Wednesday October 22, 2014 Search
Weather | Athens
24o C
11o C
News
Business
Comment
Life
Sports
Community
Survival Guide
Greek Edition
Only in Athens: A new design concept for souvenirs

By Dimitris Rigopoulos

As tourism to Athens finally appears to be picking up after several years, it is becoming all the more apparent how backward the Greek capital is in selling itself. And, no, I dont mean in terms of promoting Athens as a destination and advertising campaigns, areas where there has been some progress in recent years. Im talking mainly about souvenirs, a huge market for all countries that rely on tourism and one which Athens seems to have overlooked almost entirely, or even looked down on, as it remains stuck back in the day when a Greek souvenir meant a plastic doll dressed as a presidential guard in a foustanella skirt.

An effort launched a few years ago by the City of Athens to introduce a new philosophy with innovate products signed by one of the countrys most prestigious design firms, K2, headed by Yiannis Kouroudis, did manage to shake things up quite a bit, but a stroll in the old quarter of Plaka proves that there is still a very long way to go.

In this sense, the Only in Athens project, a joint initiative between architectural firm Point Supreme and the Blanco team headed by poet Stathis Kefalouros, is making some headway by presenting alternative souvenirs for Athens.

The idea started in 2009 when Constantinos Pantazis and Marianna Rentzou of Point Supreme started experimenting with ideas based on the concept of Athens, creating a line of stamps, posters and other items. Meanwhile, Blanco was doing its own thing to promote Athens life with the photography exhibition Athens Will Surprise You.

We met around that time and decided to do something together; thats how Only in Athens came about, Pantazis told Kathimerini recently.

The Only in Athens campaign is different to anything weve seen before in the Greek capital and is inspired by the characteristics that make the city unique, both in a good and a bad way.

Foreign visitors to Athens are instantly aware that the sights of the modern city stand apart and are almost exotic. They comment on them, laugh about them, ask questions and ultimately remember them well. Even if some of its traits make their lives difficult, they dont get exasperated because they dont have to live here and everything that happens is part of the adventure of travel. The new souvenirs are inspired by these paradoxes and will remind them of Greece and Athens in particular once they get back home, explains Pantazis.

Pantazis is right when he says that Europeans are especially curious about what is going on in Athens right now.

All the things that seem to happen only in Athens today, combined with the Classical tradition, have created a new identity for the city. And that is exactly what we want to represent with our Only in Athens products, which, for example, include an Athenian apartment building, says the designer.

The Only in Athens products mostly T-shirts and other cloth items stamped with emblematic images went on display at a store in Athens in March and will be on sale at the next Meet Market bazaar this weekend (April 12-13) at the Technopolis complex in Gazi. The creators hope that their products will soon become more broadly available at major tourists hubs such as Plaka, the islands and Athens Airport.

The tablecloth that depicts Athens as an island and which is the first we created for the series will hopefully finds its way onto tables at tavernas in Athens and along the citys southern coast, says Pantazis.

ekathimerini.com , Friday April 11, 2014 (13:25)  
Acropolis Museum to put the daily lives of the ancients on display
Katerina Vrana embraces humor as wild as her hair
The business of luxury hospitality
How Amal Alamuddin Clooney became involved in the Parthenon Marbles case
Gazi: One Athenian district that seems to be riding out the storm
Even when the crisis was at its worst and the previously popular nightlife hubs in the center of Athens were all but dead, the central neighborhood of Gazi remained a place that could remind...
COMMENTARY
Intercultural dialogue in the gardens of Kavalas Imaret
Events such as the international conference titled Aspects of Islamic Gardens: Multi-meanings of Paradise, which was held in Kavala on October 11 and 12, are a major contribution to interc...
Inside Community
Inside Gastronomy
Inside Travel
SPONSORED LINK: FinanzNachrichten.de
SPONSORED LINK: BestPrice.gr
RECENT NEWS
1. Credit sector officials sleeping easy ahead of stress test results
2. Certainty on primary surplus target
3. Feverish talks on payment plan proposals
4. TUI promises even more tourists
5. Archaeologists find missing head of Amphipolis sphinx
6. Coalition leaders prepare for troika amid sour mood
more news
Today
This Week
1. The past, present and future of the Greek debt crisis
2. Gang importing heroin into Greece busted
3. Greece said to seek tailor-made plan for bailout exit
4. Self-opposing coalition
5. Gutsy rectors
6. Applications for heating oil subsidy set to start
Today
This Week
1. Possible third figure in Amphipolis mosaic may be uncovered shortly
2. Istanbul skyscraper casts shadow over Greece's banking ambitions
3. Coalition shooting itself in the foot
4. GPO poll gives SYRIZA clear lead over New Democracy
5. Greece must stick to reforms, says Schaeuble
6. Greeces closed society is central to its current malaise
Find us ...
... on
Twitter
... on Facebook
About us  |  Subscriptions  |  Advertising  |  Contact us  |  Athens Plus  |  RSS  |   
Copyright 2014, H KAΘHMEPINH All Rights Reserved.