Accomodation, Europe

Hotel Oderberger – Berlin

17. February 2018

As I was able to spare a little time off from our restaurant Mashery Hummus Kitchen in Cologne I felt the need to squeeze in a little city trip to try some new restaurants. And we all know that there is one city very reachable and with a wide range of innovative food places: Berlin. As my list of restaurants contained places in all parts of the city I wanted a hotel which is comfortable, out of the ordinary and very central. Quick research and I’ve found what I was searching for: Hotel Oderberger in the heart of so-called “Helmholtzkiez”. They took an old town pool which was built in 1898 and was shut down in 1986 and they rebuilt it as a hotel in 2012. It took them four years to turn the municipal building into an very modern and up to date hotel. Everywhere you’ll find pictures and many other artefacts which will remind you of the impressive history of the building and even the city. Sometimes, wandering around the halls made me feel like beeing in the middle of an art gallery and often it took me some extra minutes to wander around and take a look at the pictures.

But whats most important when booking a hotel? Location, right? And it’s just perfect: the train station is just two minutes away from the hotel and you are located basically in the middle of wide spread Berlin which allows you to get everywhere very easily. And whats almost as important as location? Breakfast!! Well, I loved the breakfast. For instance, the restaurant is so beautiful. Just take a look at the pictures and you’ll see what I’m talking about. But whats of course even more important is the food. There’s such a wide range of regional, vegetarian and even some vegan choices. ALSO, you can make your own fresh waffles. Enough said! I would love to stay there again one day.

If you’re interested, I’d like to mention some restaurants nearby with a wide range of vegetarian and vegan choices which I really enjoyed:

  1. Lecker Song: amazing little place selling homemade dumplings. Almost half of the menue is vegetarian/vegan. Favourite restaurant of the trip. Schliemannstr. 19, 10437 Berlin
  2. Häppies: cute small restaurant with just a choice of yeast dumplings. Very innovative, friendly staff and just YUM. Dunckerstraße 85, 10437 Berlin

 

Hotel Oderberger

Oderberger Str. 57

10435 Berlin

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Allgemein, Europe, Food, Travel

Gräflicher Park – Hotel Bad Driburg

19. November 2017

Do you know those times when you are just exhausted, tired, uninspired? Most likely when you’ve worked too much, didn’t get enough sleep and just haven’t had enough time for yourself in a while. It has been a time like that for me and my best friend. So we’ve made the only sane decision one could make in that situation: to get a break! Soon we found the Hotel Gräflicher Park quite close to our home town cologne. While browsing through the Website we couldn’t believe all the benefits this place has to offer:

  • Amazingly beautiful surrounding: the “Gräflicher Park”
  • Extensive spa area on 1.500 m² with a pool, saunas
  • Big variety of wellness and medical treatments
  • 2 restaurants and 1 cafe each with very good reputation
  • Included Ayurveda clinic
  • Modern and beautiful rooms

Especially the Ayurveda treatments and approach which even applies to the menu of the restaurant fascinated us. Decision made! A few weeks ago in October 2017 my friend, her baby and me spent two nights at the hotel. Spoiler alert: we LOVED it there. The whole property was built 230 years ago in the 17th century and is run by a family in 7th generation. When we arrived and got a first glimpse at the venue we wondered if this could really be the hotel we are about to stay in. It’s just amazingly beautiful. During our stay we had the pleasure to experience the Ayurveda pulse diagnosis, the Ayurveda three course menue including a chat with the chef, tried all of the restaurants and the spa area. I guess one could say that we really made the best of our stay. So where to start? I’d like to point out the two highlights. First, the pulse diagnosis which was examined by Vaidya Kumaran Rajsekhar has been astonishing. Both of us were surprised which detailed insights he received by simply taking our pulse and asking a few questions. At the end, you’ll get a detailed recommendation regarding the recommended diet and lifestyle. Secondly, to complete this experience we signed up for the three course Ayurveda menu which was prepared by head chef Thomas Blümel. What should I say? You simply HAVE to book this when you are there. I told my friend that this has probably been the best meal of my life and I still can’t believe how great it was. Also, it has been vegan and prepared according to ayurvedic principles. So basically, it has been full of amazing flavours, healthy and cruelty free. What a great combination. Also, talking with Thomas Blümel has been very interesting and gave us an insight on how many benefits this way of cooking has and also how the staff of Gräflicher Park is treated. The management obviously internalized how important it is to support the health of the bodies and minds of their employees. I personally find this very progressive and also it is something which you can really tell as everybody is just extremely friendly and positive. Well, what can I say: this weekend was just everything we did hope for and more.

 

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Accomodation, Europe, Food, Travel

Hotel Schwarzschmied – South Tyrol

27. August 2017

We’ve spent the other half of our vacation in southtyrol at Hotel Schwarzschmied which is located close to the beautiful city of Meran. It is surrounded by vineyards and the whole setting and design of the place is just extraordinary. The moment we entered our room I fell in love. The garden suite is one of the most beautiful rooms Schwarzschmied has to offer. The most amazing detail is the large bathtub with a view over the vineyards and church. Rarely I have felt so comforted and like home when entering a hotel room. I’ve been so tempted to spent there every minute of my stay and just the fact that everything else was so great as well. There is a great spa with three saunas, indoor and outdoor pool and best of it: there’s a yoga class everyday! Even my boyfriend tried it once and liked it. The Yoga teacher is exceptional and also gives great holistic massages which I’ve tried as well. Also, there are special activities everyday like guided hikes or cultural events. I can’t really say that I’ve hiked a lot but that surely didn’t keep me from enjoying the wonderful food they served for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Breakfast and lunch was served in buffet form and you can choose from three courses for dinner. And guess what: one of the courses is always vegan or vegetarian. And if theres nothing on the menue which you like, you can always ask for another alternative and everybody will try their best to meet your wishes. I’m still searching for the right words but my whole stay I’ve just felt so very welcomed and cozy. I hope to be able to go back there some day.

