Lastly, the Greekest way to greet the new year is to spend a night (not a fortune, mind you) at the bouzoukia. These club-sized spaces are a staple in Greek nighttime entertainment where the country’s biggest names perform live. Expect light shows, dance ensembles, smoke machines and the ritualistic carnation-throwing and opa-shouting. There are two types of bouzoukia; the more old school ones, where A-list artists take on the whole show with a laiko repertoire (Greek folk/popular music, a simpler evolution of rebetika); and the more pop bouzoukia, where younger pop acts team up with established laiko singers, resulting in extravagant genre-bending live shows. Votanikos Club, Enastron, Kentro Athinon, and Hotel Ermou are some of Athens’ biggest bouzoukia stages. If you really want to go all Greek, check into a traditional after-hours eatery for a hot, soul-soothing dish of patsas (tripe soup) and call it a very Happy New Year!
Photo: Thalia Galanopoulou