Checking in to Chateau Royal in Berlin

Hotel connoisseur and writer Regitse Cecillie Rosenvinge was in Berlin to check out Château Royal – the boutique hotel making a statement in the German capital…

bed in guestroom at Chateau Royal berlin set in wooden back wall with shelf and light detail

Arriving on a cold, windy afternoon, Château Royal opened its doors to an unapologetically warm welcome and a peek inside its rich history and design story.

view from bar into lobby at Chateau Royal Berlin

Image credit: Château Royal

Berlin. The rebellious capital of Europe. Although I have lived in the city for five years, I still find it chaotic, overwhelming, eclectic – and quite wonderful. The former French Culture Minister, Jack Lang, once said; “Paris is always Paris, but Berlin is never Berlin”, and I tend to agree with him. Hence, I was both curious and excited to finally be able to stay at one of the city’s newest design boutique hotel addition, Château Royal.

Holding five stars and a place in the Michelin guide, the cheeky yet chic brainchild of local restaurateurs Stephan Landwehr and Moritz Estermann (the guys behind the Berlin institution ‘Grill Royal’), and Icelandic chef Victoria Eliasdottír, Chateau Royal is in many ways a breath of fresh air on Berlin’s hotel scene.

The ‘chateau’, which really has nothing to do with a chateau but instead a former Stazi spy base, is made up of two historical buildings from 1850 and 1910. The hotel is designed by renowned British architect and Hotel Designs’ Brit List Awards 2022 winner for The Outstanding Contribution to the Hospitality Industry,  David Chipperfield and Studio Irina Kromayer – the result is a gorgeous detail-obsessed hymn to Berlin’s heyday at the turn of the 19th century.

hotel guestroom at Chateau Royal with graffiti on wall above the bed

Image credit: Château Royal

As I entered the lobby, checked in at the reception desk and made my way to the second floor, I was immediately captured by the colourful tiles, marble and the herringbone parquet floors oozing Berlin bohemia with a contemporary twist. The design details reminded me of a scene from the roaring 20s, Thomas Mann and Marlene Dietrich – I am sure last-mentioned characters would have loved it here.

bathroom in chateau Royal with centred freestanding period bath

Image credit: Château Royal

Contemporary design plays a vital role at Chateau Royal. Everywhere you look, from the rooms to the public spaces, you will find art installations, paintings and creative work made by both famous and unknown artists – all with strong ties to Berlin. Even the staircase connecting the 101 rooms allocated on five floors, includes a wall of colourful glass. The term ‘organised playfulness’ comes to mind. All rooms feature custom-made furniture produced exclusively for the hotel.

central courtyard and garden at Chateau Royal Berlin

Image credit: Château Royal

The heart of the premises is the cosy lobby area, which is connected to the cocktail bar and, a bit further on, the restaurant Dottír led by head chef Elena Müller. The cuisine is seasonal and contemporary with an occasional twist of Berlin, but my favorite part of the gastronomical chapter is the breakfast offering. You can enjoy your made-to-order eggs benedict and pancakes in the airy winter garden or in the adjacent living rooms with a view to the playful neon installation by artist Karl Holmqvist hovering over the buffet.

Visiting Chateau Royal is a pleasant surprise and, in many ways, like visiting an artsy and extremely classy friend. With a central location in Berlin Mitte, just a few steps away from Unter den Linden and Brandenburger Tor, the hotel remains one of Berlin’s hot spots to meet, drink, dine and sleep – even two years after its opening.

I know I’ll be back soon.

Main image credit: Château Royal