Ever wandered what Maximos Mansion (Μέγαρο Μαξίμου) looks like inside?
Greece’s first lady Mareva Grabowski-Mitsotakis invited Architectural Digest inside for an exclusive tour.
Maximos Mansion has been the official seat of the Prime Minister of Greece since 1982. It is located on Herodes Attikou Street, next to the Presidential Mansion and the National Garden of Athens.
“It had not been repainted since 2004, just before Athens hosted the Olympics,” Grabowski-Mitsotakis told the American magazine.
With less visitors & Athenians walking past Maximos Mansion due to the coronavirus pandemic ‘shutdown’, she decided the time was right for a restoration.
“(The Prime Minister) said, ‘You can do whatever you like, but it can’t cost the Greek state one penny,'” Grabowski-Mitsotakis recalled.
A team of volunteer curators and collectors helped the Greek first lady plan the upgrade of three rooms: a formal meeting room, a reception area dubbed “the living room,” and the Prime Minister’s office.
It must be highlighted that each ‘upgraded’ room is filled with art and design objects created by Greek artists and artisans, with many on loan from studios as well as private and institutional collections.
This is because Grabowski-Mitsotakis wanted the restoration to “represent the Greek people.”
“The idea is to change the art on display every two years so we can demonstrate the talent and craftsmanship of local artists,” she added.
Next in line for beautification is the mansion’s courtyard, where visiting dignitaries are often invited to breakfast.
But for now, Grabowski-Mitsotakis is “very satisfied that the project came together. I wanted to make this a place that belongs to the people and relays the message that in Greece, we have beautiful history, traditions, and craftsmanship.”
“We are guardians of this place for a few years… My philosophy is: You might as well leave your soul in the places where you spent time. You have to love the places that represent you.”
*This article originally appeared on Architectural Digest