Greece Journal: Thessaloniki’s Visual Marvels

by Laurie Pressman

Second in a two-part series.

After a delay of six hours due to an air traffic controller strike in Rhodes, we anxiously arrived into Thessaloniki International Airport around 10:00 PM – only to find they were having a taxi strike. We would need to figure out how to take the bus to our hotel. Though none among us spoke Greek, luckily there were some local people that instructed us in English about where to get off, and the concierge at the hotel where we were staying came to meet us.

And what a fabulous hotel it was!  Just minutes from the city square, we would highly recommend The Excelsior.

The ExcelsiorThe Excelsior veranda

From the moment we arrived, when they delivered a bottle of champagne and a bowl of fruit to our room after our long trip,to the cake they surprised us with on my birthday…

Excelsior serviceExcelsior room

…and the drinks they bought us one night before dinner, the hospitality, level of service and overall ambiance of the hotel was superb.

Excelsior lobby

And how wonderful to see that the color palette in their business lounge looked like it came right out of the “Back to the Fuchsia” palette in PANTONEVIEW home + interiors 2012!

Excelsior lobby

With great weather, we spent our couple of days in this port city doing a lot of walking, exploring and enjoying the local flavors. Thessaloniki is the second-largest city in Greece and the capital of the region of Central Macedonia. There is a beautiful waterfront lined all the way down with wine and coffee bars packed full with people of all ages just relaxing and having fun.

Thessaloniki waterfront

Visited the White Tower which was built in the 15th century where the eastern wall and sea wall meet.  At one time called the “Blood Tower” (as it was used as a prison for long term convicts and served as a place of execution), this tower got its current name in 1890 after being whitewashed by a convict in exchange for freedom.  Interesting history of the city detailed on each floor and an observation deck at the top where you can see the whole city.

White TowerWhite Tower

So many food markets with fresh fruits and veggies…

Thessaloniki market

Gaming cafes…

Gaming cafe

And streets upon streets of outdoor restaurants…

Thessalonika street

Though we did not see many Americans during our brief stay, the one namesake we did see surprisingly enough was Woody Allen.

Woody Allen Bar

With its beautiful modern architecture…

Thessaloniki street

…interrupted with ancient history…

Thessaloniki monument

…this second stop on our  journey was a wonderful visual treat.

 

  • Guest

    Thessaloniki stole my heart when I lived there three years ago. This post did a wonderful job capturing the essence of this beguiling city.

  • http://hanhtrangduhoc.edu.vn/ Du hoc Anh

    Nice story! I have been chance traval and discover some place! I think this place have great scene, so glad to visit your blog:D

  • Agiopoleos

    100 years ago Thessaloniki was freed from Ottoman terror:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cY-7balNrIw

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