I love my annual summer trip to my home city of Dusseldorf in Germany and though said trip was, well very different, than last year’s in times of Corona this August, it was still an absolutely delightful weekend, full of wonderful experiences.
Indeed, the Germans have nailed the ‘new normal’ - from hotels, to restaurants to work out classes, everywhere I went providing a save and clean experience which managed to retain the joy all these things usually offer, even if they now included a little more distance and discipline.
WHERE TO STAY: ME AND ALL HOTELS
Me And All Hotels has always been, hands down, my favourite hotel in Dusseldorf, in my eyes nailing its affordable yet boutique accommodation concept and Corona hasn’t changed that.
Rooms are, as always, meticulously clean, with a few tweaks for the new age that we live in. Indeed the remote comes wrapped in plastic and disinfected, for your use only, and the hotel breakfast buffet, a highlight of any hotel stay for me, has been kept alive here by cleverly offering single serving juice bottles, indiviudal cutlery sets to take by the entrance and of course compulsory mask wearing once you leave your table.
Yes, at Me And All Hotels they do tick all the boxes in terms of Covid 19 safety but they have also managed to keep that hotel magic alive, that magic for which you stay at a hotel at in the first place, a little escape from reality and the flats we have been confined to for so long that we can all do with right now.
WHERE TO SWEAT IT OUT: BECYCLE
I am not going to lie, living in London I am very spoiled when it comes to the sheer choice of boutique fitness classes available to me - Barry’s and 1Rebel for running and Psycle, Soulcycle and Boom Cycle for some kick ass spinning. That is not quite how the situation has been in Dusseldorf, where I have always been annoyed in the past by the complete lack of good workout classes available.
Hallelujah then for BECYLE, located literally opposite Me And All Hotel in the centre of Dusseldorf, a new super state-of-the-art spinning, barre, hiit and reformer pilates boutique studio which has finally revolutionised how Dusseldorf locals can work out.
The whole space and spinning studio in particular is stunning and the staff lovely, with classes taught in English which makes this a destination for any visitor to the city!
My 45 minute spinning class was pretty hard and sweat inducing (of course with all the precautions taken, every second bike empty etc.) but fuelled by a great instructor and banging soundtrack and the locals here are very lucky to finally have such fab workout concept and boutique studio in Dusseldorf, I will be back for sure!
WHERE TO EAT:
Essentially all Dusseldorf eateries are back open for business, with most utilising outside space during the summer months for al fresco dining, but even when we did sit inside (there were one or two torrential downpours during my weekend there) tables were kept consistently far enough apart, waiters wore masks and we had to leave our contact details wherever we went which meant eating out felt safe and enjoyable, precautions not taking over the enjoyment of eating out!
THE FAVOURITE: MüNSTERMANN KONTOR
Münstermann Kontor is without a doubt my favourite restaurant in Dusseldorf, always impressing with its seasonally changing menu that rightly holds a Michelin Bib Gourmand. Their menu is still vast but they have opened up the restaurant front and added lots of outside tables which makes the previously always heaving dining space actually a lot more pleasant! A must visit.
THE NEW DISCOVERY: CAFE DE BRETAGNE
Cafe De Bretagne, a quintessentially French bistro, is all kinds of fabulous - affordable seafood platters, gorgeous bread, great wine and wonderful staff, plastic dividers used inside that you barely notice and in no way take away the charm of the wonderful new discovery!
BEST SPOTS FOR DRINKS:
EN DE CANON
En De Canon, a great new wine bar right by the Rhine, serves a fantastic selection of German and Swiss wines and has a wonderfully spacious outdoor terrace, away from the crowds of the old town, that is ideal for people watching. A new favourite.
Chérie pre corona was a crowded hipster bar that me and mum always loved going to for an after dinner drink. It hasn’t lost it’s buzz but now has tables spilling onto a cobbled old town side streets which adds a touch of Paris bistro charm to this place and has made me love it even more!