Shall we meet in Athens?
city of the acropolis was buzzing with nightlife and activities
amidst peaceful demonstrations when we joined a Marketing
Greece MICE familiarization programme to explore the destination’s
meetings and conferences facilities. Despite these revitalizing
signs, and with the Greek economy on the road to recovery,
the country’s meeting, incentives, conferences and events
business gurus are being very cautious. They are keen to remind
visitors that the country has been through turmoil and is
still crawling back to safety.
Luxury still reigns in Athens. The destination
has everything to define its mythological stories; city
life, the sun, sea, lakes, mountains and frequent peaceful
city itself is complete with shops, markets, good transport
facilities, restaurants, first class hotels and everything
that you can ask for in a city. The mountains are evident
with every monument taken full advantage of. Of course,
you cannot visit any tourist attraction, restaurant or otherwise
without being reminded of the famous “Acropolis view”
albeit the famous Mount Lycabettus, at 277 meters (908 feet)
above sea level and highest point of the city, is also within
birds view. Pine trees cover its base, and at its two peaks
are the 19th century Chapel of St. George, a theatre, and
a restaurant. Nevertheless, Athens’ best kept secret
are its beach destinations. Choose a beach destination or
city destination and you are in for a treat in Athens.
activities for delegates:
may not have a lot of time to spare in Athens so Executive
Traveller has put together a quick tour guide for those
keen on absorbing some of Athen’s culture and beaches.
Acropolis and the New Acropolis Museum
For any trip to Athens, one must not fail
to visit the Acropolis Museum. This remarkable destination
still has conservators working on the Caryatids with advanced
laser technology as you stroll through the exhibitions and
galleries. Here, there is the opportunity to talk to a museum
archaeologist. Visitors can appreciate the unique views
of the Acropolis itself from the Parthenon Gallery on the
visit to the Acropolis of Athens itself is a must especially
as it is what sells almost every events venue in Athens.
The sacred rock of the Acropolis was for many centuries
the most important religious centre of the city of Athens.
This ancient citadel located on a high rocky outcrop above
the city contains the remains of several ancient buildings
of great architectural and historic significance, the most
famous being the Parthenon. The Acropolis is the crowning
beauty and glory of Athens. This is where you immerse yourself
into Greek mythology and history and see Proplylea, the
temple of Nike, the Parthenon, wonders of the Golden Age
of Pericles. From the Acropolis hill you will have a breathtaking
view of the surroundings, including the Agora, the Observatory,
the Democracy hill (Pnyx), the Philopappo Hill and Mars
Hill. You can also admire the theatre of Dionysos and the
Odeion of Herodus Atticus where ancient Greek drama was
and city life:
After culture, walk through the historic
neighbourhood, via the Temple of Hephaestus/Attalos Hall
to the Old Plaka neighbourhood through the Pandrossou Street
Market to the Parliament building in Syntagma square and
watch the changing of the Guards (Evzonoi) in their traditional
Greek uniforms. The Hellenic Parliament was initially built
in the 19th century as a palace for King Otto and Queen
Amalia. It became the permanent seat of the Hellenic Parliament
market is one of the oldest market streets in Athens
with over 110 stores right in the centre of Athens.
Lake Vouliagmeni - Nature-Wellness-leisure
This one of a kind lake can be found on the
South Coast of Athens, by the seaside of the Saronic Gulf.
The natural beauty of its scenery offers the visitor true
moments of relaxation. Its modern and quiet installations
are environmental-friendly and are suitable for swimming
and body exercise in the natural nursing springs. Our café
provides excellent service and is the place to enjoy the
view of this ecological paradise. Free parking is also available.
The grounds are
full of works of art and the conference rooms are fully-equipped
with translation systems in 9 foreign languages. There are
also luxurious reception areas with very fast internet connection.
opened in 1888, the magnificent Conference and Exhibition
Centre which is now hosting the Greek Ministry of
Foreign Affairs the serve the needs of the Hellenic
Presidency of the Council of the European Union has
been the venue for many other activities such as Press
centre for the Athens 2004 Olympic Games, Greek Fashion
Week, Royalty receptions, exhibitions and many more.
Events can be held almost anywhere within the Zappeion.
