berlin: das stue hotel opening

© das stue - a grand 1930s embassy building is now home to berlin's coolest hotel

the hotly anticipated das stue hotel has finally opened its doors. combining sleek, contemporary design with architectural grandeur, it's a rather unique addition to berlin's hospitality scene. the hotel occupies a monumental structure from the 1930s - that once was home to the royal danish embassy - and is situated in a leafy corner of tiergarten, an area of town that has shot up the hipness ladder since the arrival of many contemporary art galleries and the opening of the superfabulous andreas murkudis concept store a few blocks away. the hotel’s peculiar name is actually danish for living room, and the property is accordingly conceptualized as an elegant, inviting space where people relax, socialize, entertain, and discuss.

complementing the stately curved historic building is a new annex, designed by axthelm architekten, and combined the property features 80 rooms in five categories. upon entering das stue's majestic entrance hall, guests marvel at an overhead wave of hundreds of tiny lights, flanked by two sweeping staircases. a striking sculpture of a crocodile’s head adds up to the cool visual drama, created by renowned interior designer patricia urquiola. behind the entrance is a long sight line creating a dramatic axis through the hotel, and leading to a tucked-away concierge and reception area. the architecture then opens up into the hotel’s modern addition, where angular volumes frame das stue’s very heart. right here, the lounge, bar and outdoor terrace, with private access to the berlin zoo, are located.

the lounge features whimsical shapes and a cool experimental use of colour and texture. next to her own designs, urquiola personally curated other objects, like leather animals in the shape of rhinos, hippos and buffalos that humorously reference to the nearby zoo, in addition to the vintage fashion photography that adorns walls throughout the hotel. the rooms have been designed by barcelona-based practice lvg arquitectura and feature all the comfort and amenities required by today's savvy traveler. the furnishings are bespoke, and splashes of colour playfully show up on textile accessories and photographs on the walls. many of the rooms feature sliding walls for extra privacy or a more expansive atmosphere. das stue's old building features attic-level rooms with oversize terraces and sweeping views of the greens of tiergarten park.

and as a great hotels know how to entertain its guests, das stue boasts two restaurants that are very much destinations in their own right. the casual is a all-day dining spot which offers the best of spanish cuisine in a stylish but relaxed setting. taking culinary matters to a higher level is cinco by paco pérez, another domain of acclaimed chef paco pérez of costa brava's restaurant miramar. refined mediterranean dishes are served in a modern yet inviting setting that includes a playful installation of tom dixon’s copper hanging lamps and copper kettles. there's also a separate luxurious space available for private events. completing the package of amenities is an indoor swimming pool, sauna and spa, with treatments by wellness expert susanne kaufmann. opening next february will be the so-called bel etage, offering a meeting space of four adjoining suites that can be connected for an array of private or public uses. location: drakestrasse 1 [tiergarten].

© das stue - entrance hall, guestrooms, lounge, restaurants, bar and swimming pool [top to bottom]