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Hermina Athens City Guide

Konstantina Pantelous, Designer and Founder of the Hermina Athens brand, talked about where to dine, where to walk and when to hit her beloved Athens.

1. Do you have a go to cuisine in Athens? If so which is the best restaurant for this?

Athens offers an amazing variety of eateries. You can find all types of cuisine, but of course, you have to try Greek mezedes (small typical dishes) in either one of typical old style taverns or in more modern ones like Ergon, which also serves as a deli shop. If you are looking for more modern and creative Greek cuisine you can try Nolan which I would describe as an Asian-Greek fusion restaurant.

2. Do you have a favourite shop? Is it somewhere you can buy clothes, interiors and jewellery?

Protogenous is a street with the coolest vintage shops in Athens. As a dedicated denim lover, Treasure House is my favorite. A few steps away is Pallados street where you will find a basket heaven at O Pasialis tis Pallados. It is an amazing sight and every day they hang all the baskets and place all the glassware and cookware outside the store. When they close the store all the bits have to be taken inside which means that they need an extra 3 hours for opening and closing the store. In terms of interiors I also like to dig up old treasures.
One of my favorite places is “Palioisinitheies” in Moshato, but there are many vintage stores all over the Psyrri and Monastiraki area if you do not want to move away from the city center.

3. What would your ideal weekend be?

Athens offers so many options for weekend getaways. If you happen to visit the city between the months of May and October you can always grab a ferry and in about 1 hour visit a beautiful island of the Saronic Gulf like Hydra or Aegina. In Aegina I would suggest staying at an amazing and recently renovated residence called “Villa Nikolaou” where we recently shot our latest campaign and left me with the warmest memories.

4. Where you go on a date and why?

I love going on Saturday strolls around the city starting early in the afternoon. Walking around and stopping at different locales to have a quick drink, chit chatting… and then going for an early spontaneous dinner to a cozy restaurant. A day that starts early and does not have to end very late and if you are up to it you have time to end it with a cinema or a home movie.

5. What bar would you recommend? On Pallados street you will find the most exotic and mysterious bar. Juan Rodrigez is a beautiful and colorful space serving amazing cocktails. Another option is a very fresh addition to the night life of the city called “To Lokali” which is described as a Cup, Tap and Tavern. They are both in the Psyrri area.

6. What is Athens’ best kept secret? I would have to say all the small – new or older – neighborhoods where you can find really cool cafes, bars and restaurants of all types with the coolest vibes. My favorite are the Koukaki and Petralona areas.

7. Which is the best time of year to go? I think that probably the best time to visit Athens are the months of May-June or SeptemberOctober when the weather is warm but not extremely hot and you can still go swimming to one of the nearby beaches and discover the city walking around all day.

8. What are your must dos in the city? There are some amazing museums in Athens. The Acropolis museum, the museum of Cycladic Art and the recently opened Basil & Elise Goulandris Foundation which hosts modern art are perfect if you are an art lover.

9. Where would you go to get inspiration? I don’t have a go to place for inspiration. I do love the sea and it gives me serenity and concentration, but inspiration is something totally spontaneous for me. It can be anything. From a movie, a song, a picture, an article in a newspaper, a visit to a museum, a talk with a friend, a love story or a heartbreak!