SIGHTS in Dusseldorf:
The Düsseldorf city gate, built in 1995, is a truly impressive sight. The two massive pillars hold a three-storey attic, which at the height of 56m, is the highest hall in Europe. The archway scrapes the skies at a height of 70m and is covered by a glass facade. The interior walls are made out of beechwood and actually count as an element of the passive interior climate system. The archway also houses the office of the minister presidents and state prime minister. There are also a number of restaurants and bars that have called the archway home. The gates have quickly become one of the city's landmarks and can be found in the harbour district. The floorplan is shaped like a parallelogram and was based on the architecture of the Grande Arche in La Défense, Paris.
You could easily get the impression that everything worth seeing in Düsseldorf is located along the Rhein river. And you wouldn't be incorrect in thinking so. Even prince Carl theodor from Pfalz-Sulzbach fell hopelessly in love with beautiful Düsseldorf. As a result, he built a castle just for parties and hanging out. The extensive Benrath castle gardens were once simply a place to stroll around in and it remains so today. These days however, you will even find concerts taking place inside the garden walls. But the castle Benrath, built in 1773, has been exceptionally well maintained and is alone worth seeing. Unfortunately, the prince's impressive collection of furniture and art objects from his time have either been destroyed or never to be found again. Therefore, the castle has been tastefully decorated with modern art pieces, to give the visitor an impression of how the magnificent castle once was. The highlight of the castle is without doubt the large ballroom and its impressive dome.
A massive concrete cube has called Düsseldorf its home since 1967. Inside this example of brutal architecture, you will find art that is always searching for a home. Since there are no permanent exhibitions, the Kunsthalle doesn't possess its own collection. So visitors are always treated to something totally different every time they visit. You can't restrict yourself to a particular epoch or style in Düsseldorf anyway. Expect to find anything from avantgarde to classical moderns, but the video work by Gerry Schum and Dan Graham's works are current highlights. Artistic appreciation also has great value in Düsseldorf. For instance, free children's tours are run on a regular basis and there are also workshops for adults and tours with various themes. After getting through the sensual overload, take a break at the Kunsthalle Café or the nearby Rhein riverbank.
EAT in Dusseldorf:
There is no chance of getting a table without a reservation in this trendy Trattoria on the Düsseldorf Heinrich Strasse. Those who are after some authentic Italian culinary delights during their stay in Düsseldorf have to plan ahead. Once you have gotten ahold of a table, then a whole world of Italian gourmet delicacies open up before your very eyes; beef carpaccia with rocket lettuce, or the house specialty - poached stockfish with capers, tomatoes and olives in white wine. Alongside the excellent kitchen, Baccalá offers young artists the chance to show off their work in an atmosphere that is perfect for the thoughtful contemplation of artwork. The sophisticated ambience is rounded off by a thoughtfully composed interior and fantastic service. For example, the Baccalá offers a helicopter taxi servce and live music for special occasions.
Dusseldorf has always been know for its slightly more dignified manners. Thus it's hardly surprising that the highly sophisticated French cuisine is well received here. And even if the inhabitants of the city have the necessary wherewithal, they take a great pleasure in picking up a bargain. In Robert's Bistro they can do so. Here you find French cuisine at reasonable prices, the offer includes creations like deer with spicy nougat sauce or duck filet with hot lime sauce. Additionally an appropriately compiled wine list with classic and modern wines - also at acceptable prices. The nice side effect of Robert's fair rates: the rich and beautiful don't stay among themselves but mingle with businessmen, punks and older married couples. This mixtures tastes tremendously good!
STAY in Dusseldorf:
The parquet is dark, and the reception counter incredibly long. That's how the Dusseldorf Hotel Innside Derendorf welcomes its guests. The even cut of the counter, its glossy surfaces, the indirect LED spotlights - and the huge bowls with orchids at the reception - make it clear: this hotel addresses contemporaries with a modern taste. In the 160 rooms the designer look continues: ceiling-high windows match the creme-coloured fabrics, leather and head-high columns. The rooms are light and bright, air-conditioned and provide spacious king-size beds. The bathrooms which are separated by frozen glass leave a futuristic impression, while the rain shower provides experiences as archaic as standing under a clattering summer rain in the wild. You can relax at the Finnish sauna or the flavoured steam baths in the WellFit & FunArea, afterwards you head to the stream showers and gym machines. All of them equally chic.
SHOPPING in Dusseldorf:
The Concept Store
In 2008 the nationally renowned concept store Apropos from Cologne opened a dependance in Düsseldorf. And it's been a big competition for all those exclusive boutiques on legendary Königsallee. The store offers a true luxury shopping excess on over 950 square metres. Apart from fashion, accessories, jewellery, books, fragrances and cosmetics you also find beautiful objects for your home. The shoe division gets women with a blessed wallet into top gear because they do not only find high heels with the characteristic red sole by Christian Louboutin, but also heels, sandals, lace-up shoes and boots by famous labels like Alexander Wang, Bottega Veneta, Jimmy Choo, Pretty Balerinas, Pedro Garcia, Valentino and Yves Saint Laurent. The golden bar-lounge offers refreshments during an overheated shopping marathon. Who would possibly still need to go to Königsallee?
Even well-travelled, experienced shoppers will feel their breath being taken away as they enter this store. In this extraordinarily elegant atmosphere you will find even more extraordinary and elegant clothing pieces on offer. The more glamorous, the better. Norman Icking doesn't just produce stunning bridal wear, but also festive pieces for every occasion. What is the criteria here? It has to be exquisite, of high quality and refined. If it glitters and rustles, then that's even better. The creations are full of fantasy and are offbeat, therefore intended for more sophisticated and confident customers. Names like Nanini, Julian Macdonald and Anya Hindmacher can also be found in-store. If it's all a bit too fancy for you, then maybe you should drop in at Norman Icking's Streetwear Shop at Hermann Strasse 23, where you can do some more down-to-earth shopping.
We are really sorry to inform you all, gentlemen, but fashion designer Katrin Gehlen-Susko's collections are only made for women. Only the finest fabrics and materials are used for her creations, which all have timeless classic cuts. Loyal shoppers come here for clothes that can be worn for much longer than a season. If you are looking for strong colours and confident cuts, whilst maintaining a reserved and clear cut look, then Katrin Gehlen-Susko's store is the right place for you. The designer doesn't just restrict herself to designing and creating works of fashion, she also offers her customers consulting and matching services, so you can be sure you find that perfect look. All pieces are hand-finished and wedding dresses can be custom made. To make sure that one of the best days of your life won't be tarnished by a fashion faux pas, Katrin Gehlen-Susko offers fashion accessories and professional consultation, so your custom-made dress can really shine.