STAY AT THIS HOTEL! It has everything going for it: location, style, comfort, value... and especially service. Located in the becoming-trendy neighborhood of Psiri, the hotel is just a half-block off Ermou, a major thoroughfare with 2 subway stops and short walks to the Plaka, Acropolis and other top historic/tourist sites. O&B is short for Ochre & Brown, the soothing color pallet of the hotel's sleek and modern design. We stayed here for a couple days following a Mediterranean cruise, and it was the perfect extension of our pampered holiday. The welcoming desk staff could not have been warmer or more gracious, offering us coffee and even complimentary breakfast as we waited the few minutes while our upgraded room was readied. (We arrived earlier than expected at 10 a.m. and surely did not expect to get into our room until the afternoon.) We were then offered a thorough map tour of the area geared to our interests, as another staffer quietly moved our bags to the room.
Our superior double was in the recently-opened expansion, facing the relatively quiet front street of Leokoriou. I'm not sure I've experienced a better designed room. The queen-size bed was extremely comfortable with luxurious duvet and high-quality linens. A flat-screen TV adorned one wall with plenty of local and international channels and a DVD player. Large double-pane windows that opened 2 ways were welcome during cooler spring weather. The bathroom was spectacular with a very large open shower with tiled sitting bench and "rain" shower-head as well as a hand-held option. The one-piece white-stone sink and designer "floating" toilet were efficient and sleek. Fluffy towels and high-end amenities were standard. I especially appreciated the ample storage, which is often scant in such "design hotels."
A sitting chair beyond the desk chair would have been nice, but a glance into a larger suite showed those comforts to be included there along with a walk-out balcony. Front facing rooms look onto rather dilapidated buildings, but that's the character of this changing urban neighborhood. For the reasonable nightly rate, my expectations were exceeded.
The included breakfast buffet was ample with many bread, danish, cereal, yogurt, meat and cheese choices, along with an eggs-to-order option. We also had dinner in the small restaurant one evening, and it was fantastic, combining traditional Greek and modern classics with a reasonable wine list. (The amazing Greek salad could have been a meal itself.) As always, the service was excellent and extremely friendly. We also had drinks in the back-room bar (what had been the breakfast room before the recent expansion). The accommodating desk staff were also generous in suggesting other restaurant options in the vicinity.
Most impressive was the check-out courtesy we received. We needed to catch a 6:30 a.m. flight on the morning of a general strike due to the current economic crisis. Staff arranged for a 4 a.m. taxi and then surprised us with "breakfast bags" of sandwiches, fruit and orange juice for the journey. You don't expect such consideration in major city hotels these days. I travel a lot, and this was the best hotel experience I've had in years.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- O&B is a cozy Boutique Hotel, in the centre of Athens, next to the main sights of the city and just one minute walking from Thisio Metro Station and Monastiraki area. With its Acropolis Suites featuring private terraces with view of the Parthenon, its elegant rooms and its trendy Bar Restaurant, O&B Athens Boutique Hotel provokes you to experience the new meaning of hospitality and care, giving a new flavor and meaning to the urban lifestyle. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- o And b Athens Boutique Hotel
- o b Athens Boutique Hotel