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D o m o t e l K a s t r i , at h e n s D o m o t e l X e n i a V o l o s , V o l o s D o m o t e l a r n i , K a r D i t s a D o m o t e l a g i o s n i Ko l a o s , sy V o ta t h e s p r o t i a s D o m o t e l n e V e , pa l e o s a g i o s at h a n a s i o s ( K a i m a K t s a l a n ) D o m o t e l a n e m o l i a , a r a c h o Va - D e l p h i
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e already find ourselves halfway through 2017 and, despite the turbulent international environment, the sun in Greece continues to rise in full glory every day, casting its light over our myriad islands, nurturing the plants and animals on our mountains and glittering playfully on the clearblue waters of our hospitable seas. The people who live in this country are indeed fortunate. But they are also eternal fighters, with a strong historical presence that dates back millennia. A new era dawns for Greece right now. The creativity of a people with such strong roots, with such a luminous trajectory that has given the world such great wealth, will not succumb to the challenges of a recession. These are people who stand tall and optimistic, who battle for a better future â€“ for themselves, for their loved ones and their fellow man. These are people accustomed to hard work and naturally endowed with a joy for life, the kind of joy that can be found even in the smallest, most mundane things. These are people who have always shared their material wealth but also the intangible values of sentiment, sadness and happiness. These are people who are essentially hospitable. Residents and visitors are witnessing the revival of Greek national identity through an evolutionary process with distinct, contemporary, local characteristics. Across the country, communities are opening their arms to embrace their people and their visitors. It is something quite special to experience this metamorphosis, particularly in times like these. The pages that follow offer a glimpse into this transformation, this transition from pupa to butterfly that this country experiences every year â€“ and with it, the change in its residents and, of course, its visitors. We hope you enjoy it! Konstantinos Alexopoulos CEO, Domotel Hotels & Resorts
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SUMMer taLeS 2017
COLUMNS 06 Concierge: Documenta 14 at the National Museum of Contemporary Art in Athens, movies under the stars in Kifissia, escapes and art at Thessaloniki’s Pier A. 10 My town: TV presenter Stathis Panagiotopoulos tells us what he loves about Thessaloniki; contemporary classical music composer Dimitrios Skyllas shows us around his native Volos, and Stamatis Nedilakis, the designer behind the wooden bow-tie craze, talks about Karditsa. 14 Delphi: A photographic triptych of one of the world’s most ancient sacred sites. 20 Agenda: The must-do cultural events taking place over the next few months in Athens, Volos and at our other destinations. 26 Indulge: A picnic at Domotel Kastri. Domotel’s delightful cocktails. Kastri Bistro’s new, spruced-up menu.
cOvEr: OLGA chArAMI
featUreS 30 Interview: Writer Eugene Trivizas tells us about his fascinating journeys. 36 Syvota: Setting off from Domotel Agios Nikolaos on five special excursions in one of the loveliest parts of Greece. 46 Volos: Exploring the coast and downtown streets of a city that is much more than a crossing point between Mt Pilio and the Sporades. 52 Photographic tribute: Volos in black and white by Dimitris Letsios, a celebrated Greek photographer. 58 Thessaloniki: Flavors, sights and experiences in a city all dressed up for the summer. 66 Fashion: A day in Kifissia. 76 Kifissia: A tasteful tour.
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A Factor y for Contemporar y Ar t The histor y and ever yday life of the National Museum of Contemporar y Ar t, the beating hear t of documenta 14. by Maria Korachai
© STEPHIE GRAPE
he fiery red entrance of the National Museum of Contemporary Art (EMST) in Athens looks like it is devouring the stream of visitors who enter daily for the documenta 14 exhibition (www.documenta14.de), which for the first time is being hosted by two cities, Athens (until July 16) and Kassel in Germany. The building’s bright white interior is structurally neutral in order to keep attention focused on the artworks of the group show, hosting artists from around the world. Moving up the four-storied building and crossing through the exhibition’s visual and audio installations, projections and contemporary art performances, you can’t help but steal glances outside the huge windows, which seem as if they’re framing the city and inviting the outside in. Distinctive features of urban Athens gradually come into panoramic view: boxy apartment buildings, graffiti, terraces with reflecting window panes and satellite dishes. Bringing it all together, the Acropolis and Lyca-
bettus stand above everything, as if surveying this surreal scene. During the ’60s, when this great industrial building operated as a brewery, these same windows provided visual distraction for Athenian passers-by who would gaze in at the brewery’s copper vats. In its heyday, FIX was an ultra-modern plant that operated all through the night with its lights on, offering its own tireless show and transforming the face of a then-undervalued area. Following its expropriation and reconstruction, the building remains a point of reference for the city’s history, providing its name both to the Metro stop and to the neighborhood in general. Info: Kallirrois & Amvr. Frantzi, Tel. (+30) 211.101.9000, www.emst.gr/en/. Open: Tue, Wed, Fri-Sun: 11:00-21:00, Thu: 11:00-23:00, Admission: €8 €4 reduced.
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A Cool Oasis for Movie Lovers Make yourself comfor table, have a sip of cold beer and feel free to stargaze. The film will be star ting shor tly. by Maria Korachai
© DIONYSIS KOYRIS
bright retro sign welcomes you into a yard in full bloom. There’s a delightful scent of jasmine and honeysuckle, and lanterns that cast a soft, romantic light over the line of people at the snack bar waiting for some delicious nachos with cheddar cheese. The open-air cinemas of Athens don’t scream for attention with huge posters or blaring sound systems. Instead, they offer the joy and familiarity of a backyard where everyone is welcome. Most of the cinemas are over 50 years old and unsurprisingly emanate a vintage romanticism; you might even get to see an old projector which is being kept as a memento. Thankfully, as is the case with all Greek cinemas, films here haven’t succumbed to the dubbing craze, either. Two of the greenest open-air cinemas are located in Kifissia (4k from Domotel Kastri), the northern suburb where Athenians used to have summer houses and which still retains a countryside flair, although it is now fully integrated in the city’s urban landscape. Boboniera has been screening popular movies since 1918, in a place surrounded by hickory trees, basil and ivy. On entering, you will see an
old projector reel – a souvenir from the ’60s – on your way to the snack bar, which caters to modern appetites, serving a variety of items from hot dogs and pizza to crisps and beer. Chloe, on the other hand, a cinema that first opened in 1960, has diehard fans who are just as interested in its wild bushy garden with two large plane trees and a forest of fragrant flowers, as they are in the comedies and action movies it shows. Its snack bar offers everything you need to enjoy a film, including popcorn and sandwiches. For those who feel the night is still young after the film, step across the street to the Recipe Bar. Info: Boboniera, 12 Papadiamanti, Tel. (+30) 210.801.9687. Screenings: 20:50 & 23:00. Tickets: €8.5/person, €6.5/children for family movies. Chloe, 17 Kassaveti, Tel. (+30) 210.801.1500. Screenings: 21:00 & 23:00. Tickets: €8.5/person, €6.5/students.
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“My city can be summed up by the song ‘Take It Easy’” Television presenter on the popular show “Radio Ar vila”
hessaloniki has something special, something that makes you long for it every time you leave. It’s the endless charm of the sea; it’s the waterfront and the Ano Poli (upper town). When I’ve been away for a while, I daydream about getting on my moped and riding down from the suburb of Evosmos to the coastal area of Kalamaria – the varied sights along this half-hour journey change like a kaleidoscope. The city has a philosophy (one that is captured in the Eagles’ song “Take It Easy”) and a seafront that is divided into two parts. The newer section, with its constant bustle, is still not sure of itself. It doesn’t know what it wants to be when it grows up and is going through a period of soul-searching. The older part is like a time machine. In contrast to much of the rest of the city, little has changed here since 1917, when a major fire destroyed a large part of Thessaloniki. A walk here makes you feel like you are stepping into an old postcard. My friends and I take off to the coast, to the beaches of the Thermaic Gulf, which are reminiscent of 1970s vacation spots. Then we head to the city center, where I grew up. Mitropoleos Street, Navarinou Square and Proxenou Koromila Street are where I spent my teenage years and early adulthood, in the pool halls and bars there. In the center, anything you need or any place worth visiting is within
walking distance. On Kassandrou Street, the 15th-century Alaca Imaret– its name translates as “multicolored almshouse” – has something about it that moves me: its architecture and atmosphere call to mind a different era. It is worth dedicating one sunny day to the western side of Thessaloniki. Climbing Lagada Street towards the Moni Lazariston (Lazarist Monastery), at a short distance from the intersection on your left you will see a discreet green sign for the Zeitenlik Allied Military Cemetery. The World War I Serbian section is not at all morbid, but bright and well-kept with rows of identical headstones, often with moving but stoic inscriptions. A rich source of historical information, the site is maintained with obvious love and care. The grass looks like it has been trimmed with a nail clipper, there is not a single piece of litter or any other such indignity to be seen and the monuments are simple and imposing. If you are fortunate enough to meet the caretaker, he will open the underground mausoleum, a truly incredible museum. The western suburbs of Thessaloniki are charming and unfairly overlooked, with Russian eateries and old neighborhoods that continue to preserve a small part of the city’s old cosmopolitan character.
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“The simple beauty of Volos is richly rewarding.” Contemporar y classical music composer
© NIKOS PANTAZARAS
ou need an uncomplicated approach when getting to know my hometown of Volos. In return, you will be richly rewarded by the energy of its simple beauty. Whatever your plans, your first excursion should be to explore the area around the port by walking along the waterfront, beginning at Anavros Beach and ending up in the Palia district. This way, you will be able to see the city unfold before you like a scale model. You’ll see it change character as you walk through it. One stop that is a must is the Church of Aghia Triada, which features rare icons painted by the artist Giorgos Gounaropoulos – although traditionalists may find them rather unconventional! An excellent choice for a coffee break – a ritual that is sacred for many of us – is at one of the port’s cafés with a view over the water. But if you’re looking for something different, somewhere brimming with local character, Charta is the place you’ll find it. Hidden down a side street in the city center, this café and bookshop offers a quiet space, plenty of food for thought and endless literature and poetry. For those searching for honest cuisine unmoved by passing trends, even better hidden is To Filaraki, a small tsipouradiko (an eatery that
serves the Greek spirit of tsipouro accompanied by small meze dishes) run by Alekos and his family. Here the fresh fish – served in absurdly large quantities given the price – can drive one into a state of ecstasy. It’s essential, however, to book a table in advance. Reaching the end of the day (or the beginning of a fresh nighttime experience), I find Taki Ikonomaki Street, the city’s new alternative nightlife strip, the most interesting area. This little street in the heart of Volos is lined with cafés and bars where you can sit either inside or outside, or get your drink and head to the benches opposite – a practice borrowed from the south of Spain and Portugal that has recently reached Volos and has helped us become more social and interactive! I cannot fail to mention the bar Alter Ego, with its classic cocktails and retro decor, and Tender Bar, a refuge for those of us with a perpetual desire to stay out until the morning light. info: Charta, 16Α-Β Skenderani / To Filaraki, 3 Georgiou Averof / Alter Ego, 38 Aghiou Nikolaou / Tender, 35 Ogl.
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“Karditsa gives me quality of life” Founder of “27 Wooden Accessories”
got to know Karditsa as a student in the Department of Wood and Furniture Design and Technology at Thessaly Technological Educational Institute. Even though I left the city after graduating, I always felt something drawing me back. My instinct was telling me that I would have a better quality of life in this little bicycle city of 110,000 people. The pace is more relaxed here, the distances laughable and, as I am free from the hectic Athens pace, I can find inspiration, create my designs and raise my son with my wife, Ermina. I start my day by looking up at the mountains around Lake Plastira. Whether they are covered with snow or not, they give you a sense of freedom. Every morning, I walk across to the municipal market with its cafés and I admire the roof, made of metal and glass. The building is a European Architectural Heritage monument. It is worth marking on the map, as is Pafsilypo Park, with its free-roaming peacocks that make you forget you are in the middle of an urban setting. After a caffeine fix at Piu in the square behind the courthouse, get your ticket for the Archaeological Museum. Through exhibits and digital applications, you will learn all about this town’s ancient history. To truly get into the spirit of Karditsa, share a glass of tsipouro with the locals at Steki, owned by Kyra Giota, next to the main square. For
shopping to the sounds of jazz, drop in at The Little Fabrica boutique, where you’ll find handmade wooden bowties, wooden glasses and other objects I make in my workshop. Summertime in Karditsa is all about ice cream; try the flavors at Cherry on Top. Enjoy a show at the municipal outdoor cinema or a theater performance under the stars at the theatre in the village of Mitropoli (9k from Karditsa). No matter what season you find yourself here, make sure to visit Plastira Lake. Head for the observatory for a view of the plain of Thessaly from an altitude of 1,230 meters, stroll along the lakeside trail or cross to the other side in a canoe or paddle boat. Afterwards, make a beeline for my favorite taverna, To Fragma, which is located about 700m from the dam. Kostas and his mother will make believers out of you with their warm welcome and delicious dishes. info: Piu, 4 Kazampaka / Karditsa Archaeological Museum, 1 Lachana / To Steki tis Kyra Giotas, 19 Iezekiil / The Little Fabrica, 3 Dimarchou Haritou Nikolaou / Cherry on Top, 7 Aza / Municipal Outdoor Cinema, end of Bousdra / To Fragma, Tel. (+30) 24410.941.93 / 697.575.0455
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D e l p h i
The sancTuary of apollo
© PERIKLES MERAKOS
Delphi is where the most important religious center in antiquity, the oracle of the god Apollo, was founded and flourished. The name Delphi is believed to have been derived from the word “dolphin,” referring to the form the god is said to have taken to lure a boat with its crew of Cretan sailors to this location to become his first priests. Today, the remains of the Sanctuary of Apollo include sections of the Doric temple (330 BC), where the high priestess Pythia foretold the future, and the theater, pictured here in the form it assumed during the 2nd c. BC, after restoration. This is where the musical contests (song and instrumental music) of the Pythian games - celebrated every four years to honor the god – and other religious festivals took place.
