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TRAVEL: Das Stue Combines History & Luxury in Berlin

How often do you step foot into a hotel to be greeted by a life-sized bronzed crocodile? At Das Stue, Berlin’s first luxury boutique hotel, this is just one of the many delights that await you.

Once I stepped foot out of my taxi, I was met by a grand entrance complete with two sweeping marble staircases as well as a door man who graciously offered to take my bags. As the former Royal Danish embassy, Das Stue offers a relaxing stay within their walls of modern design and neo-classical architecture. Let’s just say, the second you walk into Das Stue, there is a feeling of grandeur.

Das Stue

Location
Situated in the city’s embassy district, Das Stue is just a ten minute drive from Mitte, Berlin’s city centre, where many of the sights and museums are located. Most buildings near Das Stue precede World War II. With the help of refurbishments, you can still see the history within the architecture of this peaceful neighbourhood.

Das Stue also offers a breath of fresh air – literally. Just next door is the city’s Tiergarten Park and Berlin’s Zoological Garden, which features more animal species than any other zoo in Europe. In fact if you’re lucky, some of the rooms on the upper floors have an expansive view of the grounds, which means you can spy on the ostriches and antelopes from the comfort of your room.

Das Stue TiergartenDas Stue Room Park

Accommodations
Within Das Stue, there are 79 guest rooms and suites, ranging in size from 27 to 110 square meters. All rooms are equipped with large windows and some are complete with floor to ceiling windows, balconies or terraces. Aside from the natural sunlight, the rooms are also furnished with a rain shower (some have oversize bathtubs), Wifi and a full HD entertainment system by Apple, incorporating both internet access and a flat-screen TV.

Das Stue Room

Our room was located in the old part of the building, which meant sizeable windows and very high ceilings (well over 4 meters high). The room was quite spacious and offered modern decor, which was clean, relaxed and comfortable.

Across from our room was the library. As I attempted to fight my jet lag, I failed miserably and found myself awake at 3am. I sauntered across the hall and wandered through the library in the historical front part of the building. The neo-classical architecture in this section is complemented with an expansive landing, original parquet floors, French doors, restored hardware and comfortable seating arrangements. The perfect spot to lose yourself in a wide selection of Taschen books.

Das Stue StairwellDas Stue Library

Lounges, Bars and Dining
With two separate restaurants as well as a lounge, bar and private dining space, Das Stue is bound to satisfy your taste buds.

For those who prefer something more avant-garde, Cinco, the Michelin starred restaurant by Spanish chef Paco Pérez, is truly a gastronomic experience. In an intimate room embellished with an overhead explosion of copper pots and pans paired with copper lamps, you can tempt your senses with oyster and caviar tartar or fully amuse your palette with a tasting menu reaching up to 22 courses.

Das Stue CinchIf you prefer comfort food like Spanish tapas, step across the hall to The Casual, where natural light streams into a triangular space from skylights above. Here you can indulge in Pérez’s take on Octopus, Salmon Tataki or Thai Salad.

Das Stue The Casual

Sometimes you just fancy a drink. Das Stue offers a bar, lounge and outdoor terrace. Throughout this area, you can spot beautiful artworks including a large giraffe made of painted chicken net as well as stunning black-and-white vintage fashion photography and portraiture. The drinks will take you back in time to the 20’s, and spirits include unusual whiskies and cognacs not otherwise available in the German capital. For those who prefer vino, you can choose up to 400 German and Spanish wines – the options are pretty close to endless.

Das Stue BarDas Stue Bar

Added Extras
If the library isn’t enough to relax your mind, the spa might do the trick. Right off the lobby is a discreet hallway, leading to a lap pool and sauna, as well as three private treatment rooms offering Susanne Kaufmann products and treatments. You can go for a swim and then treat your muscles to a massage or your skin to a facial. If this doesn’t combat the jet lag, I’m not sure what will.

