Buy This Issue
The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 1 April 2017
DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 1 APRIL 2017 23 GREECE New five-star hotels to be built in Greece by American conglomerate Greece’s ten euro coin. One of the largest hotel and resort chains in the world is set to create four luxury hotels in Greece within the next nine months. Wyndham Hotel Group went forward with the announcement, after the official opening of the group's first Greek venture, the Wyndham Grand Athens in the up-and-coming inner-city area of Metaxourgeio. The group has already started a joint venture with Zeus International operating two facilities in Loutraki: the 108-suite Whyndham Loutraki Poseidon Resort and the 207-suite and bungalow Ramada Loutraki Poseidon Resort. The company has also acquired two resorts in the eastern coastal area of Attiki, which are under renovation and will open in 2018; Aqua Mare will reopen as Wyndham Garden Attica Riviera, while Mare Nostrum (a 352-room resort and spa) will reopen as Ramada Plaza Attica Riviera. The group is optimistic for these investments, expressing a firm belief in Greece's potential as a tourism industry powerhouse, stating that no other coun- try in the world is as invested in tourist products as Greece. The joint business venture plans at least 10 hotels in the next five years, in both rural Greece and the islands, and to use Greece as operational headquarters from which to expand to the Balkans, specifically Romania, Bulgaria, and also Cyprus. Rigas Feraios’ statue in Panepistimiou Avenue, Athens, vandalised. to implement their ideals to the facts on the ground in the Balkans. Accordingly, Feraios set out for Trieste in 1797. Over the Alps from Vienna, there is another lovely former Austro-Hungarian city; the Italian port of Trieste, which was once Austria's key maritime outlet. Like Vienna, it also had a very active and influential Greek community. On our family's visit there, last year, while enjoying the city and taking in its Greek and Serbian churches and monuments, we once again ran into Feraios' footsteps. Taking coffee one lovely May morning in the Caffé Degli Specchi, a Triestine landmark café founded nearly two centuries ago by Greeks, I sat with Archimandrite Gregory, the current Greek priest, an urbane, learned, and pious fellow. I mentioned to him how much I loved the city's café culture; cafés were the center of Triestine commerce, culture, and conspiracies. Apparently outside one famous Trieste café, the Caffé Tomasso that we had visited the day before, "our own Rigas Feraios was arrested by the Austrian secret police," Archimandrite Gregory said, sipping his espresso. Again, serendipitously, we had traced Feraios' footsteps. In both Vienna and Trieste, we had met up with Feraios by accident. Yet later, in Belgrade, we met again, this time by design. Belgrade today is a bus- tling, sophisticated, if somewhat chaotic, European capital straddling both sides of the Sava and Danube Rivers. For centuries, Belgrade was the first frontier fortress of the Ottoman Empire. Having apprehended Feraios, the Austrians dispatched him, along with his co-conspirators across the Danube to Belgrade, where the Turks eagerly awaited him. After a sufficient round of tortures, in June 1798, Feraios and his comrades were strangled and their corpses flung into the Danube. At the foot of Belgrade's majestic Kalemegdan Fortress, there lies a Turkish-era structure known locally as Nebojsina Kule (Nebojsa's Tower). Nebojsa's Tower is just steps from the Sava's confluence to the Danube River, the site of Feraios' watery grave. The main complex of Kalemegdan fortress rises steeply from the tower. Just off the road and tramway ringing Kalemegdan, a statue stands at a fork in the road. It is Feraios, Riga od Fere to the Serbs. His name is inscribed in both Greek and Cyrillic Serbian, along with a short inscription, grcki i srpski narod (Greek and Serbian nation). As he was carried off to strangulation, he proclaimed, "I have sown a rich seed which others will reap." Though a neo-Byzantium was not to be, the fruits of this seed are the modern Greek and Serbian states. Guns and ammunition discovered in Xanthi mosque The Imam has been arrested over illegal possession of the weapons Police seized guns and ammunition from a mosque in Xanthi on Tuesday after authorities were tipped off, reports ANA-MPA. In the mosque located just over an hour-and-a-half away from the Turkish border in the village of Iliopetra, police found a .22 pistol, a .38 pistol with a silencer, and a Flobert hunting rifle along with thirty cartridges. Following the raid all findings were sent to the foren- sic service's laboratories in Athens, and the Imam was arrested for the possession of illegal weapons and to be questioned over the matter. He was due to appear before a local prosecutor on Tuesday, reports Kathimerini. With tensions currently running high between Greece and Turkey, the case has been brought to the attention of the Citizens' Protection Ministry and senior government officials. PHOTO: KATHIMERINI Malta’s capital wins the Melina Merkouri Prize Valletta is the 2018 European City of Culture and the prize acknowledges the work of the people Valletta is the recipient of this year's Melina Merkouri International Prize for the Safeguarding and Management of Cultural Landscapes, in recognition of the work carried out by the Valletta 2018 Foundation. Established by UNESCO and the Ministry of Culture of Greece in honour of the artist and former Greek Minister of Culture, Melina Mekouri, the prize has been awarded every two years since 1999 to reward efforts to preserve and enhance cultural landscapes, specifically those fashioned mainly by human hands. The announcement is yet to be made official, but the decision was made in Brussels, as part of the European Capitals of Culture panel's final assessment of the preparations and progress of the Valetta 2018 Foundations towards Valletta being a European Capital of Culture along with Leeuwarden in the Netherlands in 2018. Merkouri was instrumental in the conception and launch of the European Culture Capital initia- tive in 1985 and this year's prize is a way to acknowledge the effort of Valletta 2018 in highlighting the richness and cultural diversity of the city. The prize comes with a €1.5 million cash grant which will allow the foundation to further pursue its ongoing economic and social regenerations and its strong cultural programme.
25 March 2017
8 April 2017