Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mykonos: “The Piano Bar” of Little Venice

Discovering The Montparnasse Piano Bar, one of a dozen of so chic bars that light up Little Venice from dusk-to-dawn during this island’s madcap tourist season, is one of the high points of our trip to Mykonos.

Although our time on the island was short, we managed to get in two visits to this legendary watering hole that has cultivated a loyal following among locals, tourists and ‘big names’ alike since its opening back in the early 1980’s.
DSCF1408
Little Venice - Mykonos Island, Greece
DSCF1411
But first a bit about Little Venice, one of the most romantic – and certainly among the most photographed – spots on Mykonos:
The 18th Century buildings with wooden balconies that make up the area served as homes of sea captains or pirates, depending on what version of the story you’re told. Some are still homes (and available to rent) and others are filled with bars and boutiques. You explore the area following a winding maze of narrow walkways as old as the buildings themselves.

It is fun to explore at any time of day, but it wasn’t until this trip that we learned how much fun it was at night.

We’d likely never have discovered ‘The Piano Bar’ had it not been for our American friend and novelist, Jeffrey Siger, who spends half his year on Mykonos – writing books.
(We’ve introduced you to him and his books in earlier posts.Click the link to see them.) Over breakfast at the hotel our first morning, he tipped us off to the bar’s seasonal reopening just the night before.

The bar – and its real life owners, longtime personal and professional partners, Nikos Hristodulakis and Jody Duncan – has appeared in the fictional crime mysteries Jeffrey writes as well as in the posts he contributes to the blog, Murder is Everywhere.

DSCF3844

Arriving at a rather unfashionable early hour for Mykonos nightlife - 9 p.m. – we were given a warm welcome by Nikos and Jody (pictured above). With few ‘early birds’ they had time to share laughs and stories with us as though we had been regulars for years; a warmer welcome than at some places we have frequented for years.

DSCF3849
David Dyer - pianist
The pianist, David Dyer from Colorado, who has been a springtime featured performer at the bar since 1987, began playing at 10 p.m. and had we not had an early morning outing scheduled  the next day we’d have stayed much longer listening to his repertoire.

His music was exceptional and brought us back to sit at the bar – just like regulars - the next night. The place reminded us of “Cheers” the bar featured in the U.S. television comedy (1982 -1993) where ‘everybody knows your name’.

That evening we made the acquaintance of a longtime visitor from Sussex, England who regaled us with tales of traveling in Mykonos decades ago - back when there wasn’t even a ferry dock and passengers got to shore aboard tenders.






I’ve long advocated the fun of doing ‘novel’ research for our travels. Often times visits to locations appearing in fiction stories make for some of our best travel experiences. And this bar didn't let us down.
DSCF3845
The Scout, Nikos and Jeffrey Siger
I couldn’t decide if the artwork that fills The Piano Bar walls highlights the old wooden ceiling or vice versa. The Piano Bar which got its start at another Mykonos location moved in 1994 to the present location, that of Montparnasse, an art gallery that opened in the late 1960's and quickly became a gallery and bar.

DSCF3850

Candle light and flowers accented the bar and lounge areas and added to the bar’s welcoming atmosphere. It is definitely worth a visit should you find yourself in Mykonos. (And travel tip: its lounge provides a great place to watch those postcard sunsets!)

DSCF3848

While today we focused on drink, we’ll be back Tuesday serving up some photos of our food finds. Hope you’ll join us then for another taste of Greece. Until then, “Happy Travels” and a big welcome to our new subscribers! Linking up with Noel Morata's Travel Photo Monday

19 comments:

  1. What a gorgeous location, as shown in your first photo, Jackie. And once again, how fortunate you were to be able to have the experiences you've described here.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for the visit today Andrew - as always I appreciate the time you give to TravelnWrite, and for taking time to comment! Have a great week!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hello Jackie and Joel:

    The Piano Bar looks and sounds to be terrific fun and just the kind of place we should love to discover on our own travels. And clearly you were made very welcome indeed; such a reception adds considerably to the enjoyment and interest.

    We love those wooden, blue painted balconies. How wonderful to have an apartment complete with one of them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jane and Lance, I thought of you two as I wrote the blog post and know you would absolutely love this place! Thanks for stopping by today!! Have a great week!

      Delete
  4. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Comments promoting businesses that have no relevance to the topic of the blog or the post, will be removed by the administrator, who is me, and your comment was removed.

      Delete
  5. Looks like a great little spot to enjoy a drink :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. It was a perfect spot for a drink and for getting to know Mykonos, just a bit better! Thanks for the visit, Catherine. . .and the comment!

    ReplyDelete
  7. We have enjoyed your blog entry so much, Jackie and Joel. It seems you have captured the essence of our existence perfectly, and you make us proud of the life we've created here in Mykonos. Hope we'll see you both again here on the island and in The Piano Bar soon. As one of our entertainers says, the first time you visit us you are guests, the next time you visit you are family!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So glad I was able to capture the magic of the place you two have created. And without a doubt you will see the two of us at that bar of yours again. I almost agree with your entertainer's observation, but in our case we felt like family within minutes of our first visit. . .maybe that's because I wanted to take a 'pee-ak' around the place! :-) See you soon, we hope!

      Delete
    2. We'll always remember your visit, especially when you wanted to take a pee'ak. Nikos and I were laughing about that yesterday! Lots of love from both of us!

      Delete
  8. Replies
    1. It really was a perfect spot! Thanks for visiting today ~ as always your comments are most appreciated!

      Delete
  9. This is such a find and one of those places I need to bookmark should I ever be lucky enough to get to Mykonos. The place looks like it oozed character and personality.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, Leigh, you should make it a point to stop by if you find yourself in Mykonos. Do it early in your trip though as I know you will want to go back for a second or more visits!

      Delete
  10. Lovely ambiance, hosts, entertainers and views, I'm sure! How lucky you are to have such great friends all over the country!

    Have a lovely week, Jackie and Joel!

    Poppy

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Poppy, there just seems to be a magic about Greece that makes it easy to discover and make new friends no matter what the location. . .that is one of the reasons we love it so there! Thanks for your visit, as always, it is appreciated.

      Delete
  11. What a fantastic experience with truly lovely and fascinating people. :-) I just love your adventures. :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is certainly people like Jody and Nikos who make travel special; people and places. . .can't get enough of either one! Take care and have a great weekend!

      Delete

Glad you stopped by today and took the time to leave a note. Hope we'll hear from you often!

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...