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Â© PERIKLES MERAKOS
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The charioTeer In the Archaeological Museum of Delphi – one of the most important museums in Greece – the visitor has the opportunity to admire the famous bronze statue of the Charioteer, which is attributed to the sculptor Pythagoras of Samos. A work of the early Classical period (478–474 BC), the Charioteer was part of a larger group of statuary, including the chariot, at least four horses and possibly one groom. It was uncovered in 1896, during an excavation by French archaeologists, and was found intact, covered in a green-blue patina characteristic of the material, and with the figure’s extended right hand still holding the reins of the horses.
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The sancTuary of aThena pronaia The archaeological site of Delphi, among the most important in the world, is nestled between two steep rocks known as the Phaedriades. It is said that when Zeus released two eagles – one in the east and one in the west – to determine the center of the earth, the eagles met at Delphi, which is why this spot became known as the earth’s omphalos (navel). One of the most important monuments to be found here, and probably the scene-stealer of the whole site, is the Tholos (pictured here), an elegant circular building in the sanctuary of Athena Pronaia dating to around 380 BC, whose function remains unknown.
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AGENDA S E L E C T
E X H I B I T I O N S ,
P E R F O R M A N C E S By
X E N I A
A N D
O T H E R
C U LT U R A L
E V E N T S
G E O R G I A D O U
© fondazione nicola del roscio. courtesy archives fondazione nicola del roscio.
Cy TwOMBLy AND ANCIENT GREECE To 03/09/2017
Greek mythology played an important role in Cy Twombly’s oeuvre even before he visited Greece for the first time in the 1960s, and the exhibition “Divine Dialogues: Cy Twombly and Greek Antiquity” seeks to explore the artist’s relationship with the country, both in the literal and divine. Curated by Professor Nikolaos Stampolidis, director of the Museum of Cycladic Art and Jonas Storsve, curator at the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, the exhibition demonstrates the ability of a single theme to transcend time, displaying 27 works by the great American artist alongside 12 ancient artworks. n
Museum of Cycladic Art: 4 Neofytou Douka, www.cycladic.gr (Metro Station: Evangelismos)
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TREASURES FROM THE ARCHIVE OF THE GREEk ART THEATRE To 27/07/2017
© GREEK ART THEATRE KAROLOS KOUN
In an effort to reconstruct a part of modern Greek theater history, the exhibition “75 Years of the Greek Art Theatre Karolos Koun - 75 Objects” presents a curated selection of items from the Art Theatre's impressive archive. Here you’ll find playbills, posters, photographs, costumes from historic productions such as The Birds and The Persians, as well as props and scenery. Together they tell the story of one of the country's most important theater institutions. STOart - Art Space of Ethniki Insurance: Stoa korai, www.theatro-technis.gr (Metro Station: Panepistimio)
THE GREEkS OF AMERICA © Εfharis leondopoulou
The music performance “Homesickness Blues: Greek Immigrants in the Basement of the USA” combines early swing and blues pieces with traditional urban Greek songs, recorded by Greeks living in the United States. Together with the music, excerpts will be read from Maria Sarantopoulou-Economidou’s wonderful book, “The Greeks of America as I Saw Them,” which recounts impressions from a trip to the US the author made in 1913. Kostas Vomvolos is responsible for the choice of pieces and their musical arrangement, while Akyllas Karazisis directs. n
Pireos 260, Garden D: 260 Pireos, www.greekfestival.gr (Buses: 049 or 914 - get off at stop yfantiria)
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SATURDAy NIGHT FEVER 16-17/07/2017
The Catalan choreographer Pere Faura, working with volunteer and professional dancers, will present the dance performance “Sweet Fever.” The production, which draws inspiration from John Travolta's famous dance scene in the film “Saturday Night Fever,” is structured according to the method of repetition. The dancers execute the steps and movements of the original choreography before gradually introducing additional elements until eventually an entirely new dance is created. n
Bios: 84 Pireos, www.greekfestival.gr (Metro Station: kerameikos)
MyTHICAL FIGURE To 29/10/2017
The B. & M. Theocharakis Foundation presents the exhibition “Maria Callas: The Legend Lives” 40 years on from the world famous opera singer’s death. Her favorite cross, her coffee mug, gifts from Aristotle Onassis, costumes from performances, outfits from her personal wardrobe, furniture and hand-written letters all shed light on the life and career of the legendary Greek-American singer. B. & M. Theocharakis Foundation: 9 Vas. Sofias & Merlin 1, www.thf.gr (Metro Station: Syntagma).
SAVVOPOULOS AT THE PANATHENAIC STADIUM © niKos charalaMBopoulos collection
The prominent singer-songwriter Dionysis Savvopoulos promises a constellation of voices and songs at his concert “Long Live the Greek Song.” The musical evening is being held as part of the Oloi Mazi Boroume (Together We Can) campaign, which aims to collect food for the needy and is run by the TV channel SKAI. Together with younger musicians he will revisit some of the most important compositions from his own career as well as celebrated songs by legendary Greek composers Sougioul, Tsitsanis and Zampetas. n Panathenaic Stadium: Vasileos konstantinou, www.oloimaziboroume.gr (Metro Station: Syntagma)
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A RARE FRIENDSHIP CATALyzED By GREECE To 10/09/2017
Benaki Museum – Main Building: 1 koumpari & Vas. Sofias, www.benaki.gr (Metro Station: Evangelismos).
THE wORkS OF MIkIS MATSAkIS
AN EVENING OF LITERATURE
The exhibition “Mikis Matsakis 1900-1978” offers a concise retrospective of the artist, who painted mainly landscapes, and whose style was firmly rooted in realism. The exhibition comes following the donation of the painter's archive to the National Bank of Greece Cultural Foundation (MIET) by his son Giannis Matsakis and his family. It includes general works as well as sketches and religious paintings from his time studying at the Munich Academy of Fine Arts, up to the 1970s. The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue of unpublished writings by the artist himself and critiques of his work by Odysseas Elytis, who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1979 as well as other prominent intellectuals.
Julien Gosselin, the dynamic and very young (at 30 years old) director returns to the Athens and Epidaurus Festival with another theater adaptation of an important literary work. The much-discussed novel by the provocative Michel Houellebecq, “The Elementary Particles,” will form the basis of a performance that will rely exclusively on lights, video projections and live music to set each scene. Ten actors will tell the story of the Western world over the past half century, acting as both narrators and characters. Pireos 260, D: 260 Pireos, www.greekfestival.gr (Buses: 049 or 914 - get off at stop yfantiria)
n Eynard Mansion: 20 Aghiou konstantinou & Menandrou, www.miet.gr (Metro Station: Omonia)
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© SIMON GOSSELIN
© national BanK of Greece cultural foundation
© roloff Beny
The ex hibition “Ghika – Craxton – Leigh Fermor: Charmed Lives in Greece” takes a compelling view of the lives and works of three of the 20th century’s most important figures of the art and literary world: Nikos Hadjikyriakos-Ghikas, John Craxton and Patrick Leigh Fermor. The exhibition explores their friendship – which lasted for almost half a century – and through letters, paintings and photographs, illustrates their love for Greece.
© BenaKi MuseuM photoGraphic archives
Displaying human and animal figurines from the prehistoric era to the Late Roman period, the temporary exhibition, “Figurines: a microcosmos of clay,” at the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki, provides the visitor with a centuries-spanning overview of the evolution of these beautiful artifacts. In total 672 artifacts are on display; 291 belong to the permanent collection of the museum and the remainder are from the ephorate of antiquities of Northern Greece.
The temporary exhibition “The Macedonian Art Society 'Techni': 65 Years of Collections” at the Teloglion Fine Arts Foundation is a rare presentation of the fine art collection of this historic art society of Thessaloniki. The pieces on display include pioneering works from important figures in the world of Greek modern art. The exhibition features works by: A. Tassos, Vaso Katraki, Chronis Botsoglou, Dimitris Mytaras, Yiannis Spyropoulos, Ioanna Spiteri, Panayiotis Tetsis, Alekos Fassianos, Opy Zouni, Paris Prekas, Lykourgos Kogevinas and Constantin Xenakis, among others.
Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki: 6 Manoli Andronikou, www. amth.gr (Buses: 7, 10, 11, 12, 31, 39, 58 and Thessaloniki Sightseeing Bus No. 50).
Teloglion Fine Arts Foundation: 159A Aghiou Dimitriou, www.teloglion. gr (Buses: 24 – get off at Chilia Dendra, 17 - get off at Triandria and 37 – get off at kryoneri).
GREECE OF THE PAST
THE LIFE OF SAINT SAVA OF SERBIA
A young boy sees his reflection in the mirror for the first time, a nurse reads the newspaper to soldiers wounded on the Albanian Front, two women carry containers of mud on their heads for the construction of a road, a girl stands on the stone steps of her school and admires her new shoes. The exhibition “Portraits of History: Voula Papaioannou – Dimitris Harissiadis 1940-1960,” featuring works from the Photographic Archive of the Benaki Museum, compares the perspectives of two great 20th century photographers during a critical period for Greece: from the turbulent years of World War II to the postwar period and the reconstruction of the country.
The Museum of Byzantine Culture (MBP) and the History Museum of Serbia are co-organizing the exhibition “Saint Sava of Serbia” which is on display in the temporary exhibition wing Kyriakos Krokos of the MBP. The exhibition will feature representations of the saint and texts about his life and works, with the highlight being an exact replica of his bishop's staff. Saint Sava was the founder and first archbishop of the autocephalous Serbian Orthodox church and had a deep relationship with Mount Athos, founding the Hilandar monastery there in 1198. He had an equally important relationship with Thessaloniki, where he was ordained archimandrite and later remained in the monastery of Philokalou, of which he was a benefactor.
Thessaloniki Museum of Photography: warehouse A, Port of Thessaloniki, 3 Navarchou Votsi www.thmphoto.gr (Buses: 3, 5,6, 12, 25)
Thessaloniki Museum of Byzantine Culture: 2 Stratou, www.mbp.gr (Buses: 3, 10, 11, 12, 31, 39 – get off at stop Stratigeio)
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© “tehni” Macedonian art coMpany
archaeoloGical MuseuM of KoMotini / ephorate of rodopi / hellenic repuBlic, Ministry of culture and sports, photo: o.KouraKis
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THE FLIGHT OF THE BUTTERFLy To 30/09/2017
Rooftile and Brickworks Museum N. & S. Tsalapatas: Southern Gate, Tel. (+30) 24210.298.44, www.piop.gr
RELICS OF THE GREEk STRUGGLE
yOUNG CREATORS IN DELPHI
From 30/06 to 05/07/2017
In “Photographic Pairs” the poetic images of Lia Zanni meet the melancholic photographs of Michalis Politopoulos – both members of the Photographic Circle, a non-profit cultural society. Held at the Delta Art Gallery and curated by Panos Rozakis and Spiros Lazarou (also members of the Circle), the exhibition includes snapshots of family moments and seemingly insignificant details of our daily lives captured with tenderness and sensitivity. “Their photographs are the garden outside of the little room of memory that we all build inside of us,” Lazarou says.
The exhibition “Philhellenism and the Struggles of the Greeks” is being held to mark the 50th Karaiskakeia – an annual festival that celebrates Thessaly’s heritage. It will include artwork and other items related to philhellenism reproduced from materials held in the permanent collection of the Library of the Hellenic Parliament and the Collection of Michalis and Dimitra Varkarakis. Additionally, six wings will house books and archive material from the library related to the Greek Enlightenment and the Greek Revolution, with a particular focus on Georgios Karaiskakis, one of the leading figures in Greece's struggle for independence.
To celebrate the 40th anniversary since its creation, the European Cultural Center of Delphi has planned a meeting of young artists titled “Delphic Festivals and Ancient Greek Drama.” The conference will include a visual arts exhibition, a one-day conference, video screenings, workshops, theatrical and other performances and lectures. Specifically, the exhibition “In the end he will make it... From the Hero to the Antihero,” curated by Professor Nikos Navridis, is a study of how modern societies shape the definition of a hero and simultaneously create its antithesis.
Delta Art Gallery: 4 Chatziargiri, Volos, www.deltaartgallery.gr
© hellenic parliaMent art collection
© Michalis politopoulos
© apostolos chantzaras
The Piraeus Bank Group Cultural Foundation presents the art installation “Psihes” (Souls) by Apostolos Hantzaras at the Rooftile and Brickworks Museum N. & S. Tsalapatas. In Greek, ‘butterf ly’ was one of the earliest definitions of the word ‘psihi,’ the soul. Thus dozens of butterf lies hang in the spaces of the old factory, transporting visitors to a place of myths and colors.
n karditsa Municipal Art Gallery: V. Tzella & Vasiardani, Tel. (+30) 24410.791.19 & (+30) 24410.799.37
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European Cultural Center of Delphi, Delphi Conference Centre: Tel. (+30) 22650.827.31-2, www.eccd.gr
i n d u l g e
Luncheon on the Grass Enjoy a gourmet picnic with old-timey romantic flair in the garden of Domotel Kastri by Alexia Amvrazi
© STELLA GIAKOUMATOU
hether you are a hotel guest or simply a visitor to the suburb of Kastri, Domotel Kastri offers you the opportunity to book a spring or summer picnic and enjoy it among the greenery of the hotel’s garden. A checkered blanket is laid out for you on the grass among tall pine trees, and soon the basket arrives, brought to you by one of the attentive waiters from the Katri Bistro. A warm, appetizing smell wafts through the air as the waiter opens the basket to reveal the contents of the numerous jars and decorated tins that lie within. “Here are some fluffy Oberto keftedakia (meatballs) with fresh mint, and this jar contains freshly chopped tomatoes with oregano that goes great with the meatballs,” the waiter says, knowing he is recommending a win-win combination. As for the jar with the glistening red spheres and cream-colored flakes, we’re told that it holds “crisp, sweet watermelon balls dressed with aged anthotyro cheese.” A perfect summer feast unfolds right before your eyes, and it’s quite hard to believe that all these foods being slowly spread out on the blanket once fitted so neatly into just one basket. There is so much to try and enjoy! Savory choux puffs stuffed with smoked salmon, cream cheese and
pickled beetroot; wild greens pie with yogurt; tabbouleh with quinoa and Florina red peppers; warm lagana breads that have the perfect contrast of inner softness and outer crunch and which can be slathered with homemade lemony taramosalata (fish roe); a delectable, Greek-style quiche Lorraine with creamy Naxos gruyere and turkey cubes, with crispy, meltin-your-mouth pastry. For dessert, the chef has prepared cheesecake with homemade cherry jam. You can accompany your meal with water, soft drinks or wine from the restaurant’s extensive wine list. The sommelier suggests a light and crisp Xinomavro rosé that does indeed perfectly suit the ambiance and food. If you are planning on enjoying the picnic with your children, you can add on a few items from the restaurant’s children’s menu, such as freshly cut French fries or mini burgers. Picnics must be booked at least one day in advance. Domotel Kastri can organize picnics for 2-10 guests, and it’s best to inform the hotel in advance about special dietary requirements. The picnic costs €30 per basket, for two people, drinks excluded. To reserve your spot in the garden, call (+30) 210.350.7100.