Das Stue PoolDas Stue Spa

Das Stue truly is luxury at its finest. Their name is derived from Danish meaning living room, and Das Stue creates a comfortable and relaxing experience without any pretension. That’s reason enough to stay at this upscale hotel, but it’s just one facet of an unforgettable experience in Berlin.

Details
Prices start from $290/night for a room and $410/night for a suite.

Das Stue Hotel Berlin Tiergarten
Drakestraße 1, 10787
Berlin, Germany
+49 30 311 722-0
das-stue.com

– Chenessa Lam

Disclaimer: Our media visit was hosted by the hotel, however
the opinions expressed in this post remain our own.


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TRAVEL: Comfort and Contemporary Design at Misafir Suites 8 Boutique Hotel in Istanbul

Situated in the heart of Istanbul on a small backstreet is Misafir Suites 8. This luxury boutique hotel features contemporary décor within a 19th-century building, right in the heart of Beyoğlu. If you’re planning on visiting Istanbul, this is the perfect spot to set up base.

Misafir 8 Suites Boutique Hotel, Exterior
Misafir 8 Suites

Location
A short walk from Taksim Square and just one block from Istiklal Caddesi, one of Istanbul’s busiest pedestrian streets, Misafir Suites 8 is surrounded by small bars showcasing local acoustic artists and quaint coffee shops where locals come to drink Turkish coffee (which is stronger than an Italian double espresso) over a game of backgammon. The street itself is a picturesque cobbled road with vines between the historic buildings – you would struggle to believe you are only a block away from the main shopping street. Within walking distance are the highlights of the area, including the Galata tower, offering spectacular views of Istanbul, a river cruise of the Bosphorus river (suggested by the helpful staff), and a nostalgic tram ride to the main square.

Istanbul Istiklal Caddesi

Accommodations
Upon our arrival to Misafir Suites 8, we were greeted by the friendly reception member who checked us in and showed us to our room. With recent renovations, the hotel has expanded from 7 suites to a total of 21 rooms. We stayed in the Junior Suite, it was spacious and embellished with minimalist furniture design and complementing textiles. The suite was outfitted with in-room amenities such as a fully-stocked minibar, a flat screen TV and a jacuzzi bathtub. The king size bed is fitted with quality linens and the living space is comfortable and offers helpful guide books about Istanbul. Armed with free Wi-Fi, we were left with the promise that if we had any questions to call down or ask at the reception desk.

In the lobby, the reception staff are happy to offer local knowledge about the area ranging from restaurants to eat and the best street food vendors, along with travel/transportation advice, to the ‘must see’ things to do while in Istanbul.

Misafir 8 Suites Boutique Hotel, LobbyMisafir 8 Suites Boutique Hotel, Junior SuiteMisafir 8 Suites Boutique Hotel, Bathroom

Lounges, Bars and Dining
Sekiz, the Misafir Suites 8 bar and restaurant is situated on the hotel’s ground floor. It offers an inviting atmosphere with a good selection of drinks from around the globe, and an impressive Scottish single malt whiskey selection that could rival bars in Edinburgh. From breakfast to dinner, guests can indulge in a multitude of flavours at Sekiz. This is also where the complimentary breakfast is served, which offers traditional Turkish pastries, toast, tomatoes, cucumbers, eggs, fresh fruit and pancakes, along with coffee/tea and our favourite drink during our trip of freshly squeezed orange juice.

Misafir 8 Suites Boutique Hotel, Restaurant

A variety of different rooms are available, however I highly recommend one of the suites as a base for your city break. It’s well worth it! With design and comfort in mind, Misafir 8 Suites is the perfect sanctuary within the bustling streets of Istanbul.

Details
Prices from $220/night
Kuloğlu Mah. Erol Dernek Sok. No:1, 34433 Beyoğlu Istanbul, Turkey
+90 (212) 249 89 30
8istanbulsuites.com

– Pete Healey

Disclaimer: Our media visit was hosted by the hotel, however
the opinions expressed in this post remain our own.

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