Hamburg is a magnificent choice for a German vacation, and there are few European destinations as exciting as Germany’s second-largest city!
Hamburg is known for its Hanseatic history, and this North German powerhouse was (and still is) one of Europe’s most important trading ports. This is a city of waterways, and ships, harbors, and warehouses still line Hamburg’s canals and docks today.
That might sound industrial, but Hamburg has expertly revitalized its image. The city’s famous red brick and timber warehouses are protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and many of those warehouses have been retrofitted and redesigned into masterful buildings like the Elbphilharmonie, where you can watch concerts and take in the culture.
This is a city with character. There are unique museums to visit – like Miniature Wonderland, where you’ll find the largest model railway in the world – as well as more traditional institutions like the International Maritime Museum and the Altonaer Museum.
Explore the city, and you’ll find world-class restaurants, quirky bars, and trendy cafes. And, if that’s not enough, you’re surrounded by lakes, riverside trails, and tons of opportunities for outdoor adventure in this unique environment where nature meets the urban.
The best hotels in Hamburg have character, too. You’ll find beautiful boutique retreats overlooking the Alster Lake, repurposed red brick warehouses that have been turned into design hotels, and timeless, five-star classics that haven’t aged in over a century. If you’re planning a trip to northern Germany, keep reading, as we explain where to stay in Hamburg.
Don’t forget to check out our web story: The 12 Best Hotels in Hamburg, Germany
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Where to stay in Hamburg
Hamburg is like an industrialized Venice, and we think that’s kind of cool! This is a city that doesn’t do normal, and you’ll love the unique array of classic hotels that sit alongside repurposed warehouses across Hamburg. With so many waterways, rivers, lakes, and canals, you can also guarantee that the best hotels in Hamburg are going to offer a beautiful waterside view!
The city’s traditional center is focused between the manmade Inner Alster Lake and the northern banks of the River Elbe. It’s a large area, complete with historic buildings, shopping streets, museums, churches, and everything else you’d expect from an old German city. It’s also where you’ll find many of Hamburg’s best hotels – and many of those offer views over the lake.
Among Hamburg’s harbors and dockland infrastructure, you can find the regenerated HafenCity, which is the most exciting place to stay. HafenCity is home to the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Speicherstadt, or Warehouse City, where there’s an impressive array of red brick architecture.
It’s a unique part of the city, and you’ll find fascinating regeneration projects to discover and unique hotels to stay in. Further afield, there are several high-end hotels located along the banks of the River Elbe. These retreats are far enough away to feel like you’re in the countryside but close enough to cycle into the city!
Whether you’re planning a weekend getaway or a weeklong excursion, we’ve got you covered with our list of the best boutique hotels in Hamburg!
The 12 Best Hotels in Hamburg, Germany
1. Fairmont Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten
The Fairmont Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten knows a thing or two about hospitality because Hamburg’s most luxurious hotel has been welcoming guests since 1897! This is one of the city’s oldest and best hotels, and you’ll feel like European nobility when you book a weekend stay in a deluxe room or luxury suite.
Let’s start with the architecture. We know you’re going to love the grand, timeless facade of the Fairmont that overlooks the Inner Alster Lake in Hamburg. You’ll feel like you’re on a Victorian Grand Tour when you step through the opulent entranceway to be greeted by lavish chandeliers and period features.
Check into your room, and you’ll be met by soft, plush decor, warming tones, and boundless luxury. You’ll find historic paintings and photographs on the walls, alongside beautiful views of the lake or the hotel’s elegant courtyard. There are 156 rooms and suites at the Fairmont, but each manages to attain a level of individual character and charm that’s usually lost in larger hotels of this size.
Once you’ve settled into your room, you’ll find that you’re within easy walking distance of many of Hamburg’s major sightseeing attractions as well as the city’s glorious lakeside waterfront. Alternately, you can spend the day indulging in treatments and massages at the hotel’s spa, where you’ll also find a fitness center, saunas, relaxation lounges with wood-fired fireplaces, and a rooftop spa terrace with wonderful views of Hamburg.
The Fairmont matches luxury with fine dining cuisine, too. You’ll love browsing through the many menus at the hotel’s multiple restaurants and bars. Cafe Condi serves up a gourmet buffet breakfast, the Wohnalle serves afternoon tea, while the Jahreszeiten Grill cooks up barbecues and steaks.
You haven’t even tried the best, at this point, as you still have the 2-Michelin-starred Haerlin Restaurant (if you can get a table) as well as the fusion Japanese-Peruvian food of Nikkei Nine to try!
2. The Westin Hamburg
One of the most unique hotels in Hamburg is The Westin, which you’ll find inside the Elbphilharmonie, one of the city’s most impressive works of design and architecture.
