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Attalos Hotel, Athens, Greece

We stayed at the Attalos Hotel for 3 nights whilst in Athens for the Athens Classic Marathon and 7 nights another time. Before we go into details, here’s a short film that I made on arriving at the hotel the first time we stayed. It’s not meant to be a glossy film showing the accommodation at it’s best, just an honest first impression on what the average visitor might encounter on arrival.

Location - The Attalos Hotel is at 29 Athinas Street, a 10 minute walk from the Monastiraki Metro Station, and 25 minute walk to the Acropolis. You can reach the Metro Station direct from the airport, it cost 8 Euro and takes less than an hour. From the Metro Station you head across the square, with your back to the Acropolis, the street ahead of you is Athinas. The hotel is on the left, about 500 metres from the square.

From the hotel the Ancient Agora, Roman Forum and main tourist centre of Plaka are all 15 minutes walk away.

If you are in town for the marathon race the hotel is well place for attending the Athens Marathon expo (which is a 25 minute walk away in the National Gardens) and the race itself (buses to the start leave from Syntagma Square, a 20 minute walk away, and the finish line is about 30 minutes walk, or a very short Metro ride, from the hotel). The hills to the west of the Acropolis are an easy 30 minutes walk from the hotel. They offer great views of the ruins/sunset.

Check In/Reception - Check in is after midday; the receptionist had my reservation to hand and I was checked in within 5 minutes. The hotel staff all spoke excellent English. This was something I noticed in all of Athens, there was never any issue with making myself understood.

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The Room – I’d read on Trip Advisor that the Attalos was a budget choice, so I was expecting the room to be very basic. I got a surprise, a pleasant one, as the photo and video will show you. The room was spacious, very clean and gave a good first impression.

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The room was a twin, so was fitted out with 2 beds. Also a TV with several satellite channels (including the BBC, CNN and Euronews), a safe, fridge, wooden chair and desk, a very good air condition unit (it was powerful, I reckon is could cope with the Greek summer easily, when temperatures reach 45 degrees outside), nice low level lighting and double insulated windows. There was also a very good signal for the Wi Fi, which was free in the room. It was fast, I uploaded the film for this review in under 90 minutes (can take 3 times that long on slow connections).

The bed was firm and comfortable, and was made up daily. Outside I had a large balcony, with table, chairs and a view of the Parthenon ruins to the left and the rest of the city, the mountains and sunset (in November, rest of the year it may set behind buildings) straight ahead.

The bathroom was well equiped and spotless. The bath was not large enough for me to really stretch out in (I’m 6ft tall) but then again, most baths I come across aren’t. I prefer showering in hot climates anyway so stood in the bath for this; the water pressure was good and hot water came through immediately and was in plentiful supply.

The toiletries were renewed daily, as were the towels. The towels were new, and embroidered with the name of the hotel, as was the bed linen. Not really the mark of a budget hotel, in my opinion. More a mid range, very comfy, city centre option.

There was no noise in my room. I guess the rooms facing the street would be noisier, although the street isn’t a main artery and is pretty quiet at night. But if you have a choice and want it extra quiet, ask for a rear facing room.

A Buffet Breakfast was included in the room rate, I was very happy with it. Plenty of choice, and tasty too. In the evenings I mostly ate at Kostas Souvlaki house, on Pentalis Street, about 10 mins walk from the hotel, which is widely known as the best Souvlaki in Athens (and cheap too, about 2 euro per stuffed pitta).

The Roof Garden/Bar – The hotel roof garden offered superb views; the Acropolis and sunset were the things I enjoyed gazing at the most. The area is dotted with colourful plants and flowers and is a real sun trap, and at night the bar opens 8 til midnight.

The Lounge - On the 1st floor is a lounge with vibrant green chairs/sofas and an internet centre. Its free to use the computers and printer (perfect for printing off boarding passes or other tickets). There is also free coffee served here from around 11am onwards, and a TV to watch, if the reception of the one in your room is a bit ‘snowy’ (like mine was at times).

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In Summary - The Attalos Hotel has a good location for both general sightseeing and for attending the Athens Marathon expo (which is a 25 minute walk away in the National Gardens) and the race itself (buses to the start leave from Syntagma Square, a 15 minute walk away, and the finish line is about a 30 minute walk from the hotel).

If you want to do any training runs before the marathon race there is a nice route that starts at the hotel and loops around the National Gardens, Zappaion Exhibition Hall, Panathenaic Stadium and Temple of Zeus.  There’s another that takes you up to the top of Philopapas Hill, which is also a lovely sunset viewing spot.

The owners/staff are very friendly and helpful, my room was tastefully decorated and very comfortable and the breakfast offered high quality local food. I totally enjoyed my stay here, so I’d say that the Attalos Hotel is Very Highly Recommended.

For more information on the Attalos Hotel, please see their website - http://www.attaloshotel.com/

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