The date when I became traveler who is interested to know historical stories and to learn more about the place except for the names of the beaches and the hotels is still unknown to me. As I mentioned before, I heard about Kavala many times as it is a port stop for Thessaloniki and Istanbul. It has a long significant presence in the evolution of the area, from the classical to the post-Ottoman period.
Kavala is also a birthplace of Mohamed Ali Pasha, the founder of modern Egypt and the Egyptian Royal Dynasty. Mohamed Ali was born in 1769, when Kavala, along with Egypt, formed part of the Ottoman Empire. Mohamed Ali Pasha’s parents died at his very early age and he was adopted by the keeper in Kavala. He then married into a wealthy family and used its wealth to stand by his land. In 1801 he was knighted kinghood by the Sultan and became a very positive and active member of the revolution of 1821. However, in 1813, as a donation to his hometown, he founded and supervised the construction of an impressive Imaret, Koranic school and charitable center.
From 1902 – 1923 Imaret acted as a charitable retreat providing sleeping headquarters for 60 people, libraries, and teaching classes together with daily food. From 1923 onwards it was used throughout the years as a restaurant, museum and coffee shop. It was being neglected and abandoned. Luckily that changed thanks to one woman Mrs. Misirian. She understood the historic symbolism of this estate and ached for its demise, hence with great love and admiration she restored these historical grounds and converted the greatness of Imaret into one of the most exclusive boutique hotels in Greece. Through this renovation, the site has been brought back to life with grandness and greatness.
This time I was indeed lucky, having the opportunity to visit this luxury hotel. You can imagine the atmosphere of this hotel is very unique. I had a little tour around the building with a guide, who told me all the ins and outs of the history of the Imaret (it used to be a religious university).
There is something I need to mention about this hotel, as an exclusive hotel the grounds call for utmost respect. Every paving, wall finish, floor detailing, landscaping that has been designed makes you take notice and respect it. When you walk around the reception and the exterior grounds, you know that you are somewhere great, even if you do not know the history of the site. It is the ambiance and the precious finishes that give out this importance of respect. The exterior surrounding views looking out are heavenly and the grounds have an aristocracy when you are walking around the gardens and under the arched hallways. The staff of Imaret is truly doing its best to make you feel special here, even though sometimes it looks like they are mystical, they are actually doing everything for their guests’ experience. So once you enter the Imaret hotel, you will feel that the grounds are only there for your use.
As I had only one day to be at this hotel, and the weather was not friendly, I decided to leave Imaret, with a note that I will be back soon! If this monument looks astonishing during the rain, can not imagine how it is going to look in the summer!
Imaret hotel is located in the heart of Kavala, it is close to everything. Also, being at Imaret do not miss to visit the Fortress of Kavala or Tobacco Museum. I believe that you already schedule to visit one of the most beautiful crystal beaches.
More information about Imaret Hotel you can find at www.imaret.gr
or at Imaret’s Facebook page here.
After visiting this mysterious boutique hotel, I decided to sit down at close to the cafeteria and sum up all impressions. One traditional Greek coffee, view over Kavala… guess that this day looks like a day of Egyptian princess?! Couldn’t ask for more.