The Elbphilharmonie is also a concert hall and cultural venue, and you’ll love how a large red brick warehouse overlooking the Elbe has been redesigned into a modern, architectural wonder.
The Westin is located within the tall glass superstructure that sits above the old red brick walls of this former warehouse in HafenCity. This means that you’ll enjoy marvelous views of this city’s revitalized port and harbor from your luxurious room.
In keeping with the post-modernist design, your room is sleek and contemporary, and you’ll love the minimalist approach, the floor-to-ceiling glass windows, and the bright colors and light tones. You’ll have The Westin’s “Heavenly Bed” and “Heavenly Bath” concept to enjoy nightly, while you can make use of the hotel’s indoor swimming pool, workout studio, and therapy rooms for a relaxing spa day.
You can drink and dine with a view at The Westin’s stylish BLICK Bar, which offers beautiful panoramas, expertly brewed coffee, and a fine selection of snacks. Dinner is served at Fang & Feld, where the chefs draw on centuries of Hanseatic culinary traditions to serve up fresh but historic North German cuisine.
3. The Fontenay
The Fontenay is one of the best Hamburg hotels, and you’ll instantly fall in love with its serene lakeside location as you enjoy spectacular views from the panoramic bar. The Fontenay Bar provides you with a 320-degree view of Alster Lake from the 6th floor. Even if you’re not staying here, you can enjoy cocktails or coffee in an unbeatable location.
It’s a wonderful introduction to The Fontenay, and you’ll soon realize that this is more than just a hotel. The Fontenay’s stunning, modern architecture is designed to impress with its sleek, rounded shapes and futuristic design. The hotel is close to the city but is still surrounded by an abundance of urban nature by the lake.
This is a five-star hotel, and those beautiful views continue in your luxury room, where you’re greeted by floor-to-ceiling glass windows. There’s stylish wood flooring, Peruvian-inspired art from Antonio Maro, and all the amenities you could ever need!
Best of all is the hotel’s rooftop spa, where you can swim in the indoor and outdoor pools, work out in the fitness and cycling suite, or just sit back on a lounger overlooking the city. As well as the Fontenay Bar, you can enjoy refreshments and weekend piano music in the Atrium Lounge, fine dining and panoramic views in the Lakeside Restaurant, and relaxed lunches and dinners in the Parkview Restaurant.
4. Tortue Hamburg
One of the best boutique hotels in Hamburg is Tortue Hamburg, where you might just find your new home away from home. This charming, colorful, and downright stylish hotel is located right in the center of Hamburg, and you’ll quickly fall for Tortue Hamburg’s unique, quirky, and refreshing concept.
That concept offers individually designed rooms that promote a sense of hominess, and every room at Tortue Hamburg features a living room area complete with a sofa and desk, in addition to the extra-long beds and marble bathrooms.
Staying at the Tortue Hamburg is a delightfully refined experience, particularly when you consider that this boutique hotel has two bars, in addition to two restaurants. The bars have a French-inspired sheen to them, and you’ll enjoy the mixology that goes on at both Bar Noir and Bar Bleu.
French class continues in the Brasserie, where you can enjoy French-inspired German dishes. Or, if you’re looking for something a little more unique to try, the Asian-inspired Jin Gui Restaurant is one of Hamburg’s most exciting fusion restaurants.
5. SIDE Design Hotel Hamburg
If you love cool styles and cool concepts, one of the best hotels in Hamburg is the SIDE Design Hotel. This newly renovated hotel focuses on sleek minimalism and contemporary design. You’ll immediately notice this when you step inside the futuristic 92-foot-high (28-meter-high) atrium that features its own light show.
The facade of the hotel is a mixture of simple glasswork and stone, while inside, the hotel’s interiors have been created by Matteo Thun, a renowned Italian designer. Rooms at this boutique hotel have been designed with this minimalist or “purist” style in mind, and you’ll enjoy the space, the functionality, and the sleek decor that awaits you upon check-in.
The colorful spa area and swimming pool are highlights of SIDE Design Hotel. You can spend your day enjoying spa treatments, relaxing in steam baths, or sweating it out in the sauna. You’ll find the Sky Lounge on the 8th floor of the hotel, while Argentine-inspired steaks are served in the hotel’s Meatery + Bar Restaurant.
6. Moxy Hamburg City
Moxy Hamburg City knows how to stand out, and that’s with industrial designs, bright purple neon signs, and public foosball tables. If you’re looking for something a little different during your stay in Hamburg, Moxy is the place to book!
Moxy Hamburg City is located between the Elbe and the Alster, and you’ll love how the traditional industrial exterior contrasts fabulously with the hotel’s unique, modern, and very purple designs.
