Freitag, 23. Oktober 2015

Schlosshotel Grunewald, the hidden luxury oasis of Berlin

When the summer is about to go in Berlin, I always check either a new travel destination in a warm country or new places in the city where I can go away of the winter. In the last case, the choice varies from museum to restaurants or architectural wonders that must keep me awake and with an alert mind during the boring cold. With a lot of time to spend in Berlin during this long hot summer, I finally decided to spend more time in the Grunewald area, a favourite place for walking, both for the natural wonders and the architectural works. On one lonely quiet street I discovered the well kept secret of the West Berlin: the design boutique hotel Schlosshotel Grunewald
It is around 11 o'clock and it seems that no one is around. I go through the stone gates and dare for more. Some fancy limousines are waiting at the entrance, ready to go. 
The rest is silence. The few personnel people I met are moving graciously, the few guests are discretely having their conversations in one of the corners.The massive furniture and the big windows seem to absorb all the undeserved noise. 
The same silence in the park garden, where comfortable white modern sofas are spread between classical fountains. A lady guest with an Afghan dog is taking her seat and orders something while checking the smart phone. The wi-fi in the garden goes pretty fast.  
lThe sunny weather is tempting but I am decided to explore more the stylish interior. Many details of the 1914-built villa, when the hotel was called Stadtpalais, were kept as such. 
The big space of the lobby with its huge chandelier and the claire obscure interior amplifies the mystery of the place. No wonder that this hotel is usually preferred by VIPs coming to Berlin for enjoying their privacy, as for instance the former US state secretary Henry Kissinger who was here again recently. 
The old wooden door were matched with modern designs, such as the golden leaves motifs on the white walls. 
The hotel has now 43 rooms and 10 suites. Most rooms have a view over the garden, but sharing the wooden stairs to the lobby. The stylish interior design bears the trademark of Karl Lagerfeld. 
 Oil paintings in the corners and in the room are adding a personal note to the hotel ambiance.
The small wooden doors are opening to glamorous worlds but as usual in Germany, abundance and luxury are private matters not shared with the rest of the world. 
Back in the lobby, back to the same unbroken majestic silence. Quiet enough to imagine how it was at the time when Josephine Baker was coming here regularly or how Romy Schneider celebrated her wedding.
The restaurant is ready to offer the gourmet meals, the cigar bar for some private conversations. In one neighbouring space someone is having a business presentation. 
 The mixture between modern lines and classical background is spotless.
 But also very inviting, to a glass of wine or some rest. I make a mental note to come back soon for a special gourmet tasting one of the next months. 
For now,  it is time to leave. I go out discretely as I entered. It is a bit more than a hotel and a bit more than a castle. Hope to find the right definition of this place during my next visit.

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