The Academy of Athens
This imposing structure was built between 1859 until 1885, sponsored by the family of business entrepreneur Baron Simon Sinas, who then lived in Vienna.
The building was based on plans by Theophile Hansen and construction was supervised by Ernst Ziller; its location had been chosen in 1842 specifically to form part of the noted Athenian Trilogy of neoclassical buildings.
The structure is covered in white Pentelic marble, its pediments adorned with Peiraic stone. Statues of Athena, goddess of literature, and Apollo, god of the arts, both created by Leonidas Drossis, sit atop tall Ionic columns overlooking the entrance.
Impressive statues of Plato and Aristotle are also there to greet visitors. Based on drawings by Drossis, these were not completed until after his death. Although completed in 1885, the Academy was not officially founded until 1926, at which time it commenced operations and emerged as the country’s premiere research institution.