Best Shopping in Athens

Shopping in Athens Is Exciting and Original

Voukourestiou street in Athens, starting from Stadiou and reaching to Kolonaki, is the area where most internationally acclaimed jewelry brands have their stores: Zolotas, Lalaounis, Bulgari, Fanourakis just to mention a few. For the largest variety of fashion items Attica shopping centre on Panepistimiou and Golden Hall at Marousi are the top spots. Locally produced cosmetics Korres  can be found in many pharmacies, or at their exclusive stores.  Shoes are a must for most shoppers and Vavoulas is a name which has reached beyond the local market over the years, with excellent quality and good value for money. Uniquely Greek fashion is well represented by Ioanna Kourbela and outstanding jewelry can be found at El. Marneri Galerie  for timeless elegance and  stylish trends.   A visit to the Benaki Museum is also a must, for artistic gifts, Yannis Souvatzoglou sculptures bring art closer to life, Katerina Lolou designs one of a kind jewelry inspired by Greek forms with a contemporary approach, at Thalassa Collection you can find scarves, shawls and ties with designs inspired from Greek tradition and history, at Gusto di Grecia delicatessen in Kolonaki, shop for specialties from all over the country, Free Shop is an avant garde boutique with carefully selected elegant fashion brands.


Gusto di Grecia
Photo courtesy of Gusto di Grecia

Gusto di Grecia on Pindarou street in Kolonaki is a delicatessen shop specializing in genuine traditional Greek products from all over the country. The team of young professionals did wide research on the subject before opening the store, finding the best producers from islands and mainland, so as to guarantee excellent quality and value for money. At Gusto di Grecia you can find some of the best brands of olive oil, together with olives Kalamon. Other interesting specialties include dried figs from Euboea, loukoumi (Turkish delight) from the island of Ikaria, chalvas (sweet made with tahini) from Volos, almond pastries from Chios, raisins from Corinth. The prosciutto and other cold cuts produced on the Stremmenos farm in the region of Evritania are famous in Greece for their quality and taste. You will find them at Gusto di Grecia, together with a wide variety of cheeses, from the well known feta to gruyere from Naxos and Crete. The produce of wine is also important in Greece, and you can find several very good labels here.

Recommended for Best Shopping because: Genuine traditional Greek products from all over the country.

Nelly's expert tip: Delicious specialties from all over Greece, selected for their quality and value for money

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KORRES is a Greek skincare brand, born out of Athens first ever homeopathic pharmacy in 1996. The brand's simple philosophy is based on the use of natural ingredients of the highest quality; skin- and environmentally-friendly products with clinically tested efficacy; products that are affordable for everyday use yet of interesting aesthetic. The first KORRES productwas an aromatic herbal syrup with honey and aniseed, a recipe inspired by rakomelon, a warming spirit-with-honey concoction, which George Korres grandfather used to favor in his hometown on the island of Naxos. The first ever KORRES cosmetic product was the Wild Rose 24-Hour Moisturizing & Brightening Cream; the brand's first global innovation that went on to become a global best-seller. Today the KORRES portfolio includes over 400 natural products, with brand presence in 30 markets. In Greece, KORRES products can be found in pharmacies. They are also available in standalone stores in the centre of Athens, the Athens International Airport and in Thessaloniki.

Recommended for Best Shopping because: Cosmetics made with natural ingredients of the highest quality

Nelly's expert tip: Korres cosmetics are carefully researched, affordable and healthy

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Yannis Souvatzoglou
Photo courtesy of Yannis Souvatzoglou

Yiannis Souvatzoglou is an artist with wide inspiration who offers us the chance to rediscover the fascination of simplicity. His sculptures, which include small decorative objects and magnificent statues two meters high, express an innovative mind and are inspired from Cycladic art. Minimal shapes, abstraction are some words which can describe his art. For thirty years he has been researching his techniques and exploring materials. Bronze, aluminum, glass, are combined to create figures from mythology, butterflies, angels, fairies, ethereal powerful being which exist on more dimensions. He has taken part in many international exhibitions and his works are included in many private collections. For Christmas shopping the impressive jewelry is a perfect gift and also the statues of maternity and offering love, which express everlasting ideals of mankind.

