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Hamburg 2004

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last updated: 14-Aug-2005

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Trip to Hamburg

When: 2nd-5th September 2005
How: Flying Swiss

A trip to Hamburg had been my birthday present to JJ - our first trip to Hamburg.

We stayed in the SIDE Hotel, a new modern hotel opposite to the Opera. I had once seen a picture of it in a SPA guide, and liked the interior - not the usual velvety business traveller stuff, but cool design. We had a Deluxe room, which also differed from standard hotel rooms: The bathroom had now wall, but just a milkglass screen, the TV was hidden in a wooden box in the middle lof the room - and I didn't find any velvet wherever I looked!

SIDE hosts the fusion bar&restaurant, where we had our first dinner. Food is as the name says: fusion, with a bit of everything stirred in , and nicely presented. I remember eating very well and very much, whereas JJ complained that his fish with five spices was more like five spices with fish. But this was the only flaw in an otherwise superb dinner. However: no nightlife after this...

SIDE room

Our room in the SIDE - the brown box hosts the TV which
raises on pressing a button.

The SIDE lobby seen from 8th (or 7th?) floor
SIDE lobby

The first full day we spent with walking around, shopping, eating a bite here and there, more walking around, more shopping (I remember Manufactum in Chilehaus, just because there is no Manufactum shop in Switzerland), and then a boat cruise on the Binnenalster (a lake/river/basin downtown). The funny thing about the cruise is the captain commenting which celbrity owns which villa where - gossip is alway fun. Anyway, it was a very relaxing change after all this shopping.

We both liked Hamburg very much - it is easy-going, cosy and a little bit mediterranean (at least if the weather is okay). It felt like an "everyday city" to live in, not just a tourist city to visit.

Our dinner was at Indo Chine (no webpage, Neumühlen 11, 22763 Hamburg, Telephone: 040/39807880). This is a very laid-back in-spot just at the shores of the Elbe river, in a new quarter. So inside it is buddha statues, steamed rice and a huge menu all across Asia, and outside you see oceanliners and cargo ships passing, and on the far side scurry ghostly cargo lifters, remotely controlled. We caught the last table somewhat in the middle of the room - so better book early. Food was good.

The way back leads through the red-light district. Don't tell anyone, but we've been too tired. Next time...
Alster cruiseBoat cruise on Binnenalster

On the second day, we first went to the Isemarkt. This is a colourful food market held on Tuesdays and Fridays under a metro railway bridge. Bad luck that we didn't stay for a week and had our own kitchen...
Around noon we went to the harbour to board a cruise of the Speicherstadt (warehouse district with waterways instead of streets), the new-developping Hafencity, and the harbour. We do not have something like this in Switzerland - sorry I had to include four pics.

Hamburg harbour Hamburg Speicherstadt
Hamburg old harbour Speicherstadt - warehouse district
Hamburg Yang Ming cranes
A Chinese container ship being unloaded - all automatically  ...and this is how unloading worked previously

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