BERLIN | Hotel de Rome, A Rocco Forte Hotel
A hotel that epitomizes prestige.
An editorial collaboration with AirBerlin and Visit Berlin.
photos ©by Dawn GarciaImagine if you will, one of the most exquisite European cities whose story not only identifies historical evolution, creative immersion, stunning landscapes, exquisite service and more art, design and architecture than you can envision and then spending three glorious days indulging in everything it has to offer. That’s Berlin! Invited to experience German luxury thanks to AirBerlin and the VisitBerlin, my first introduction to the city began as the swell of summer loomed and my desire to be inspired was ever present.
The minute my feet touched the ground, the city welcomed me in every way so by the time my taxi driver dropped me off in front of my hotel – a hotel that exists in the very heart of Berlin – my deep desire for luxury, art and culture was awakened in ways I will forever be grateful for! Hotel de Rome can best be described as a hotel that emits luxury, service, hospitality, inventive design and attention to detail. In other words, this Rocco Forte Hotel is everything I hope for in a luxury hotel! While there are certainly an onslaught of choices in the city alive with artists, curiosity and a quiet ferocity, Hotel de Rome isn’t your average stay.
As you enter up the stairs leading inside, the exterior is a classic facade of a once upon a time Dresden bank but the moment you enter in you’re surrounded by bits of the past reinvigorated with a modern touch. The ambiance is one that provokes a sense of wonder with a large glass table situated in the middle of the lobby, beautiful flower arrangements situated atop, and a large dangling iron bird cage lit with deep shades of red giving off a creative vibe that invites you in. The seating just past the artistic centerpiece consists of rounded black velvet tufted cushioned sofas and to the right of the entry is the bar (with hand crafted cocktails) and restaurant (La Banca), and back towards the lobby and elevators is the Opera Court for afternoon tea.
As I take in the sleek lines, the open layout, the history of the building with walls that have more tales to tell than I can possibly fathom, I check in and am led to my room. The building did serve a very different purpose once upon a time but thanks to designer, Olga Polizzi, the past has been upgraded to modernism without losing the charm and intrigue that sets it apart.
Arriving at my door, even the door itself has character. Designed to look like a vault door, it’s unassuming and simple but flawless. Inside is a junior suite that opens up in a room that is bright, endless with high vaulted ceilings, a pristine bed, a couch that beckons you to just lay down and take it all in, designed with a clean color palette and the accent of a deep rich red lacquer entertainment center that draws the eye, however it’s the en suite bathroom that I’m in love with. It’s not only large but it has a toilet for him and her, a beautiful walk-in shower, heated tiled floors and a soaking bath that I utilized every single night.
Waiting for me in a silver ice bucket was a bottle of Ferrari Champagne and a slate board with fresh fruit, chocolate, chocolate shavings, macarons, fresh made pastries and a welcome note. The décor is minimalist allowing the subtle design accents to warm the room and not crowd the mind with too much distraction. One of the personal touches I appreciated most were the selections of literature left on the side tables including a collection of Goethe that lent to the immeasurable inspiration Berlin would offer my craving soul.
La Banca is a restaurant, sure, but its HOW they feed you that’s the difference. Every morning as part of my stay, I jaunted down to the restaurant for breakfast. The spread is something of a gluttonous yet healthy array of options to feed even the most finicky diners (including kids!). But in addition to their vast spread of pastries, fresh cold pressed juices, fruits, cheeses, meats, and unique creations, you also have the full menu available to you which includes my daily favorite: the omelet. I ordered the egg white omelet with grilled veggies and without fail, every morning, I’m certain it only got tastier. The service was always phenomenal but Jan, a young server with absolute grace, quickly become my favorite. He offers every single guest the same level of service with a smile, remembers what you like and is attentive without ever being invasive. The breakfast at La Banca is superb! While I didn’t dine for dinner, I did manage to have bar bites and cocktails in the bar which was yet another huge success.
Designed with spacial awareness, seductive lighting, well dressed decor and fabulous bartenders, this was certainly worthy of many late night nightcaps. Their cocktail menu is inventive and their presentation is on point.
TRY: Berlin Buck | Kick and Rush | Kentucky Funk Julep (the Risotto hits the spot with any of them!)
By far one of the best nights of sleep I’ve had in a very long while. With large grandiose windows that open into an open courtyard, the sounds of the city hum in a dull whisper in the distance as the fresh air creeps in and gives you solace. While I stayed in the Junior Suite, we explored the Renaissance Historic Suite and the Bebel Suite. Each room designed with completely different appeal honoring the space and the possibilities.
The Renaissance Room is a re-envisioned version of a Banker’s executive office with rich wood paneling, bookcases, historic furniture, gorgeous layout and most critical, the soundproof doors. Once the space where bankers discussed high level financial dealings, there is something rather intriguing about this room. So intriguing, even George Clooney loved staying in it!
The Bebel Room is brightly decorated with shades of yellows, reds and grays and modern accents that offset the history of Hotel de Rome itself. This room is the most luxurious in terms of the bathroom, the center bathtub, kitchen, the wraparound terrace, the video system, the living room and the overall sense of affluence. This is the créme de la créme of where to slip away into modern luxury! As an aside, the service and the staff here is flawless and impeccable.
the SPA + POOL
Make sure to visit the spa and pool while you’re here. I spent my mornings working out, swimming, then enjoying the steamroom and sauna. One of the most endearing aspects of the spa is the manicurist station located inside of the old bank vault.
NOTE: While the sun is shining, enjoy the Rooftop Terrace.
From the minute you step outside your room, there is much to explore so whether you’re stepping into the smoking lounge equipped with a well-stocked humidor or enjoying the ballroom, mesmerized by the light fixture hanging in the stairwell you will be inspired, or stepping outside to see the city brimming with life. Just outside the hotel doors what you’ll find is an artistic and architectural mecca. Past the entry, about two hundred feet away is Humboldt University, the Bebelplatz memorial (burning of the books), the Linden trees, the truly breathtaking Neue Wache (the Central Memorial of the Federal Republic of Germany for the Victims of War and Dictatorship), the East Side Gallery (Berlin Wall), and as you head towards the center of town where Check Point Charlie exists once the gateway of spies, you’ll see a rich array of architecture and design that adds modern sustainability with industrial innovation. Aside from the history, there is modern street art, incredible museums (180 museums and galleries in Berlin alone!) and more cuisine to choose from than your hunger can envision. Either way, THIS is where to stay! It is truly magnificent in design, seeped in story and is well worth every single Euro. This is an extraordinary and luxurious must!
RESERVATIONS | Behrenstrasse 37 | 10117, Berlin, Germany
MORE Berlin …
Vimeo – BERLIN | Welcome to Berlin!
Vimeo – BERLIN | Design + Architecture