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Key Tourism Figures 2016: Georgios Kaminis, Mayor of Athens

Yorgos KaminisOfficial Tourism Message

Athens is an eternally trending city; a contemporary European capital on an upward trajectory, boasting a history of 5,000 years where some of humanity’s most fundamental principles were born. It offers authentic experiences, engaging activities, unforgettable images punctuated by our unmistakable Greek hospitality (filoxenia) with a savvy Athenian twist.

Following three excellent years for tourism, Athens is now experiencing an average 23 percent increase in foreign visitor numbers, making a strong comeback in the international tourism and travel market.

We feel the upward trend is sure to continue, as our city offers great value for money, new hotels and venues, attracting more and more travelers who are choosing Athens for their leisure and business travel all year round.

Capitalizing on this momentum, the municipality has been honing the city’s tourist identity over the last few years, bolstering the tourist product considerably via new tools that engage audiences, improvements in infrastructure, changes to its transportation network, newly created green spaces, the unification of archaeological sites and the regeneration of many of the city’s areas. Together with the Athens Convention & Visitors Bureau (ACVB), we are moving ahead with new projects, new initiatives and most importantly new durable alliances, bringing on board the best of the public and the private sector, creating a consortium of “doers” so as to implement an ambitious vision that will place Athens at center stage as the next favorite city break destination and all-seasons travelers delight, under the umbrella of the campaign: This is Athens! A living, breathing stage for sustainable living with contemporary culture at its heart, Athens is ready to engage audiences and visitors with urban trends, world class art, creative initiatives and leading events such as the Athens Biennale, Documenta 14, the authentic Marathon and UNESCO’S Book Capital 2018.

In this effort, some of the city’s most cutting – edge projects are underway, amongst which are the development of Syggrou Avenue with the new National Museum of Contemporary Art and the newly completed SNFCC, Athens’ most ambitious cultural, educational and recreational complex yet, a 500 million euro investment that will house the redesigned National Library of Greece and the Greek National Opera.

As tourism is vital to the City’s economy, we at the City of Athens invest in building brand awareness, innovation and creative thinking to achieve robust growth, employment opportunities, bringing in income and improving the lives of our residents whilst giving them a sense of ownership over all that is accomplished.

We invite all visitors and tourism professionals to contribute in this effort — to visit, bring their event to Athens, explore the City’s transforming personality as it evolves into its future identity of postmodern cool, rooted deeply in a resplendent past and authentic present.

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