Aegean Airlines is a Star Alliance partner airline based out of Greece. There’s nothing remarkable about the airline itself, and it doesn’t even fly to North America. However, they have the most generous status granting mechanism out of any Star Alliance partner airline.
Aegean has two status levels of interest: Blue and Gold. To qualify for Blue, you need to have 4000 status miles, and for Gold, you need 16000. Blue gives you Star Alliance Silver, and Gold gives you Star Alliance Gold.
These qualification tiers are the most generous of all Star Alliance partners. For example, with Air Canada, to qualify for Silver status you need 25,000 status miles, and for Gold, you need 50,000 status miles!
What makes Aegean even better is that you get one year after qualifying for Blue level (4,000 in one year) to get the next 12,000 miles for Gold. So theoretically you can get up to two years to get 16,000 status miles, which is possible even for the casual flyer!
Wait, it gets even better… your Gold status is valid for 36 months! This is extraordinary, considering most other airlines only give status for one year! Wait, wait, it gets even better… to requalify for Blue/Gold for another 36 month period, all you need to do it credit one flight, any flight, during that period! This policy is unprecedented in the industry, and is almost too good to be true (but it is). Right now, if you signup for a Miles&Bonus account with Aegean, you’ll get 1,000 status miles to start with. So really, all you need is 3,000 miles for Blue, and 15,000 for Gold!
Note that Aegean points are not very useful. I would just credit your flights until you reach that 16,000 point mark, and then one flight every 36 months (make it a short flight).
Also note that Aegean imposes pretty harsh status earning rates on partner airlines. Check what fare class you’re booked into before crediting to Aegean, and compare it with their chart on partner earning rates.
Now, why would you want Star Alliance Silver or Gold status? With Silver status, you’ll normally get priority line access and free luggage. With Gold, you get free lounge access, more free luggage, better lines, and generally better treatment. It’s absolutely worth it!
Flyertalk has a great post on Aegean status if you want to learn more.