Hamburg: Five of the best... unusual venues

C&IT spotlights five of the best unusual venues in German port city Hamburg, from sky-high platforms with panoramic views to an iconic hotel that hosted James Bond.

Hotel Atlantic Kempinski (© www.kempinski.com)
Hotel Atlantic Kempinski (© www.kempinski.com)

Hotel Atlantic Kempinski

Since opening in 1909, the 221-room Hotel Atlantic Kempinski has become a landmark in Hamburg. The image of the light green tiles that line the roof, the Atlantic sign that is spread across them and the arching white exterior walls became iconic in 1995 when 007 himself, played by Pierce Brosnon in Goldeneye, scaled down them, fleeing his desperate captor who lay dead in the Presidential Suite.

The 245sqm room has now become one of the most sought after pads not only in the city, but in all of Germany. When not in use, groups can take it for pre-dinner drink receptions.

Furthermore, the rooftop can be used as a venue for champagne and canapés as the sun sets over the Alster Lake. Groups are snuck up to the hotel’s attic, via the staff lift, and after tip-toeing past clusters of interesting props, items and furniture that have all but been forgotten about over the years, delegates are greeted with amazing views across Hamburg from one of the most exclusive venues in the city.

Panoramadeck

A modern design with spectacular views across the city, Panoramadeck at the top of the 23-storey EMPORIO Tower is without doubt one of the most stunning venues in Hamburg. The former Unilever building gives delegates the chance to experience unrivalled 360-degree views of the German port city’s expansive parkland, its hundreds of canals and the Elbe River.

The Panoramadeck’s 2,000sqm of event space includes a series of small to mid-sized meeting rooms and large open spaces that can be used for conferences and gala dinners for as many as 500 delegates.

On the ground floor of the EMPORIO Tower is a large conference room, a foyer and a bistro that can be used for group dining, which when combined with a pre-dinner drink reception from 90-metres above ground level creates an unforgettable evening venue.

CHOCOVERSUM by HACHEZ

At CHOCOVERSUM, groups of up to 120 are invited on a 90-minute tour of the city centre exhibition that shows the journey from cocoa bean to chocolate bar, with plenty of opportunities to gorge on the samples throughout.

While being accompanied by experts, delegates can taste the freshly roasted cocoa beans before dipping their fingers into the liquid chocolate straight from the Conche. At the end of the tour, groups get to create their very own personal chocolate bar using all manner of ingredients and toppings.

The venue offers three additional packages exclusive to groups, which incorporate both the chocolate making and its surroundings by the harbour.

A crash course in how to make praline will see dessert-making beginners go home with pages of ideas and recipes, as well as a box of their very own delicacies, while the Sweet World Heritage tour, which launched in July 2015, showcases Hamburg’s architectural heritage in the Speicgerstadt and Kontorhaus Quarters. Chocolate workshops take place at certain points throughout the tour to detail the origins behind chocolate manufacturing in the area.

Reichshof Hamburg Hotel

Back in the day, the Reichshof Hamburg Hotel was one of Europe's most popular properties and during the 'Roaring Twenties' era was a renowned hangout spot for the city's wealthiest residents and visitors.

Having closed in 2014 to undergo a significant renovation project, it is now one of the city’s newest and most exciting venues.

The 279-room property, located opposite the city's historic Central Railway Station, reopened this summer as a 'Curio - A Collection by Hilton' hotel, marking the brand's launch into Europe.

Care was taken to preserve the Reichshof's 20th-century heritage, which is embodied in the hotel's centrepiece, the Restaurant Slowman, and the restored, 100-year-old Bar 1910, where guests can find a selection of international whiskies among many other spirits.

The hotel's restoration programme was extended to the 550sqmvof meeting space, which can hold conferences and meetings for up to 250 delegates. Smaller groups of between five and 18 can be hosted in one of four meeting rooms, while gala dinners for 80 delegates can be accommodated in the Hans Albers conference room.

International Maritime Museum

The International Maritime Museum is housed inside a large heritage-listed building on the banks of the busy Port of Hamburg. The museum celebrates 3,000 years of maritime history and modern research, which has seen the conception of vast Viking dragon boats to the ship liners that sail the oceans today. The museum’s most precious exhibit is the Atlantis Majoris, the world’s first nautical atlas, that was printed in 1657 in the Netherlands.

Groups can take guided tours of the museum where delegates are taught about everything from the history of shipbuilding to the most harrowing war stories that took place at sea.

Another of the museum’s top attractions is its high-tech ship simulator, which allows guests to have a go at navigating some of the largest and trickiest ships around, including the Tokyo Express container vessel, the Europa cruise ships and a catamaran.

The modern-build museum can also host groups of up to 600 for private events. The stunning 600sqm Deck 10 is one of six event spaces, which include a conference room with maritime furnishings, a spacious foyer perfect for drinks receptions and the Meerwein restaurant. Modern audiovisual technology, which also include multilingual simultaneous translation, is available across the venue.

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