i’ve just arrived from hamburg where i spent a week in the very cool 25h hafencity hotel. located in the up and coming harbour area, it was close to the elbphilarmonie (which, disappointingly, is still not complete yet), to the city center (where i took my daily evening walk) and close to the markthalle, the venue for the deus concert, one of the reasons i was in hamburg at the time.

as my recent new job requested that i work remote a full week, i barely had any time left for visiting, but, as it was my third time in hamburg, i managed to score the essentials: the feldstrasse flohmarkt, the altona design fair, the many christmas fairs, the best of shopping and dining.  but, overall, i spent my week hotel-bound.

fortunately, it was not at all as terrible as it may sound: the hotel had a maritime theme which seeped into the tiniest of details with a great sense of humour and the atmosphere was friendly and relaxed. on the ground floor, there was the reception area and the heimat kuche+bar and the mezzanine (aka the club floor) held the business center, the mac station, the vinyl room and the tea lounge, where guests could hang out with complementary hot samova tea. the public area was full at all times, day or night, and watching the many interesting characters present was sufficient entertainment in itself.

tea lounge

one night, there was a reading club in the vinyl room. the participants were having a noisy good time, enjoying both the text as well as the sponsoring vodka. another evening, there was this guy doing unexpectedly different covers of 90s hits. and so on, you get the picture.

i ate at the heimat kuche+bar several times and enjoyed the short, locavore menu, the young, relaxed staff and the super interesting co-diners: 25h ceo, christoph hoffmann, in his signature look, many people who looked like they’ve always had a creative career and, certainly not least, a very subtly elegant 50+ lady, whose picture i failed to get, but who would have made a supreme argument for ageless, modern style: beside having a comfortable, awesome look, her minimal outfit was completed by her local cheese and fig mustard plate dinner and by her multitasking on her ipad.

i was happy to find out that the hotel did not discriminate against our four-legged friends, be it the temperamental but curious shiba dog or the heart melting smilla, the friendly little thing who was happy to pose for me in exchange for more playing.

smilla, the mascot

the access to the rooms was via the elevator which only worked after being activated with the room key/card. all guests had 24/7 wi-fi internet which, i believe, should be a basic feature in all hotels.

the lobby also hosted a pop-up two wheels good store and a corner for selling 25h merchandise along with cool art albums and hamburg tourist stuff. one of the most intriguing features of the lobby is the insertion of a real-life, full-size industrial container transformed into a “room” that can be rented for special events: one long wooden table with the ubiquitous here in hamburg eames plastic chairs and a big lcd screen. the side of the container can be lowered so that the party is private. one evening, there was a group having a work meeting and, some other time, a party having dinner while watching a football match.

the lobby


this is an unpretentious, flexible hotel, up to date with the current trend of people wanting less intimacy and staff and more of a cool scene and the possibility of doing things yourself, if needed.

there was no gym, just a  top floor sauna with a good view of the harbour and a daily morning jogging bar offering water bottles, towels, etc for the running inclined.

i enjoyed my stay at the 25h hafencity hotel and i fully recommended it if you’re in town!

photo credits: 25h and lilaesthete