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Fine Drinking in the Lobby You can count on Domotel’s bartenders to deliver the kind of satisfaction that only a well-made drink can provide. by nena dimitriou
drink is often the best way to segue into a meal, put an end to a stressful day, celebrate a successful deal or an anniversary, or break the ice at a business meeting. At Domotel’s hotel bars, the emphasis is on fine drinking and using only premium spirits. At Domotel Kastri, choose among the signature and classic cocktails on the list created by distinguished bartender Giannis Kedes. Top selections include the Dark ‘n’ Stormy with Caribbean rum and the Vodka Sour, a play on the classic whisky version. There are also several great mocktails that make up in flavor what they lack in alcoholic punch. We recommend the Virgin Paloma with grapefruit or the Virgin Mojito with that refreshing kick of mint.
© DIMITRIS VLAIKOS
Classic Negroni (gin, vermouth and Campari).
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© DIMITRIS VLAIKOS
01 The “Athenian” salad with white grouper cheeks, herb mayonnaise, pickled cucumber and bottarga. 02 Chef de Cuisine Alexandros Charalabopoulos. 03 Pork cheek with a buttermilk-and-potato mash, pickled onions and vegetables. 04 The éclair duet: rich chocolate, fragrant vanilla cream and raspberries. 05 Macelleria’s unique space, ideal for private dining. 06 Buffalo-milk couscous with crayfish, octopus, calamari, fennel and lemon verbena.
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Prestigious Dining Talented chefs, premium Greek products, creative cuisine, and a friendly ambiance are all just a shor t stroll from your room. by nena dimitriou
he first thing that strikes visitors to Domotel Kastri Bistro is the warmth of the hospitality. Aiming to please and to offer a rewarding gastronomic experience, the team behind the bistro that has become such a hit in Athens’ northern suburbs pulls out all the stops to ensure that diners feel right at home. Thodoris Karinos, Executive Chef at Domotel Kastri and Chef de Cuisine at Kastri Bistro Alexandros Charalabopoulos have created a menu that showcases premium Greek products at their finest. They put together dishes that allow the colors and tones of each ingredient to shine, creating interesting textures and artistic shapes. The recipes are creative and contemporary transformations of traditional Greek dishes. Handpicked ingredients from Naxos, Kozani, Serres, Metsovo, and other locations on both the Greek mainland and the islands lend mouth-watering mixes of flavor to every dish. The buffalo-milk couscous, for example, is prepared with shellfish and flavored with fennel, lemon verbena and lemon juice. The pork cheeks are served with a rich buttermilk-and-potato mash and pickled onions, introducing an air of rustic harmony to the bistro’s elegant atmosphere.
In the kitchen of Domotel Kastri Bistro, the team selects seasonal vegetables and ingredients when they are at the peak of their flavor, such as peaches and strawberries in spring and watermelon and melon in summer. The salads of crispy-fresh greens, citrus and red fruits are perfect and boldly flavored opening dishes for any meal, while variations on classics, such as the “Athenian” salad with fish or the deconstructed stuffed tomatoes, connect the urban cuisine of the past to that of the present. Committed to freshness and seasonality, the chefs adapt winter menu favorites according to the availability of produce in other seasons. In this way, the excellent stuffed cabbage leaves of winter become stuffed chard on the summer menu, for example. To offer diners the finest meats possible, the bistro works with Macelleria Oberto artisan butchers in Piedmont, Italy. Info: 154 Eleftheriou Venizelou & Romilias, Nea Erythrea (next to the entrance of Domotel Kastri), Tel. (+30) 210.350.7100.
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The “National Stor yteller” and His Life’s Journeys A brief journey to the weird and wonder ful world of the criminologist-author who taught generations of children the language of the imagination. by Maria Coveou
© SISSY MORFI
e studied law, finance and political science, specialized in criminal justice and comparative criminology, and for decades worked as Visiting Professor of Criminology and Director of Criminal Justice Studies at Reading University / Faculty of Letters. At the same time, he also built a remarkable career – with distinctions and awards in Greece and abroad – on the imaginary worlds he created for children. His work is so firmly etched in the minds of Greeks that he is regarded as the country’s “national storyteller.” Critics have hailed him as a poet of fairytales, humanitarian, educator, miracle worker and wordsmith, likening him to Hans Christian Andersen and Aesop. Ask him and he will introduce himself with his customary discretion as an “explorer, inventor and juggler of runny eggs.” Meet Eugene Trivizas. A permanent resident of the Island of Fireworks, as he likes to claim (he actually lives in the UK, but he must know better), Trivizas appears to soar above the world of “real” people, stubbornly refusing to come to ground in a place where imagination and diversity have no place. In the hundreds of worlds he has created (484 at last count), all creatures are
accepted unconditionally, however odd or frightening they may appear to be, and nothing is impossible or unbelievable as long as you have the courage to imagine it. Baddies can turn out to be goodies and vice versa, heroes don’t always behave heroically, princesses don’t wait around for a prince to save them and objects rarely have one single, predictable use. Through his 150-odd books full of brilliant wordplay and a bitter-sweet, surreal sense of humor, Trivizas has entertained and educated generations upon generations of children in Greece and beyond, teaching acceptance, empathy, the pushing of boundaries, the importance of questioning established notions creatively and the need for imagination. Many of his fans, now adults with kids of their own, continue to seek solace in his stories, which always manage to bring out the child in even the most serious of grown-ups. We asked Trivizas to show us around his planet and to talk to us about his actual and imaginary journeys. As expected, the interview was anything but conventional, and it left us with a sense that we too were soaring above the world of “real” people.
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σ υ ν ε ν τ ε υ ξ η
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When you speak the language of the imagination all nature’s creatures lean in to listen.
Why did you become a children’s writer? When I was a boy and some story that I was being read came to the end, I felt betrayed by the words “and they lived happily ever after.” The heroes may have been happy, but they had abandoned me. So I tried to imagine what would happen if the story continued. Sometimes I’d bring the vanquished dragon back to life and in return he’d tell me where some treasure was hidden. Sometimes I’d try to guess what Sleeping Beauty was dreaming of just before she woke up and sometimes I’d look for the cobbler who made Puss in Boots’ footwear. This yearning for my favorite fairytales not to come to an end prompted me to start writing my own. Why do we need fairytales? Because they show us that we can defeat the dragons threatening us and the giants ruling over us. How did you become involved in criminology? When I was a child, I found a book of stories by the British writer Hector Hugh Munro on my father’s bookcase. In one of these, a boy is sent to bed without his dinner for being naughty. The rest of the family enjoys a lavish dinner, without the punished boy. But the menu contains poisonous mushrooms and the entire family dies a painful death. A policeman arrives and, as he’s counting the bodies, he sees a boy coming cautiously down the stairs. He looks at him and asks: “Why are you alive?” The boy, taking a moment to think, answers: “Because I was naughty.” This story got me thinking because it is such a reversal of the view that “good” is re-
warded and “bad” is punished. It was the exact opposite here. The naughty boy’s punishment turned out to be the cause of his survival. How do you explain that? It’s hardly surprising that I ended up becoming a criminologist in my quest for answers. What inspires you? The sunflowers of Spain, the lizards of the Dominican Republic, the bougainvilleas of Plaka, the roosters of Dellagrazia (or Poseidonia) on the island of Syros, the cactuses of Arizona, a color, a sound, a shadow. Even the most insignificant object like a cherry stone, a burnt match, an ice-cream stick, a milk bottle-top or a chocolate wrapper can be a source of inspiration. You have created all sorts of useful inventions. Which do you consider the most important? The tickler, a machine that tickles you when you’re sad and makes you laugh; the taxi magnet, a device that makes taxis feel an irresistible draw to you when it’s activated; the teleboa, a television that devours you if you watch it for more than three hours a day; and chameleon paint, which turns your room into the color of the last dream you had before you woke up. Have you invented any special gadgets for people who travel? Indeed I have! The lightener. It’s the exact opposite of the burdener. You put it in your suitcase and it makes it easier to carry.
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Eugene Trivizas has fans in many countries around the world.
What do you always pack when you travel? Colored paper clips.
eighth color of the rainbow is hidden. I would also like to travel to Fruitopia with Thanos the Courgette. Where would you like to take your students? To the Island of Fireworks.
What don’t you like about holidays? Borders. What is your favorite mode of transportation? The hot air balloon. How are your imaginary journeys connected to your real ones? I like writing stories in trains and airports at night. All my heroes are traveling somewhere or other after all. Tourtouri the Snowman goes all the way to the North Pole to keep a promise he gave a girl never to melt (The Snowman and the Girl), Tiribikos the mouse emigrates to the Land Without Cats (The Land without Cats) and Timotheos Peppermint, a piano tuner, travels to the end of the world to find the five keys to an amazing treasure (The Chest with the Five Locks). Why is travel important? Because it adds new colors to the rainbow of life. What is your ideal journey and who would you like as your travel companion? Accompanied by a firefly, I would like to travel to the deepest depths of the darkest black hole in space, because this is where I suspect the
What is the strangest place you have ever visited? The Sewer Museum in Hamburg, where you could once see (it closed in 2009) all sorts of objects collected from the city’s sewage system, including used condoms, the dentures of drunks and wallets tossed by pickpockets after they’d pinched the money. In one wallet belonging to a Welsh sailor, they had found intact a love letter from his sweetheart. What are the three places in the universe you would like to visit? The Jasmine Galaxy, the Four-Leaf Clover Nebula and the Planet of Lost Colors. What is the best view you have ever had from a hotel room? A forest full of enamored woodpeckers. Is there a single scene from your travels you will never forget? Yes, the one at the Gate of the Temple of Heaven in China. I saw elderly poets writing poems in water on the slate paving stones on the subject of the ephemeral nature of life, trying to complete the last verse before the first evaporated.
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Eugene Trivizas through the eyes of illustrator Efi Xenou
Where does your mind take you when you close your eyes? To an oasis that appears whenever I throw a handful of green confetti. What is one walk you will never forget? A path along the Cornish coast from a sea cave poetically called Song of the Sea to the Minack open-air theater. The cave has waters with magical colors, waterfalls, petrified sea anemones and a natural sculpture called the Diamond Horse, where you can see the sun’s rays sparkling like jewels through its cracks at sunrise and at sunset. The open-air theater is hewn into the sheer granite rocks and overlooks the Atlantic Ocean. It really is something to watch Shakespeare’s The Tempest with a real tempest raging in the background. What do you miss most about Greece when you’re in the UK? The sunlight.
What fragrance do you associate with Greece? The aroma of night-blooming jasmine and bitter-orange blossoms. What is your favorite Greek walk? The walk along the banks of the river Voidomatis (in Epirus). Which of your translated stories would you recommend to a foreign reader keen to explore your worlds? The Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad Pig in English, The Snowman and the Girl in French and The Magic Pillows in Chinese. What comment from a young reader has made the biggest impression on you? It was from Evita, who said: “I wish you were my daddy so you could tell me your stories all day long.”
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Excursions Around Sy vota A swim in the Ionian Sea, raf ting and horse riding in the waters of the legendar y Acheron River, outings to water falls, castles and unknown archaeological sites; theyâ€™re all close at hand. Base yourself at Sy vota and head out on five exciting journeys around charming Thesprotia. text â€“ Photos: Olga Charami / Illustration: Philippos avramides
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(27k from syvota) Syvota’s beautiful waters, white beaches, hidden coves, small fjords and rocky islets will charm you, while the coastal road south towards the picturesque town of Parga in the district of Preveza is pure enjoyment. Before you start off, there’s time for a swim at Bella Vraka or a boat-ride to the famous Piscina with its enchanting waters. Once on your way, visit family-friendly Perdika, the beach at Arillas and the popular Karavostasi, or follow the paved path uphill to the archaeological site of Dimokastro. Take a detour to the village of Agia, and then cut down to Ali Pasha Castle, with its magnificent view of the Ionian Sea. Descend towards the lovely beach of Sarakiniko, or seek out the waterfall and the restored watermill at Anthousa. When you reach Parga, there’s more to decide: should you go swimming at Kryoneri, Piso Kryoneri or Valtos; walk up to the famous Venetian castle and its steep alleyways, or sit for a coffee or an ouzo on the cosmopolitan seafront promenade? If you choose to approach Parga by the national highway, you’ll miss out on the scenic route, but you will pass by the charming village of Margariti, known for its Ethnographic Museum and for the Kalodikiou wetlands, also known as the “Lilly Pond,” thanks to the water lilies that cover most of its surface in spring.
The island of Panaghia in the bay of Parga, which can be reached by swimming or on a paddle boat.
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02. igoumeniTsa (24k from syvota)
A modern port town, Igoumenitsa looks out onto the Ionian Sea and the boats leaving for Corfu, Patra and Italy. The main reason to visit Igoumenitsa, if you’re not sailing for distant shores, is its well-maintained archaeological museum which features a permanent collection of finds from all the major ancient cities in the region, as well as interesting temporary exhibits. The Museum of Culture and Tradition, known as “Rena’s House”, is also worth a visit, or you could try a little people-watching in one of the many cafés on the seafront promenade or the pedestrianized streets of the town center. Stretch your legs with a stroll in the green park that was once the site of the local fort, or take a bike ride along the three-kilometer cycle path that borders the sea. Five kilometers north of town is the famous beach of Drepano, while further north still is the estuary of the Kalamas River, known in ancient times as “Thyamis.” Exploring the estuary can be a charming experience, if a bit challenging: the dirt paths cut across fields and are frequently blocked by fences that you must open and close behind you to prevent animals escaping. You’ll have no trouble spotting Ragiou Tower just short of the mouth of the river. Dating to the Ottoman era, it was built on top of a 5th century BC fortification wall that is still visible. Clearly , this prominent location has been attracting human interest since ancient times. (The site is open to visitors depending on staff availability.)
