After Cyprus, a member of the 18-country euro zone, admitted that it could no longer afford to prop up its shaky banking sector, international lenders stepped, offering 10 billion euro ($14 billion) in assistance.
But by far the biggest slice of the country's 23 billion euro bailout had to come from Cyprus itself. After chaotic negotiations with euro zone finance ministers, the European Central Bank and the International Monetary Fund, a so-called 13 billion euro "bail-in" was agreed. It proved to be controversial, with shareholders and bondholders bearing some costs of restructuring, including a levy on uninsured bank deposits over 100,000 euros ($136,000).
(Read more: Russians return to Cyprus, a favorite tax haven)
Authorities also imposed restrictions on bank transactions in an effort to avoid savers in the country's banks immediately withdrawing their money - the last of which will be removed this spring.
"If you take a longer-term view and a Europe-wide view, I think that it was a disastrous thing for them to do because they undermined confidence in entire euro zone structure," Christopher Pissarides, a Noble Prize winning economist and chairman of the Council of National Economy of Cyprus, told CNBC.
One year on, and Cyprus is not entirely avoiding the headlines.
Central Bank Governor Panicos Demetriades resigned earlier this week after a tumultuous year, and last Tuesday the island's parliament approved a bill to privatize number of state-owned companies – one of the conditions of the aid package – just days after it had rejected an earlier version.
(Read more: Cyprus central bank governor resigns)
Cyprus moves on
But despite some news from theisland, there are certainly less cameras on the streets of Nicosia: last March the Cypriot capital was flooded with journalists.
As news of the bank controls emerged, savers rushed to the country's banks to try and get to their savings. International concern increased that the country could fall victim to social unrest.
"They were waiting to see the riots and strikes in other bailout countries, and it never happened," said Parker Williams, a Brit who lives in Cyprus and writes about the country for expat website CyprusExpat.co.uk.
Economist Pissarides agreed. "There has been nothing as serious as we have seen in Greece. We are much closer to Ireland than we are to Greece in how we are dealing with the troika (of international debt inspectors)," he said.
Preliminary data released Tuesday showed Cyprus remained in recession in the fourth quarter of 2013, but the rate of contraction slowed. Cyprus' economy shrunk by 0.8 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013, slightly up from the 0.9 percent drop in the third quarter.
According to Eurostat data, unemployment in Cyprus was at 16.8 percent in January, while youth unemployment reached 40.3 percent.
(Read more: Economy more resilient than expected: Cyprus Minister)