Ladadika is the only district in the centre of Thessaloniki that escaped the 1917 Great Fire and still remains to a certain extent intact. It covers several square blocks between Tsimiski street in the north and Koundourioti street in the south (the western limit is Ionos Dragoumi street while the eastern limit is Salaminos street).
Originally it was the place where various foreign and local merchants kept their storage houses and their enterprises. It was a very densely built area with small and narrow roads very close to the city's harbour, covering the area south of the French Quarter and west of the Jewish Quarter. The French were the first to establish their enterprises here, immediately followed by local -mainly Jewish- merchants who played a leading role in the city's economic and financial life. After the end of WWII the area gradually lost its economic significance and vigour and was eventually almost completely deserted by merchants. Some warehouses were demolished and ugly buildings began to emerge from their ashes whereas the rest of the structures suffered from desertation. The place soon became inaccessible to passersby while the whole area was taken over by brothel houses and turnt into an ill reputed place. The historic district of Ladadika was severely damaged by the 1978 earthquake and a huge restoration programme was undertaken in the '90s, so that the district kept its character and its quite distinctive architectural features.