Igoumenitsa, Greece’s western gateway.
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03. The river acheron (50k from syvota)
For ancient Greeks, the River Acheron was the passage to the underworld. Today, it offers a very special excursion, with several interesting stops, through a beguiling natural wilderness. Go up the river, starting from its estuary at the village of Ammoudia, famous for its fish tavernas. The best beginning to this singular journey is a boat ride traveling up the last four kilometers of the river’s course, with modern guides posing as Charon, the boatman to the underworld, and offering a tour with all the drama that their role demands. Five kilometres further north from where the boat ride ends is the village of Mesopotamos and the archaeological site of the Necromanteion, built in the late 4th-early 3rd c. BC, where it is said that ancient Greeks came to communicate with their dead. Its most impressive feature is the underground cavern with fifteen stone arches. You’ll be fascinated by the descriptions of chthonic worship that you’ll hear from its guards. End your river tour at the village of Glyki, 15k to the north, where restaurants and cafés have set out tables on the banks of the river. Alternatively, you could have a picnic here (there’s also an area for camping) or follow the trails that start there, including one that traverses the entire length of a nearby gorge. For a special experience, you can try horse riding along the river banks, or rafting in the legendary waters – there’s the option of a 15-minute raft-ride on a tranquil stretch of the Acheron. From Glyki, it’s well worth continuing to the village of Souli, a place made famous in the Greek War of Independence. Along the way, you’ll come across idyllic Myli Souliou, with its waterfalls, and travel in the shadow of the wild, impregnable mountains that gave the local Souliots, famous for their resistance to the Ottoman Turks, their steely character. In the hills around this pastoral village, you can find the spot called Koungi – where the last Souliots are said to have blown themselves up to avoid surrender to Ali Pasha – and the Fort of Kiafa, which that same Ali Pasha kept well-guarded to ensure that the fierce Souliots would never return.
Games on the banks of the River Acheron, in the village of Glyki.
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The gorge of the Kalamas River and the ruined bridge of Boliana.
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The Koulia Tower in Paramythia, a superb example of a fortified residence.
04. paramyThia-Kalamas (45k from syvota)
Paramythia, once the administrative center of the region, still retains its aristocratic character, and a stroll along its narrow alleys lined with old shops and cafés is particularly pleasant. If you happen to visit on a Saturday, you’ll get to see its famous street market, which may not be quite as lively as it was in the old days – or match the excitement of the annual Lambovo festival which takes place in October – but it certainly brightens up the town. Arriving at the top of Paramythia, pause to admire the famous Koulia Tower, a restored building dating to the late 18th-early 19th c. The five-storey structure is considered one of the best surviving examples of a fortified residence in northwest Greece, and is open to visitors. You can also visit the castle and, a little further along the road, in the village of Chrysavgi, there’s the archaeological site of Elaia where, during the 4th cen-
tury BC, the earliest inhabitants of Thesprotia founded their first towns. Close by is the Fort of Eleftherochori, built by Ali Pasha. It’s worth taking a detour from the Egnatia Highway to enjoy a beautiful drive along the River Kalamas; this means you’ll be approaching the old national highway between Igoumenitsa and Ioannina. Kalamas in antiquity was a navigable river, and this explains why the remains of Classical-era and Byzantine towns have been discovered along its course. To the west is the beautiful archaeological site of Fanoti-Doliani (a town which was at its height during the Hellenistic period and was still inhabited into the Ottoman era), while to the northeast is Pente Ekklisies, located at the mouth of the Kalamas Gorge, the most spectacular point on the river. This is where you can see the ruined bridge of Boliana; higher up on the mountainside is the fortified Byzantine town of Osdina, with its beautiful churches of Taxiarches and of the Dormition of the Virgin.
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The famous Vothnes in the stream of Dafni, featuring waterfalls and pools suitable for swimming.
05. sagiada-FiliaTes (45k from syvota)
The northernmost part of Thesprotia around Sagiada and Filiates – close to the border with Albania – has an aura of old Greece and a great deal to offer: quiet beaches, old villages with stone houses and arched bridges, beautiful monasteries and distinctive natural landscapes. In the little port of Sagiada, you can enjoy ouzo and seafood in fish tavernas with commanding views of Corfu that are particularly beautiful at sunset, while in Palia Sagiada you can wander among the abandoned houses, admiring the traditional architecture. Keep an eye out for summer events such as theatrical performances and art exhibits, led by young local artists, that take place among these ruins. On the pebble beaches of Strovili and Keramidi, you’ll be swimming parallel to the national border. In the town of Filiates, there are attractive old houses, as there are in beautiful Finiki; you can admire them as you walk down old mule tracks. Be sure to visit Gitana, an impor-
tant ancient town of Thesprotia, and take a look, too, at its ancient theatre, where there are names carved onto the marble seats. Visit Giromeri for the famous 14th century monastery (a monastic center from the time of the Despotate of Epirus) and admire the frescoes, which belong to two distinct phases: a blend of Byzantine and western art dating to the 16th century, and a vernacular style dating to the 17th century. Nearby is the hermitage of Osios Nilos, who founded the monastery. Be sure to visit Kokkinolithari Filiaton as well. The pilgrimage to Aghios Minas, known as the “Meteora of Epirus” thanks to its location atop a conical rock, and the village square with the taverna are two good reasons to visit. But the real experience is to be had down in the stream of Dafni which flows in the gorge below. The ancient mule track of Laggaris (just outside the village) leads you, after an hour’s walk, to the banks of the stream and to the natural formations known as Vothnes. These are pools which fill with water from waterfalls. Further north is the site of Mourgana, which is even more untouched but considerably harder to reach.
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A Delightful City Break The capital of Magnesia is so much more than a cit y ser ving the Sporades and the villages of Mt Pilio. It is a fascinating blend of rela xed charm, amazing architecture, culture, heritage and enter tainment options. by Alexandros Skondras*
o matter which direction you come from to reach Volos – be it from the hinterland, the sea or Mt Pilio – this city will make a distinct impression on you in the way it seems to bridge opposites: the city and the countryside, the mountain and the sea, the old and the new. And though they are mere points of passage, bridges can be an interesting destination in their own right, places where you can ponder what lies ahead and what you have left behind – an exercise that should not be done in haste. Indeed, life in Volos is slow and a proper visit needs the right amount of time. But even if time is in short supply, this is an easy city to get around, as the planning follows the grid system developed by the ancient Greek architect and town planner Hippodamus.
© SAKIS GIOUMPASIS
Old TOwn Start your visit with a stroll around the Old Town, one of the city’s prettiest quarters, built on a hill shaped by successive layers of habitation dating back to prehistoric times. This neighborhood’s main feature is its collection of small streets flanked by quaint shops, tackle stores, cobblers, flower-filled courtyards and also the very interesting Museum of the City of Volos (17 Feron, Tel. (+30) 24210.298.78). The museum, located in a simple yet attractively renovated building that was once a tobacco warehouse, illuminates the city’s modern history through the stories of its residents and material evidence of their activities. On the seaside bor-
* Alexandros Skondras is an architect and photographer born in Volos.
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An afternoon stroll down Argonafton Street.
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Â© PIOP/NIKOS DANIILIDIS, SAKIS GIOUMPASIS, CLAIRY MOUSTAFELLOU, ALEXANDROS AVRAMIDIS
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der of the old quarter, you will come across some of the favorite haunts of Volos foodies. Stafylos (6 Melounas, Tel. (+30) 24210.385.48) serves selected Cretan dishes, the most interesting of which are the apaki, or cured pork, the stuffed cabbage leaves and the snails. La Petite Cantine (12 Pyrassou, Tel. (+30) 24210.371.09), meanwhile, is an ethical project that employs people with special needs and serves street-food style dishes with a focus on nouvelle cuisine and healthy eating. Heading away from the Old Town towards the port, one of the first buildings you will come across is the Rooftile and Brickworks Museum N. & S. Tsalapatas (South Gate, Tel. (+30) 24210.298.44), among the few surviving samples of an early industrial plant in the country. The museum sheds light on Volos’ industrial heritage, from the different stages of the manufacture of bricks and rooftiles to life in the factory.
The wATerfrOnT At the port, the third biggest in Greece, the tone is set by the big passenger and commercial ships that arrive in the early hours of the day, squeezing between the fishing boats and trawlers that have just brought in the night’s catch. The locals turn up early in the morning to get their fish as fresh as possible, creating a bustling market. The quays where the fishermen tie up their boats are a good vantage point from which to observe the entire ritual. Some fisherman is bound to tell you all about the size of the fish he caught and offer tips on how to cook them in the traditional manner. The old Silo – once used to store grains and cereals – is a dominant feature at the port, an austere monolith that seems almost out of place. Then, standing across from it, on Riga Fereou Square, is a building that is entirely traditional: Volos City Hall, designed by Dimitris Pikionis according to the tenets of Pilian architecture – slate roof and wooden door and window frames. Volos’s promenade starts at the port, at Argonafton Street, where you will see a row of tsipouro and meze joints ready to welcome passengers disembarking from the ferries servicing the Sporades. You can explore this stretch on foot or by bicycle, as there is a well-marked bike lane – you will have noticed by now that bicycles are an important mode of transportation for local residents. The mood along the waterfront becomes more relaxed as you reach the section that hosts the cafés, where only pedestrians and bicycles are allowed. This is a good place to relax with the locals, with a coffee break at Minerva (53 Argonafton) – one of the oldest cafés on the promenade and a place where time appears to have stood still (try its classic baked chocolate cake) – or at the café-bar Achilleion right next door (54 Argonafton), that’s housed in a neoclassical building designed by local architect Κonstantinos Argyris that also houses one of the town’s first cinemas. Rested after your stop, continue down to the end of the Argonafton promenade to take a look at the building with the imposing domes on the far corner. Built in 1926 as a tobacco warehouse for the Papastratos Company, the structure now houses parts of the University of Thessaly. Right across the street is a statue dedicated to World War II resistance fighters, as well as a small arched bridge that leads to a breakwater. It is worth making the brief detour to walk to the lighthouse at its end, where you can enjoy the panoramic view of the town’s waterfront. Returning to Argonafton, continue your seaside stroll to Aghios Konstantinos Park and the church there. This is a favorite spot for students at the nearby university to hang out, enjoy the sun, snack on souvlaki or crack open a few beers at night. The next green spot is Anavrou Park, just after Domotel Xenia Volos. This is a more romantic park, with ornate statuary, a small open-air theater where locals can stage their
01 The Rooftile and Brickworks Museum N. & S. Tsalapatas. 02 Bronze model of the Argo, by the sculptor Nikolas. 03 Taking a break in Aghios Konstantinos Park. 04 La Petite Cantine restaurant. 05 Argonafton Street, with the monument to the Resistance in the foreground. 06 The Museum of the City of Volos. 07 A bike ride down Argonafton Street. 08 The famous pastries of the café Minerva.
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01 Tasty dishes at the Galanos tsipouradiko. 02 A warm atmosphere and delicious food at Ba.Ca.Re. 03 The pedestrian bridge in front of the university. 04 Preparing choice meze in the Demiris tsipouradiko.
own productions and a small replica of a Neolithic settlement. Adorning Anavrou is the yellow neoclassical building that houses the Archaeological Museum of Volos (1 Athanasaki, Tel. (+30) 24210.252.85), one of the oldest museums in Greece. It contains finds dating from Paleolithic to Roman times from all over Thessaly. Also worth a visit for its treasures of Pilian folk culture is the Kitsos Makris Center of Folk Art (38 Kitsos Makris, Tel. (+30) 24210.743.69), a monument of Pilian heritage located just a few minutes’ walk from the park and the waterfront in the beautifully preserved home of the late Greek folklorist.
© SAKIS GIOUMPASIS, ALEXANDROS AVRAMIDIS
The ciTy cenTer For still more interesting things to do and discover, head into the town center, starting at Aghiou Nikolaou Square and the Byzantine metropolitan church of the same name, which can be distinguished by its baroque bell tower and pleasant courtyard. The pedestrianized strip that runs along one side of the square is Ermou, Volos’ main street and the best place for a bit of shopping therapy. The real magic, however, lies in the little side streets leading off it, where you will find all sorts of interesting places to have a meal or a drink. Tucked away on Skenderani Street is Ba.Ca.Re. (No. 12–14) – which brings together the traditional and modern in dishes like the squid-ink pasta and the burger made with local ingredients – and Creperie Poquito (No. 13), which serves gourmet savory and sweet crepes. On Pavlou Mela Street, Podilatissa (No. 32),
is a pleasant and welcoming café-bar dedicated to fans of art and the bicycle. It regularly hosts art exhibitions and its lovely inner courtyard, which resembles the garden of a stately house, is the perfect place for light conversation and cheerful debate. Parallel to Ermou and just a hop from Aghiou Nikolaou Square is the pedestrianized Taki Ikonomaki Street, equally interesting in terms of entertainment and ideal for an afternoon or evening stroll. You can have a relaxing drink at Speira (No. 45), a very special bar that helped transform the entire street with its quirky décor that resembles an architect’s studio; at Elefantas (No. 70A), with its industrial, Berlin-inspired style; and nearby Alter Ego (38 Aghiou Nikolaou), where the jazz and blues music give the place the feel of a speakeasy. Also running off the square, Dimarchou Kontaratou Street, named for a former mayor, has been dubbed “Volonaki” by locals, in a reference to the upscale Athenian district of Kolonaki. It’s now the trendiest part of town for all-night bar-hopping. A must, Hemingway Bar (No. 4) serves whiskies and whiskeys from around the world, along with cocktails made with premium spirits by its experienced mixologists.