Moxy Hamburg City’s public spaces – including work desks, lounge areas, and a bar – are utilitarian and useful, but at the same time, they are bright, vibrant, and very much out there. This is a lively, happening hotel, and you’ll find someone to chat with any time you order up a beer or an espresso martini in the Day Bar.
Rooms at Moxy Hamburg City are also utilitarian, at least at first glance. They are minimalist but sleek and comfortable, and you’ll appreciate the easy functionality of the room and the soft bedding after a day of sightseeing. The hotel has a small fitness area where you can work out on exercise bikes or lift a few weights, while the kitchen serves up sandwiches and snacks 24/7.
7. Movenpick Hotel Hamburg
Have you always wanted to stay in an old German water tower? Perhaps not, but in Hamburg, you can, and it’s one of the best hotel experiences in the city! The Movenpick Hotel Hamburg is a four-star hotel with a difference, primarily because it’s located within a repurposed 19th-century water tower overlooking Schanzenpark.
This is one of the most unique hotels in Hamburg, and we recommend booking an upper floor Tower Suite for spectacular views over the city. Rooms here are smart, with dark wood paneling and elegant bathrooms, as well as all the functional amenities you would expect from a modern Hamburg hotel.
This is a hotel that draws effortlessly on Hamburg’s industrial history, and you’ll love the red brickwork that extends throughout the lobby and into the bar and restaurant. The Movenpick Restaurant offers a refined menu with a focus on Swiss cuisine. You can even watch the chefs at work in the open kitchen or enjoy the bright views from the summer terrace.
Head below ground and into the water tower’s old cellars and vaults, and you’ll find the Movenpick’s famed Cave Bar. You’ll be surrounded by red brick walls as you order up a gin and tonic or ask the expert mixologists to craft you something special.
8. AMERON Hamburg Hotel Speicherstadt
The AMERON Hamburg Hotel Speicherstadt is easily one of the coolest hotels in Hamburg. You’ll find this boutique gem in the restored and revitalized Speicherstadt area, where you’ll be surrounded by waterways, heritage-listed timber warehouses, and tons of exciting things to do!
Speicherstadt means “Warehouse City” in English, and this area is known for its unique timber and red brick architecture. The whole district is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the AMERON Hamburg Hotel Speicherstadt is the only hotel within this protected area.
We think that makes this boutique hotel incredibly unique. Plus, you’ll love how one of the tall warehouses has been expertly repurposed and retrofitted into a luxury design hotel. From your hotel room balcony, you can gaze out across Warehouse City, watch boats traverse the canal below, and immerse yourself in Hamburg’s Hanseatic history.
Your room will be wonderfully retro, and the interior decor is designed to take you back to the 1950s. There’s beautiful wood paneling, historic artwork and photography, and vintage rotary telephones. The concept is nostalgic, but rest assured, comfort levels are extreme!
You can also relax in the Finnish sauna that’s a highlight of the hotel’s VITALITY Spa. The retro design continues in both the spa and in Cantinetta Ristorante, where you can order delectable Italian cuisine alongside expertly mixed cocktails.
9. 25hours Hotel Hamburg HafenCity
HafenCity is home to the coolest Hamburg hotels, including a stylish offering from the trendy 25hours Hotel brand. This unique hotel’s red brick exterior emulates the famous Hamburg warehouses of old, while the design concept inside is inspired by the city’s long tradition of sailing and trading.
The comfortable rooms at the 25hours Hotel Hamburg HafenCity evoke a sense of ocean travel, and you’ll love the retro cruise line memorabilia and the cabin-like decor that’s found throughout. The public spaces are a showcase of industrial-chic at its finest, while it’s hard not to love the rooftop “HafenSauna” that overlooks Hamburg’s harbor.
The hotel encourages guests to explore Hamburg either on foot or by bicycle, and you’ll receive plenty of top-quality local advice from the staff. Whenever you’re feeling hungry, head over to the hotel’s Heimat Restaurant, where North German cuisine is on the menu.
10. Hotel Atlantic Hamburg
One of the best hotels in Hamburg is the Hotel Atlantic, a classic Hamburg establishment that’s been an immovable feature of the skyline since it first opened in 1909. Overlooking Alster Lake, Hotel Atlantic was originally built as a luxury stay for cruise passengers docking overnight in the harbor.
Over a century later, Hotel Atlantic still draws the crowds with its grand imperial architecture. You’ll love the palatial inner courtyard, the stately rooms, and the lavish decor that’s found throughout.
In many ways, Hotel Atlantic has changed little in over a hundred years. You can still order timeless cocktails at the Atlantic Bar, just like the first guests did in 1909!
Rooms at Hotel Atlantic have that same Imperial-age look and feel, with their high, vaulted ceilings and classic furnishings, but you’ll be happy to know they’re also very modern. There’s stylish floral decor and furnishings, 49-inch televisions, and heated flooring in the marble bathrooms.
