It is hard to write about something you don’t understand – hard to mold the words into a clearcut, finite meaning about something that seems indescribable and infinite.
The train journey from Hamburg to Aarhus, in Denmark, is long. The scenery does not change much and neither does the weather: when I arrive, it is still raining. This is why instead of walking, I am happy to hop on a taxi, and whizz myself to Villa Provence.
My most loyal readers have by now observed my interest in historic hotels and buildings. This is why, a few weeks ago in Hamburg, I was particularly delighted to receive an invitation to spend a night in a former telecommunication office.
When I think of Germany, I think of Bach’s piano music, the sorrowful books of Goethe, and the epochs of Mann. When I think of a traveller’s Germany, I do not think of the Untergrundbahns, nor the divided Berlin or the destructions of the WWII: I think of the long journeys through country meadows, wandering salesmen with their neat suitcases, the medieval villages stopped in time.
This is why I was particularly charmed when I stepped into my suite in Palais Esplanade, where a charmingly old-fashioned atmosphere greets us modern travellers.
When I see a small octagonal tower surrounded by red brick houses, I stop in amazement: this was going to be one memorable night in my own princess tower!
Recently, on my travels and talking with hotel and B&B owners around the world, I have come into the conclusion that the best accommodations are provided by people who travel a lot themselves. This is also the case with von Deska Townhouses.
During my recent visit to Amsterdam, I was glad to discover another, urban side of the city. With a 1970s stylish retro design, loads of green plants, dim lights and wooden furniture, Hotel V Fizeaustraat is a little oasis in an urban jungle.
When I arrive at the small square of Anna Paulownaplein in The Hague’s upscale district of Mesdakwartier, my heart starts to flutter of joy. And I use this familiar expression from 19th-century novels in purpose, as the area has a beautifully elegant, charmingly old-fashioned feel.
When you move from Amsterdam’s historic canal districts to the city’s museum square, the colour palette changes from bright primary colours to more discreet, prestigious looking cityscape built of red brick. Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum, Banksy and Warhol, design in museums and shops. Amid all this, JL No 76 is an elegant art lover’s hotel.
Rain starts to rattle against the rooftop when I climb up the wooden stairs of my home for the night in Amsterdam. Outside, the Amsterdammers cycle a little bit faster than normally to make it home before the heavy rain. The lights of the street-level restaurants and shops reflect against the wet asphalt. A few blocks away, a tram announces its arrival with a bell.
I am in the core of cosy Amsterdam, indulging myself in Kamer01.