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Kolonaki is the central neighbourhood of the Athenian urban elite.

  1. Modern and Contemporary era (1821 - )

    1860 Building in the area started. Until then, it was an area with vineyards and sheepfolds. Until the late 19th century, it was a dangerous place at night.

  2. Ottoman era (1453- 1821)

  3. Byzantine era (331 AC- 1453)

  4. Roman era (30 BC- 330 AC)

  5. Hellenistic era (322- 31 BC)

  6. Classical era (478-323 BC)

  7. Archaic era (800-479 BC)

  8. Geometric era (-1100- 800 BC)

  9. Prehistory (-1100 BC)

What I can see

Until the financial crisis, the Kolonaki district was synonymous with the upper class: expensive stores, boutiques, and big law firms and physicians. After the crisis, however, Kolonaki retained its upper class profile, although several of the boutiques have closed and more restaurants and bars have opened. This profile is completed by old, traditional and newer cafes and some bars, which are mostly filled on Fridays and Saturdays. Kolonaki is also famous for its interesting architecture. Eclectic buildings of wealthy families, modern interwar buildings (a stylized version of the modern with geometric purity) and some very interesting examples of contemporary architecture compose its urban identity.

What I can't see

Kolonaki was named after the Roman column that was discovered near Dexameni (Water tank). Another version of the name is based on an old superstition. To prevent epidemics, the inhabitants roamed calves through the city, then slaughtered them and buried them in pits on top of which they placed small columns (kolonakia in Greek). The affluent Athenians of the 19th century chose to settle in this area in order to be near the palace (today’s parliament). The first blocks of flats were built here in the 1920s in an attempt by the then-elite to separate from the Greek refugees of Asia Minor, who lived in huts, and whose spatial spread in the city was leaping.


Yohalas T., Kafetzaki Τ., (2013), Αθήνα, Ιχνηλατώντας την πόλη με οδηγό την ιστορία και τη λογοτεχνία [Athens, Tracing the city guided by history and literature], ESTIA Bookstore

Field observation by scientific editors

Konstantopoulos H., (2010), Η χαμένη γωνία και ο αριθμός 3, [The missing corner and number 3] in Rodi P.A., Tournikiotis P., (2010), Εκδοχές του Μοντέρνου στην Αθήνα του Μεσοπολέμου, [Aspects of Modernism in Interwar Athens],,, 4, Τα τετράδια του Μοντέρνου [Journals of Modernism], Futura, p.p. 19-33

Leontidou L., (1989), Πόλεις της σιωπής, εργατικός εποικισμός της Αθήνας και του Πειραιά, 1909-1940, [Cities of Silence, Worker Settlement of Athens and Piraeus, 1909-1940], Cultural Technological Foundation of Pireos Bank

Lianos Ν.Α., (2016), Η στεγαστική αποκατάσταση των προσφύγων, [Housing Rehabilitation of Refugees] in Ιστορία μιας πόλης, [The History of a city], part 3, p.p. 40-49, Lifo

Marmaras V.Μ., (2012), Για την αρχιτεκτονική και την πολεοδομία της Αθήνας, [Architecture and Urban Planning in Athens], Athens: Papazisi

Cade D., (2013), Αθήνα, η αλήθεια, αναζητώντας το Μάνο Χατζιδάκι λίγο πριν «σκάσει η φούσκα», [Athens, the truth, searching for Manos just before the “bubble burst”], Savvalas