Βehind the glamour of high heels, high-end boutiques, and sun-glassed locals sipping on iced coffees, Kolonaki is no stranger to history and culture.

Cappuccino, Croissants & Couture

Kolonaki may be the city’s poshest neighbourhood, but there’s delicious irony in the fact that under Ottoman rule it was largely grazing lands. Many of its earliest inhabitants chose to settle at the foot of Lycabettus Hill because it reminded them of their mountain village. Kolonaki’s star may have waned in recent years, but it’s still the place moneyed Athenians go to shop and socialise. And just as the city’s centre of gravity has shifted so has Kolonaki’s, moving from Agios Dionysios to Kolonaki Square, with the cafés on its lower side and along Kapsali Street siphoning off its cachet. But Kolonaki never goes out of style—and is in fact reclaiming its own. The high street retailers that sprouted like weeds in the 1990s have beat a retreat, leaving space for a new crop of Greek designers to move in.

The Capital of Café Culture

Photo: Orestis Seferoglou

Photo: Thomas Gravanis

Lycabettus Hill

Dexameni

Photo: Orestis Seferoglou

“Folk fashion doesn’t just reflect personal status: history is sewn into it too.”

Museum of the History of the Greek Costume

Courtesy: Gennadius Library

Gennadius Library