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Revisiting: The Literaturhaus


Snow suits the Literaturhaus. The light in the conservatory goes slate-blue at cake time. We lift flutes of sparkling wine (it's Christmas Eve) and watch snow drift into piles on the windowsill.


At breakfast-time, too, the rooms are hopping, but the generosity of space in this stately villa absorbs the noise. I have a crisp rösti topped with bacon and fried eggs; my friend orders the scrambled eggs. The clientele is that ballyhooed Charlottenburg mix, staid or sleek (new APC next door!), of young and old. 


When the waiter brings S colored pencils in a cloth roll, the tips are all sharp.



The simple bistro dishes are solidly prepared. A chestnut soup, half cream, half air, was outstanding. The other day, reunited after a weekend away, we sat beneath the high windows and celebrated with slices of Torte (fluffy poppyseed custard, mocha-caramel Baumkuchen, raspberry yogurt).


The cellar is a bookshop, replete with small-press gems.


Upstairs there are readings, of course; the International Mahler Orchestra does a chamber music series. This Saturday the music will travel, with a three-part concert (Purcell, Schubert, Brahms) moving between three rooms of the Literaturhaus.

PS: Sun suits the Literaturhaus too, of course, if it comes: light filters through leaves in the vast garden, the fountain tinkles. 

PPS: Tranquil saunas in West Berlin to recommend? 


Literaturhaus, Fasanenstraße 23, Berlin-Charlottenburg (map). Villa with cafe, bookshop, garden.


Love the light in the first photo! Makes me miss those short winter days!

I love that place, so unusual for Berlin, it always feels like a trip to another, more "bourgeois" city. I grew up in Charlottenburg but don't like saunas, so no sauna recommendations from me, sorry...

Lena, I know, I never did either, but there was one in our hotel on Usedom that was always empty, and the hot air did wonders for my lingering cold. It's true, I'm so taken by these places where you feel you've stepped through a secret door. (In fact, after our cake we wandered the garden door and discovered all manner of sculpture in the back gardens of the neighboring galleries and museum.)

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