I don’t think I’ve ever been this enthusiastic about a bath before…
Usually people remember a hotel because of things like the comfortable bed, the friendly staff, the outstanding amenities or the distinctive decor. For me, on this occasion, it was all about the bath.
I recently booked a last minute trip to Athens to attend a travel conference and when I checked in at the Royal Olympic Hotel, I heard those three magical words: “we’ve upgraded you.” Sweet music to my ears…
Marbled from floor to ceiling, adorned with drapes embroidered with fine gold thread and guarded by a larger than life-size Grecian statue in the lobby, I knew even a standard room would be impressive. The hotel is family-run and was meticulously designed by the owner Mr Ioannis Papadimitriou and his father; originally opening 1968 before having a radical transformation in 2009.
The adventurous father and son duo took inspiration from buildings they admired during their many trips abroad and then worked with an architect to bring their grand visualisations to life. From Greek pillars, to Roman arches and fabrics with a Middle-Eastern feel, you’ll be taken on a trip to Ancient Greece and transported around the world without even leaving the hotel.
One of its greatest assets is its location; it faces one of Athens’ most important archaeological sites; The Temple of Zeus and it’s also a short walk from The Acropolis.
Whenever I visit a hotel, I always look forward to the suspense of swiping the room card and opening the door for the first time. Will the windows reveal the dreaded car park/brick wall view or something a little…more pleasing to the eye?
In this instance, I wasn’t disappointed. I stayed in an Athenian Panorama room overlooking The Temple of Zeus.
There was a glass wall in the bedroom and mirrors on the back wall. The great thing about this design is even if you turn away from the window, you’ll still catch a reflection of the Temple of Zeus glistening on the wall behind you.
There was even a private balcony with two deck chairs to get a closer look.
Then came the bathroom. Oh, the bathroom!
I never expected this glass wall to continue into the next room, but it did and what better way to admire Greece’s archeological masterpieces, than from the comfort of my warm bath!
Sightseeing and soap suds; if only every hotel had the option of the ‘view from the tub’.
Alas, most cities have frosted glass in the bathroom or a view of ceramic tiles, but this experience makes me want to start a new trend of finding baths with the best city views.
This hotel combined family-run charm with first-class service and an unrivalled attention to detail.
Despite its recent economic problems, Athens is reinventing itself and having only been there a few days, I left knowing that there was so much more for me to explore. It embraces the fact that it is home to the world’s oldest archeological sites while also showcasing urban artistic movements and highlighting itself as a place for creativity to thrive.
Athens welcomes foreign visitors with open arms. Everyone I met was a joy to talk to and were keen to practise their English and have a chat. On that note, ‘Efharisto Athens’ – I’ll definitely be back…
Have you ever had an amazing view from a bath? Tell me where in the comments below…
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