The Municipality of Limassol which was established in 1878 is the largest Municipality in Cyprus, its population reaching 150.000 inhabitants. After the tragic events of 1974 it has progressed into one of the greatest commercial ports in theMediterranean, as well as one of the most important maritime, tourist, commercial and service centre in the wider region.
Limassol is today the business and financial centre of Cyprus with a large number of local and international companies surrounded by a further network of hotels, restaurants and other venues for entertainment and leisure. The city if therefore constantly in motion, developing even more.
It is important to mention that hundreds of shipping, as well as financial companies have their headquarters in Limassol. Today our city is the largest ship-management centre in the European Union.
What is extremely important for the city’s economy is that Limassol has always been a popular tourist destination, combining an organized coast with clear waters and wonderful hotels and generally a well organized tourist infrastructure.
It has a long and extensive history, as the first settlements of the city were established some 4000 years ago. It was always a natural harbour, with potable spring water, and surrounded by extensive agricultural plantations, chiefly comprising from grape vines and carob trees.
Limassol is additionally well known for a long cultural tradition. Visitors have the opportunity to experience a variety of cultural or other activities. In addition, they can visit museums and other archaeological locations around the city, which is an astonishing combination of ancient, Frankish, Byzantine, Ottoman and modern influence.
The Limassol Carnival is one of the most popular events organized by the Municipality. It has been a tradition of the city since the 1940s, even though it is dated back to the 19th century, attracting tenths of thousands of people every year, locals and visitors.
The Wine Festival is another great event organized by the Municipality of Limassol every year, which celebrates its 52th anniversary this year. It is not just any festival. It has been an institution for years, related to the city’s culture. It also promotes another main feature of Limassol, being the centre of the wine industry in Cyprus.
The Municipality has been making a great effort in order to put together various cultural events which take place around the year. It also encourages different cultural groups to be active and creative.
The Ballet Festival takes place every year in the Limassol Municipal Garden Theatre. It is one of the most important traditions, which offers the opportunity to watch some of the most famous ballets in the world along with other performances.
There are other centres such as the Municipal Music School, the Dance Centre and the Art Workshop. Other important cultural institutions are the Archives Museum, the Public Library, the Public Gallery and the Municipal Museum of Folk Art.
Limassol Municipality in cooperation with the Cyprus Theatre Organization has established the Pancyprian Theatrical Museum. What is more, the neighborhood of artists is now being organized. It will consist of all the art workshops in Limassol as well as a gallery where artists can present their work.
As far as theatres in Limassol are concerned the Municipal Garden Theatre and the Pattichion Municipal theatre are main features of the city. The latter is under renovation with contribution by the European Structural Funds. The Rialto Theatre significantly contributes to the theatrical tradition of Limassol along with Theatre One and the Limassol Theatrical Development Company.
The improvement of the sea front has brought the people of Limassol closer to the sea and also promoted the island character of the city. The widespread restoration of the pavements, the street overlay and the creation of more parks around the city are only a small preview of what it is soon to follow. Works within the city centre have finished by rebuilding streets and pavements, creating underground services and taking measures about traffic for the road safety of the pedestrians and cyclists.
Works for the new Garillis river park have also begun. New cycling and pedestrian paths will be created as well as entertainment and leisure venues. Additionally, works for the new seaside park are soon to end which also consists of cycling and pedestrian paths, as well as entertainment and leisure venues.
Other important projects are the regeneration of the old port into a modern fishing port and the construction of the new yachting marina.
The State University of Technology in Limassol has been the most important contribution to the development and stimulation of the city centre.