Waldorf Astoria Berlin

NYC flair meets Berlin cosmopolitan chic
VERIFIED LUXURY
West Berlin has been on the up and up in the last couple of years, gradually shifting back into the city’s media spotlight after languishing behind the hipper East for several decades.

This upswing is largely due to the major redevelopment of the Bahnhof Zoo area, whose pre-Wall legacy of bleak architecture and urban squalor has, somewhat unfairly, lived on. Huge investments have meant that the area nowadays possesses a cluster of bold and impressive new buildings ranging from Bikini Berlin — a shopping center filled with high-end boutiques and cafés — to several gleaming new hotels.

Chief among the latter is Waldorf Astoria Berlin, a $557 million project completed in 2012 whose distinctive 390-foot-high tower — nicknamed Zoofenster (“zoo window”) — has come to at least partly define the new West Berlin. The interior’s stylish flair, presaged by its architectural prowess, extends to a top-notch dining experience, a striking Guerlain Spa and attentive service.
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Our Inspector's Highlights
• Designed by German architect Professor Christoph Mäckler, the chic hotel makes constant reference to its famed New York counterpart, which dates back to the late 19th century; the large gilded bronze gate in the lobby, for example, nods to the Art Deco ironwork that marks the New York hotel’s façade.

• One especially fun design element that gives you an idea of the clientle: In the foyer, a wall of white stone and gilded glass squares serves as a guest book for celebrities like Charlize Theron and Dustin Hoffman, who autographed the panels.

• Named after Berlin-born director Fritz Lang, Lang Bar recalls a 1950s New York lounge. We soak up the elegant throwback feel when sitting in a curved periwinkle banquettes with a Manhattan.

• Right across the street from S-Bahnhof Zoologischer Garten, the Waldorf Astoria is close to West Berlin’s landmarks. Zoo Berlin, one of the largest in Europe, is across the road, as is the historic Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church, whose missing spire, destroyed during World War II, pays poignant tribute to the suffering of such conflicts.

• The only Guerlain Spa in Germany, this fifth-floor sanctuary covers almost 11,000 square feet. There’s a Vichy shower for body services, a foot bath lounge that’s used before every treatment, as well as sauna and steam rooms.
Things to Know
• While the restaurants and bars are all open to the public, the 15th-floor Library Lounge is a private space exclusively for guests. It offers its own business center and a setting for high tea.
The Rooms
• The spacious and comfortable rooms exude a combination of classic Art Deco decor and slick modern gadgetry.

• Grounded by swirl-patterned carpets and high-end wooden furnishings, all rooms feature floor-to-ceiling windows with external black-out blinds, large bedrooms with signature Waldorf beds and pillow menus.

• The striking white marble bathrooms that have separate showers and toilets, deep tubs, heated floors, TVs embedded in mirrors and an all-star cast of Salvatore Ferragamo products.

• In-room coffee machines keep you sufficiently caffeinated while the Apple TV system and large 40-inch television sets keep you entertained. Views span the surrounding area, including the bustling Zoo station, the leafy Tiergarten and the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church.

• The top floors are naturally given over to the suites, with the 31st-floor Presidential Suite offering the best panoramas (as well as a grand piano) and the slightly lower Tower Suites featuring their own separate entrance and elevator.
The Restaurants
• At the NYC-themed Lang Bar, pull up a retro bar stool or sit in a plush Pullman-style booth and enjoy live jazz and expertly crafted cocktails.

• In the summer, the action of the Lang Bar moves up to the sixth-floor roof terrace, whose white deck furniture and resident DJ create a decidedly hip ambiance.

• On the ground floor, the smart Roca serves Mediterranean food for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

• Sit in the plush purple chairs in the art deco Peacock Alley for afternoon tea or an evening cocktail.

• The hotel’s 15th-floor Library Bar provides a small menu and a selection of art, fashion and architecture books that are as impressive as the views.
Getting There
Hardenbergstrasse 28, Berlin, BE 10623, Germany
TEL49-30-814000-0
NEARBY AIRPORT(S)
TXL (12-18 min)