The Independent Voyager


Boutique Hotels in Berlin: a Primer

By Elicia Sacharow

It seems like everywhere you go, you’ve got to shift your expectations on your hotel. In Paris, the rooms tend to run small; in Amsterdam, the stairs are steep and more like ladders; in Miami, there’s often a resort fee to pay. Don’t wonder anymore–we’ll tell you what you need to know about Berlin’s hotels!

Even the most basic rooms are a good size with great amenities!

We can hear your sigh of relief from here. After traveling through Paris and London, we were itching for a nice-sized room that wouldn’t feel cramped or break the bank. Berlin fit the bill beautifully! Throughout our selection, the standard double rooms are a nice size—typically 200 square feet and going up. One of our favorites is the suite at The Dude; we feel like we could dance the night away with this much space! And of course each has the amenities to match: free Wi-Fi is pretty much the norm at our selected hotels (not necessarily for Berlin!), well-known toiletries (like Molton Brown or local specialties like Turn Off the Water), and many hotels offer a restaurant, bar, pool, and/or private courtyard.

Half of the suite at The Dude. There’s also a sofa and chairs off to the right.

Go to the rooftop if it’s a view you want.

We adore Berlin, but it’s not a place where your hotel is going to give you a room with the most magnificent vista of Berlin. It’s very much a low-rise city with few landmarks that tower above it, so really the rooftop is your best option for a sweeping view. Rest assured that hotels are well aware of the assets on their rooftops; they tend to guard them jealously to save them for their guests (and who can really say no to an exclusive view)? However, never say no to a terrace or a window overlooking a courtyard—you could find yourself seeing this or this!

View from The Weinmeister Berlin's rooftop bar

The Weinmeister’s rooftop bar features in-your-face views of the Berlin TV Tower…and an exclusive guest list. (Lucky you, you’re with the hotel!)

A central location is great, but you will still need public transportation.

Berlin is huge! It’s 340+ square miles—Paris, for example, is only 40.7 square miles. That said, it’s very well-connected; a train or bus stop is never more than 10 minutes away. Yet when you’re dealing with a city of this size, it makes a lot of sense to consider what you want to do and see—there’s bound to be a hotel in the area. If you want to be all over the city (and that’s easy to do in Berlin!), it might be better to select a hotel right next to convenient transport.

H'Otello K'80 Boutique Hotel Berlin

H’Otello K’80 sits right next to Savignyplatz S-Bahn station (but don’t worry, the soundproofing is excellent!).

Berlin and its boutique hotels are one-of-a-kind.

Some hotels are housed in historic buildings, some are in former warehouses repurposed as a hotel, and some pretty much got to start from scratch. The hotels also reflect the city’s history as not only a capital, but a divided capital: the hotels you’ll find in East Berlin often bear marks from Soviet occupation and the hotels in West Berlin tend to look like more “traditional” European architecture, but what all of Berlin has is bubbling creativity. Art dances across entire hotels and spills into the neighborhood.

Arte Luise Kunsthotel Berlin

Arte Luise Kunsthotel is right next to the Berlin Wall and is one of the most creative hotels of Berlin. It’s decorated (and re-decorated every 2–5 years) by local artists who get a commission from bookings in their rooms.


Berlin’s atmosphere is like nowhere else—come experience Europe’s new creative capital in tremendously personable style. Start your search here with!

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