Recommended for Best Shopping because: Small and big sculptures made with great inspiration and artistic expertise

Nelly's expert tip: Yanni Souvatzoglou is perfect for finding original gifts and for art collectors

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Vavoulas company has been producing high quality shoes for four generations, with great success reaching beyond the local market. Soft leathers, studied designs and elegance combined with comfort make these shoes a great buy. The first retail shop opened on 18 Ermou street in the 60s and today the sales points and corners have multiplied and expanded to many towns all over the country. Vavoulas shoes are favorites with devoted customers who value the importance of good quality footwear and resist compromising to passing fads. Glamorous for evening and easy to wear casuals, sandals and high heels, comfortable flats or trendy platforms, designed to last and impress.

Recommended for Best Shopping because: All time classic favorite with a discriminative clientele who appreciate the timeless quality

Nelly's expert tip: Fashionable and comfortable shoes for all occasions

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Thalassa Collection is located in the fashionable Kolonaki district and specializes in the design and production of scarves, ties, shawls. Mainly inspired by Greek tradition and history, all patterns are exclusively designed in the Athens atelier and printed on fine quality fabrics such as silk, cashmere, cotton. Some of the best selling designs are the "Greek Alphabet" design, the "Evil Eye", the "Tsarouhi", and also the designs inspired from the Greek Islands. The obsession in every single detail, the use of fine quality materials, and the incredibly rich variety of colors are the key element that define the world of Thalassa Collection.

Recommended for Best Shopping because: Silk, cashmere, cotton with savvy designs inspired by Greece

Nelly's expert tip: Scarves, ties, and shawls inspired by Greek tradition and history

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Katerina Lolou is a well known talented artist, who has been creating contemporary jewelry for more than twenty years. Preferring feminine forms, smooth curves and elegance, she frequently uses rubies, tourmalines, opals and pearls set in 18 carat gold. One of a kind pieces, inspired mainly from classical Greek forms, interpreted with a contemporary approach. Her jewelry has timeless elegance and value and is appreciated by women of all ages, who distinguish the class and the high quality of this jewelry range. A boat, an eye of abalon and an anchor, combined in a good luck charm, bring best wishes for a joyful trip through the new year 2015 and a safe harbor for all.

Recommended for Best Shopping because: One of a kind pieces inspired mainly from classical Greek forms

Nelly's expert tip: Classy, elegant jewelry by a talented designer

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Free Shop is an independent, avant garde boutique housing a thoughtful and balanced selection of sophisticated and elegant brands operating in Greece for over forty years. The unique brand mix includes Balenciaga, Maison Martin Margiela, Acne, Pierre Hardy, Preen, Olympia Le Tan,Sacai, Maison Michel, Chelsea Paris, Eddie Borgo, Ca & Lou, Shourouk, Christophe Lemaire, Zimmermann, Equipment, Alberto Biani, Maria Calderara, Mara Hoffman, Isolda, Stella Jean, Mih Jeans, JamesPerse,Enza Costa, Ancient Greek Sandals, Isapera, Wildwood, Laura Urbinati, Marysia swimwear, Kiini and more. Free Shop currently owns and operates three stores , one shop-in-shop and the Balenciaga Boutique in Athens, and two stores in Mykonos, one for women and one for men.

