sites on your own, which is totally feasible albeit a bit lacking on the information side and possibly time consuming, you can trust Keytours, the Athens tour experts and see all the essentials while also learning about the stories each site has to tell.
Brimming with all sorts and kinds of tours, you are bound to find one that excites you, like a private day tour from Athens to Temple of Poseidon for example. Greece has innumerous ancient landmarks, and Athens’ outskirts offer one that you will not soon forget. Wonderful sea views are found all the way along the Athenian riviera until you get to Sounion cape and there the views become breathtaking. At sunset, the sky is painted with phenomenal colors against a seductive backdrop of the ancient temple. Since traveling with a child is always a bit of an adventure, (new) parents will always appreciate minimising surprises and unnecessary meandering. Tailor this tour and/or any of the other private tours to your specific needs and time schedule, so that you enjoy not only the ancient sites while learning, but also do not have to worry about getting to and from them.
Athens is also getting ready for winter sales on the 2nd Monday of January that last until about end of February! For more ideas about what to do, you can check my previous post for the top three things to do while in Athens.