Welcome to the Club Étoile
German Romantic writer Jean Paul once wrote, ”Berlin is more a continent than a city.” These words, though a couple of centuries old, have never rung truer. Whether you have lived here all your life, or are just visiting for a few days, you can’t escape the feeling that you may never fully get to grips with the city. It’s one of the best and one of the worst things about Berlin. To fully appreciate the scale, and also see why it is known as the city that never sleeps, you need to get up high. I think I know just the place…
The Club Étoile is an exclusive area hidden away at the top of the Hotel Concorde. Anybody who books into one of the fabulous Deluxe Suite or Executive Rooms on the 10th and 11th floor can expect to be treated like a VIP, with a whole host of perks and services. Privacy, comfort, luxury, bespoke service – these are just some of the reasons guests love the Club Étoile, but for me, the best bit has to be access to the stunning Club Étoile lounge, pictured below. This week I was invited up to the lounge to chat to the friendly staff about what makes a stay in the Club Étoile so special.
I arrive at the main reception downstairs and am immediately escorted to the lift. The receptionist inserts a flat key into the hole next to the button for the 11th floor and we shoot upwards. I feel a bit like Charlie Bucket in the great glass elevator. When the doors open, I am shown down the corridor to the friendly concierge sitting behind the desk at the entrance to the Lounge. “Welcome to the Club Étoile,” he says, “this is where our guests are brought to check in. They can help themselves to the buffet and drinks in the Club Étoile Lounge before we show them to their room; it’s hassle-free and just what you need after a long journey.”
I’m keen to see the view, or rather views, from the windows which curve around the edge of the lounge and spend some time admiring the sunset and trying to identify the various spires and domes in the distance. When I finally turn my attention to the lounge itself, I see that it is designed in the typical Concorde style: effortlessly elegant and spacious, with a painting by Junior Toscanelli hanging on the back wall. I start chatting to another member of staff about what else you can expect from a stay in the Club Étoile. “I think one of the biggest luxuries when travelling is having somebody to take care of the organisational side so you can concentrate on enjoying yourself. That’s why our concierge team goes out of their way to fulfill every guest’s specific needs and requests, from booking tickets for a play to checking them in online for their flight.”
“Then there’s the late check-out ’til 4pm, the morning newspapers and of course the catering service in the lounge… from an extended continental breakfast spread to homemade cakes to a snack buffet in the evening with small appetisers, cheese platter, fresh baguette and an open bar with champagne, wine, gin, Baileys… It’s all about making the guest feel at home, and of course they’re welcome to bring guests up to the lounge.” I can’t imagine a better way to enjoy breakfast than whilst looking out over the city. On my way back to the lift I walk past the Miss.Tic mural on the wall and hope I will have an excuse to come back soon.