The hotel even boasts a private cinema room where you can watch classic films or the latest blockbusters. If that’s not enough, you’re going to appreciate a sauna or swim session at the Energy Clinic Spa after a day of sightseeing in Hamburg.
No stay at Hotel Atlantic is ever complete without a fine dining experience. The Atlantic Bar serves up a traditional afternoon tea in elegant surroundings, while the Atlantic Restaurant offers gourmet fusion food from around the world, cooked using locally sourced, seasonal ingredients.
11. GINN Hotel Hamburg Elbspeicher
If you love a bit of industrial chic, then the GINN Hotel Hamburg Elbspeicher is the perfect pick. This beautiful boutique hotel is located in Hamburg’s revitalized harbor area, within a suitably repurposed red brick warehouse that rises some eight floors above the district.
Head to the 8th floor when you first arrive, and you’ll be greeted by wonderful views over the River Elbe, as well as the surrounding post-industrial redevelopments that the city is so famous for.
Order up a gin to the 8th-floor terrace, take in the panoramic views, then settle into your stylish red brick and wood-paneled hotel room. Rooms at the GINN Hotel are definitely modern, and you’re going to love the mixture of technology and industrial character that’s quite unlike anywhere else in Hamburg.
GINN Hotel Hamburg Elbspeicher offers you a North German dining experience at the GINN Restaurant, where you’ll be able to sample some of the region’s best dishes. There’s a focus on locally sourced fish, meat, and vegetables, and you can rest assured that everything on the menu is fresh and seasonal.
12. Hotel Louis C. Jacob
If you’d love to stay outside of Hamburg’s city center, we can’t recommend Hotel Louis C. Jacob enough! This beautiful boutique hotel is just a half-hour drive from the city, and you’ll love its prime position on the scenic banks of the River Elbe.
But this five-star boutique gem is much more than its admittedly spectacular riverside location because Hotel Louis C. Jacob dates back to the 1780s and is one of Hamburg’s oldest hotels. There are 84 luxury rooms, the best of which offer views over the Elbe. There’s traditional wood flooring, portraits and paintings from the 18th and 19th centuries, and modern amenities like the much-needed Nespresso coffee maker.
You can take a stroll through the riverside gardens, cycle into Hamburg, or relax or work out in the wellness center. Remember to reserve a table at the Jacobs Restaurant, where you’ll be awed by the lavish crystal chandeliers and historic artwork. You may need the sommelier’s assistance to navigate the extensive wine cellar, while Michelin-starred Chef Thomas Martin serves up a menu of seasonal fish, game, and vegetable dishes.
That completes our list of the 12 best Hamburg hotels! Did we miss any cool boutique hotels in Hamburg? Comment below so we can add them to the list!
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Frequently Asked Questions
The Fairmont Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten knows a thing or two about hospitality – Hamburg’s most luxurious hotel has been welcoming guests since 1897! This is one of the city’s oldest and best hotels, and you’ll be treated like European nobility when you book a weekend stay in a deluxe room or luxury suite. You’ll feel like you’re on a Victorian Grand Tour when you step through the opulent entranceway to be greeted by lavish chandeliers and period features.
One of the best boutique hotels in Hamburg is Tortue Hamburg, where you’ll have a delightfully refined experience. Particularly when you consider that this boutique hotel has two bars, in addition to two restaurants. The bars have a French-inspired sheen to them, and you’ll enjoy the mixology that goes on at both Bar Noir and Bar Bleu. Enjoy French-inspired German dishes or try the Asian-inspired Jin Gui Restaurant which is one of Hamburg’s most exciting fusion restaurants.
Hotel Louis C. Jacob dates back to the 1780s and is one of Hamburg’s oldest hotels. This beautiful boutique hotel is just a half-hour drive from the city, and you’ll love its prime position on the scenic banks of the River Elbe. There’s traditional wood flooring, portraits and paintings from the 18th and 19th centuries, and modern amenities like the much-needed Nespresso coffee maker.
The Fontenay is one of the best Hamburg hotels, and you’ll instantly fall in love with its spectacular views from the panoramic bar! Best of all is the hotel’s rooftop spa, where you can swim in the indoor and outdoor pools, work out in the fitness and cycling suite, or just sit back on a lounger overlooking the city. You can enjoy refreshments and weekend piano music in the Atrium Lounge, fine dining and panoramic views in the Lakeside Restaurant, and relaxed lunches and dinners in the Parkview Restaurant.
The Movenpick Hotel Hamburg is a four-star hotel with a difference, primarily because it’s located within a repurposed 19th-century water tower overlooking Schanzenpark. This is one of the most unique hotels in Hamburg, and we recommend booking an upper-floor Tower Suite for spectacular views over the city.