Stroll here: Handsome
border central Alster Lake in Hamburg.
Hamburg has all the
attributes of a major international travel and meetings
destination, but not the corresponding reputation. The city,
Germany’s second largest, has more bridges and canals than Venice,
a downtown centered around a scenic lake, a vibrant nightlife, some
of the most lavish shopping in the country and several top-quality
Local hospitality officials hope expanding transportation
routes and new construction will boost Hamburg’s image, making it
more attractive to Americans.
After Hamburg Airport unveiled a new
terminal in May 2005, Continental Airlines launched nonstop flights
from Newark, N.J., to the city, a move that helped boost passenger
volume at the airport past the 10 million mark for the first time.
An underground rail station at the airport will be connected to the
metropolitan rail network in 2008, providing a 23-minute connection
to Hamburg’s main downtown station.
The Congress Center Hamburg will open an
expansion this September featuring a new 75,000-square-foot exhibit
hall, giving the center a total of nearly 130,000 square feet of
meeting and exhibit space. The expanded center will have 43
air-conditioned halls and meeting rooms, plus seating for a total
of 16,000 people. An 86,000-square-foot rooftop garden will be
added next year.
Hamburg Messe, a five-minute walk from the
CCH, plans to expand its main trade show hall from approximately
700,000 square feet to more than 900,000 square feet by the end of
Hamburg’s jewel on the inner Alster Lake, the 156-room
Raffles Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten, opened the
Jahreszeiten Terrace, an attractive open-air cafe along the lake’s
banks, in April.
The 252-room Hotel Atlantic Kempinski Hamburg
opened a new Pilates studio in March. The facility was co-designed
by dancer Karin Schoenfeld.
The Grand Elysee Hamburg completed an
expansion in April that increased the hotel’s room count to 511 and
meeting space to approximately 21,500 square feet.
The 285-room Crowne Plaza Hamburg renovated
its eight meeting rooms last year.
The 284-room Le Royal Meridien Hamburg in
August opened Le Soleil, a restaurant exclusively for private
events, with a terrace overlooking Alster Lake.
The 277-room Hamburg Marriott Hotel replaced
all of its beds last year and plans to renovate its 4,500 square
feet of meeting space this year.
The 226-room Movenpick Hotel Hamburg is being
constructed in an early 20th-century water tower and will open in
early 2007 with 4,800 square feet of meeting space.
The most significant construction in Hamburg is the
revitalization of the city’s warehouse district, dubbed
HafenCity, a 385-acre harbor neighborhood a
half-mile from City Hall. The project will include 5,500
apartments, office space, parks, the Elbe Philharmonic concert
hall, a maritime museum, an aquarium, a science center and a new
cruise ship terminal. These various ele-ments will open in stages
Also in the works is BallinStadt, a new museum
dedicated to European emigration to America, which will open in
2007 near HafenCity.
Europa Passage, a new shopping arcade, will
open this fall, extending the lakeside Jungfernsteig shopping
district. The complex will feature more than 100 stores,
restaurants and 365,800 square feet of office space.
Spielbudenplatz, an outdoor plaza with a
moveable stage, opened on the Reeperbahn last month, beside Angie’s