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Travel news, reviews and intel for high-flyers

Hotel Check: Sofitel Athens Airport

WHERE IS IT? Literally across the street from the terminal, this hotel takes just one minute on foot (even with luggage to reach). There is no stress over having to wait for an airport shuttle so I literally rolled out of bed later than usual and was through security in minutes.

HOW MANY ROOMS? 345 rooms and suites


PROPERTY HIGHLIGHTS: Renovated guest rooms, French flair, and a location that is steps from the airport make this a prime choice for any Athens layover.

WHAT’S IT LIKE? Sofitel hotels are known for incorporating delightful French influences throughout their hotels. Guests are greeted with a “bonjour” or “bonsoir” depending upon the time of day, and their food and beverage options blend local options with a few French favorites. Guest rooms stock Hermes toiletry products for even more French luxury.

ROOM FACILITIES: Views from higher floors survey the runway and apron areas although those on lower floors look mostly at the roadways surrounding the airport. Black out curtains are exceptional, and most guests here stay just one night. I would not rule out staying here for longer though since the metro system has a station adjacent to the hotel making it easy to get into and out of town for dining and sightseeing (it takes 35 minutes).

Beds have plush comforters with thick pillows that can be chosen from a menu, and bedside controls make it easy to switch lights on and off with one button. Turndown service delivers a spot of tea bedside. Power and USB outlets are on either side of the bed although my USB port was a bit finicky. Still, the option for both is impressive and not as common as I would like. The hotel has undergone a renovation of its guest rooms instilling a fresh and modern look with bright fabrics and beautiful marble baths with separate water closets and glass showers. Soaking tubs are another luxurious amenity as are bottles of water and slippers in all rooms. Club-level rooms gain access to a lounge with free refreshments throughout the day.

RESTAURANTS AND BARS: At breakfast, the bright restaurant boasted a sign indicating the spread had been approved by a Greek association marking it truly authentic. I found the range of local cheeses to be delicious, and there were more Greek pastries and egg dishes to fuel my morning. The buffet was most popular although a la carte options were also available. The rest of the day, the restaurant caters to guests with an international menu albeit more Greek options prove popular. The room service menu continued the same theme.

LEISURE FACILITIES: A top-floor fitness center and swimming pool are pleasant additions to any airport hotel providing the chance for travelers to decompress. Given the airport location, it is more difficult to jog around the neighborhood, and this panoramic option is a fine replacement.

BUSINESS AND MEETING FACILITIES: Wireless Internet is complimentary and fast, and the hotel does brisk business in the conference department with stellar audiovisual equipment in the modern meeting areas. Travelers love the ability to fly in and out for meetings without the inconvenience of traffic or long drives.

VERDICT: This is the most convenient hotel for fliers in Athens, and its Sofitel affiliation adds luxury when and where weary travelers may want it most. Bon sejour!

PRICE: Internet rates for a traditional room start at $151 on the random dates we checked.

CONTACT: Sofitel Athens Airport, Athens International Airport, Spata, 19019 Greece. Phone: 30-210-354-4000.