National Museum of Contemporary Art
and events properties available in Athens:
An excellent point of reference for conferences
and exhibitions will be to visit either www.athensconvention
bureau.gr or www.all-athens-hotels.com but here are few
that Executive Traveller has visited:
This is an exclusive resort set in 72 acres
about 24 Km from Athens International Airport and 40 km
from the center of Athens of a lush green peninsula with
several magical sandy coves, surrounded by the blue waters
of the Aegean Sea. The hotel combines natural beauty with
all the advantages of modern living. It is also 20 Km from
Glyfada suburb and Golf Course.
and events facilities:
The resort’s meeting facilities can
cater for business events of any size from five delegates
to a large convention. It has conference facilities and
break out rooms with natural lighting and views overlooking
the Aegean Sea. State-of-the-art equipment can be arranged
and installed upon request. The magnificent Grand Hall can
hold up to 1,350 delegates; it features an outstanding stage,
two foyer areas and an open-air terrace. Both indoor and
outdoor areas measure more than 2.500 sqm/27,000sq.ft and
provide facilities for conferences, exhibitions and social
Now celebrating its golden year with Athens,
Hilton Worldwide’s long relationship with Greece began
in April 1963 when the company’s legendary founder,
Conrad Hilton, personally opened Hilton saying: “I
agree with those who believe that the Hilton hotel in Athens
is the most beautiful Hilton Hotel in the world”.
Since the famous two-day celebration to launch the official
inauguration of the hotel, many a famous names have passed
through the doors of Hilton. Hilton Athens have not only
held on to its famous names but has kept some very loyal
staff, with some like Katy Kalouta, PA to the General Manager
and Michalis Loundas, doorman have worked for the hotel
for about four decades. A few more others have also stayed
on at the first International hotel brand to embrace Athens.
the Hilton Athens offers for events and conferences
Located in the centre of the city’s
commercial district, Hilton Athens is a mere 25 minutes
away from the airport via the subway. It has 22 modern meeting
rooms and terrace covering 6,000m2 function space with capacity
for 2-1300 people supported by state-of-the-art facilities
and a professional team.
property has 506 contemporary styled rooms with private
balcony offering a view of either the Acropolis or city.
It has 4 restaurants and bars including one rooftop, heated
indoor swimming pool and large outdoor pool as well as a
ballroom which can hold up to1100 persons.
46 Vassilissis Sofias Avenue
– a luxury collection resort & spa, Astir Palace
For meetings and Weddings, this luxury property
has 123 rooms and suites, 58 bungalows, some with private
pools together with 8 meeting rooms and boardrooms.
Westin Astir Palace Beach Resort
of a delightful Riviera location in the elite neighborhood
of Vouliagmeni, The Westin Athens Astir Palace Beach
Resort is perched on a private peninsula overlooking
the crystalline waters of the Saronic Gulf. The resort’s
inimitable location provides a peaceful and scenic
environment, while offering limitless possibilities
for activity and entertainment nearby.
Westin Astir Palace Beach Resort
40 Apollonos Street, Vouliagmeni, Athens, 16671 Westin.com/athens
The Athenaeum InterContinental Athens offers the largest,
and arguably the most flexible meeting and banqueting facilities
composed of the imposing Athenaeum Ballroom accommodating
up to 1500 persons, together with a sophisticated Conference
Centre, function room and several other meeting and break
out rooms. The property has 543 guest rooms.
Grande Bretagne, a luxury collection hotel
Arguable the most beautifully appointed hotel
with the best views in town. Hotel Grande Bretagne can be
the meeting planners’ ultimate choice for sophisticated
business meetings and lavish social events in Athens. Featuring
over 1,100 square meters of refined function space, the
hotel has repeatedly hosted the most important and glamorous
weddings and banquets in Athens. The property has 320 rooms
and suites together with grand meeting spaces with capacities
ranging from 14 to 800.
Palace Hotel, Athens
This five star hotel centrally located in
the heart of Athens and the old town of Plaka is within
walking distances of the Acropolis.
For meetings and events, it has a delightful roof-top restaurant,
garden court, 102, standard rooms, 33 superior #acropolis
view rooms 9 junior suites, 10 suites and one presidential
suite with private pool. Events can be held in any of the
hotel’s 7 meeting rooms including three ballrooms,
one of which has a capacity of 300.
Palace Athens Hotel
18-20 N.Nikodimou Street
to Athens – The National Museum of contemporary Art
(www.emst.gr) with its impressive roof space.
to travel to Athens from the UK:
Aegean Airlines is offering direct flights to Athens
from London Heathrow, Manchester and Birmingham until October,
from €136,55 per person return including taxes:
• Aegean flight prices are from the following destinations
and may change due to airport taxes.
• Total 158.93 EUR (airport taxes included)
• Total 139.14 EUR (airport taxes included)
• Total 136.55 EUR (airport taxes included)
Rooms at Hilton Athens
start from €119 per room/per night on a B&B basis.
For more information on accommodation in Athens please visit
the website of the Athens
& Attica Hotels Association
• For more information on Athens please visit www.discovergreece.com