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Greece’s tourism growth July 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Tourism.
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The number of tourists arriving in Greece rose 5.95% in the first half of 2007, compared with a year earlier, suggesting a third successive year of growth, the Association of Greek Tourist Enterprises said Thursday.

“If the rate of growth remains through the end of the year, Greek tourism over the period 2004-2007 will have recorded a 24-percent cumulative increase in tourism arrivals,” said Stavros Andreadis, Chairman of the Association. “That is a spectacular result,” he said. “And it shows that the growth potential is enormous.”

Greece last year attracted nearly 16 million tourists, who spent an estimated 12 billion euros ($16.6 billion), the Association said.

Life in Athens > on a Sunday July 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Greece Athens, Greek Culture Heritage.
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athens_acropolis1.jpg  Sunset at the Sacred Rock of the Acropolis. Pictured is the Erechthion with the famous Karyatides statues. On Sunday 15th July, 2007.

athens_acropolis2.jpg  Evzones, the elite Presidential Guard, marching infront of the Parthenon at the Sacred Rock of the Acropolis, before the lowering of the Greek flag ceremony. On Sunday 15th July, 2007.

Photo Credits and Copyright > AthensNewsAgency-MacedonianNewsAgency/Orestis Panayiotou. All rights reserved.

Hochtief to operate Olympic Venues in Greece July 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Business & Economy.
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Essen-based Hochtief Facility Management GmbH is to take over the operation of the Olympic Games venues in Greece, initially for a period of 12 months.

Following an international competitive process a contract to this effect has been concluded by Olympic Properties SA, the Greek State-owned company responsible for the management and operation of the Olympic Facilities, and Hochtief. The contract has a volume of more than 20 million euro.

The Olympic Facilities, which were used during the Athens Olympic Games of 2004, include stadiums, multifunctional halls, marinas and the Olympic press center. In all, Hochtief Facility Management will be responsible for an area of over four million square meters. The company has been commissioned to guarantee and optimize the technical and infrastructural functionality of the venues. For this, it will put an appropriate IT infrastructure in place. In addition, Hochtief will ensure that the venues can continue to be used for events and then provide technical support for such events.

Most of the Olympic venues are situated in the greater Athens area, while there are further sports arenas in Crete as well as in Volos and Patras.

Greece once again gripped by heatwave July 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Greece News.
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Greek authorities were on Monday preparing to deal with the repercussions of yet another major heatwave that is sweeping the country, with temperatures in some areas expected to reach up to 44C.

Tuesday is expected to be the hottest day of the week but temperatures will remain steadily above 40C throughout the country until Thursday. The highest temperatures are expected in Larisa, Argos, Corinth, Trikala, Thessaloniki, Drama, Kavala, Serres and Katerini.

The Civil Protection General Secretariat has alerted all state services and local authorities to be prepared to deal with incidents linked to the high temperatures and set in motion the Health Ministry’s Perseus plan, in which hospitals and the ambulance service are on standby.

The Public Power Corporation (PPC) is also on red alert as power consumption is once again expected to peak and test the limits of the power grid.

Firefighting plane crashes in Greece July 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Greece News.
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Two Greek firefighter pilots were killed on Monday when their Canadair water-bomber plane crashed while combating a fire on the island of Evia, as Greece braced for a fresh week of searing temperatures.

“The plane crashed into a hillside between two houses,” the island’s deputy governor Stamatis Kapeleris told state NET television. Television footage showed wreckage from the CL-415 Canadair close by the front yard of a house near the town of Styra on the island off the eastern coast of central Greece.

The plane was built in 2001 and was the latest addition to Greece’s water bomber fleet, the air force said. Public Order Minister Vyron Polydoras said the two pilots had “attained immortality through their self-sacrifice.” “These men are real heroes,” he said.

Monday’s casualties brought to five the number of firefighters lost this month during a campaign that has seen fresh blazes start almost every day, many suspected to be arson. Three firemen were trapped and killed by a blaze on Crete on July 11.

The causes of Monday’s plane crash are unclear but officials said strong winds were blowing in the area. “There are a lot of open fronts and the wind remains strong, I fear for what might happen tonight,” Styra Mayor Sofia Moutsou told NET.

The Canadair plane was one of seven aircraft sent to the island along with 22 fire engines to combat a blaze that broke out Monday and burned hundreds of hectares of olive and plane trees. The local community of Dilesos was evacuated as a precaution.

Over 300 fires have broken out around the country since the weekend according to the fire department, aided by a combination of high temperatures and strong winds. Fires continued to rage on Monday near the towns of Nafpactos in western Greece, Kyparissia and Corinth in the Peloponnese, and on the Ionian island of Corfu, the fire department said.

Greece earlier this month experienced what authorities described as its longest heat wave in over 100 years, during which 15 people died. Another hot spell has arrived and is set to continue until Thursday, when the barometer could hit 43 degrees Celcius.

The state Public Power Corporation on Monday announced that national electricity consumption set a new record without even counting the country’s numerous islands. The company called on consumers to limit electricity use during the peak noon hours.

Paleontologists make rare discovery in Greece July 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Archaeology Greece.
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This is a rare and unique find in Greece

A group of paleontologists have discovered the tusks and petrified remains of a mastodon, or large mammoth-like mammal, that lived about three million years ago, the head of the team said on Monday.

The Greek paleontologists from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, along with Dutch specialists from the Natural History Museum in Rotterdam, discovered the remains in the northern Milia region near Grevena. The tusks weighed a tonne each and measured five metres, the longest found to date.

“This is a rare and unique find in Greece, and is useful for studies of a period dating back three million years,” Geology Professor Evangelia Tsoukala said.

The researchers also dug up petrified remains of a humerus, the long bone of the arm or forelimb extending from the shoulder to the elbow, thigh bones and teeth. The animal appears to have stood 3,5m tall and weighed more than six tonnes, Tsoukala said.

Her team, which began excavating sites in the area in 1996, discovered another pair of 4,38m mastodon tusks in 1998, and in 2002 they dug up parts of a petrified rhinoceros skull dating from the same period.

Countdown > 4 days left July 23, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Music Life Live Gigs.
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To July 26, that is next Thursday!

For the biggest summer event in Greece and Athens!

For the live performance of the Greek

Cypriot Superstar!

Ladies and Gentlemen >

Mr George Michael, live in Athens, at

the OAKA Athens Olympic Sports

Stadium!

Official website > http://www.georgemichael.com

Tickets for George’s concert > http://www.ticketnet.gr/reviewsMichael.html