Wednesday, October 2, 2013

BERLIN is Fresh

A city with a past, a present and bright future...

Oddly I came to this city 3 times this year during various months although it felt like the same season, winter. There is cold winter( heavy coats, gloves, snow boots), fresh winter ( wool coats, shearling boots and sunglasses to pretend its spring ) and then what feels like San Diego winter, 50F. They consider it Fresh, I consider it Damn Freezing.
Keeping with the theme of past, present and future, the hotels are the same way.

  From the past, steeped in History and grandeur is the Adlon. Built in the early 1900s here is where all the statesmen came to rub shoulders, make pacts, and hold elegant Nazi parties. Now it's still where world dignitaries and Russians stay.

Then you have Hotel de Rome, which is what I would consider the present day Berlin. Still steeped in recent history with bullet shell casings still in the walls of their bedrooms and super fortress like bank vaults now used as the spa.

 Their restaurant focusing on haute germanic gastronomy and a roof top bar to enjoy the architecture of past, present and future.

 The new Das Stu hotel would be the future of Berlin hotel, making top of Forbes list this year. Finished earlier this year and located in the hip and young part of the city, Tiergarten.
 Here is where the music producers, start up gurus and model type women hang at the bar and try to be seen and be in the scene. Super sleek but very welcoming rooms with views of embassies and Berlin Zoo. Super chefs of Spain  and the best of the spa world. 
Nearby you have the uber chic CafĂ© Am Neuen See garden where the fashion of I just rolled out of bed wearing a 10K€ Rolex, a pinch of fur and ripped jeans drinking Gewurtzaminer .  Lets not forget the Soho House where getting in to Sunday Brunch is worth praying for. Bourgeois Berliners pay high membership fees to hang out with George Clooney and Britney Spears here. Besides that, eh.
Now lets talk about the city. We can never forget what happened as our past shapes us. Berlin has done an amazing job in turning what was the horrific wall into a modern day art gallery. You have the dictators walls to remind us that there is still work to be done, the East side gallery showing the past into present day interpretations and then very cool steel structures that's its hard think it was a wall. Architecturally you have old Rococo buildings, half bombed churches atop modern buildings. . Potsdamer Platz with big Sony headquarters, glass rail stations and a bar named Catwalk (think Milan). Apartment buildings are also quite interesting having a very Cold War plain looking building next to a fancy terrace that looks like it belongs in Trocadero. This city really is full of old and new side by side and it must be seen to really see how seamless it looks.
The future of Berlin is strong. With all this old and new archicture the are also cranes next to it all. Real Estate is booming, fashion and business growing showing a very promising future.  I know this will not be my last time in Berlin...