2 DAYS IN HAMBURG: "GERMANY'S GATEWAY TO THE NEW WORLD"
This weekend I took a trip to Hamburg with Berlin Food Stylist, @Beckybiel to explore one of Europe's biggest harbor cities. We were immediately enamored with the fascinating architecture of old and new blended together flawlessly. Situated right on the Elbe Riber, Hamburg is home to 1.7 million people and is the second largest city in Germany. The city got it's name "Gateway to the New World" because for over 800 years products have been passing through its harbor. We teamed up with the Hamburg Tourism board to explore the lovely city. One of our favorite areas that we couldn't get enough of was the Speicherstadt Region- the world's largest warehouse complex and was also recently named a UNESCO World Heritage site. The red bricked buildings line canals and are gorgeous in the evening at dusk when the warm lights start to turn on within. 13,000 ships call at Speicherstadt, making it the 2nd largest port in Europe.
Hafencity (where the incredible new Elbphilarmonie building resides right on the water) is home to some of the most ambitious architecture influenced by modern and nautical themes that blend perfectly together right on the water. Although not one building is similar to the next, they all somehow flow in sync with one another. The aesthetic tranquility here is captivating the way they incorporated the old architecture with daring modern designs. The Old Elbe Tunnel was the first river tunnel on the continent and is really interesting to check out- lots of films were shot down there. Nowadays you can walk through it and at the end of the walk there is a panoramic view at the end of the harbor.
Landungsbrucken, also know as, "The Last Departure to the New World" is one of Hamburgs most iconic landmarks. You can walk along the harbor and then climb the stairs situated next to the train station for great views. The walk is dotted with places to grab some ice cream and fresh fish sandwiches right next to the water. You'll quickly get a true sense of what marine life feels like. Unfortunately, we didn't make it to the Reeperbahn area although almost everyone recommended it. It's Germany's biggest "red light district" and is lined with trendy clubs and bars.
We stayed at one of our favorite German hotel lines- 25 HOURS HOTEL HAFENCITY. The experimental hotel gives you the feeling you're on a cruise ship while walking down the hallways and entering your "cabin." The decor is modern and fresh with a harbor-like and nautical flare. The hallways have giant black and white imagery of harbor workers from back in the day giving you a taste of what the culture felt like. Like other 25 Hours Hotels, it offered plenty of spacious and comfy lounge areas for us to work on our computers. Lots of attention was paid to every tiny detail- from the light up globe in our room to the text on the soap in the shower reading "Turn the water off when you use me!" The location was a dream- right in the center of Hafencity and a short walk to the legendary new Elbphilamonie. We were scrambling for our phones with the Shazam app constantly- as the playlist created for the hotel was incredible. One of my favorite parts of the hotel was the Sauna where the lounge area is surrounded with glass sliding doors and views of the harbor and Hafencity. Since we didn't have the most ideal weather (what could one expect in winter near the North Sea...) we were lucky that our hotel rents out adorable yellow rain coats to borrow for a day of site seeing.
This adorable cafe is tucked away in a stunning neighborhood of Eimsbüttel filled with gorgeous houses and a flower shop on every corner. We enjoyed the most beautiful (and healthy) brunch here and literally wanted to order everything on the menu. If you like colorful food like me, I recommend taking your camera for this one. Also it's important to make reservations before because the cafe is adorably cozy and you're going to want to make sure you get a seat. The food was truly a work of art.
VINCENT VEGAN "#veganisnotatrent"
We heard about this place from the Hamburg Food Guide App and are so glad we went to check it out. It's always a challenge for me to eat healthy while I'm traveling so I love finding places I can feel good about eating, not to mention supporting awesome small local businesses. Everything was "sehr sehr lecker" as the German's would say- absolutely delicious! Try the Vegan Pizza if you go- you won't regret it.