Friday, July 29, 2011

GREECE

(does not include Athens or Greek Islands)

Services
Yachts of Seabourn – 300 Elliott Avenue West, Seattle, WA; 800-929-9391; seabourn.com.



ARGOLIDA
Hotels
Amanzo’e – Agios Panteleieimonas (Kranidi); 011-30-275-477-2888; amanresorts.com/amanzoe/home.aspx; hilltop complex of 38 villas with private plunge pools overlooking silvery olive groves & mountains & cobalt-blue bay; 10 minutes from pretty yachting village (Porto Heli); well-designed suites include sitting area with soaring windows for light and view, bedroom that opens onto patio & plunge pool, marble-faced bathroom with built-in tub, huge shower, separate lavatories & dressing areas; fine restaurant, spa and fitness center, yoga studio, beautiful library, art gallery, tennis courts, gorgeous infinity pool, & 10 minutes away by shuttle, private, full-service beach club with 2 fresh-water pools overlooking Mediterranean & pebbly beach.



COSTA NAVARINO
Hotels
Romanos – Navarino Dunes (Messinia); 011-30-27230-96000; luxurycollection.com/theromanos; on ocean.



KALAMBAKA
Sights & Sites
Caves of Meteora – Kalambaka (nearest village); name means “suspended rocks,” “suspended in air,” or “in heavens above”; among largest and most important Eastern Orthodox monastery complexes in Greece, 2nd only to Mount Athos; 6 monasteries built on natural sandstone rock pillars, at Thessaly Plain’s northwestern edge near Pineios River and Pindus Mountains; UNESCO World Heritage site; Theopetra caves had inhabitants 50 millennia ago; hermit monks among 1st people to inhabit Meteora.



MONEMVASIA
Hotels
Kinsterna Hotel & Spa – Agios Stefanos; 011-30-27320-66300; kinsternahotel.gr; Byzantine-era mansion by Aegean with cistern-fed pool.



THESSALONIKI (or Salonica, Salonika) (includes Amphipolis)
Bars & Nightclubs
Cocktail Bar – Polytexneiou 17a; 011-30-2310-524-242; in disused office building (in prostitute district); very DIY.
Coo – Vasileos Irakliou 4; 011-30-2311-274-752; bar, cafe, gallery, music space, and radio station.
Fragile – Valaoritou 29; 011-30-6982-964-834; rooftop patio for drinks; no-frill night spot for live and recorded music.
Urban – Zefxidos 7; 011-30-2310-272-821; "glam bar."
Xena Diafora – Sigrou 8; 011-30-697-242-7956; perpetually crowded but tiny.

Hotels
Egnatia Palace – Egnatia; 011-30-2310-222-900; egnatia-hotel.gr; centrally located above Aristotelous Plaza; bright, modern rooms and suites with individual design and furnishings; gym, hammam (Turkish bath), heated pool, massage room, and sauna.

Restaurants
Coo – Vasileos Irakliou 4; 011-30-2311-274-752; bar, cafe, gallery, music space, and radio station.

Shopping
157-173 Designers – Ernestou Emprar 13; 011-30-2311-249-854; 157-173designers.eu; cutting-edge designs for home accessories.

Sights & Sites
Alatza Imaret – Dimitrion Square (just off Ayiou Nikolaou, half block north of Kassandrou, 1.5 blocks north of Ayios Dimitrios church); 011-30-2310-278-587; former 15th Century mosque with poorhouse (almshouse); among city's best-preserved Turkish buildings; now often serves as museum.
Amphipolis Tomb – Kasta Hill; theamphipolistomb.com; beautifully preserved mosaics & statuary.
Archaeological Museum of Amphipolis – Serres Prefecture; 011-30-2322-032-474; odysseus.culture.gr/h/1/eh155.jsp?obj_id=3250; contains many items related to Amphipolis civilization & history, dating from Archaic to Christian periods; finds displayed in chronological order, comprising following groups: prehistoric period (from Mount Pangaio & Ketil Tepes Hill, exhibiting figurines & seal from Neolithic period (6–3K BCE), most important exhibits in museum); Archaic period (from Kasta Hill & Iron Age cemetery at Amphipolis, exhibiting gold jewelry); Classical & Hellenistic periods (from onsite excavations, exhibiting dancer figurine (performing Peirihios Dance), 3 2nd Century BCE statues of Electra & Orestes, 4th Century BCE female figure & Aphrodite and Eros (2nd Century BCE), local deity Attis bust (1st Century BCE), full-length siren tearing hair & beating breast, silver reliquary with gold olive wreath found inside & gold wreath from male burial); Roman period (mosaics from Roman house and from excavations in local cemetery, 2 mural paintings from Roman house & capital with rams’ heads carved in relief); Early Christian period (from 5 Early Christian basilicas at Amphipolis); & modern era (from chapel found at low elevation near Nea Amphipoli); also exhibits finds from ancient Argilos and Eion, port of ancient Amphipolis, together with wall panels relating ancient Amphipolis and surrounding area history; also, 18th Century historians’ correspondence about ancient Amphipolis, along with photographs of unearthing and restoration of Lion of Amphipolis, in 1913.
Aristotelous Square – city center; columned, curved facades open to waterfront in 1 direction and “upper city” (Ano Poli) in other.
Bey Hamam – Egnatia Street (city center); also known as Paradeisos Baths; Thessaloniki's oldest Turkish bath, dating from 1444; large and labyrinthine structure now used for art shows.
Coo – Vasileos Irakliou 4; 011-30-2311-274-752; bar, cafe, gallery, music space, and radio station.
Dynamo Project Space – Typou 5; 011-30-2310-522-762; dynamoprojectspace.blogspot.com; architect, art, and design platform.
State Museum of Contemporary Art – Kolokotroni 21; 011-30-2310-589-149; greekstatemuseum.gr; among other things, houses Costakis Collection (among world's best Russian avant-garde art assemblages).
Yeni Djami (Geni Tzami) – Archeologikou Mouseiou 30; 011-30-2310-857-978; hri.org; former mosque built for converted Jewish community (called Donmeh; now museum.

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