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Confused by the name? Well, 25Hours is a small chain of design-focused hotels, but they have two here in Hamburg, Germany. "HafenCity" is their harbor city location and it happens to be the only hotel within this very cool, very up-and-coming area that's also the largest rebuilding project in Europe.
According to some staff with whom we chatted during breakfast in the Heimat restaurant, Europeans (and especially Germans and Swiss) know the 25Hours brand very well; it's rare for them to see someone like us, Americans, choosing it over, say, any of the other large chain, international hotels located closer to the city centre.
Looks like we—along with the rest of the world—may have gotten a wee tad ahead of ourselves following IKEA's announcement last week that it will be launching a new chain of budget hotels across Europe.
Though we readily accepted the fact that the Swedish brand wouldn't have its name on the hotels, what wasn't immediately clear was that the hotels won't actually contain any IKEA furniture. Sad, but true.
In a statement to Reuters, here's what a senior exec at IKEA's parent company, Inter IKEA, had to say:
Though they've dabbled in the real estate business for a while now, internationally-known furniture megastore IKEA is getting ready to dive into the hotel business with a string of 100 "budget design" hotels across Europe—and the first one is scheduled to open in Germany.
The announcement came yesterday, about a week after the company's net worth was revealed to be a staggering €9 billion.
Clearly, they've got the dough to build whatever the heck kind of hotels they want to. But, in the interest of making even more money, the company has decided to focus on the trendy (and lucrative) budget hotel market. And though the hotels will not be branded or operated by the company, IKEA will build, develop and own them.
We assume, of course, that they'll also be supplying all the furniture.
Our love for the city of Hamburg, Germany is new and yet oh so exciting. We only fell head over heel for the maritime metropolis a couple months ago, and it was the HafenCity that tipped the scales from "liking" to "loving."
Luckily this most-nautical-of-all districts has a hotel: the 25Hours Hotel HafenCity. It belongs to a small chain of four properties under the 25Hours brand: Frankfurt, Vienna, Zurich and here in Hamburg. This chain just posted a particularly impressive Hamburg view on their Facebook page, and we can absolutely confirm that this is the typical view from the rooms at the HafenCity Hamburg hotel...although they've got the added special visitor of Cunard's Queen Mary 2 in at dock.
And luckily the hotel understands that some of their guests have chosen this location for its prime ship-spotting address. Inside the rooms at the 25Hours Hamburg, there's a handy-dandy pamphlet with a schedule of ship arrivals and departures, with a special focus on the main cruise liners.
There's travel talk everywhere about how expensive it'll be to fly and drive this summer, so there has to be some savings somewhere, yes? The most obvious place will be in hotel rates, and so our gift to you this week will be one hotel a day that comes in under $100 a night. Now, we're not saying every place will be of Ritz quality, because then it would be...well, the bloody Ritz. But the places will be nice enough for you to sleep at night.
Our Pick: Hotel Pension-Funk, Berlin
Hotel Club Lounges / Hilton Hotels / Airport Hotels / Frankfurt Hotels / Hilton HHonors / Germany Hotels / → All Tags
Over on Jaunted, you can get our inside looks at some of the world’s best airline lounges, so we thought we’d do something similar here and start talking about some of the hotel lounges we’ve frequented lately for our series on Hotel Club Lounges. Today, we're having a look inside the Executive Lounge at the very new Hilton within The Squaire complex at Frankfurt International Airport.
When you're an executive lounge at an airport hotel, it's probably a good idea to mirror the upscale airline lounges found next door, right? Right. So when the Hilton Frankfurt Airport finally opened last December, they kept that jet set appeal all the way up through the executive lounge.
We popped into the lounge only a few days ago, thanks to one of our buddies at Australian Business Traveller and his Hilton status. Upstairs in the shiny, zeppelin-like SQUAIRE complex, the Hilton's lounge overlooks the atrium lobby andif you're luckythe glass roof will give you brief glimpses of airplanes taking off right overhead.
Hotel Art / Hotel Wallpaper / 25hours Hotels / Hamburg Hotels / Germany Hotels / Design Hotels / Hotel Design / → All Tags
Is the WiFi free? Does the gym have good machines? All these things get noticed when checking into a hotel, but what about the atmosphere of the placespecifically the art on the walls or on the floor? We're highlighting properties around the world that do their artwork right, and the specific pieces you should stare long and hard at when next you drop by.
Today: The 25hours Hamburg Hafencity's's in-room wallpaper.
The 25hours didn't win Travel + Leisure's 2012 hotel design awards for nothing. The place is an homage to the seafaring history (and the current hip culture that adores it) of Hamburg, Germany. Every little detail is considered, and twisted to conform to the hotel's theme, that of a international maritime trading post. At breakfast, your chair may actually be a pile of rugs. Need a meeting room? It's inside a repurposed Hapag-Lloyd shipping container.
Travel to Germany is all the rage right now, so it’s no surprise new hotels are popping up left and right. One of the latest is the Swissôtel Dresden, which opened last month in the center of Old Town.
Many properties in the Swissôtel brand look like they’re straight out of Business Traveler’s Digest (if there were such a thing) with their staid décor, but this one’s got personality. Check the Alice-in-Wonderland-like gigantic lamp doubling as a sitting area and the oversized jewel-toned chairs.
Hotel restaurants can be hit or miss with the cuisine, but the Swissôtel’s breakfast buffet is tops because there’s cake! Namely, Dresden’s traditional Eierschecke, a custardy-cheesecakey loveliness that jumpstarts the day.
Rather than drummers drumming, pipers piping, and golden rings, a group of Chinese visitors to Cologne, Germany had a more unseemly batch of presents for their hotel: police confiscated "100 snakes, 70 tortoises and 20 neon-colored frogs" from the three tourists, reports English-language news source The Local. And, no, a partridge in a pear tree was not included in their arc of travel companions.
Hotel Bathrooms / Hotel Design / Design Thursdays / Frankfurt Hotels / Odd Hotels / Germany Hotels / → All Tags
This week, Con Nast Traveler took a minute to examine some of the world's most unique and gorgeous hotel bathrooms. Ever. Sure, a few classics made it onto the list—like the Mandarin Oriental New York and the Hyatt on the Bund—but the above photo caught our eye. It's of the public mens bathroom inside the Goldman 25hours in Frankfurt, Germany. We wonder what gets used to clean these things: a toilet swab, or a toothbrush?
Look familiar? Yep. The concrete tube hotel phenomenon strikes yet again, this time in Germany and Austria.
Though there are lots of small details that are making us fall deeply in love with this "hotel" and its amenities, we feel this tagline on the website sums things up pretty well:
"dasparkhotel would like to offer a temporary comfortable uncomplicated home for a certain time."
Gee, thanks, dasparkhotel. Read on below to see inside one of the pimped-out drain pipes!
Women-Friendly Hotels / Hotel Amenities / Germany Hotels / Zurich Hotels / Hyatt Hotels / → All Tags
For beauty-products-loving ladies, the FAA's 3-1-1 rule puts a serious crimp in their style. Not to mention that gadgets like hair dryers and straighteners take up a lot of precious luggage real estate. To help these style-seeking women out, German Hyatt hotels and the Park Hyatt Zurich are offering Hyatt for Her, a new in-room beauty service.
As part of Hyatt for Her, hotels offer a hair menu as well as a manicure-pedicure and blow-dry room service so you don't have to lug products and equipment with you when you travel but still get smashing results.