If you’re the edgy urbanite type who secretly enjoys low-key opulence this place is for you. Located in a not-so-glamorous neighborhood of Athens but very close to the major sites, Wyndham Grand represents the neo-Hellenic aspiration of offering what they describe as “affordable luxury.” With a conference center and work areas as well as VIP services it is a great place for professionals visiting the capital on the job who need to be centrally located but don’t want to break the bank.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Recently added to the Wyndham family, this hotel has upped its ante on all fronts, benefits from renovated infrastructure and offers efficient hospitality at affordable rates.
There are 276 of them but only a few look out onto the Acropolis--still, most overlook city views that give you a real sense of being in Athens. Most are very spacious, modern and comfortable, with soft beds you’ll want to snooze the morning away in. The decor is attractive, clean contemporary Scandi in tranquil neutral shades with invigorating splashes of blue, green or yellow.
YOU SHOULD KNOW Added plusses are a capsule-coffee machine and free, high-speed Wi-Fi in the rooms.
Large and centered on creating a sense of comfort and respite after a long day around the town, the slick bathrooms have strokes of lime green or muted yellow and are furnished with materials like marble, wood and dark glass. There are plenty of fluffy towels, a bathrobe and slippers and Korres toiletries (80 percent organic) to enjoy during your stay.
YOU SHOULD KNOW There is no bath as such but a large shower cubicle, that occasionally has issues with overflowing.
The lobby is spacious and shiny with a big seating area, where the Silk Lounge bar is based. Quite a lot of gold reflective surfaces, and black gloss in parts, with some earthy elements like wooden furnishings and cool backlit, panels speak to the hotel’s lavish yet modern aesthetic, although the rooms are far less ostentatious.
YOU SHOULD KNOW The hotel is accessible to individuals with physical disabilities.
Where else? On the roof, with a great view of the Acropolis and Lycabettus Hill, and a poolside bar serving refreshments and snacks. It’s quite small (there are around 10 sun loungers lined up) but hot, less busy days can be a pleasure to hang out here sipping ice coffee. Complimentary towels are supplied by the hotel.
The essential summertime beauty treatments--cellulite smoothing massages, aloe masks, wraps and scrubs to prep you for your beach deity look as well as relaxing and rejuvenating therapies are on offer here, among them the Ancient Greek Massage.
A medium-sized but well equipped (cardio, weights, treadmills) fitness area on the 8th floor that’s accessible to guests 24/7, with complimentary sauna.
A sumptuous complimentary breakfast and artfully presented and creative a la carte dishes inspired by Mediterranean seasonal ingredients are served at the attractive ground floor restaurant Fos (meaning light, because it’s well lit by natural light by day as it is located in the hotel atrium).
A live DJ set, spanning vistas of the Parthenon in its sparkling nighttime attire, well-mixed signature cocktails, tapas bites for those seeking something to nibble on as well as options from the a la carte menu. The rooftop bar Above is a good choice if you have a couple of nights at the hotel or as a sunset start to the evening.
Set on Karaiskaki Square right next to Metaxourgeio station, Syntagma Square is just 3 stops (6 minutes) away by metro. From there you can take the blue line to the Athens International Airport (around 35 minutes ride). A taxi from the hotel to the airport will take around 20 minutes and cost 35 euros during the day and 55 euros at night (after midnight). A taxi to the center of town (around Syntagma square) won’t cost more than 3.5-4.5 euros. A note about the area: Metaxourgeio has in recent years become a magnet for artists from around the world, and there are several art galleries and spaces to see. Atopos, The Breeder, Rebecca Camhi, Vamiali’s and Titanium Yiayiannios galleries nearby present the best of contemporary art by Greek and foreign artists.
The Michelin starred Funky Gourmet (10-minute taxi) is famous for its avant-garde Greek cuisine. Aleria (10-minute walk, 5-minute taxi) is another excellent restaurant that will satisfy even most demanding palates with their take on Greek and Mediterranean food. Right next door and more down to earth is Alexander the Great (3-minute walk) Greek restaurant, serving lovely homemade Greek food. For everyday snacking there is an excellent bakery called The Bread Factory (1-minute walk) just across the street from the hotel. It has limited seating.
Bios Bar (5-minute taxi) is a go-to for Athenians in the know, it hosts art events and some good live gigs. The Blue Parrot (5-minute walk) with its retro vibes is a popular haunt in the area. Fancy a colorful cocktail? Then try out the funky and artsy Klosterion in Metaxourgeio's Avdi square (5-minute walk).
WHY WE LIKE IT
Stylish, clean-cut and with very comfortable rooms, bathrooms and facilities like a high-quality spa, pool and scenic rooftop bar, this is a great choice for business travelers and holidaymakers alike. It has been renovated recently (in 2016) after having being acquired by the Wyndham hotel chain. The competitive rates are an added bonus.