TSipOurO STOp Tsipouro, a strong, clear spirit made of the pomace left over from winemaking, is an integral part of Volos’ food scene, and the custom of getting together at one of the town’s many so-called tsipouradika dates
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01 The central square in Makrinitsa, Pilio. 02 Products from the halva producer Papagiannopoulos. 03 Me Zen, the “alternative” tsipouradiko.
back to 1922, when refugees from Asia Minor would gather after a hard morning’s work at the tsipouro joints at the port for a glass and a meze to whet their appetite before lunch. Volos’ most famous tsipouradika, like Papadis (6 Argonafton & Solonos, Tel. (+30) 24210.293.60), are still concentrated around the port area. In the center, you will find Demiris (23 Efremidou, Tel. (+30) 24210.655.59) and the alternative, buzzing Me Zen (8 Alonissou, Tel. (+30) 24210208.44), which mixes tradition and modern culinary techniques. If, however, you’re looking for something more authentically Asia Minor, look for Galanos (24 Platonos, Tel. (+30) 24211.078.21) located in the former refugee neighborhood of Nea Ionia. Don’t forget that the ever-changing meze is an integral part of the ritual. These can be simple (salads, baked potatoes or various dips) or more sophisticated (fish, marinated octopus or shellfish). And if you find traditional Voliot dishes on the menu – such as boubari (a type of sausage containing finely chopped offal and rice) or spetzofai (a rich dish of sausage with a pepper and tomato sauce), don’t pass up the chance for a taste.
dAyTripS There are quite a few interesting and attractive spots just a short drive from the town of Volos. Makrinitsa (25–30 minutes) is known as the Balcony of Pilio because of its beautiful stately houses, built on the side of a hill and boasting stunning views of the Pagasetic Gulf and Volos. Aghios Lavrentios (35 minutes) and Aghios Georgios Nileias (40
minutes) are two lovely villages; walk around and explore the maze of small streets under the shade of countless plane trees. In the opposite direction, taking the Athens road, Sesklo (20 minutes) and Dimini (10 minutes) are two very interesting villages and also home to the remains of Europe’s oldest Neolithic settlements.
lOcAl delicAcieS TO gO There are many traditional local products that you can enjoy in Volos and take back home, too. You should try the halva made with tahini from Papagiannopoulos (Papadiamanti & 2 Vassani), as well as the delicious ice creams made by the family-run firm of Pilio (www.pilioicecream. com), as well as the lemonades and orange drinks produced by Epsa (www.epsa.gr), a well-known local company that started as an ice-cream maker in the town of Agria and is now one of the country’s foremost soft-drinks producers. Volos also produces some very fine beers at the Plastiga Brewery (www.plastiga.gr) and at the Thessaly Microbrewery (www.volosbeer.gr). Tsipouro is available from the Apostolakis winery (www.apostolakiswinery.gr) and the Nea Anchialos Cooperative (www.thessalikotsipouro.gr). You should also bring back a few jars of fragrant fruit preserves produced by the Portaria Women’s Cooperative (www.portaria-pelion.gr), which can be found at selected grocery stores in Volos. Wild herbs, such as ironwort, are sold for tea-making in many shops.
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Promenade on Argonafton street.
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the lens of time
Dimitris Letsiosâ€™ unvarnished Volos A Greek photographer gives us an alternative interpretation, in black and white, of the capital of Magnesia in the region of Thessaly. by Maria Coveou photos: Dimitris Letsios archive / thessaloniki Museum of photography
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wo children sit on crates on the side of a road perusing a school primer. A traveling photographer slicks back his hair. A pair of pedestrians wait for a steam engine to pass before crossing a road. Like Italo Calvino’s invisible cities, which exist only in the tales of explorer Marco Polo, the town of Volos as seen by Dimitris Letsios (1910-2008) seems like a figment of the photographer’s imagination – at least to the young, because older residents will still discern in his black-and-white snapshots the town of their childhood, even if their own memories aren’t always quite as clear as his images. Letsios, who was born in the village of Anakasia just outside Volos, is regarded as one of the most important post-war photographers in Greece, ranking with other greats like Costas Balafas, Takis Tloupas and Spyros
Meletzis. He explored the Greek countryside tirelessly for more than 60 years, paying particular attention to his home area of Thessaly. Here, he captured every aspect of the landscape (the valleys, mountains, lakes and coastline) as well as the daily grind of the people in its rural communities. His archive, which he donated to the Thessaloniki Museum of Photography before his death, comprises some 55,000 negatives and prints, most of which show the countryside. However, a part of his work, albeit a small one, is dedicated – as could only be expected – to the town of Volos, which he captured in what was a transitional period for the entire country, before the advent of modernization and industrialization in the 1960s. It was a time, according to the director of the Thessaloniki Museum of Photography, Hercules Papaioannou, when “Greece was struggling to stand
01 Coachman on the waterfront in Volos. The Argo sculpture can be seen in the background. 02 An itinerant photographer in the market. 03 Children doing their homework in the street. 04 View of the city from the balcony of the new City Hall, early 1970s.
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01 At the Pedopolis Children’s Home, Agria. Advertising photo for EVOL Milk, circa 1960. 02 On a shopping errand at the fishmonger’s on the main waterfront. 03 The Pilio Railway on Dimitriados Street. 04 Cobbler by the roadside. 05 Waves on the waterfront due to the strong south wind, in front of the Papastratos tobacco warehouses (today they house part of the University of Thessaly) 06 Dimitris Letsios with his Rolleiflex (photo by Takis Tloupas).
on its own two feet as a country again and when urban areas were still pervaded by a sense of rural simplicity, a feeling that was later lost.” Letsios chose to turn his lens to this less sophisticated aspect of Volos, giving us in these photographs an unofficial and unvarnished version of history. The protagonists of his version, captured with reserve and yet with tenderness, are the town’s hard-working folk, mainly men, such as the cobbler, the basket-maker and the man who sold song-birds – all nameless characters that Letsios came across in the street or at the market. While some of them do appear to be 06 posing, Letsios was a devotee of pure street photography. He avoided staging his photos, with just a few exceptions, and did not employ experimental methods when shooting or sophisticated darkroom techniques when developing his pictures. When it came to portraiture, he was not interested in the genre itself but rather in the human condition that each of his efforts was aimed at exposing: the innocence of childhood; the daily toil of the common worker; the solitude of the coachman waiting for his next
fare; or the itinerant photographer’s anxiety over his dwindling clientele. Even when he was shooting urban landscapes – such as the seafront of Volos, where he lived and worked for years and of which he was particularly fond – Letsios was not interested in making anything look more attractive. Instead, his pictures showed Volos for what it was, a town in the process of transformation: the demolition of an old house, the growing concentration of building sites, the necessary appearance of the first traffic policeman to regulate the flow of an ever-growing number of cars, the first billboards on the coastal road, the first modern-style tables and chairs at the now-historic café-patisserie Minerva on Argonafton Street. His work also includes material such as photographs of the Volos Carnival, of a performance at the ancient theater of Dimitriada and of a local fashion show. In the main, however, Letsios was a photographer driven by a personal ideology that put him clearly on the side of the working class, which – from his privileged position in the heart of the urban fabric – he framed and delivered to the next generations. His oeuvre comprises a valuable historical and sociological study available to anyone who wants to learn from it, as well as to those who simply wish to admire the images or reminisce about a different time. info: The photographs are featured in the Greek-English coffeetable book “Dimitris Letsios – A Portrait of Volos” (edited by Hercules Papaioannou), which can be purchased from the Museum of the City of Volos (17 Feron; open Tue-Sun 10:30-13:30 and evenings on Wed-Fri 18:00-21:00, free admission, Tel. (+30) 24210.298.78)
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The City at its Summer Best It’s easy to make the most of your stay in a cit y of such ef for tless charm. Here are some of our favorite Thessaloniki neighborhoods and experiences. by Amber Charmei
ith a cosmopolitan pedigree stretching back 23 centuries, Thessaloniki is all relaxed, laid-back confidence with no pretension. Intimate, explorable and welcoming, it’s also effortless for the visitor. Curving around its seafront and broken up by broad urban boulevards, it is convenient to navigate and very easy to get the best out of, surprising you at every turn. Grand plazas on the European model, like the French architect Ernest Hébrard’s Aristotelous Square, have entrances leading to covered marketplaces where little has changed since the Byzantine era. The old city walls circle an Ottoman maze of alleys, stairways, and public fountains with inscriptions in Ottoman Turkish, while not a kilometer away, on the broad shopping thoroughfare of Tsimiski Street, Thessaloniki shows its international, contemporary side. This is a city made for living outdoors. Enjoy it best in the early morning hours, before lunch. Head out again at dusk, when the shadows start to lengthen and the streets and seafront fill up again for the second half – some might even say the better half – of the Greek day, and stay out as late as you like.
up under the famous Zongolopoulos umbrella sculpture, to gossip on benches and to buy roasted corn and cotton candy from old-style vendors (or cocktails from the latest pedal-bars – catch one near the umbrellas). If you end up near the concert hall, be sure to enjoy the view from the fifth-floor balcony of the new Allegro café/wine bar. thessbike: for bike rental locations: www.thessbike.gr Allegro: M2 building of the Thessaloniki Concert Hall, 25th Martiou (on the waterfront), Tel. (+30) 2310.896.081 Mon-Fri 12:00-02:00, Sat and Sun 10:0002:00 n n
SeA ANd be SeeN The “old” seafront, which extends from Nikis Avenue west of the White Tower to the port, with the Thermaic Gulf in front and the neoclassical apartment buildings and Aristotelous Square behind it, has always been a favorite destination for the evening volta (a formal stroll for socializing). Come as you like but, honestly, locals have always made an occasion of the evening promenade by dressing up a little. End with a drink at the café locals refer to only by its address. n
Café Nikis 35: 35 Nikis, Tel. (+30) 2310.230.449
© SAKIS GIOUMPASIS
New wAterfroNt Thessaloniki takes full advantage of the sea, with a new promenade and a series of thematic parks stretching from the late 15th-century White Tower to the Concert Hall. In the early morning, you’ll find anglers and runners on the land, and scull boats skimming across a sea as flat as glass. Later in the afternoon, this wide promenade draws all Thessalonians with their dogs. They come to bike, to play tennis, to meet
MiNi-CruiSe Those boats docked next to the White Tower with drink menus outside may look like a touristy thing but locals absolutely love them. Pick the boat whose music you like best, and for the price of a drink you’ll have a 45-minute cruise around the bay – extra romantic in the evening, or a refreshing morning start to a day of sightseeing.
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George Zongolopoulosâ€™ umbrella sculpture on the New Waterfront.
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© PERIKLES MERAKOS, ELEFTHERIA KALPENIDOU, SAKIS GIOUMPASIS, ALEXANDROS AVRAMIDIS
CooliNg off iN the MuSeuMS Thessaloniki has a lot of museums for a city of its size. Possibly the coolest is the State Museum of Contemporary Art, located in the Moni Lazariston (Lazarist Monastery) cultural center. Its Costakis collection is one of the finest collections of Russian avant-garde art in the world. Most endearingly, these works were brought together not by a trained professional in the arts but by a man of great natural taste who began his collection as soon as he could afford to and continued to build it while employed as a driver at the Greek embassy in Moscow. Downtown, the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki has a vast collection of beautiful artifacts, and thanks to excellent signage you will leave with a fuller picture of the often opulent public and private life of ancient Thessaloniki. Right next door is the Museum of Byzantine Culture, a dark, intimate, sacred space, worth visiting as much for its design (by architect Kyriakos Krokos) as for the rich exhibits from sacred and secular life. Right across the street inside the exhibition complex is the Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art – see pieces by international figures such as Niki de Saint Phalle, Joseph Beuys, and Dennis Oppenheim and local greats like Yannis Gaitis. Foreign visitors may appreciate observing how international movements in the art world have been interpreted by Greek artists of the 20th and 21st centuries.
n Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art: 154 Egnatia, Tel. (+30) 2310.240.002, Open: Τhu 10:00-22:00, Fri 10:00-19:00, Sat 10:00-18:00, Sun 11:00-15:00, Admission €4, €2 reduced
MoNuMeNt wAlk Monuments from Thessaloniki’s most interesting eras are all within easy reach of each other. Start at Egnatia Street at the eastern end of Venizelou Park with coffee in one of the city’s most unique settings. On the roof of café-bar To Palio Hamam (“the old bath house”), you can sit among the tiled domes of the 15th-century Bey Hamam. Less than 200m away through the park is the Roman Forum – largely intact and easily viewed from outside the perimeter. Another 100m brings you to Aghios Dimitrios Street. Go west to enjoy an immersive (and playful) approach to history and culture at the newly established Seikilo cultural
n State Museum of Contemporary Art: Moni Lazariston, 21 Kolokotroni, Stavroupoli, Tel. (+30) 2310.589.143, www.greekstatemuseum.com, Open: Tue-Sat 10:00-18:00, Admission €3 n Archaeological Museum of thessaloniki: 6 Manoli Andronikou, Tel. (+30) 2313.310.299, www.amth.gr. Open daily 08:00-20:00, Admission €8, €4 reduced n Museum of byzantine Culture: 2 Stratou, Tel. (+30) 2313.306.400, www. mbp.gr, Open: April-October, daily 08:00-20:00, Admission €8, €4 reduced
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01 A mini cruise on the Thermaic Gulf. 02 The State Museum of Contemporary Art. 03 The New Waterfront. 04 The Macedonian Museum of Contemporary Art. 05 The much-photographed Aristotelous Square. 06 The cafĂŠ/wine bar Allegro in the Concert Hall. 07 Beer and food at Zythos.
