Zappeion in Athens
The Zappeion Megaron of Athens: Designed by the famous Danish architect Theophil Freiherr von Hansen in 1878, the Zappeion Megaron is named after Evangelos Zappas, a businessman from Epirus who played a major role in starting the Zappian Olympic Games, which laid the path for the modern Olympic Games. He offered to sponsor the revival of the Modern Olympic Games and soon the first modern Olympics were held at the Panathenaic Stadium Athens in 1896.
The Zappeion building is a tribute to this great man who brought the Olympic Games back into the modern world. Having played the role of the official Olympic village for the Olympic games of 1896 and host of the fencing events, the Zappeion building today is used for public exhibitions, wine tasting, trade shows, business meetings, and cultural events. Many international conferences are also hosted in Zappeion. Note that it was here that the integration of Greece into the European Union was signed in 1979 by the then prime minister Konstantinos Karamanlis.
The classic architecture of this building is completely breathtaking. With an oval shaped open area flanked by a two-storey colonnade, the building is painted in traditional rust colors, a feature common in several ancient Greek buildings. One of the more famous exhibitions held here was that of Olympic Torches, an extremely interesting collection. The Zappeion Megaron is easily accessible with buses running frequently from Syntagma Square. A walk through the National Garden is definitely required.