My Berlin guide city. Berlin is considered one of the world’s great cultural capital filled up by energy, creativity and cosmopolitan feelings. I have been there for my first time at the beginning of February and I think is a city with a lot of potentialities as well as controversial and unsolved aspects, especially in architecture and city planning. Berlin is a city full of opening galleries, studios and shops in underused urban spaces.
WHAT TO DO IN BERLIN
Scheunenviertel. Next to Alexanderplatz, the district is full of independent boutiques, art galleries and nice locals. In this area you will find furniture and clothes by local designers, the nice Hackescher Markt and a MUJI Store.
Jewish Museum. It was one of my highlights and on my check list since I was architectural student. The additional building made by American architect Daniel Libeskind zigzags with its titanium-zinc façade and features underground axes, angled walls, and bare concrete “voids” without heat or air-conditioning. With his “Between the Lines” design, the architect did not want simply to design a museum building but to recount German-Jewish history.
The atmosphere is intense and architect’s aims are successful. It definitely deserves a visit! Official website
Checkpoint Charlie on Friedrichstrasse (full of tourists) and the Berlin Wall Memorial alone the southern side of Bernauer Strasse.
Reichstag. The new Parliament moved into Foster+Partners’ renovated building. The spiral stairs of glass dome enchant visitors. Admission and audio guides are free but an advance registration is required.
Brandeburg Gate and Holocaust Memorial. Five minutes walking distance from Postdamer Platz or the Reichstag, they are two uncontested symbols in Berlin.
Postdamer Platz. As many parts of the city, it is mostly a passage area. However its skyline is pretty interesting in my opinion.
KaDewe e Galeria Kaufhof if you are a makeup addicted in those shopping malls you will find Sephora and Charlotte Tilbury’s makeup line. I bought a couple of products that I love. I had to buy something, you know! 😉
WHERE TO EAT IN BERLIN
Chupenga Burritos & Salads. I loved this place: cool setting and well designed ambiente, friendly staff and delicious burritos for a reasonable price. Discovered not so far from the Jewish Museum and the Checkpoint Charlie.
Acht&dreissig We chose this restaurant for a small dinner after a strolling in a cold late afternoon. The atmosphere was lovely and the staff very friendly and polite. The beef Tartar was delicious, fresh and well prepared. We drank a couple of wine glasses, which was pretty good and with a right price!
Shiso Burger. Burgers are homemade and tasty. The place is small but cosy. If you are in the Scheunenviertel it deserves a visit. Most probably you have to wait a little bit for a table.
WHERE TO STAY IN BERLIN
In the vibrant Bikini Berlin context, perfectly connected with the city center and next to the Zoo, there is the 25hours Hotel Bikini, crafted by the Berliner designer Aisslinger; more than a name, a guarantee!
Rooms have raw surfaces and drawings on walls, trendy design furniture and cozy beds. We stayed in a wonderful Jungles M room with beautiful view to the zoo. A must for all trendsetters!
Highlights: on the upper floors the Sauna with view all over the Zoo and the NENI Restaurant.
Not so far from Berlin, reachable in 2,5 hours by train, in Dessau there is the Bauhaus Foundation, Mecca for Architecture & design fans! Of course, I could not have been there! They have also a lovely design store where I bought a nice design-porn T-shirt, as memory.
Photography: Valentina Burigo