Where to go for a relaxing weekend getaway without driving far away from Berlin? Where do you recharge your batteries without getting stuck in a traffic jam driving into Brandenburg? In many other metropolises, you can hardly save yourself from compelling #staycation offers; in Berlin, there are baiscally two valid possibilities: a day at Vabali Spa or staying in a fancy hotel. We tried the latter option and spent a few days at The Stue Hotel in Tiergarten, which is recommended up and down the country as one of the best hotels in Berlin.
Behind the curved facade of the former Danish Embassy hides an seductive world of marble, wood and copper. In the Hotel Das Stue, now part of the Accor Hotels group and Sofitel brand, a small architectural work of art was realized. Lots of space, light and pleasant fabrics make the interior of the hotel an experience for the senses without overbearing guests with kitsch. I really liked the quiet and subdued, the contemporary and the artistic. None of the pomp and splendour that one knows from traditional houses and therefore very appropriate for Berlin. A visitor at Stue instantly recognizes that every piece of furniture here, from the sofas to the lamp sockets, has a name, a brand and an origin. It’s no coincidence that a very special interior design, furniture and fashion store gets a place of honour at Stue: Andreas Murkudis).
I’d like to indulge in an ungrateful comparison: the Stue is more sophisticated, but probably just as cool as the Soho House on Torstraße. And fortunately not so crowded with prtentious people, but I guess nobody beats Soho at that.
The Stue (Danish: “living room”) is, despite the name, predominantly a Spanish creation. Patricia Urquiola’s public spaces are full of drama, art and silent passion. The bar, the centerpiece of the lobby, is courageously the highlight in an otherwise muted lobby. The restaurant is hidden behind geometric angles and only a few steps away, without ever really being perceptible in the room.
Rooms & Prices
Although the price per night doesn’t seem very budget-friendly (and one can assume that every amenity costs extra – and not too little), the Stue at least knows how to pamper their guests. Hotel and restaurant staff are not only polite, they are even courteous – unheard of in Berlin, the city of grumps.
The facilities are as sophisticated as you would expect in a hotel of this kind (plus a little more). But if you’re staying at Stue, you shouldn’t do a sightseeing tour: it’s too nice to become one with the sofa in the lobby or to order a perfect Ceasar Salad via room service, straight to bed. That said, the rooms are merely satisfactory: they are a bit cramped. To be fair, we booked the lowest room category (about 260 Euro per night). But it was worth it – if only for the ultra-wide and comfortable bed.
Unfortunately, we had to change rooms after the first night as cigarette smoke from the smoker’s pavilion on the terrace rose up into the first floor and. Our complaint went through flawlessly, and we immediately were comforted with a new option on the 4th floor (a smaller room though).
Breakfast, wellness & activities at Stue
And that’s pretty much all that happened. We had a few drinks at the bar, I left early in the morning (once) to work out in the miniscule gym and then decided to go for a proper jog in Tiergarten. I also highly appreciated the fact that breakfast was available until noon on weekends and 11 AM on weekdays. Breakfast is very highly recommended – whether you’re staying at the hotel or feel like celebrating the best part of the day. Let me put it like this: breakfast at Stue is excellent.
The buffet is extended by an a la carte menu, although it’s almost unnecessary: everything the heart wants can be found on well stacked platters and plates, from cold cuts to egg meals, hearty pastries, chia puddings and healthy smoothies. The Spanish, 25-course menu of El Bulli chef Pérez we didn’t try, as 5-Cinquo, the fine dining restaurant at Stue, was closed or booked out during our stay.
We also made use of the Stue’s secret gateway to the Berlin Zoo. Although more expensive than the regular entrance, it’s definitely nice to jump from breakfast to zoo and have a leisurely walk.
The only thing I really didn’t like was the tiny, tiny spa at Stue. The 260 square meters large (or one should actually say: small), very minimalistic Spa, branded by the Austrian beauty specialist Susanne Kaufmann, consists of a pool with an integrated whirlpool and a diminiutive Finnish sauna for a maximum of two people. The spa, indeed, is nothing but an afterthought: there is not even enough room for more than 2 people at a time to lie down on a sun chair. It’s a bit uncomfortable to share naked space with other guests, and as soon as children arrived on the scene, we were definitely gone.
Das Stue – Conclusion
Anyone who writes sauna and pool in capital letters should take the trip to Bleiche Resort – the pricing will be similar, but the Bleiche spa is gorgeous and incomparable to what we experienced at Stue. For everything else – an excellent drink at the bar, first class staff, and direct access to the Berlin Zoo – there is the Stue, right in the middle of the Berliner Tiergarten.