STAY in Hamburg:
This hotel has history. It was once the most famous bordello in northern Germany, despite fierce competition in the harbour city. Attentive onlookers will immediately recognise from the baroque furnishings what once went on here, with flock wallpaper, baldachins and mirrors giving its past away. Today it is an extraordinary hotel with an extravagant design. The Parisian charm of the Village Hotel appeals to artists and musicians alike. A relic of the past: free coffee day and night. Double room from EUR 85.
Located in Schanzenviertel and just a stone's throw from Karo-Viertel is Fritzhotel and its 17 sought-after rooms. They may not be the most spectacularly furnished dwellings, yet you'll be exactly where the city thrives. Just around the corner you'll find bars, pubs, restaurants and shops. A multi-cultural scene, hospitality and the city centre on your doorstep - what more could you want? Double room from 90 Euros.
Simply put Kempinski is one of the best addresses in the world, which is treasured by regular guests as well as the stars. Here both are equally discreetly catered for. A subtle sense of glitz and glamour drifts through the hotel, the rooms are elegant and stylishly furnished. Some even offer a heavenly view of the Outer Alster. Guests at Kempinski must find the time to take a seat in the foyer - watching what goes on there is often better than television. Double room from EUR 171.
SHOPPING in Hamburg:
Deluxe delicatessen: Butter Lindner is a haven for any gastronome and amateur cook. Here simply everything tastes good. Hamburg's in-crowd head to Butter Lindner to pick up their essentials. From bread and pastries to sausage, sweets, vegetables and spices, here you can find everything you need for your favourite recipe, or just a delightful snack. And the quality is so good that even star chef Tim Mälzer regularly drops by to stock up. The highlight, after which the shop was named: butter directly from the block. Salted or not, sliced to measure.
If you are looking for just the right pen, Trixi Gronau has the answers. Even if you're not looking, you're still likely to leave with something. Pens and pencils, wrapping paper, timers, jewellery and candles - a colourful mix of items that is sure to surprise any customer expecting to find mere copier paper. The shop is a delight for those who like to poke around and pick out a little something for themselves or others. The fact that many of the items available are actually made by Trixi Gronau herself is an extra treat.
Need advice? Kathrin Bruss has such a good eye for designer fashion that even the stars allow her to dress them. The Pet Shop Boys, Sheryl Crow, Thomas Gottschalk and Herbert Grönemeyer are just a handful of fashion-conscious stars, who have been convinced by Bruss' sense of style. The truly big names, however, are to be found on the labels: Dries Van Noten, Ann Demeulenmester, Neil Barret, Chloé and many more are regulars at Petra Teufel. Clothing for people with taste and individual style.
SIGHTS in Hamburg:
The weekend is here, the night is young, what better place to start than Große Freiheit - the street that will take you on an adventure, where an endless sea of clubs and bars await revellers and tourists alike. But what awaits them in the early hours of the morning? Complete freedom. In the ?Kiez' there's absolutely everything: strip clubs, techno clubs, sausage stands, student pubs, sex shops, an operetta house, wax stars and real girls to suit every taste. Legendary status has been achieved by the table dancing bar Dollhouse and the Safari Club, which is now Hamburg's last remaining club with a live stage show. Note: the notorious Herbertstraße is only open to men. Respect this rule to avoid trouble.
Alster round trip
A fun journey down the Alster on a mini steamboat will show you a unique view of Hamburg. All aboard as you float along the river through the green metropolis, under the city's countless bridges, past the church spires, Jugendstil villas and parks. If you ask us, a trip on the Alster is compulsory. Where you voyage is entirely up to you. An Alster Cruise is the flexible variant. This starts at Jungfernstieg and concludes at Winterhuder Fährhaus, offering more opportunities to hop on and off along the way. The Fleet trip is a hit with the tourists - it begins on the Inner Alster and makes its way through the old warehouse district. The canal trip offers passengers plenty of greenery, while the Dämmertörn is the perfect way to start a romantic evening. Drinks and sausages are available on board. Mmmmm!
Kunsthalle is home to a first-class collection, which covers no fewer than seven centuries. Here each of the big art families has its own room or house: the old masters are also represented, as are the authorities from the 19th century and the modern classics. The media collection, which includes audio and video works, deserves a special mention. Among others it features work by Günter Brus, Dennis Oppenheim, Valie Export and Gordon Matta-Clark. The Gallery of Contemporary Art - a four-storey, white cube - is dedicated to art from 1960 onwards boasting many interesting pieces.
EAT in Hamburg:
The Curry Pirates love the product they sell - their homemade sausages are served simply with fresh sauces and French fries. Every week sees the unveiling of a new sausage creation, which sometimes requires a touch of daring from the uninitiated. That said, the classics are adventurous in their own right: the standard Bratwurst is filled with diced apple or dried apricots, the lamb Bratwurst comes with a yoghurt-mint sauce and the truffle Bratwurst is served on beans. Only Germany's most expensive Bratwurst need be ordered in advance - only then will the sausage masterpiece made from truffle and veal be exclusively prepared for your plate.
Das Seepferdchen is the high-end interpretation of a rustic harbour shack. The restaurant features a modern design which utilises traditional materials. The lobster tank bar and boat lounge provide the perfect venue for maritime merriment. The restaurant, which is located directly in the harbour, is one of the most beautiful locations in the whole of Hamburg. Whether you are a fan of octopus, scallops, Calamaretti, coalfish, gilthead seabream or turbot, you'll find your favourite seafood here. A wonderful ambience combined with top-draw cuisine come at a price. Yet an evening at Seepferdchen is worth every penny. Our recommendation: the Seepferdchen Platte for two.
Whether you fear for your figure when presented with such a tempting offer is your business. But in terms of maintaining a good conscience, you're in the right place. No flavouring agents, but instead cocoa beans, vanilla pods and lemon juice. No granulated sugar, but instead agave nectar. If that doesn't convince you then ask yourself why the line in front of the petite ice cream parlour is so unbelievably long. We reckon that it's down to Hilmar's reputation of making the city's best ice cream. Or maybe having the biggest selection: every day there are 20 different flavours to choose from, including some quite bizarre creations such as thyme and honey and sea buckthorn. Of course, there's chocolate too!