Recommended for Best Shopping because: Sophisticated and elegant fashion brands, selected with fashion sense

Nelly's expert tip: An avant garde boutique with selected brands for fashion lovers

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Ioanna Kourbela, with sartorial, stage directing and fashion design studies, is head of the creative department of Kourbelas Knitwear since 2003, when she presented her first collection. Two years later the company was renamed K3 wearable Thinking and three new Exclusive Shops Ioanna Kourbela opened in Plaka, which immediately attracted a public with distinctive taste. From 2009 onwards, characteristic creations of previous years and designs which became favorites are relaunched in the Basics collections. In 2011 the first mens collection is a great success, which can be found in the first Exclusive Male Shop in Plaka, and in the spring of 2013 the White Collection is launched, the first made to measure bridal collection by Ioanna Kourbela. The vibrancy and the richness of the color palette follows the dynamics of Greek light and every six months five new tones are presented. Ioanna Kourbela collections are based on natural fabrics, linen, silk, wool and are well known for their subtle movement, minimalistic aesthetic and the charm of classical harmony.

Recommended for Best Shopping because: Fashionable, original creations which women enjoy wearing all year round

Nelly's expert tip: Exclusive, elegant and original fashion by a talented Greek designer

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El.marneri galerie is the only gallery of contemporary jewelry in Greece. Situated very close to the Akropolis Museum, it features contemporary jewelry, artistic creations and objects that suggest inspiration and innovation. By hosting group, individual and themed exhibitions, it functions as an incentive as well as a stage for Greek and international artists to create and present their inspiring work. It showcases contemporary jewelry pieces bound with precious gems and rare-cut stones in gold, platinum and silver, as well as more humble materials like, various fabrics, paper, clay and wood in unique designs. The gallery also hosts a series of art exhibitions –objects, sculpture, painting, video-art and other installations. El.Marneri Gallery invites artists to participate in building a collection of jewelry and art objects that revisits the age-old notion of the protective charm. One-of-a-kind or limited edition objects tap the ancient tradition of apotropaic symbols; they revise it, reinvent it, comment on it. The collection – that is to be permanent and exclusive to the Gallery – will constitute a work in progress that is to evolve through the addition of both participating artists and new acquisitions. The project is to be completed in a year's time and will be launched at a special event held at the Gallery this coming Christmas.

Recommended for Best Shopping because: The only gallery of contemporary jewelry in Greece with exquisite creations

Nelly's expert tip: El. marneri galerie features inspired and innovative contemporary jewelry and artistic objects

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The Benaki Museum Shop in the main building is the first Museum Shop which opened in Greece and since then has supported the activities of the Benaki Museum. The objects on sale are mainly copies of the museums exhibits, manufactured with traditional methods and are of classic value and aesthetic quality. Gold plated silver copies of garlands and statues, votive articles, cups and jewelry, from ancient Greece and Byzantium, are some of the objects on sale. Creations by young upcoming artists are also sold in the shop, which have been inspired by the Museums exhibits, interpreted in contemporary forms. The Shop in the Benaki Museum on Pireos Street has a different approach, providing original artistic creations rather than faithful reproductions of Museum exhibits. The Shop also contains a bookshop specializing in art books where one can find catalogues of museum exhibitions from abroad, and books on the exhibitions held at the Pireos Street Annex. The Shop, at the Nikos Hadjikyriakos-Ghika Gallery sells new works, inspired in their majority by the works of N. Hadjikyriakos-Ghika and the artists of the interwar generation. Among the artist chosen, some have been collaborating with the Shop for years, but many new ones have also been chosen. Top designers and creators in the applied arts share the space with new groups of designers. Special constructions for children designed by us, and collaborations with shops in museums abroad are part of this rich section that hopes to help expose the young to art. The Islamic Art Museum Shop sells objects Islamic art, made with traditional techniques, from countries such as Turkey, India, Pakistan and Egypt. For Christmas shopping there are many attractive gifts, such as lucky charms in various original designs, papier mache festive decorations, calendars in the shape of spinning tops, and many more artistic and colorful ideas.

Recommended for Best Shopping because: An excellent Museum shop with a wide variety of gifts and art objects

Nelly's expert tip: The Benaki Museum was the first to open a Museum Shop in Greece which set the example for more to follow

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Meet Nelly Paraskevopoulou

Born and bred in Athens, Nelly went on the move after finishing high school and spending some years working in textiles.  For her, Italy was the next chapter. But, after 12 years, it was back...  More About Nelly