Perhaps it’s unavoidable that Athens is most often conceived of in its historical context. As the birthplace of Democracy and the progenitor of Western philosophical thought, the monumental contributions that Athens has gifted the world resonate through the ages. By and large, these reasons are compelling enough to warrant more than a passing visit to the Greek capital, but there’s certainly much more to experience in this vibrant metropolitan city than just the glory of its past. Modern Athens is in a constant state of flux. New hotel and restaurant openings as well as an up and coming street food scene offer exciting new reasons to visit Athens, while old favorites, like its tried and tested shopping scene and exciting nightlife, are still as relevant as ever. So, if you’re going to be spending some extra time exploring the city’s treasures - and we definitely suggest that you do - make the most of it by staying at some of the finest and most luxurious hotels Athens has to offer. From classic to contemporary, our Travel Experts have picked out six spectacular properties that represent the crème de la crème of Athenian hospitality.
Timeless Opulence at the Grande Bretagne
Opposite Syntagma Square and across the Greek Parliament stands the iconic grande dame of Athenian hotels. With its impressive marble clad entrance and ornate interiors that reflect its long and illustrious history, the Grande Bretagne is a landmark property that has been the de facto choice of the Greek and international elite for generations. Its prime location smack dab in the center of Athens makes it an ideal jump off point to start exploring everything the Greek capital has to offer while it also affords you with a fantastic view of the Acropolis that is best enjoyed from the hotel’s distinguished rooftop restaurant. Classically decorated rooms and suites featuring choice furniture, original artworks and restored antiques from Sotheby’s and Christies create a relaxing and luxurious environment, while the hotel’s impeccable service standards and its immaculate attention to detail set the Hotel Grand Bretagne apart as the quintessential luxury experience in downtown Athens.
Boutique Elegance at the King George
Housed in a former annex of the Royal Palace and Prime Minister’s residence, the gilt-edged King George Hotel on Parliament Square has been a shining example of luxury and sophistication since it first opened its doors in 1930. Its enviable location offers quick and easy access to several of Athens’ most sought after sites like the Acropolis and the Ancient Agora, while also making it easy to explore the characterful areas of Thission and Plaka as well as the nightlife hotspot of downtown Athens in Kolonaki. Its 102 rooms and suites featuring stenciled ceilings, herringbone floors and luxuriant marble bathrooms are the epitome of classic style, and they have hosted VIPs, Hollywood stars, and international politicians alike. Visit the awarded Tudor Hall on the 7th floor of the hotel for a sensational gastronomic experience that weaves together contemporary Greek cuisine and signature cocktails with an unrivaled view of the Acropolis.
Olde-Worlde Style at the Electra Palace
As the first five-star hotel in the old town of Plaka, the Electra Palace evokes memories of Athens in a bygone era. Its classic architecture and design blend in seamlessly with the historical surroundings of Plaka, while its central location makes it easy for you to explore Athens' sights as well as the numerous cafes, restaurants, and souvenir shops that can be found in this part of the city. Inviting rooms, in soft beige colors with splashes of burgundy and gold are decorated with charming faux-antique furniture, while marble-tiled bathrooms and Jacuzzi bathtubs add a note of restrained elegance. Keep up with your swimming routine at the rooftop pool, splash out on a massage treatment at the hotel’s spa, and get back to exploring the city feeling thoroughly rejuvenated.
Retro Chic at the Electra Metropolis
Housed in an imposing 10-storey building in the heart of downtown Athens, the Electra Metropolis is an amalgam of contemporary Greek modernism and the retro chic mood of the 1950s. As you enter the hotel, an enormous atrium, embellished with a towering piece of artwork by acclaimed artist Alekos Fassianos, makes a powerful statement and sets the tone for the overall style of the hotel. Room types range from snug standard rooms to impressive Acropolis suites with private balconies, all designed with comfort and functionality in mind. If you’re looking for an escape from the hustle and bustle of urban Athens, the hotel’s spa offers a choice of expertly executed treatments, while the 10th floor roof terrace takes the prize for being the hotel’s most outstanding feature, providing full-blown 360-degree views over the Acropolis and the surrounding hills.
The Essence of Contemporary Design at the New Hotel
Bold and strongly opinionated, the New Hotel stands out from the crowd as the most unique contemporary hotel of Athens. Located right off the central Syntagma Square, the hotel is within walking distance of the pedestrian-friendly area of Plaka and offers easy access to the city’s sights as well as its many restaurants, cafes, and shops. Upcycled, custom-made furniture and eye-catching collectible items that were hand-picked by the hotel’s art aficionado owner decorate the hotel's 79 rooms and suites, adding yet another layer of sophistication the hotel’s artistic character. Featuring anything from authentic Greek traditional folklore figures to gold shaded mirrors and floor to ceiling bamboo walls as part of the décor, each different room type has its own style that promises to make every stay at the New Hotel a diverse and exciting new experience. If you’re looking to delve deeper into the world of artists, you can find over 2000 art books to read through while enjoying some down time at the hotel’s top-floor veranda. When appetite calls, you can opt for dinner at the rooftop New Art Lounge and enjoy the beautiful 360 view of Athens by night.
Less is More at the AthensWas
Situated on the famous Dionyisiou Areopagitou pedestrian street, one of the most prized and historic streets of Athens where the present meets the past, AthensWas is noted for its cutting-edge design and sleek minimalist aesthetics. Featuring a sophisticated and meticulously thought out combination of modern and vintage designer pieces, the hotel’s interiors are at once subtle and impactful. Its 21 rooms are dressed in a dark color palette with a stylish blend of wooden and leather furnishings, while black and grey marble bathrooms with fantastic walk-in rain-showers add a touch of contemporary luxury. Its rooftop restaurant, Sense, offers a dreamy view over the fabled Acropolis, Lycabettus Hill, and the Olympic Stadium – the perfect place to enjoy the restaurant's delectable gastronomic creations after a full day of being out and about.