SkyGreece Airlines will launch service to Canada on May 17

SkyGreece Airlines Boeing jeet

SkyGreece Airlines posted this photo of its Boeing 767-300ER  aircraft to its Facebook page today.


Routes revealed: Travellers will have more choices for direct flights between Canada and Greece beginning Sunday May 17.

That’s the day SkyGreece Airlines is expected to launch service between Athens and Toronto, with three flights per week.  On Thursday May 21, SkyGreece will start a once-weekly flight to Toronto from Thessaloniki, and on Sunday May 24 it will debut a once-weekly departure from Athens to Montreal.

More good news: SkyGreece will offer service during winter months, too, with two flights per week from November 2015 until April 2016.

Canadian charter airline Air Transat and Air Canada rouge, a “leisure” division of Air Canada, are the only carriers presently offering direct flights between the two countries — and only during the spring to fall travel period.

The SkyGreece transatlantic schedule was revealed today on the Greek Air News Facebook page.


Executive appointments announced this week

As I reported in a January 21 post, SkyGreece received Canadian regulatory approval this month to commence scheduled service between the European Community and Canada. In an announcement about the Canadian Transportation Agency decision, SkyGreece promised to unveil its “new and exciting flight program” within days.

A private company based in Athens, SkyGreece has offices in Montreal, Toronto and New York.

On January 26 the airline announced the appointment of Denis Codere as its deputy chief commercial officer, and on January 28 it announced the appointments of Eleni Kessaris and Louise Cofsky to director positions on its Canadian management team.

The Greek Air News report did not include any information about fares for the flights between Canada and Greece. Curiously, SkyGreece didn’t make any announcement about its new routes on either its website or its Facebook page today. It did, however, post two photos of its single Boeing 767 aircraft on Facebook (including the one I have republished at the top of this post) along with the comment “The family will be growing soon!!”, which suggests SkyGreece may soon be adding more aircraft to its fleet.


New 4-star hotel set to open at Platis Gialos beach on Mykonos

The George Hotel Mykonos

This photo, from The George Hotel’s Facebook page, shows the Platis Gialos hillside location of the soon-to-open accommodations


 Hillside hotel: Mykonos-bound travellers will have more accommodation choices at Platis Gialos once a brand-new hotel, The George, opens for the 2015 summer season on May 1.

The George Hotel only has a presence on Facebook so far, where it has billed itself as a 4-star property and posted several photos showing the hotel exterior, a sample room interior, and a typical hotel room view. But its website and online booking system should be up and running in early February. [Editor’s update: The website and booking page were operational as of January 29.]

The hotel is built into the side of the rocky hill that stands behind Platis Gialos beach, one of the most popular strands on the island. The George appears to be situated next door to the 5-star Myconian Ambassador Hotel, which just happens to be the first hotel we ever stayed at in Greece. It’s an excellent location: George Hotel guests will enjoy wonderful views of the Platis Gialos area while being just a 5-minute walk from the beach in one direction, and a similar walking distance from the nearest bus stop in the other.

Platis Gialos is one of the best resort areas to stay at on Mykonos, since it offers a good selection of restaurants right on the beach and close by, along with several convenience stores, and is walking distance from four nearby beaches — Psarou, Agia Anna, Paraga and Paradise. Moreover, it takes less than 15 minutes to get to Mykonos Town by regular bus service or by taxi.

The George is affiliated with the Acrogriali Hotel, which is one of several hotels fronting on Platis Gialos beach.

General manager Argyrios G. Theoharis told me The George will have three room types, all of which offer sea views: deluxe double; deluxe triple, and a 2-bedroom family room that can accommodate up to 5 guests. Room rates will be available once the website and online booking system are launched next month.

Below are several photos from The George Hotel Facebook page, where several more room and view pictures can be viewed.

See my August 23 2011 post for photos and information about Platis Gialos beach.

 The George Hotel Mykonos

I have circled The George Hotel location on this aerial photo of Platis Gialos

 The George Hotel Mykonos

From The George Hotel Facebook page, a view of the hotel exterior

 The George Hotel Mykonos

This is one of three room interior photos posted on the hotel Facebook page

The George Hotel  Mykonos

Guests of The George will enjoy views like this of the Platis Gialos area

Agency approves SkyGreece bid for licence to fly to Canada

SkyGreece Airlines aircraft

Facebook page photo of the SkyGreece Airlines aircraft


Application approved: Canadian travellers may soon have a third option for direct flights to and from Athens now that the Canadian Transportation Agency has approved SkyGreece Airlines’ application to offer scheduled service between Canada and Greece.

In a ruling released January 20, the Agency said it has approved the SkyGreece request “for a licence to operate scheduled international services between member states of the European Community and Canada.”

SkyGreece is a private company incorporated in Athens, It has offices in Montreal, Toronto and New York.

In a post on the SkyGreece Airlines Facebook page today, the airline said it is “extemely happy” with the Agency’s long-awaited decision.

“More great news about SkyGreece Airlines S.A. and its new and exciting flight program will be unveiled in the next few days,” the airline added.

There is no word yet on the results of SkyGreece’s similar application for a licence to offer service between Greece and the USA.

As I reported in a March 25 2014 blog post, Greek media had reported that SkyGreece was hoping to commence flights between Greece and New York during the summer of 2014. But the applications for licences to fly to Canada and America took longer than expected, and as I reported in a post on June 18 2014, SkyGreece began operating charter flights to certain destinations in Europe and north Africa instead.

Although SkyGreece has only one aircraft at present, service to Canada would give travellers an alternative to Air Canada and Air Transat, which are the only Canadian airlines currently offering direct flights between Canada and Greece.

I’ve been curious to see how competitive the SkyGreece fares will be, but even if they’re dirt cheap I won’t be flying SkyGreece to Athens — I’ve already booked flights with Air Transat for my next Greek holiday this spring. But if their prices are good, and their schedule reasonable, I definitely would consider SkyGreece for subsequent flights.

I will keep you posted on any forthcoming route and fare announcements from the airline.


Captivating colours on the coast of Paros

Paros coast

A rugged section of coastline near Parasporos beach on Paros


True colours: One of the things we most remember from our first trip to Paros 10 years ago was an afternoon walk along the island’s rocky coast just west of Parasporos beach. We were mesmerized by the constantly-changing sea colours, which ranged from a deep cobalt blue to a vivid emerald green, with an astonishing array of turquoise shades in between. It was fascinating to observe the colours shift as we moved from one cove to the next. Below are some of the photos we shot during our hike. You can view those and more images in larger format in the Coastal Colours on Paros album on the MyGreeceTravelBlog Flickr page.


Paros coast


Paros coast


Paros coast


Paros coast


Paros coast


Paros coast


Paros coast


 Paros coast


Paros coast


Paros coast


Paros coast


Paros island coast


Paros coast


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