Berlin has its party reputation, but it’s also a multilayered, complex city. Its weather leaves lots to be desired, memories of war still permeate the landscape, the architecture is not always the most beautiful the world has to offer and germanic tones can be hard on the ear… But there is a silver lining: the chic and hip Das Stue, a five-star hotel near the Tiergarten Zoo in the diplomatic quarter.
Das Stue, whose name means “living room” in Danish, is a pearl. It opened in 2012 featuring the excellent workmanship of interior decorator Patricia Urquiola mixing classic and contemporary with a nod to history in this building that once housed the Danish embassy in the 1940s.
The high ceilings and elaborate chandeliers are impressive. Two staircases lead to room floors, so guests can bypass the lobby and reception altogether. You feel at home almost immediately. That said, the crocodile head might give you a jolt when you first walk through the hallway, where it reigns supreme.
Just past the reception, there is a welcoming bar-lounge area with an animal theme. A small patio is open in nice weather — in other words, rarely.
La girafe et les gorilles de l’artiste Milanaise Benedetta Mori se fondent dans les recoins du lounge.
There are two restaurants at the hotel under the direction of Spanish chef Paco Pérez, who cut his teeth at El Bulli. Here, Casual is open all day — for breakfast, lunch or diner. It’s a relaxed, light-filled atmosphere.
The second restaurant, Cinco, is the hotel’s gourmet restaurant, a meeting spot of Berlin’s hip crowd. Awarded a Michelin star, it dishes up a refined molecular gastronomy menu with Mediterranean flavors. Fancy Oli recommends the 25-plate menu. Delish!
The Tom Dixon copper lamps hung over the main dining table are paired with cookware. Quick, rush to post this on Instagram. It’s now or never.
Under the stairs on the ground floor and the floor above, cozy relaxation spaces welcome you with chairs, armchairs, sofas and leather footstools shaped like rhinoceros or hippopotamus from British leather experts Omersa. It’s the perfect spot to catch up on your reading or wait on latecomers before heading out.
The hotel’s 79 rooms and suites have a view on the city zoo. They are rather large and elegantly decorated with Arne Jacobsen furniture. And here’s a fancy detail: every room comes equipped with an iMac.
The spa is up to snuff for this hotel, what with the large swimming pool, Turkish baths, top-of-the-line care and massage. It’s a perfect place to retreat on a rainy day. You can access the pool from the first floor, so no need to parade in your bathrobe in the hotel lobby.
Das Stue gives you peace of mind in an elegant setting. The prices are rather affordable for a five-star hotel, and you certainly won’t be disappointed by the quality. Here’s a little tip from Fancy Oli: cab drivers have a hard time locating Das Stue, so opt for a private hire driver. Bis Bald !