Contemporary elegance, a play at discreet luxury, professional service and a stunning view of the Acropolis and its New Museum next door define this family-run hotel in the scenic Makriyianni area. Decorated with original sculptures and artworks, minimal modern furniture with warm brown hues and soft Italian Artemide lighting, the Herodion has a sophisticated but unpretentious ambiance. It is also just down the street from the Odeon of Herodes Atticus, where Athens Festival performances are held, and a few minutes from the Acropolis. An excellent base for sightseeing.
The rooms are variable; some are smaller, are less well lit by natural lighting and have no views to write home about, and others are more spacious and overlooking the Parthenon. Earthy neutral materials like gray, beige, cream and brown are warmed by touches of pink, blue and red, and light wooden furniture offers a clean, modern aesthetic. The beds are comfortable and bedding is changed daily. Cleaning staff jump into action as early as 8 a.m., so make sure to use the electronic lock button or place a Do Not Disturb sign outside your door.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Although all the rooms have double-glazed windows and are decked out with a French wall-to-wall fabric that is designed to soundproof the space, as well as Tarkett wooden flooring that absorbs sound, the rooms facing out to the street can still be a little noisy. Be sure to take full advantage of the hotel's location and ask for a room with an Acropolis view.
The clean, shiny white and gray marble bathrooms are generally small, but comfortable enough. You’ll find cotton robes and local brand Olive toiletries as well as the good old-fashioned wall hairdryers. The Italian non-slip granite showers are attractive but not perfectly enclosed.
After the impressive modernist metal sculpture that lures you in, the lobby seems quite ordinary, but stylish and polished nonetheless. Adjoining the lobby area is the lovely Atrium Greek bistro, flooded by natural light because of its glass roof, where you can order a drink at the bar, read or even play a game of chess. In winter sit by the fireplace for the especially cozy ambiance.
YOU SHOULD KNOW The adjacent light-filled atrium with its fine antiques, Greek works of art, and cozy, pillowy chairs offers an intimate vibe.
The hotel has no pool but two Jacuzzi hot tubs (for up to four people each) on the fourth floor, which are free to use for hotel residents. They have great Acropolis views and are open to 10 p.m.
Even though the hotel has no full-time spa, massage therapies with an accredited specialist can be arranged in the therapy room three times a week. There are also yoga sessions held in the roof garden twice a week (these are early morning sessions that will get you revved up for the rest of the day).
Breakfast is served in the ground-level restaurant. The buffet spread is high quality but not one of a kind. You’ll find the usual American and International breakfast options with homemade pastries, fresh fruit, eggs cooked several ways and fresh juice--you can also request special dishes to be made fresh for you. The bistro cuisine at the Atrium is innovative, gourmet Greek and dishes are made with fresh, regional ingredients from across the country. In the summertime, you can also dine at the rooftop Point A restaurant under the stars with a wonderful view of the Acropolis.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Dinner at the Point A restaurant on the roof is served in very low to dark lighting that celebrates the light from the Parthenon and the nearby Museum; menus can be read with the help of a special torch. Also, tables are placed quite close together.
Point A is also a bar, serving an excellent choice of creative cocktails, top quality bourbons and rums, and even Tapas cocktails, accompanied by tasty bites, like the ‘Skipper’s Martini’ accompanied by a salmon crostini. Prices are the same as you would pay at any quality cocktail bar in Athens.
The Acropolis metro station on the red line is one stop away from Syntagma square. From there you can change to the blue line and travel to the airport in 40 minutes. By cab, it’s around 45 minutes depending on traffic and will cost around 35 euros (55 at night). Piraeus port is a 20-minute taxi ride from here.
There’s a great choice of restaurants near the hotel in the Makriyianni area, as well as a little further up in scenic Plaka and a little further down in trendy Koukaki. Strofi (a 10-minute walk along scenic, pedestrian Dionisiou Areopagitou St), a classic for thesps, singers, and dancers who used to head there after starring at the Odeon of Herod Atticus, serves classic Greek cuisine, I Fabrika Tou Efrosinou (15-minute walk) in Koukaki offers regional cuisine with playful touches and Aglio, Olio e Pepperoncino (5-minute walk) is the area’s best known and most loved Italian restaurant.
Just a few minutes away you’ll find Hitchcocktales (3-minute walk) which, as its name suggests, serves creative and classic drinks. Next door is Wine Point (3-minute walk) where you can sample excellent labels (and accompanying finger food) from around the country. A little further down is Tiki Bar (5-minute walk), which has a stylish party vibe and sometimes live performances.
WHY WE LIKE IT
It’s exciting to (nearly) have it all--top location, lovely rooftop views, understated style, great customer service and comfortable rooms. Unless you are on the more heavily demanding side and are seeking super-polished luxury, spas, pool and gym, this place is a comfortable and elegant base for seeing the city’s major sites and exploring the wider area too.