Sponsored by Bikini Berlin
Berlin is a grand city, but rarely looks like one, admittedly. While I mostly love its small town appeal, sometimes one needs to actually see and feel the attraction of a metropolis. I’m thinking about a backdrop of actually high buildings, a mix of shops and cafés and maybe the view on a zoo, preferably the “monkey hill”. Wait what? Yep, entirely possible at Bikini Berlin.
Bikini Berlin is actually a heritage-protected, former business building in what once formed the center of West Berlin – the 1950s structure used to house a factory for woman’s wear, hence the nickname. Today, it’s the home of Berlin’s most progressive shopping mall with over 50 shops, cafés, bars, and restaurants. The renovation placed an emphasis on creating a contemporary structure – and indeed, wandering inside the open concrete and turquoise steel structures makes it easy to get lost. To lose your time strolling along the many shop windows, having a drink at one of the cafés or just be stunned by the view onto the zoo.
The array of brands represented ranges from big international names like the Artek store, to local favorites like Mykita, and German fashion houses like Odeeh. But also Berlin’s new food brands are well known here, and for some of them it’s the only outlet in the West – Concierge Coffee is serving caffeine at the Artek store, Barcomi’s most delicious cakes are sold at the Super Concept Space on the rooftop, and Funk You in the spacious patio with the giant windows facing the zoo, is using Five Elephant’s Coffee beans.
The best view, and probably the perfect end of your stroll must be the Monkey Bar on top of 25hrs hotel in the building on the east end of Bikini Berlin – located on the 10th floor with many floor length windows, it has all the views over the zoo and the adjacent Tiergarten parks. It’s a lovely place to watch the sun set over the old and new west.