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Accomodation, Allgemein, Europe, Travel

Hotel Pfösl – South Tyrol

26. August 2017

As we opened our new Restaurant Mashery – Hummus Kitchen earlier this year, I’ve been craving for a relaxed, laid-back time in the mountains to recharge my batteries. And I couldn’t have made a better choice than Hotel Pfösl for that. They have renovated the whole place just a couple of weeks before we arrived. So I’ve seen pictures online but clearly had no notion what would expect me. The first impression already left me speechless. The whole place smells like stone pine and the decoration is stylish yet tasteful. But the room really has been overwhelming. We’ve booked the “Zirben Suite” which was just built a couple of weeks ago. All the suites do have huge windows with a panoramic view over the mountains. Also, besides the huge, comfortable bed there has been a large sun bed also overviewing the mountains. I could have spent our whole stay just laying there! Mrs. Zelger, one of the owners of the place, took some time and explained, how much thoroughness they’ve put into the renovation. It has been very important to them, that the modifications would be organic and won’t take away the charm and spirit of the place. And they did a damn good job! The concept of living in accordance with nature also extends to the kitchen. At Pfoesl they try to offer regional and seasonal food wherever possible. They even have their own vegetable and herb gardens and for breakfast, they offer tea made from those homegrown herbs which was delicious. In general, the menue has been great and very suitable for vegetarian and vegan needs. There has been an vegetarian or vegan option on the menue every evening and additionally, they offered more possible combinations based on the menue of the evening. Every evening, there has been a wide range of salads offered as a buffet and a three course menue which was served at the table. Also, there have been special events where you could choose from an awesome range of freshly baked bread from the old stone-oven. Also, one detail which I loved in particular was that there has been a juicer so that you could prepare your own fresh juice for breakfast which is the best start to the day. Back home, I’ve had great plans on how many kilometres I was going to hike each day but all the plans just faded, when I’ve seen the spa area for the first time. The indoor and outdoor wellness area sums up to unbelievable 2.000 m². This includes an panorama-infinity outdoor-solepool and 8 different saunas. There. I’ve spent most of my time at Pfoesl but also did some trips to bozen and the Karersee which have been great. All in all, I loved the time at Hotel Pfoesl and I could recommend it for everyone who is searching for nature, relaxation, exceptional staff and great food.

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Accomodation, Europe, Travel

The Dude – Berlin

2. November 2016

The Dude Berlin is a small, beautiful boutique hotel with 27 rooms. It is located in a central but quiet neighborhood, but with excellent access to transit to all of Berlin. Most of the big tourist spots are very easy to reach, as it is close to transportation, and the transportation system in Berlin is just great. The Dude is perfect if you want to have a different experience from the hotel chains and looking for something more individual and charming. The staff is very friendly, attentive and helpful and they were always willing to give good recommendations and help the guests to get around the city. If needed, they also hand out maps and point out directions. The rooms as well as the whole hotel are very individual, contemporary and comfortable. You’ll find many lovely details. For example, the shower gel and shampoo are from Molton Brown. I love such things! The rooms in general are set up very well, they are comfortable and clean and the furniture is exclusive. Also, theres a nespresso machine and a mini bar. If thats not enough, you’ll find the excellent Brooklyn restaurant, where they sell high class american food like burger etc. The breakfast room is small but cosy and theres an a la carte selection with high quality breakfast to choose from like bread, pancakes, bircher musli and croissants. There’s even home made jams. Coffee and tea are both very good. I can really recommend The Dude if you are looking for a hotel which is special, with exceptional staff and a great location!

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Accomodation, Europe, Travel

Villa Westend – Norderney

1. November 2016

I’ve spent two nights at Villa Westend in September and learned, that the house is owned by Family Bruns since its building. For quite some time it has been leased but since this year its run by Family Bruns again. And you can tell, that they love what they do right away. To come clear: the furnishing is quite old and some of the bathrooms are plastik cubes within the room which I found quite funny. You’ll find the ground floor with the breakfast room and lounge even more appeiling. The furnishing is colourful, tasteful and unique. It’s planned to renovate the whole building and rooms within the next years. By the way: the breakfast has been great. There has been a choice of rolls, bread, various spreads, cheese, eggs, sausages, fruits, vegetables and so on. That goes with delicious coffee and tea. And the location couldn’t be better – the beach and the famous “Milchbar” are just a few meters away and there a even a few rooms with sea view. You can rent a bike in a store right in front of the hotel which comes in super handy if you plan a trip. All the restaurants, stores as well as the western beach are just minutes away. But the best thing about Vila Westendare its charming owners and staff. Absolutely everybody has been so sincere and helpful which makes you feel like home. Another great thing is, that the prices of Villa Westend are really fair in contrast to many other hotels in Norderney. This is due to the fact that the house is owned by the family since many years and the owners are not planning to compete with the many other hotels which are super fancy and impersonal but rather continue being a charming guesthouse. Therefore, if you’re looking for a individual, charming place with a perfect location, you’ve found the perfect place!

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