05 December 2013 13:31

The New York Times chose to cover the latest, trendy places in Nicosia in its travel section last week, entitling its feature 'In Cyprus, a New Spirit Animates the Capital'.
The feature subtly depicts the prevailing dividing line of the capital and encourages the current shift in venues with regards to their décor.
"Europe's last divided capital, Nicosia, Cyprus is experiencing a renaissance with more and more venues catering to the artistic set. No longer wary of the demilitarised United Nations Buffer Zone that bisects the ancient walled city between the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot sides, young Nicosians have reclaimed their old town.
"Emboldened by falling real estate prices, arty cafés, boutiques celebrating home-grown fashion and buzzy restaurants have opened among the Venetian fortifications and Byzantine churches on the Greek side.
"While beachgoers have long flocked to the coasts, the rebirth of the inland capital is evidence of a historic city in transition."
The feature includes five locations including Avo's Armenian Food outlet, which in their eyes has "helped revitalise Old Nicosia's once desolate former fabric district.
"The formula is simple: A wood-burning stove plus delicious and cheap Armenian street food. Locals line up for freshly baked specialties like lahmajoun — piquant minced meat atop crispy flat bread — and halloumi cheese pies."
It selected the Suvenir unisex boutique which focuses on up-and-coming Cypriot and Greek designers and Ermou 300 which opened last year where one people "gather around courtyard tables resembling flowerpots to sip cocktails like the Ouzografos, which improbably mixes ouzo, lemonade and basil with cubes of local halloumi cheese".
 As the feature explains, "the adjacent shop offers such items as traditional painted wood Cypriot chairs with colourful coverings knit by Sylvette Fissentzides".
Bar and café 7 Kleidia wasn't excluded from the list. "Multicoloured umbrellas hang overhead at this relaxed cafe in a small pedestrian alley filled with new galleries and shops. A favourite haunt of creative types since it opened in 2011, 7 Kleidia serves Cypriot coffee the traditional way — made in a copper pot over hot sand — along with local wine and spirits."
And finally, The Market Company which perhaps stands out from the "numerous restaurant-bars that have recently popped up around Onasagorou Street,  turning this stretch near the border checkpoint into a happening night-life quarter.
"The liveliest stop is Market Company, an industrial-chic spot that opened in 2012. Stylish denizens order small plates like prawns flavoured with berries and toast at the white-tiled bar until the early morning hours."


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