Thessaloniki’s ONOMA Hotel: Smart, Sexy and Fun
Among the first Gen Z- and millennial-targeted concept hotels in Greece, ONOMA opened its doors in the midst of the pandemic offering functionality, connectivity and urban chic taste and style that’s affordable. It’s also one of the most Instagrammable urban hotels in Greece.
Modern interiors and lighting, comfortable furniture, easy check-in, smart technologies, wireless services, free WiFi, great finger foods, and extra soft beds are just some of the ingredients that make ONOMA a must for your next visit to Thessaloniki.
It’s also pet friendly (whole floor dedicated to our furry friends) and wheel-chair accessible.
Feel Right at Home at ONOMA Hotel
“It’s all in the name: ONOMA is what you make it – there is nothing more personal than your name,” says Michael Chrysochoidis, the youthful owner of ONOMA Hotel, which is the newest member of the Anatolia Hospitality.
“For me personalization is key. The idea is to make you feel at home. That’s why we named the hotel ONOMA, which means ‘name’ in Greek.”
At the same time, it’s wholly adaptable to your needs,” Chrysochoidis tells GTP Headlines.
And that’s exactly what our experience of ONOMA did. We felt right at home in minutes after being welcomed by the stately “Seeker”, a street-art-style giant representing the modern traveler who welcomes you at the door.
Think personalized coffee, cocktail, perfume, and of course, the hotel’s key seller: your very own theme room.
ONOMA Hotel – The Details
The eight-floor ONOMA Hotel is a revamped technical school designed to create a sense of warmth, belonging and peacefulness.
Like many of this new breed of city hotels abroad, ONOMA has focused more on the user experience of its mostly younger clientele and less on classic luxury services offered at its other hotels.
There are self-check-in counters for those who don’t want to do much talking, a wide choice of co-working spaces which are open to guests and non-guests.
A funky playroom-working area complete with ping-pong table which doubles as conference table, arcade machines, PlayStation, library, and boardgames not to mention a small but complete gym equipped with the latest in sports technology.
The benches, sofas, arm chairs in the ‘home-work’ and den areas all aim to keep boredom at bay and stimulate creativity and productivity, says Chrysochoidis, who had us all sit in his favorite innovation: the ball pool.
“Everyone is reluctant at first but then they like it. It’s a perfect way to break the ice and relax,” he said adding that he even got his 80-year-old mother to try it out.
The hotel’s all-day Good Mood Food restaurant serves trendy street food favorites like hotdogs, the meanest mac and cheese I’ve had outside the US, fish and chips, souvlaki, bao buns, and burgers. Joining you at your table? Superman, Wonder Woman, and other mini action heroes plus Yoda instead of passé vases of flowers or uninteresting candles.
There’s the two-sided Cloud Bar on the terrace offering some of the best sushi in Thessaloniki and inventive cocktails. The view is for urban lovers with a vintage flashing neon sign and city lights in the background.
“The bet is to win over a clientele that is keen on immersive experiences,” Chrysochoidis says, adding that it’s very different to a classic stay.
“ONOMA is experience, technology and innovation versus traditional luxury, so it’s for the young and the young at heart.”
Although the hotel is non-smoking, Good Mood Food extends outdoors to the Secret Garden for the smokers.
For those wishing to let off steam, a graffiti-inspired basketball court on a hidden rooftop is great. Even Chrysochoidis, a former player, shot a hoop.
Impressive upon arrival is ONOMA’s interactive entrance featuring an LED display that can adapt to holidays and events with mottos and logos creating a unique welcome experience for each guest. For us, the Greek P-shaped entrance greeted us with rolling newsclips and cartoon reporters.
There’s even a tribute exhibit in the staircase featuring photos of all the people who worked on the project.
Before you leave, make sure to capture the moment at ONOMA Hotel’s vintage-style photo booth for free pics. And I’m absolutely sure you won’t want to leave without buying at least one souvenir including stylish T-shirts and hoodies, the softest bath robe, collectibles or the absolutely best bath mat.
The Rooms & The Experiences
Besides the espresso makers and mini fridge each room has its own tablet which you use to create the atmosphere you like (dim lights, draw curtains, a/c etc) or to chat with reception.
The room is spacious, with soothing colors and textures, a lush bed, large airy window, and slick split bathroom. A ’50s-style neon light greets you with a “Hi”, “Wow”, “Smile”…
The pièce de résistance? A Marshall speaker so you can connect wirelessly and listen to your favorite tunes.
The hotel also uses smart technology and a questionnaires to personalize your stay. Much like your own personal travel advisor online.
What makes ONOMA even more worth the stay?
Its eight (for now) in-room experiences. Become a rock star for a day, sample local fine wines, shoot some hoops (yes!), play your favorite video games, indulge in scrumptious sweets, strike a yoga pose, develop your own photos, or hit the sheets with your amore.
Guests at ONOMA Hotel can upgrade their room through the hotel app for an extra fee ranging from 35 to 90 euros. One of the “hottest” experiences is the “Gray” room inspired by “Fifty Shades of Grey” that comes with a surprise Pleasure Box with sex toys that you take home with you, champagne for two, and a sensual playlist on Spotify.
Looking ahead, Chrysochoidis tells GTP Headlines that plans are in the pipeline for the creation of ONOMA hotels at other locations in Greece including Athens, launching more innovations and room experiences, offering eco-friendly transport options like bicycles or e-bikes, and setting up a Loyalty Club connecting all hotel products with rewards and points.
“We wanted to create a smart space that connects people with people and with the destination,” said Chrysochoidis, who purchased the property in 2018 and opened it this year during the pandemic.
“It was a very daring decision and to be honest, I was very thoughtful at first but then I decided if there ever was a time to move forward this was it,” he says.
“At a time of alienation and isolation, ONOMA comes to bring people together in a shared space tailored to their unique needs”.
What We Loved at ONOMA Hotel
Besides the dozens of picture-perfect photo-worthy spots all over, the handpicked team at ONOMA are young in their 20s or 30s, fresh, knowledgeable and polite and above all discreet. Knowing exactly what their generation of travelers is looking for.
The positive vibes. The YOLO motto that comes to life here. And the freedom to be ourselves or as ONOMA Hotel staff say: #IAMWHATIAM.