Our Seabourn Odyssey cruise deposited us in Athens. While the ship was continuing on through the Mediterranean, Athens was our last stop. And although I was sad to disembark the luxury vessel, I was very, very excited to explore the ancient city of Athens. More on that later. First, the hotel.
We checked into the Athenaeum Intercontinental. The lobby is vast and situated front and centre is an interesting piece of art (pictured above, top). During my short stay, I wasn’t able to learn more about the piece but it’s certainly eye-catching and memorable. But the real highlight at this hotel was our room, which had a view of the Acropolis. I’ve had some pretty incredible views during my travels (the Opera House from Sydney’s Four Seasons, the Bosphorus from Istanbul’s Ciragan Palace Kempinski, the Bund from Shanghai’s Park Hyatt) and the view from the Athenaeum Intercontinental is another to add to the list. It was nothing short of surreal to look out the window and see the Parthenon.
The nine-story hotel was renovated in 2008 and has 543 guest rooms and 60 suites. There’s a spa with an extensive menu (though they don’t offer manicures and pedicures, which I was disappointed to learn since my nails needed refreshing!) and a business centre with all the services you’re likely to need, including small meeting rooms that are available for rent. The rooms feature all the standard hotel features you’d expect (cable / satellite TV, CD player, flatscreen television), a working desk and ours had a full-length mirror – a nice touch that not all hotels have. The bathroom wasn’t too exciting – it was rather basic with a tub that was very narrow. But the robes were plush and I loved the Korres amenities (shampoo, conditioner, shower gel and body lotion). Korres is a Greek manufacturer of hair, body and face products with highly concentrated natural active ingredients. They smelled good enough to eat. Check out their products online at korres.com; you can also order online. Hotel contact information: Athenaeum Athens, 89-93 Syngrou Avenue, Athens, 11745, Greece, Tel: +30-210-920-6000