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Mykonos party nightlife in danger as police say bars, clubs must close early

Entrepreneurs of the island of Mykonos are upset. Tourists too. The sudden implementation of a law of 1996 orders that bars and nightclubs and any other kind of entertainment facilities stop playing music as early as 2 o’clock in the morning. And this on an island that is famous for its long party nights and dance until the morning, long after the sun has risen in the horizon.

Local authorities have started to implement contradictory ministerial decisions allegedly following the complaints by local residents and tourists who want to spend a quite night and a long sleep.

Local police reportedly demands the closure of bars and nightclubs at 3 o’ clock in the morning  and those open-air facilities have to close at 2 a.m. Police implements a law of 1996 which stipulates that music instruments in entertainment facilities can operate in summer time until 3 am in enclosed facilities and until 2 am in open-air facilities.

At the same time, a ministerial decision of 2009 is still in effect and allows operation until 5 o’ clock in the morning.

Entrepreneurs are angry and confused and are threatened with heavy fines and even the closure of their bars and nightclubs if they are caught to commit the same ‘crime’ for a third time.

Entrepreneurs and the mayor of Mykonos have joined forces and sent a letter to the ministers of Public Order, Interior and Tourism demanding an extension of the opening hours.

In the letter, the Mayor of Mykonos, Constantinos Koukas, states: “There is an ominous phenomenon on our island, which is the crown of Greek tourism and entertainment destination for millions of visitors from all over the world during the summer season and with revenues that strengthen the national economy.”

 “Entrepreneurs are trapped in the whirl of law” and they face penalties or have their facilities closed if they violate the law three times a total per year, the letter reads.

The mayor underlines the impact of the negative image for the country’s top tourist destination, if visitors come and see entertainment facilities sealed by police.


Ok there is a law and another law that cancels the previous law and the two laws contradict each other and the question is why the legal framework was not solved all these years and why it is implemented now.

PS It’s not that the state needs revenues, is it?

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  1. The greedy entrepreneurs are upset (oh, poor guys! Do they pay taxes?) just because they want to make more money off a bunch of degenerate morons. If they come to Greece just to dance and drink all night and then sleep all day, then just stay in Berlin, London or whichever inner city they occupy. They don’t give a damn about the country they are in. This is called tourism?

  2. Martin Baldwin-Edwards

    A ministerial decision, or alternatively an administrative decree law, cannot countermand a parliamentary law except temporarily as an emergency measure. This is very clear in the Greek legal system and has even been upheld by the courts. So, the government of 2009 had no business issuing an illegal decision: I presume that it is not actually even a decree law, but a ministerial circular. Ministerial circulars are supposed to explain the law for employees of the state: they are not allowed to contradict the law. This has been the illegal practice of Greek ministries for decades. If Tsipras can stop this nonsense, he will go down in history as having achieved something.

    And yes, residents of Greece do have the legal right to sleep at night.

  3. @carlwilliam
    All you say notwithstanding, that sort of nightlife generates a lot of income. And even supposing the club owners aren’t paying all their taxes, that money, or most of it, nevertheless filters into the Greek economy.

    And who are we to judge what people should do on their holidays? It may not be your idea of a good time, and it certainly isn’t what I would choose to do, but if that’s what the kids want to do, then let them get on with it. They’re not harming anyone, so it’s none of our business what they choose to spend their money on. And if they choose to spend it in Mykonos rather than Berlin, then so much the better.

    Greece needs the money.

  4. It’s like being alllowed to drive (on the freeway) but you still have to obey the speedlimit.
    The same goes for a noiselimit… (be it in dB in general or a timeframe which allows an X amount of dB’s)
    I live near a shopping center.
    The owners are allowed to work from 06:00 in the morning, but they are not allowed to make more noise then “conversation level” (which is 60-65dB) untill 07:00.
    The people living there have rights as well and are protected by the law.

  5. What kind of joke is this? Mykonos nightlife starts at 2 am!

    I was there end of July and nothing was up, don’t know about now though.

  6. Martin Baldwin-Edwards

    We can note a general neoliberal theme here: money takes priority over human rights, according to those obsessed with the power of money. I encountered the same arrogant disregard for the law with a cafe-bar below my apartment in central Athens. The owners thought it perfectly appropriate to have noisy drinking parties on the street, starting at midnight and continuing until at least 4 or 5 in the morning. When I complained politely but firmly at 1 am, i was physically assaulted. It took strong threats from the municipality of Athens to remove their licence to modify their illegal conduct, and even then that lasted only a week or two. I am happy to say that they are doing poorly now, and I wish them a rapid bankruptcy.

    Some people commenting here need to learn respect for the law and for others. Money is a means of transaction, not something more important than quality of life and social order.

  7. @Martin Baldwin-Edwards
    I totally agree with you. I had a friend in São Paulo who had the same problem you describe. The bar was across the street. He just shot fireworks into it a few times until they finally learned to tone it down. Great idea. Party-goers and alcoholics be damned.