City of Athens changes hours for music in bars, cafes in Kolonaki

The Municipality of Athens decided in a recent council meeting to curb noise in the central neighbourhood of Kolonaki by limiting the hours cafes, bars and restaurants can blast music, following dozens of complaints and lawsuits by local residents.

According to the municipality, the decision requires bars and cafes to turn off the music at midnight on weekdays and Sundays and at 1 in the morning on Fridays, on Saturdays and on the eve of public holidays. It said this decision “does not concern the opening hours of bars and restaurants in general, but the hours when music can be played”.

In 2017, more than 70 businesses in Kolonaki submitted a request to extend the hours for playing music, the municipality said, while it is estimated that 60 percent of businesses “didn’t even bother” to ask for an extension, although they violated the legal hours.

According to a police order from 1996, bars, cafes and restaurants must stop the music at 22:00 in the winter and at 23:00 in the summer, based on the common “quiet hours”.

The decision will have to be approved by the Decentralized Administration.