State-run marinas in Attica and Thessaloniki will be reorganized and upgraded to the high standards seen elsewhere in Europe, Development Minister Nikos Christodoulakis announced recently.
In Athens, a facelift is planned for Marina Zea at Piraeus as well as improvements in access to the facility. At the Vouliagmeni marina, better services will be made available to vessel owners in cooperation with existing accommodation units in the area. The docks at Alimos and Flisvos will be further developed and dry dock services and maintenance are to be provided. A total of 15 billion drachmas will be invested in upgrading marinas.
The Athens daily newspaper ‘Ta Nea’ reported that Tourism Organization-operated marinas in Attica, where demand is highest, are filled to the brim and, as an increasingly affluent section of the population is purchasing recreational vessels, the waiting lists for a berth are extremely long. The list at Vouliagmeni marina apparently dates back to 1989 and no places have been freed up since.
The Hellenic Tourism Organization says that all of its marinas are fully occupied and that it cannot meet the rapidly growing demand resulting from the jump in yacht sales over recent years.
The organization’s properties company, ETA, says it will focus on modernizing and developing the existing docking facilities. Among ETA’s other investment initiatives are plans for a reorganisation and modernization of recreational facilities, such as restaurants, organized beaches and clubs, which it operates in coastal areas. Mr. Christodoulakis said a unified effort would be undertaken to upgrade the Attica coastal zone, underlining its significance in view of the 2004 Athens Olympics.
ETA, which holds the exclusive right to develop mineral springs in Greece, intends to further the notion of spa tourism -a government priority- with the establishment of a new hydrotherapy park and mineral-based cosmetics industry in Fthiotida, central Greece. At the same time, it will modernize the rundown spa at Edipsos, Evia and develop facilities at Kaiafa and Nigrita.