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space (named after the Seikilos Epitaph, the world’s oldest complete musical composition) through its display of handcrafted ancient musical instruments and reconstructed ancient Greek board games (the games and instruments are available for purchase, as are some recordings). Just 100m to the east is Aghios Dimitrios Church, dedicated to the city’s patron saint, with a beautiful underground crypt that serves as both a museum and a place for contemplation. Walk uphill for ten minutes to reach the Alaca Imaret. Hidden between mid-20th-century apartment buildings and often missed by visitors, this 15th-century mosque has much of its original trompe l’oeil ceiling painting intact. Going back downhill and walking east on quiet and shady Fillipou Street brings you to the Rotunda – at different times throughout the centuries, this was Galerius’ planned tomb, the Church of St George, and the mosque of Hortaji Effendi. It’s quite a space – with a dome 30m high and nearly as wide, and newly restored mosaics. Outside is the city’s only remaining minaret. Just down from the Rotunda is the Arch of Galerius, a favorite landmark and still the most popular spot to meet for a date. n Café/Bar Το Palio Hamam: Mitropolitou Gennadiou & Egnatia, Tel. (+30) 2310.222.460. Open daily 09:00-01:30 n roman forum: Entrance from Filippou and Agnostou Stratiotou. Open daily 08:00-15:00, Admission €4, €2 reduced n Seikilo: 77 Agiou Dimitriou, Tel. (+30) 2311.243.263. Open: Mon-Fri 11:0017:00 n Aghios dimitrios Church: 83 Aghiou Dimitriou, Tel. (+30) 2310.270.008. Open: 06:00-22:00, crypt hours: Tue-Sun 08:00-14:30 n Alaca imaret: 91–93 Kassandrou, Tel. (+30) 2310.278.587. Open daily 11:00-18:00; free admission n rotunda: Aghiou Georgiou Sq., above Egnatia, Tel. (+30) 2310.204.868, Open: Tue-Sun 08:00-20:00, mornings are best, Admission €2
© SAKIS GIOUMPASIS, ALEXANDROS AVRAMIDIS
A SwiM ANd A SuNSet ouZo Looking east across the bay are the beachfront suburbs of Perea and Nei Epivates. The waters are usually calm and stay shallow a long way out, making the spot ideal for a gentle, kid-friendly swim. But the best part is the 45-minute trip to get there. Thessaloniki Waterways operates small ferry boats with many departures throughout the day and evening from the end of Pier A of the port (across from Eleftherias Square). Schedules are posted outside the main port entrance. Get out at Nei Epivates for the widest choice of ouzeries with tables nestled in the sand. Εxperience how much more delicious everything tastes when you are fresh from a swim, but remember to bring a sweater to guard against the evening sea air on the ride home.
thessaloniki waterways, Tel. (+30) 697.215.5471, fb.com/ thessalonikiwaterway n
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01 The interior of the Rotunda. 02 The Ladadika district. 03 Valaoritou Street.
Bantis Ta Bakaliarakia tou Aristou
tASteS of the City Thessaloniki of fers some classic food experiences unique to the cit y. Here are four you should tr y. Daybreak Delight The technique for making the tender, delicate filo from which bougatsa takes its name came to Thessaloniki with the refugees from Asia Minor. Most bougatsa is made by machine now, and although it’s all tasty, there is nothing like the real thing. Bantis is one of just a few remaining shops that make true artisanal bougatsa with hand-stretched filo. They serve bougatsa with all the classic fillings: sweet cream, mince, spinach or cheese, and they’re delicious. But when a place has filo this good, they also serve it sketi – just filo, with no filling at all. It’s this version that’s usually the first to sell
out. Bantis is in a quiet neighborhood above Vardaris Square, easily reached on the #26 bus or via an inexpensive taxi ride from the center. n bantis: 33 Panagias Faneromenis, Tel. (+30) 2310.510.355. Open: Mon-Sat 06:00-15:00, Sun 06:00-13:00 a sweet, exotic taste of the past In 1908, the Chatzis family opened a shop on Sabri Pasha Street, now called Venizelou Street, but the sweets here come from an earlier era in the city’s history. The family does a great job with all the classic Greek pastries, but people come here for those things that cannot be found anywhere else
– Constantinople-style siropiasta (pastries with syrup) such as hanoum bourek, a cream-filled pastry with homemade filo, or ekmek kataifi, with a pressed and shredded filo, soaked in syrup and topped with a slab of fresh buffalo’s milk cream. In fact, the family maintains their very own herd of buffalo in order to make it. You might also try taouk yiouksou – a delicious sweet creamy pudding with a surprise ingredient: chicken breast! n Chatzis: 50 Eleftheriou Venizelou, Tel. (+30) 2310.279.058. Open daily 07:00-24:00
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blue-collar lunch classic The old-style “Bakaliarakia” (salt-cod eateries) across from the harbor serve just one thing: batter-fried salt cod with fresh-cut potatoes, skordalia (a zesty purée of stale bread, oil, and loads of garlic) and a fried hot pepper, all on a sheet of grease paper. Together it’s alchemy, especially with a bottle of cold retsina. This can be thinned, if you like, with Coca-Cola to create a sort of Greek sangria. n ta bakaliarakia tou Aristou: 3 Katouni, Tel. (+30) 2310.542.906. Open daily 10:30-19:30
late night elixir Arthritic joints, crow’s feet, and – perhaps most to the point – oncoming hangovers all flinch at the very mention of patsas the collagen-rich tripe and veal trotter soup (whose roots are in the Melanos Zomos of Ancient Sparta). This renowned panacea is the classic finale to a long night out (in a city known for late nights). Try it at Tsarouchas – the city’s oldest patsazidiko (patsas joint). They also have a large menu of classic home-style dishes, including some more conventional soups. Come for the atmosphere, especially late at night. n tsarouchas: 78 Olympou, Tel. (+30) 2310.271.621. Never closes.
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EvEning PlEasurEs Aretsou: A ten-minute taxi ride along the coast brings you to Aretsou (also called Krini), a neighborhood with the character of a seaside resort, charming marinas included. Here you’ll find a choice of restaurants for a serious fish or seafood dinner right on the shore. It’s just the place for a memorable indulgence. n Mavri thalassa: 3 Nikolaou Plastira, Kalamaria, Tel. (+30) 2310.932.542. Open daily 12:00-23:45
© SOFIA CAMPLIONI PHOTOGRAPHY, SAKIS GIOUMPASIS
n hamodrakas: 13 Manoli Gagili, Kalamaria, Tel. (+30) 2310.447.943. Open daily 12:00-00:30
Around the white tower: If you like football, there’s no better way to experience Greek exuberance than by watching a match outdoors in front of a classic kafeneio, like the Kafeneio Pyrgos under the enormous plane tree in the square across from the White Tower. The spot is also perfect for a traditional Greek coffee (ask for glyko if you want it sweet, metrio for medium or sketo with no sugar) or a snack or meal in the afternoon and evening. Next door at Zythos (that’s the ancient Greek word for beer), you’ll find craft brews and sophisticated (but not at all expensive) dishes to go with them – very popular with locals and visitors alike. n
Kafeneio Pyrgos: 3 Tsirogianni, Tel. (+30) 2310.285.492
Zithos: 7 Tsirogianni, Tel. (+30) 2310.279.010
ladadika: Sometime in the 1990s, this warehouse district (which takes its name from ladi, the Greek word for “oil”), across from the port, cen-
tered around Katouni and Egyptou streets and meandering toward Salaminos Street – was discovered, gentrified into a thumping nightlife scene and then died down. Now it’s back, with the charm of its cobblestone streets intact, and none of the frantic chaos of yesteryear; just rows and rows of inviting bars, ouzeries and casual tavernas that are open from the afternoon to late into the night, their tables spilling out into the street. Afterhours: Thessaloniki was recently named one of the top ten cities for nightlife worldwide by National Geographic. Does it live up to its reputation? Oh, yes! You can have more fun here than in a city many times the size, from a splashy Greek night out at the bouzoukia on the eastern and western edges of the city (bring cash – the mood may strike you to throw baskets of petals over your friends), to something more low profile. The balmy night air is so sweet you may just find yourself sitting for hours at an outdoor table, conversation and wine flowing softly. Ano ladadika/Valaoritou: A handful of chic, casual places with really good food, like Maitr & Margarita, have opened up among the wholesalers in quiet Ano (upper) Ladadika (as the area on the northern side of Tsimiski Street is known). The area is a mix of warehouses, light industry and textile stores plus artists’ studios and galleries – much like New York’s Tribeca in the 1980s. Walk up towards Valaoritou Street for a more lively mood – many of the neighborhood’s original industrial storefronts have been made over into Thessaloniki’s liveliest bars and clubs. Try one of a large se-
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lection of Czech beers at Gambrinus, in the Stoa Malakopi (designed by Thessaloniki’s favorite Belle Epoque Architect Vitaliano Poselli) on the quarter’s central plaza – the best spot for watching the crowds go by. La Doze, across the plaza, is as popular for its cocktails as for the avant-garde exhibitions upstairs in the Toss gallery space. Or enjoy the night sky at Urania, a favorite rooftop bar. Maitr & Margarita: 2 Veroias, Tel. (+30) 2314.007.586 gambrinus: 7 Syngrou, Tel. (+30) 2311.243.313. Open from 11:00 n la doze: 1 Vilara & Syngrou, Tel. (+30) 2310.532.986. Open from 20:00 n urania: 4 Paikou and 7 Kapodistriou, Tel. (+30) 2315.527.999, 6977.990.185. Open from 19:00 n n
sHoPPing witH suBstanCE The economic crisis has taken a curious, beautiful turn in Thessaloniki. People have simply made their own jobs – opening cafés, bars and ouzeries with personality and vision. There has also been a surge of creativity – a new wave in the city’s already rich history in craftsmanship. There are more workshops for design, fashion, jewelry and crafts than at any time in recent memory, which makes for some unique shopping. Jewelry and objects: In an office building arcade on a noisy stretch of Egnatia Street is an oasis of teal blue chic. Bord de l’eau design factory is a café and bar plus a workshop for jewelry and art objects. Giannis Gounaridis’ animal rings in sterling silver – rams, dogs, bucks with antlers – have a surreal, fairytale mystique. There are other jewelry collections, the most popular being modernist resin-on-metal renditions of
01 Some of the creations of Eleni Chasioti. 02 Maitr & Margarita. 03 Romba’s. 04 Seikilo. 05 The White Tower.
charms against the evil eye, in sizes from wearable charms to striking wall art (also available in Athens and on some islands). n bord de l’eau: 45 Egnatia, Tel. (+30) 2310.520.911, regular store hours (call for details)
handmade leather goods: For fine sandals, bags and accessories of original design, the father and son craftsmen Giannis and Stelios Terzopoulos of Romba’s complete every step by hand, using top-quality leather from a Cretan tannery. They have a full selection of ready goods and all their designs can be customized to suit. n romba’s: 8 Antigonidon, Tel. (+30) 2310.555.130. Open: Mon-Fri 09:0020:00, Sat 09:00-15:00
Clothing: Shop for clothing in styles both modern and nostalgic from two local designers. At Fractal, Elena Spentamidou creates distinctive urban clothing – flattering designs characterized by geometric forms and simplicity of line. At Eleni Chasioti’s beautiful high-ceilinged workshop on a corner near the Roman Forum, you’ll find original designs with vintage soul – inspired by the looks of the 1930s, ’40s, and ’50s. n fractal: 33 Ptolemaion, Tel. (+30) 2313.064.446. Open: Mon, Wed and Thu 09:00-16:30, Tue and Fri 09:00-18:00, Sat 10:00-15:00 n eleni Chasioti: 51 Filippou, Tel. (+30) 2310.224.453. Open: Mon-Fri 11:0021:00, Sat 11:00-16:00
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A Day in Kifissia Photos: Giannis Vastardis @darkboxstudio Fashion editor: Dimitris Nireas Schwartz @darkboxstudio Make-up and hair: Thanos Molos Models: Aino Vierimaa (d Îœodels), Okan Voz (Ace Models) Styling assistant: George Georgantellis
Floral silk dress, black military jacket with lace ending, floral clutch, Alexander McQueen (LUISA WORLD) / Sunglasses, Gucci (PANAIDIS) / Pink gold amethyst rosette with brilliants (GOFAS)
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OKAN: Checkered jacket in grey and white with pocket square in deep brown, white shirt, grey trousers, Ermenegildo Zegna (ERMENEGILDO ZEGNA) / Wristwatch with blue leather strap, Bulgari (ORA KESSARIS) AINO: Floral, light blue, cotton zipped coat, scarf, Ted Baker / Blue handbag Love Moschino (ATTICA) / Brilliant and sapphire white gold bracelet, brilliant and sapphire white gold earrings (VENETIA VILDIRIDIS)
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Silver grey suit with matching pocket square, light grey tie, Armani / White shirt, Hugo Boss (INTERVISTA) / Gold chevalier ring (ZOLOTAS)
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OKAN: Blue jacket with polka dot pocket square, light blue shirt, sand-colored pants, Hugo Boss (INTERVISTA) / Sunglasses, Dita (PANAIDIS) AINO: White, knee-length sleeveless dress, Armani / Silk scarf, Etro / Bag, Marni (INTERVISTA) Sunglasses, Max Mara (SAFILO HELLAS) / Flower-shaped sapphire earrings and bracelet (KESSARIS)
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Jacket in brown-grey with matching pocket square, pale pink shirt, brown trousers, menâ€™s handbag in bright blue, brown shoes, Ermenegildo Zegna (ERMENEGILDO ZEGNA) / Wristwatch, Hublot (GOFAS) / Eyeglasses, Mark Jacobs (SAFILO HELLAS)
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Green floral print total look, blouse and trousers, Max Mara (MAX MARA) / Borsalino hat, Philip Treacy from the stylistâ€™s own collection / Sunglasses, Max Mara (SAFILO HELLAS), Gold hoop earrings, gold necklace with brilliants, gold ring (VENETIA VILDIRIDIS)
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SPEcIAL ThANkS TO ZAMbrI cAFÃ© IN kIFISSIA FOr ThEIr hOSPITALITy
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Red ‘50s bow dress with flowers, Ted Baker / Red strap sandals, Steve Madden by Nak / Nude-colored clutch, Love Moschino (ATTICA) / Vintage red and yellow Chanel scarf from the stylist’s own collection / Earrings with south sea pearls and brilliants (KESSARIS)
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Luisa World: 15 Skoufa, Athens, Τel. (+30) 210.363.5600 Attica: 9 Panepistimiou, Athens, Τel. (+30) 211.180.2600 Intervista: 71 Tsimiski, Thessaloniki, Τel. (+30) 231.023.0906 Ermenegildo Zegna: 24 Voukourestiou, Athens, Τel. (+30) 210.364.3930 Max Mara: 2 Kanari, Athens, Τel. (+30) 210.360.7300 Kessaris: 7 Panepistimiou, Athens, Τel. (+30) 210.371.1010 Ora Kessaris: 8Α Voukourestiou, Athens, Τel. (+30) 210.371.1020 Venetia Vildiridis: 8 Panepistimiou & 11 Voukourestiou, Athens, Τel. (+30) 210.321.9408 Zolotas: 10 Panepistimiou, Athens, Τel. (+30) 210.360.1272 Gofas: 3 Stadiou, Athens, Τel. (+30) 210.331.7540 Panaidis Eyewear Boutique: 11 Voukourestiou, Athens, Τel. (+30) 210.364.7459 Safilo Hellas: Distribution: 1 Alimoundos & 563 Vouliagmenis, Athens Τel. (+30) 210.532.2566
d i n i n g
A Tasteful Tour of Kifissia With its timeless worldly charm, the greenest neighborhood in Athens is ideal for a great day out, with lots of shopping, eating and drinking options. by alexia amvrazi
ocated on the western foothills of Mt Penteli, Kifissia started to take its present form in the 19th century, when Athenian families, lured by its abundance of fresh water, dense vegetation and crisp atmosphere, built their summer villas here. Its impressive neoclassical and other 19th-century buildings attest to that period, when it took almost two hours from central Athens by horse and cart (compared to the 35 minutes by car today) to reach what was then a village. While Kifissia expanded and became commercialized over time, it retains much of its old-world charm and upper-crust ambience. It may no longer be a summer getaway but it remains a splendid destination for shopping, with plenty of high-quality stops for coffee and dessert, elegant lunch and trendy, cocktail-driven dinner.
