In the outskirts of Hamburg lies an old building with a very modern appeal. The building was once a gas factory supplying the western part of Hamburg with light, but today it serves as the city’s first design hotel. I stayed here for 24 hours. Here’s my experience:
Modern meets old
One can find luxury in many things. In Hamburg there’s several places boasting from it, and at Gastwerk Hotel in the outskirts of the city, it’s definitely present as well. For some, the large brick building can seem a bit intimidating, but once you understand the history behind, it’s a magical place!
After a 15 minute drive from the centre, we found ourselves at the entrance of the hotel. First impression: rough and fascinating.
Hotel Gastwerk saw the light of day about 120 years ago and in 2000 it re-opened as a 4 star hotel accommodating 141 rooms, lofts and suites. The grand industrial building made from steel and brick has been carefully restored, for which reason it looks impeccable today. And you definitely feel the presence of history just by entering the 6500 m2 main building, which also serves as the lobby and reception area. If only walls could speak..
A New York feeling
Hotel Gastwerk provides several room types ranging from atrium rooms to suites, but common to all of them is the warm colors, rich woods and spaciousness. We got to stay at a so-called ‘Loft room’, which most of all resembles a chic New Yorker flat (without the view though). I quickly became very fond of the brick walls framing the room as well as the walk-in-closet and the Illy Espresso Machine for general use. What more to ask for on a city holiday?! Other room facilities includes a bathroom with bathtub, a large desk and satellite TV.
It’s clear that the charming roughness of the hotel is quite unique, and together with the contemporary interior design, you won’t find something like it anywhere else in Hamburg. Uniqueness is the keyword for Gastwerk. I was fascinated by the large opens spaces that forms the main building – from the lobby to the 141 rooms distributed on 5 floors. Once 5.000 tons of coal were stored here – today, guests are relaxing with a glass of wine and enjoying the space and depth of the area.
The hotel offers a restaurant ‘Mangold’, which is open for both breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner. The kitchen is international with a regional touch giving guests the opportunity to taste classics such as beuf tartare, tagliatelle and duck breast with local ingredients. If you’re thirsty for a drink either before or after dinner, pay L.Bar a visit. We had a glass of wine in the cosy lounge, which is widely popular among business people. After a quick glance at the interior and dark red colors on the walls you’ll understand why the ‘L’ stands for ‘love’.
Unfortunately, I didn’t get to try the spa during my stay, but something tells me it’s a popular feature of the hotel. Step inside for a relaxing massage, facial or pedicure – or simply indulge in the wellness facilities that includes a sauna, a steam bath and a swimming pool. The hotel also arrange different spa packages.
Hotel Gastwerk is the perfect spot for leisure travelers and business people, who need a calm, cool and creative place to stay while in Hamburg. Personally, I love the ambience and the creative nerve that permeates the hotel, but families or tourists may want to look for accommodation closer to the city centre. Upon request guests can borrow a Mini (yes, the car!) for a day. Not a bad way to explore Hamburg…
For more information go to www.gastwerk.com.
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