Mark Bibby Jackson checks into the Vienna House Andel’s Berlin and checks out its sustanability credentials.
Walking up from the S-Bahn station along Landsberger Allee, there is one building that stands out like a beacon. With its 65-metre tower, the Vienna House Andel’s Berlin is a colossal statement of overbriding confidence. Originally designed as a shopping centre, it was converted into a 557-room/suite hotel by Austria’s largest hotel group. It reminds me a lot of the Singer Building I have just visited in Brandenburg.
As you enter the luxurious interior with its magnificent lobby area all sense of austerity flies out through the revolving doors.
A Striking Design
“Down-to-earth, with style, joy and the spirit of exploration: that’s how guests experience the world of Vienna House – and the real, slightly cheeky Berlin,” says Ralph Alsdorf, General Manager since the hotel’s opening in 2009.
Designed by Augsburg-based studio 13 crad, the ‘living’ lobby has a work corner, lounge and entertainment. Guests are encouraged to hang out or work depending upon the purpose of their visit to the German capital. I am drawn naturally enough to the reception, with its 7×14-metre golden oval of brass tiles.
I pass swiftly to my suite, which has a classic black and white design interrupted by bold dashes of yellow and nice retro touches and stylish sofas that create the sense of home. The bathroom has extra-large rain showers and an inviting bathtub. However, I have an appointment to meet and a tour of the hotel’s excellent dining options.
Dining at Vienna House Andel’s Berlin
On the 12th floor of the hotel’s imposing tower is Skykitchen, where Berlin’s youngest Michelin-starred chef de cuisine Alexander Koppe serves dishes with top-quality local ingredients and international influences. With 55 table seats and eight window bench seats there is an informality to the place in keeping with the general vibe of Berlin. At its heart is the kitchen cube, a freestanding culinary workspace with wrap-around glass window.
A floor higher, 64 metres above the ground – so take the lift, is 60s-era design bar Loft14. With large comfortable armchairs and velvet sofas the Mad Men inspired bar is littered with original features and flea market finds, as well as a 14-metre dark oak and marble bar with flamingo pink barstools. “Classy Classics meet Berlin Style Cocktails,” promises the Vienna House Andel’s Berlin management. Above all else is the 270-degree view over Berlin.
Lacking the view but with oodles of California surf chic is Mavericks, Berlin’s only California-style restaurant; a place to chill on the ground floor. Finally there is the exclusive a.lounge with its magnificent terrace area.
Wellness at Vienna House Andel’s Berlin
Andel’s Berlin is renowned for its versatility, and in addition to 3,800 square metres of conference space, the hotel has SpaSphere a 550-square-metre wellness area. It is here that my tour concludes, as I flip between the jacuzzi, Finnish sauna and steam bath, showering myself in between. Unfortunately I do not have sufficient time to relax on the rooftop terrace outside, for I have a sustainable walking tour of Berlin’s Spreefeld district to go on.
Sustainability at Vienna House
Sustainability is also at the heart of the Vienna House Andel’s Berlin – you can read their sustainability policy here. The hotel is Green Globe certified, and only works with companies that have the same environmental standards. It uses 100% green electricity, with low-emission materials and LED interior lighting applied across the hotel.
In its restaurants, chefs use regional products from local providers, including the craft beer which is brewed in Berlin’s Friedrichshain district. Embracing the farm to fork philosophy, the Vienna House Andel’s Berlin also has its own farmer’s garden in Berlin-Ahrensfelde, as well as an indoor herb garden within the hotel.
Getting to Vienna House Andel’s Berlin
Although the hotel has charging stations in its garage to encourage guests to use electric cars, there really is no need to drive here.
Both S-Bahn station and Landsberger Allee tram station are right outside the hotel, with Alexanderplatz a short walk. The tram goes directly to Berlin Central Station (Hauptbahnhof) meaning you can easily arrive here by train. My ongoing train journey to Vienna took me via Prague and Brno.
This really is the 4-star superior quality of Vienna House Andel’s Berlin. Bordering both Friedrichshain and Prenzlauer Berg, its prime location allows you to explore the wonderful city of Berlin, either via public transport or on foot.
Upon returning from my walking tour and an excellent meal at FREA zero-waste vegan restaurant, I explored the streets around the hotel, chancing upon a great local bar where I eavesdropped upon a couple of chain-smoking local Vietnamese before stumbling upon the fabulous END. wine bar, which appropriately enough concluded my short sojourn in Berlin.
VIENNA HOUSE ANDEL’S BY WYNDHAM
Landsberger Allee 106 | 10369 Berlin | Germany
T +49 30 453 053 2309