Je suis un fan

  Mandarin Oriental, Paris has just celebrated its first birthday. An oasis of contemporary luxury in the bustling heart of the fashionable Saint-Honoré district, to stay at this hotel is to savour modern Parisian style with a refined infusion of the Orient. Paris Fashion Week was in full swing when our taxi plied its wayContinue reading “Je suis un fan”

Bathing with Herodotus

Mike Sweet takes the waters in northern Evia, Greece. The healing powers of Edipsos’ thermal springs in the north of Evia have attracted politicians and artists for centuries; millennia even. Less than two hours drive from Athens, the luxurious Thermae Sylla Spa Wellness Hotel beckons at Edipsos. Built in 1890 and lavishly restored recently, theContinue reading “Bathing with Herodotus”

Cretan Journeys: Return to the village

Mike Sweet reports from Vamos in western Crete, where a community has been revitalised by the vision of a generation who turned their grandparents’ homes into delightful refuges for discerning visitors. Nestled between the coast and the national highway connecting Chania with Rethymno, the Apokoronas is a region often overlooked by the scores of touristContinue reading “Cretan Journeys: Return to the village”

A house in Athens

The house Diligianis built. 19 Levidou, Kifisia. An elegant long-handled knife sits under glass at the National Historical Museum, the old Greek Parliament in Stadiou Street, Athens. Beside it lies a leather bag with a monograph. It reads Diligiannis. This personal effect of a late-19th Century Greek politician Theodoros Diligiannis would have passing interest forContinue reading “A house in Athens”

Beyond the Beach: Poros revealed

There’s a moment as a passenger on a small ferry in Greece, when just as you leave the quay, the world begins to gently move around you. For a second or two you are the still centre of the earth itself. As we glide away from Galatas for the five-minute journey to Poros, the coolingContinue reading “Beyond the Beach: Poros revealed”

Searching for nomads: Bruce Chatwin and Greece

Bruce Chatwin was at the height of his fame when The Songlines topped the UK bestseller list in 1987. Two years later, at the age of 48 Chatwin died; one of the first prominent victims of HIV AIDS. Much has been written about the writer since his death; many have been drawn to the manContinue reading “Searching for nomads: Bruce Chatwin and Greece”

From Metarmorphosi to Madagascar – at home with the BBC’s John Humphrys in Greece

BBC journalist and broadcaster John Humphrys talks to Mike Sweet about building a villa in Greece, the book co-written with son Chris that grew out of the experience, and the charity which benefits from guest bookings. John Humphrys doesn’t recommend building a house in Greece, particularly if you happen to live more than two thousandContinue reading “From Metarmorphosi to Madagascar – at home with the BBC’s John Humphrys in Greece”

Acropolis now – The architecture of repossession

After thirty years of planning, the New Acropolis Museum in Athens is within months of opening. Built with a commitment to reunite the Parthenon Frieze, the museum may hold the key to Greece’s long held  aspiration for the return of what are commonly referred to as the Elgin Marbles. The new museum at the southernContinue reading “Acropolis now – The architecture of repossession”