Opened in 1995, the Bleibtreu—which translates as “remain faithful” in English—was Berlin ’s first design hotel. Despite a huge increase in boutique accommodation in the city, the hotel has retained its popularity and continues to appeal to a young, hip crowd. Ensconced in a renovated, nineteenth-century house in Bleibtreustrasse—one of the elegant side streets off KurfQrstendamm, Berlin’s famous shopping street—Bleibtreu does not feel or look like a boutique hotel at first glance. The ground floor hosts a buzzing bar, a busy cafe restaurant, and a florist. Pass through the bustle, though, and a path will lead you through a glass pebble garden to the reception, slightly hidden off a tree-shaded courtyard.
Once inside the Bleibtreu, the distinctive work of designer Herbert Jacob Weinand is evident. The rooms contain individually crafted furnishings, most of them made from untreated woods (in keeping with Bleibtreu’s eco-friendly policies), along with Italian mosaics and neutral color schemes. Turning his attention to the olfactory senses, Weinand has sprayed the pieces of wood in the corridors so they each have their own scent.
Taste buds are catered for, too, in Restaurant 31, where the main attraction—aside from the inventive and healthy cuisine—is a lovely, terra-cotta-tiled courtyard. Bleibtreu’s basement spa is also a talking point. It is small but packs plenty in, including a steam room, reflexology, acupuncture, a personal trainer, and meditation options. Blumen 31, the hotel’s florist, specializes in rare types of roses and all kinds of exotic and bizarre beauties. The hotel’s location means you can easily reach all the important sights, restaurants, and cultural events in the west of Berlin.