Let’s do LunCh
Il Salumaio d’Atene is an all-day deli-cum-restaurant that serves authentic Italian dishes made with the finest ingredients. Whether you choose to eat indoors under the painted glass roof or outdoors in the courtyard, you will appreciate the simple, fresh flavors and professional service. For farm-to-table food, lunch at Nice N Easy and choose from a menu that mixes American and Mediterranean cuisine with plenty of gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan options. Alternatively, lounge around in the mansion of Artisanal while enjoying a refreshing, gourmet-style meal. If you and your friends would rather enjoy a private dinner, book the Macelleria in Domotel’s Kastri Bistro, where a long table that seats 22 people dominates the room. Savor aged Macelleria Oberto meats from a special refrigerator as well as creative Greek cuisine prepared by the hotel’s chefs, all accompanied by an exemplary choice of wines and sweets.
Do like the locals and sit out at one of Kifissia’s buzzy cafes to nibble on sweets and sip on a frothy coffee as you watch the world go by. Varsos (since 1892) is Kifissia’s oldest café, and what it lacks in fancy décor it makes up for in the flavor of its tsoureki-style croissants stuffed with chocolate and nuts, the crème puddings and the crispy sfoliata cheese pie. Common Secret is another popular option for coffee or even brunch, in a cozy British country-style atmosphere, as is Amaryllis, an all-day hangout serving quality gourmet coffee, tea and tasty tarts. You could also go for another elegant choice, Menta Café, housed in the garden villa where nationally acclaimed poet and playwright Angelos Sikelianos spent the last summers of his life. For something completely different, Different Beast, with an eco-conscious décor of upcycled furnishings laid out in a post-industrial space, offers a selection of snacks, breakfast options and smooth coffees.
Τry J Cocktail Bar for a dimly-lit, New York gastro-bar vibe; Buba Bistrot Exotique for a Thai menu full of playful bites; PigOut for Greek ingredients with a modern twist; or Caffè I Frati, a “mozzarella bar” loyal to its Italian name. For a fascinating ethnic gastronomic experience, go to Oozora, which serves interesting Asian cuisine as well as cocktails by award-winning mixologists. The charming Eleas Gi is the ideal spot for an elegant and romantic dinner – try its “24 Flavors” set menu, or dine a la carte. For modern Japanese food, head to Suba. For just drinks, try Bronco, known for its cool-cat rock style. Café Escoba, which hosts Latin and rock music live shows and dance parties, is the place for margaritas, burgers and Tex-Mex nibbles.
CoCktaiL hour and beyond
If your sweet tooth is taking you off course, stop off at Aristokratikon, founded in 1928 and still one of Greece’s most esteemed chocolate makers. Try the unique white-and-dark chocolate ganache, the croquant truffles or Turkish delight. Another popular choice for handmade chocolates and other delicacies is Martha’s, while for excellent gelato, head to Zillion’s or Ninnolo.
Last but not least, there are the good, old-fashioned classic Greek taverna options. Extremely popular with locals in the know are Vathys, which has been serving wholesome, comforting foods such as ladera (vegetables cooked in oil) and onion-based stews like stifado for over 35 years, and Katsarina (since 1893), which serves classic dishes like moussaka, boiled greens (horta), lemon chicken and spinach pie.
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Café soCiety Varsos 5 Kassaveti (+30) 210.801.2472 varsos.gr Common seCret 324 Kifissias (+30) 210.623.3810 amaryllis 15A Diomidous Kyriakou (+30) 210.623.3769 menta Café 10 Aghion Theodoron (+30) 210.808.0193 different Beast 19 Kassaveti (+30) 216.700.4556 sUGar CrUsH aristokratikon 8 Argyropoulou (+30) 210.322.0546 aristokratikon.com martHa’s 324 Kifissias (+30) 210.808.1193 Zillion’s 69 Dionysou (+30) 210.620.1211 ninnolo 8 Aghiou Dimitriou (+30) 210.801.2765 let’s do lUnCH il salUmaio d’atene 3 Panagitsas (+30) 210.623.3934 salumaio.gr niCe n easy 7 Papadiamanti (+30) 210.808.2014 niceneasy.gr artisanal 2 Zirini (+30) 210.808.6111 artisanal.gr kastri Bistro 154 Eleftheriou Venizelou & Romylias (+30) 210.350.7100 domotel.gr/wine-dine/7/ Kastri-Athens
CoCktail HoUr and Beyond J CoCktail Bar 6 Argyropoulou (+30) 210.801.3896 BUBa Bistrot exotiqUe 4 Papadiamanti (+30) 210.623.1151 bubabistrotexotique.com PiGoUt 13 Aghiou Dimitriou (+30) 210.808.8866 pigout.gr Caffe i frati 7 Argyropoulou (+30) 210.808.8157 caffeifrati.gr ooZora 54 Diligianni (+30) 210.801.8515 eleas Gi Dexamenis & 4 Olympionikon (+30) 210.620.0005 eleasgi.gr sUBa 11 Levidou (+30) 210.808.5586 suba.gr BronCo 17 Diomidous Kyriakou (+30) 210.623.6691 esCoBa 1 Patriarchou Maximou (+30) 210.623.3550 escoba.gr
Nice n Easy
J Cocktail Bar
Greek ClassiCs VatHys 7 Kyrou (+30) 210.620.4834 katsarina 311 Kifissias (+30) 210.625.4072
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OUR HOTELS Each proper t y has its own histor y and personalit y. What they do share, however, is the high level of comfor t they of fer, as well as Domotelâ€™s commitment to providing an unparalleled hospitalit y experience.
D ISH E
Edited by Maria Coveou
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h o s p i ta l i t y
DoMotEl Kastri Metropolitan luxury The newest member of the Domotel family, the historic Hotel Kastri in the northern Athenian suburb of Nea Erithrea first started operating in the late 19th century and quickly acquired a reputation as a gathering spot for the Athenian elite. Nestled in a half-hectare pine grove, the fully renovated Domotel Kastri opened its doors in October 2015 as a luxury boutique hotel, retaining its original architectural style but featuring a contemporary approach to luxury lodging. Guests are welcomed by the retro fountain and the imposing wood-framed entrance, topped by an art-deco metal canopy. Once inside, the atmosphere takes on a more modern feel. The 86 minimally styled rooms of Domotel Kastri – featuring custom-made Italian furnishings – promise comfort and relaxation. The Contemporary, the morning restaurant, serves a rich “certified-Greek” breakfast (the Kalimera breakfast), inspired by traditional recipes. The Kastri Bistro (winner of a Toque d’Or for its Greek cuisine in 2016 and 2017), offering a view of the lush copse and well-tended gardens, is open from early morning to late at night, offering selections of Greek and Mediterranean cuisine, as well as delightful cocktails at the bar. Within the Kastri Bistro, the Macelleria is a unique space designed for private meetings and high-end dining with handpicked wines from its well-stocked cellar. Another option for drinks is the contemporary premium bar Point Nord, which features a private garden. The hotel is ideal not only for city
breaks and business travels, but also for large conferences, corporate events and training workshops hosted in the state-of-the-art convention center designed by renowned architect Alexandros Tombazis. The center features a modern amphitheater (the only one of its kind in an Athenian hotel) bathed in natural light and with three booths for simultaneous translation; a multi-purpose conference hall that can accommodate up to 550 persons with two booths for simultaneous translation; 16 meeting rooms for up to 50 persons each; and four 33-person computer rooms. Also available are a business center, a library and a technical support unit, all resulting in very well-organized events.
AT A GLANCE • 86 rooms (28 superior & deluxe singles, 41 superior doubles, 15 deluxe doubles & 2 suites) • 2 restaurants (Kastri Bistro, The Contemporary) • 2 bars (Point Nord, Kastri Bistro Bar) • Convention center (196-seat amphitheater, 550-seat conference hall, 16 meeting rooms with 50 seats, 4 computer rooms with 33 seats each) • Business center • Library • Gym • Free WiFi • Private parking. WHERE TO FIND US • 154 El. Venizelou & Romylias, Kastri • Tel. (+ 30) 210.350.7100 • e-mail: email@example.com • www.domotel.gr
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01 Within two years of reopening, the elegantly renovated Domotel Kastri has become a focal point for the northern suburbs of Athens. 02 A view of the hotelâ€™s gardens from Kastri Bistro. 03 Kastri Bistro. 04 Detail of the main entrance. 05 A deluxe double room. 06 The lobby. 07 The auditorium of the Excelixi Convention Center and the comfortable and well-designed function rooms lend themselves to the success of any business meeting or conference. 08 Detail of Kastri Bistro. 09 A deluxe double twin room.
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h o s p i ta l i t y
DoMotEl XEnia An urban seaside resort Fully renovated in 2006 (but with due respect for the innovative architecture of the original Xenia Hotels, a groundbreaking chain of modern Greek resorts dating from the ‘50s to the ‘70s), the Domotel Xenia Volos proudly stands on the same Volos waterfront where the building has been since 1960. At the foot of picturesque Mt Pilio, the hotel is ideal for both business and pleasure, or as a year-round base for excursions to the Sporades and Pelion. Upon entering the lobby, one is immediately impressed by the long corridor leading to the garden near the sea. All of the hotel areas have been designed with functionality and comfort in mind. Its 79 modern and understated rooms let you relax with a view of either the water, the city or Mt Pilio, while at the Open Kitchen Restaurant, the chef prepares breakfast right before your eyes. During the summer, the Pool Bar serves refreshing cocktails which you can also accompany with food from The Corner Lounge. For a livelier, more cosmopolitan experience, visit the Yacht Club,
frequented by many of the city’s socialites and soon to be your favorite late-night hangout. A state-of-the-art conference venue with a capacity for 600 persons is flooded with natural light and can be divided into smaller, individual spaces to host smaller events. The Elxis Spa, with its elegant esthetics, boasts a rejuvenating and relaxing sauna, a steam room, a tropical rain shower stall, a Jacuzzi and a solarium. There is also a fully-equipped gym. AT A GLANCE • 79 rooms (18 singles, 59 doubles & 2 suites) • 2 restaurants (Open Kitchen, The Corner Lounge) • 2 bars (Pool Bar, Yacht Club) • Elxis Spa • Outdoor pool • 600-seat conference venue WHERE TO FIND US • 1 Plastira, Volos • Tel. (+30) 242.109.2700 • e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org • www.domotel.gr
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08 01, 02 Built in 1960, the Domotel Xenia Volos was fully renovated in 2006, and now offers five-star comfort. 03 The garden is ideal for enjoying a coffee, some food or a glass of wine, and for hosting events of all kinds. 04 A table in The Corner Lounge. 05 Mediterranean flavors with a gourmet touch. 06 A double room with sea views. 07 The outdoor swimming pool. 08 The conference center. 09 The Elxis Spa offers a wide range of treatments to rejuvenate you after a day exploring the city or Pilio. Pictured here, the spaâ€™s indoor pool.
