In the snowy northern city of Florina in Greece, kafenia (neighborhood coffee houses) are key meeting places for locals during the long and hard winter—but one spot stands out from the rest. With lady’s hats hanging from the ceiling, lace draped across a red couch, and delicate glass bottles decorating the counter, Kanefenio Yinaikon “H Yini” (Women’s Kanfenio “The Woman”) does justice to its name. In this kafenio, men are only allowed in if escorted by a woman. For centuries, kafenia have been key communal meeting places in Greece—but only men were allowed access to them. This kafenio flips the switch by offering a cozy, pub-like space where local women can come together and enjoy a hot cuppa along with some homemade Florina sweets. Despite its lady-oriented nature, the kafenio remains beloved with locals of all genders and is even a popular meeting place for art students, who do their homework by the fireplace and sometimes display their art on the walls. Local women also use the kafenio to host knitting circles, handicraft workshops, book readings, and, once in a blue moon, live music. So, if you’re ever in Florina looking for a cuppa and a place to rest your legs after sightseeing, head to what is probably Greece’s only lady’s coffee house—and bring your favorite gals (and gents) along.
Kanefenio Ginaikon “H Gini”
Kallergi 4, Florina
Open weekdays 10:00 AM – 1:30 PM and 5:30 PM to 9:00 PM
Open Sunday 5:30 PM to 9:00 PM
Closed on Saturday
(Photo credit the Athens News Agency)