red|guide Tipps: Moscow
EAT in Moscow: House of Writers
No doubt: Russians have made history in the fields of literature and thinking. If you also want to be kissed by a Muse one day, don't miss visiting the House of Writers, where the illustrious guest list reads like a Who's Who of Nobel Prize winners. Boris Pasternak was here and Leo Tolstoy enjoyed the atmosphere as much as Solzhenitsyn or Mikhail Bulgakov. At the panelled dining room already the Free Masons enjoyed their supper, and at the next room the writing youth of the Sixties convened, leaving their autographs and sketches on the walls. Today the regulars include those who can afford the place as prices might get you close to bankruptcy. Hot tip: The buffet in the basement of the Art Nouveau building is cheaper and lets your fantasy run wild with unconventional paintings and furniture and well-assorted book shelves. The service is typically Russian though: slightly arrogant, a bit slow, somewhat gruff. But never mind the service and be assured that after a delicious European-cuisine-style meal, an excellent cigar and a wonderful coffee you will be the one to write the next bestseller.
SHOP in Moscow: Gum
Have you also asked yourself already why everything costs three times as much in Moscow? Here's the answer: The store rents are as astronomical as the palm grease at the border. That's why designer stores have to sell at much higher prices if they want to make profit at all. Yet Russian fashion victims don't care: They want to buy whatever it costs - and now. To keep up-to-date they flock to the GUM department store, its location alone being quite impressive. Located in the immediate vicinity of the Red Square, the GUM offers luxury shopping in the purest sense. Those who have a shop here have made it, next to Armani, Jil Sander and Max Mara. Already when looking in the shop windows you are filled with wonder and awe. Inside, you get anything that is noble and exclusive: chronographs by Chaumet, leather by Ferragamo, jewellery by Dior. If you don't get bankrupt here, you're either a millionaire or a thief.
STAY in Moscow: Pearl Suite
Cheap accommodation in Moscow? Well, there are not many options. You either reside in the centre at high prices, or you reside on the outskirts, which means one-hour travel to the sights and sleeping in the outdated ambience of Soviet times. We have found an alternative, something in between so to speak. The apartment New Arbat Pearl Suite is located close to the centre, it's newly furnished and rather cheap. Seen from outside the grey building offers nothing to get enthusiastic about but inside a surprise is waiting. The holiday apartment has everything you need: a washing machine, a fully equipped kitchen, bright and friendly furniture and a beautiful bath. But there is only one room, so forget about your friends and just come with your spouse. There's a supermarket just around the corner but if you feel like eating visit the district that comes next. The New Arbat Street is brimming with noble boutiques, casinos and pubs. One night at the apartment cost 149 Euros.
SEE in Moscow: Ballet Festivalred|guide Moscow
While France invented them, the Russians are the true heroes in tights. If you go to Moscow, don't miss ballet. The Summer Ballet Festival, for example, proves over a period of two months that one can do anything on tiptoes. Only the best ensembles are admitted here: the Russian State Ballet, the National Russian Vozrozhdenie Ballet, too. And when all of them perform the dying swan onstage, the Symphony Orchestra plays the music in the time of the tutu. The aim of the summer ballet is to combine old classics with new choreography and thus attracting a younger audience. The audience is allowed to come in jeans, only shorts and flip-flops are taboo. The program is standard: Swan Lake is always in fashion in Moscow, the Nutcracker is an evergreen and during the Cinderella performance you can follow the plot even without a programme. What's the thrill then? The dancers are the absolute masters of their art, the pros in twisting, the dancing stars of their profession. So what are you waiting for? Get yourself a ticket!