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h o s p i ta l i t y
DoMotEl arni A historic hotel One of the first hotels in the Balkans, the Arni welcomed its first guests in 1921. A rare example of Rococo architecture and a listed monument of cultural heritage, it exudes aristocratic grandeur. After a complete restoration in 2006, it was transformed into a first-class hotel, while still retaining its former glory. Today, tradition, history and architecture blend with modern functionality. From here, you can explore nearby mountain areas such as Pertouli and Elati, visit stunning Meteora, or get your adrenaline flowing by taking part in various sports on beautiful Lake Plastira. The Domotel Arni experience begins in the lobby. Marble floors meet an elegant wooden staircase leading to the Ali Pasha mezzanine, a traditional sitting room, perfect for a restful break after exploring the city. The hotel’s 31 rooms are decorated along modern lines without sacrificing classic touches, while functional spaces have been added for guests who need to combine their holiday with work. The elegant Arni Bistro, with decor evocative of its past (it was one of the first theaters in Greece) is ideal
for both business and private meetings, and is a popular meeting place for many locals. Start your morning with mouth-watering traditional breakfast treats, including savory pies and homemade jams and bread; lunch features Mediterranean dishes paired with select wines from the private cellar. The events and conference hall – Theatro – can accommodate up to 110 persons, and there are full support services available. AT A GLANCE • 31 rooms (8 singles, 17 doubles, 2 triples & 4 suites – 2 junior, 2 premium junior) • 1 restaurant/bar (Arni Bistro) • Conference hall (Theatro) with 110 seats WHERE TO FIND US • 4 Karaiskaki, Karditsa • Tel. (+30) 244.102.2161 • e-mail: email@example.com • www.domotel.gr
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01 The beautifully renovated Domotel Arni is considered a unique example of Rococo architecture in Thessaly. It was designed by a French architect and opened in 1921. 02 The Arni Bistro, with its impressive bar, beautiful chandelier, leather sofas and meticulous attention to detail in its decor, is a beloved meeting spot in the city and is open from morning till evening. 03, 04 From traditional Greek coffee to gourmet creations, Arni caters to all tastes. 05, 08, 10 Decorative elements in the hotel help recreate the magical atmosphere of a bygone era. 06 Detail from the main entrance. 07 A junior suite. 09 The Î¤heatro conference hall. 11 The marble bath in a premium junior suite. 06
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h o s p i ta l i t y
DoMotEl agios niKolaos Heavenly resort On the hillside of Syvota, overlooking sandy beaches and a cluster of verdant islands in the turquoise waters of the Ionian Sea, the pristine landscape has created an idyllic setting for the Domotel Agios Nikolaos luxury suite complex – open from May to October. Built in stone with style influences from the architecture of Tuscany and the Arte Povera movement, it is the ideal holiday resort for families and for couples looking for serenity and privacy. It is also perfectly situated to serve as a base for exploring the region, with Parga, Paxi and even Corfu within reach. This year the luxurious resort features 27 additional suites of 36 square meters each, nine of which come with their own private infinity pools. All 67 rooms have sea views and offer comfortable but refined luxury, with earthy decorative tones giving them that homey feel. Stone-paved lanes lead you to the Thalassa Restaurant, where you can start your day with a hearty breakfast, while for a snack or a lunch by the pool you can visit the Islands Bar Restaurant, surrounded by beautiful, blooming gardens. For dinner, this summer there is a new a-la-carte restaurant, offering delicious dishes to satisfy even the most demanding palates.
For an invigorating dip, the hotel’s private beach with its plush sun loungers allows you to bask in the beauty of the Ionian Sea while sipping on one of the colorful cocktails from the Skipper Beach Bar and gazing at the islet of Aghios Nikolaos. Alternatively, you can relax by the hotel pool. If you’re in the mood for boating, rentals are available, and the hotel marina is perfect for mooring your own private boat. The dreamy setting of the Domotel Agios Nikolaos is also ideal for weddings and other special occasions. AT A GLANCE • 67 rooms (11 doubles, 18 one-bedroom suites, 11 two-bedroom suites, 18 Junior suites, 9 Junior suites with private infinity pools) • 3 restaurants (Thalassa, Islands Bar Restaurant and a new a-la-carte restaurant) • 2 bars (Islands Pool Bar, Skipper Beach Bar) • Outdoor pool • Private beach • Marina WHERE TO FIND US • Syvota, Thesprotia • Tel. (+30) 266.509.3017–20 • e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org • www.domotel.gr
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01 With its idyllic green seaside location, Domotel Agios Nikolaos will become your personal Eden. 02 The Islands Bar Restaurant, which will win you over with its Mediterranean cuisine, rich wine list and excellent cocktails. 03 Sunset is the best time to enjoy a romantic break on your balcony. 04 The wooden deck and the marina of the resort, a starting point for sea excursions along the beautiful coast. 05 The ideal start to a vacation day. 06 The infinity pool in one of the brand new junior suites. 07 The fine elegance of a junior suite. 08, 09 Built in harmony with the natural environment and with respect to tradition, the resort looks and feels like a well-kept village. Everything is designed to ensure the privacy and comfort of the guests.
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palEos aghios athanasios / KaiMaKtsalan
DoMotEl nEVE Mountain retreat Fans of higher altitudes will find their own private paradise on the slopes of the imposing Mt Voras (also known as Kaimaktsalan, a name dating back to the Ottoman era). At the heart of the traditional settlement of Paleos Aghios Athanasios in Pella is the Domotel Neve. Clad in stone and wood and in harmony with the natural setting, the resort is open from October to May. It makes for an ideal destination for those interested in skiing or snowboarding down the slopes of Kaimaktsalan Ski Center, only 16 km away. Alternatively, walk through the mystical beech forests and explore the pristine landscape of mountainous Pella, go horseback riding around the settlement or into the forest, or try gliding and parachuting. The 39 rooms of the hotel combine stone with wood for a rustic style, and most include an eco-friendly fireplace for extra warmth during the cold winter months. The Lobby Lounge is ideal for groups, the perfect place for board games or friendly conversations over a cup of hot cocoa, or for personal quiet time in front of the fireplace with a glass of your fa-
vorite whisky. The restaurant, with its tables set in an atrium that boasts a view of the village and Lake Vegoritida, serves a variety of traditional local dishes. At the end of a busy day, you can escape to Neve Spa for some serious relaxation, aided by the holistic treatments that reinvigorate the body and the mind. If you need to combine your winter holidays with work, the hotel provides two fully equipped conference rooms, each with a capacity of 70. AT A GLANCE • 39 rooms (13 standard doubles, 21 superior doubles, 3 family rooms & 2 two-bedroom suites) • 1 restaurant • 2 bars (Lobby lounge, Restaurant bar) • Neve Spa • 2 conference rooms with 140 seats total. WHERE TO FIND US • Paleos Aghios Athanasios • Tel. (+30) 238.103.9800 • e-mail: email@example.com • www.domotel.gr
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01 Domotel Neve in white: built in the heart of the traditional settlement of Paleos Aghios Athanasios, on the slopes of Mount Voras (Kaimaktsalan), the hotel offers excellent views of Lake Vegoritida. 02 The spaâ€™s indoor pool. 03 A glass of brandy next to the fireplace in the lounge is the best choice for cold winter days. 04 A view of the restaurant. 05 The bathroom in the double room suite. 06 Î‘ superior double room with fireplace. 07 Night view of the hotel. 08 A suite.
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araChoVa - DElphi
© NIKOS KOKKAS
Mountain charm Situated only a stone’s throw away from the idyllic stone-built town of Arachova, Domotel Anemolia is open all year round and provides the ideal mountain lodging from which to explore the ancient site of Delphi, the quaint fishing village of Galaxidi, the Byzantine Monastery of Hosios Loukas and the mountainsides of Parnassus, where you can ski in the winter and hike or mountain-bike in the summer. Original, locally made hand-crafted objects adorn the reception and the lounge area, where the fireplace creates a warm atmosphere during the winter, while in the summer, the open terrace offers a beautiful view down to the valley below Delphi. There are 101 rooms for you to choose from. The “mini-chalet” suites are decorated in traditional fashion, offering a glimpse into local culture; they are undoubtedly the best choice for lovers of the rustic style, while those who prefer more modern esthetics can choose from among the executive suites and rooms. The Domotel Anemolia bar/restaurant is open for
breakfast daily, offering a rich buffet of local products, and you can drop in any time later the day as well to enjoy delicious Greek food or simply have a drink. Last but not least, the hotel has a long tradition of hosting conferences and other kinds of events; it provides modern conference equipment and four rooms that can accommodate up to 400 guests in total. AT A GLANCE • 101 rooms (60 doubles, 16 executive, 4 family chalets & 21 suites – 11 of them mini, 3 of them executive, 7 of them family executive) • 1 Bar/Restaurant • Indoor heated swimming pool with views down to the valley below Delphi • 4 conference rooms with 400 seats total WHERE TO FIND US • Arachova • Tel: (+30) 226.703.1640 – 1 • e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org • www.domotel.gr
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01 The lit fireplace in the reception offers a warm welcome during the cold winter days. 02 The indoor swimming pool with a view of the surrounding mountains and the Delphi valley. 03 The executive suite features more modern esthetics. 04 The day begins with a hearty breakfast. 05 The comfortable rustic living room next to the bar is an ideal spot for all sorts of get-togethers. 06 Coffee, drinks or a snack next to the barâ€™s large windows. 07 A chalet-style mini suite.
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h o s p i ta l i t y
hotEl olyMpia The urban chic hotel Time may have erased the existence of the Olympia baths from local memory in Thessaloniki. They once shared the spot where the hotel of the same name still stands, operating alongside it until 1980. The name still commemorates what was once a gathering place for Thessalonians, offering services and facilities unique for its time – such as showers, a hamam (steam bath) and massages. Now completely refurbished, the Hotel Olympia is a chic urban hotel, in harmony with the city environment, and adapted as much to the needs of the leisure traveler as to those of the business visitor. The minimal architecture, with its clear lines and dynamic combinations of natural materials like wood and granite, characterizes both the interior and exterior, while earth tones, oak floors, marble baths and designer furniture dominate all 97 rooms, creating an atmosphere of simple luxury. In the Ydor lounge restaurant, you will find gourmet Mediterranean dishes with a light touch, made with fresh, high-quality ingredients. You can also enjoy the certified Greek Breakfast (www.greekbreakfast.gr), which offers a great variety of fresh local delicacies such as flower honey, Kalamata olives, Macedonian halva (made with tahini and honey), Thes-
saloniki koulouri (sesame bread ring) and handmade bougatsa (a cheeseor custard-filled pie, a local specialty). In the Campari Bar, you can start your day with a fresh coffee or spend a relaxing evening enjoying classic cocktails accompanied by snacks. The hotel also offers the Omicron Conference Hall, a fully equipped multi-function event space with a capacity of 100 people. It measures 120 square meters and can be divided into four separate rooms to accommodate seminars and business meetings as well as exhibitions and social events. AT A GLANCE • 97 guest rooms (86 standard rooms, 9 superior and family rooms, 1 junior suite, 1 room for people with decreased mobility) • 1 restaurant (Ydor) • 1 café/bar (Campari Bar) • Event space (Omicron Conference Hall) • Banqueting & catering services WHERE TO FIND US • 65 Olympou, Thessaloniki • Tel. (+30) 231.036.6466 • e-mail: email@example.com • www.hotelolympia.gr
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06 01 The understated luxury of a three-bed executive room. 02 Exterior view. 03 Sumptuous certified Greek breakfast. 04 The Ydor lounge restaurant. 05 The elegant and cosy reception area. 06 One of the bicycles available for rent. 07 One of the flexible meeting rooms. 08 A pet-friendly hotel so you never have to leave your favorite four-legged companion at home.
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o u r
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Training Tomorrowâ€™s Tourism execuTives Given that at the heart and soul of every tourism organization is its staff, we collaborate with educational institutions in order to forge a link between academia and the tourism sector, thus facilitating student access to the labor market. One such strategic collaboration is already in place with CITY College-International Faculty of the University of Sheffield in Thessaloniki. At the same time, we are working with other
Greek hotel chains to support a new series of academic programs in tourism and hospitality inaugurated by the American College of Thessaloniki (ACT), part of Anatolia College, which will provide comprehensive undergraduate and postgraduate courses to future generations of tourism industry professionals. The tourism and hospitality programs are being conducted in collaboration with top forDOMOTEL - 94 - MAGA ZINE
eign academic institutions: Cesar Ritz Colleges and Hotel Institute Montreux, both in Switzerland, and St. Thomas University, in Florida in the US. Through these initiatives, we aspire to train highly competent professionals, give them a strong theoretical background and practical skills, and prepare them to excel in the tourism sector.
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caring for The environmenT and socieTy
The philosophy of our hotels begins with an acceptance of the fact that we are integrally linked to society as a whole through our operations and interactions. For this reason, we recognize our responsibility towards the environment and operate with respect for the principles and values of local communities. We promote energy preservation and recycling programs and gladly offer our support to related solidarity and awareness campaigns. More specifically, through the framework of the activities of Make a Wish Greece, a support group for children with serious illnesses, we helped young Michalis become a pilot and young Nicolas a secret agent, boosting their morale. In addition, we supported the Cancer Patientsâ€™ Association of Magnesia by providing a hall for its activities, as well as the Support the Child association by making available a venue for art exhibitions that raised funds for the cause.
efQm cerTificaTion: commiTTed To excellence Domotel Hotels & Resorts has firmly established itself in the hospitality sector as a constantly improving enterprise, through both a process of ongoing self-assessment and the systematic training of its personnel. In order to gain a clear picture of its current performance and to set future priorities, always with the aim of further enhancing its competitiveness, Domotel Hotels & Resorts sought and obtained EFQM excellence certification. On November 23, 2016, at an event dedicated to business excellence that was organized by the Hellenic Management Association and held at their Georgios Kontogeorgis Conference Center, Domotel Hotels & Resorts received its EFQM Committed to Excellence certification. This certificate is awarded to companies and organizations starting their journey towards business excellence that demonstrate, by their actions, their commitment to achieving that goal through the enhancement of their basic management systems, which is so necessary for their continuous development.
Pia Alexopoulou, Quality Manager of Domotel Hotels & Resorts, accepts the EFQM certificate.
ParTnershiPs As part of the ongoing development of Domotel Hotels & Resorts, management has undertaken the running of hotels under other brands as well. For this endeavor, we are developing a completely new chain of destination spas, starting with a facility in the Peloponnese. In addition, we have already been accredited as an Operator of Marriottâ€™s Full and Select Service Franchise Brands by the Marriott chain to operate its hotels in Greece. At Domotel Hotels & Resorts, we believe in cooperation and partnership, and we prove it at every opportunity.
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Souvenir from Thessaloniki - View of the waterfront (1914-1918)
DOMOTELLING S u M M E R T A L E S 2 0 17 BY
OWNER: Domotel Hotels & Resorts, 16 Kolokotroni 16, 56 430, Thessaloniki, tel. (+30) 2310.647.400 PUBLISHER: Exerevnitis - Explorer SA, Ethnarchou Makariou & 2 Falireos St, Athens, 18547, Greece iSS n: 2529-0673 EDITOR-IN-CHIEF: Giorgos Tsiros (firstname.lastname@example.org) COMMERCIAL DIRECTOR: natasha Bouterakou (email@example.com) ADVERTISING DEPARTMENT: Tel. (+30) 210.480.822.7 Domotelling is a biannual publication distributed for free. Domotel Hotels & Resorts does not necesarily share the opinions expressed in the magazine. it is illegal to reproduce any part of this publication without the written permission of the publishers.
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Travel & Lifestyle magazine of Domotel Hotels & Resorts