Florale Welten: posies and pumpkins
The Concorde, dreamt up by architect Jan Kleihues, is a stylish hotel full of great artwork and sleek design. So when it comes to the finishing touches, the little details, such as flowers, only the best will do. Florale Welten, the florists just around the corner from the hotel on the Nürnberger Straße, regularly deck the hotel out with fresh flowers. They were responsible, for example, for the table decorations – an explosion of fuchsias and lilacs, pinks and peaches – which caught my attention at the Fresh & French blog launch party way back in June. This week I decided to pay our friendly neighbourhood florists a visit to find out more.
The store is much bigger than I imagined, with two entrances and floor-to-ceiling windows revealing a cavernous interior. Brightly coloured potted plants spill out onto the pavement, next to simple white tealight lanterns and wicker baskets swollen with pumpkins.
I step inside and begin to explore the first room, which contains, besides some smart-looking houseplants, a variety of decorations for the home or garden; from smokey black statues to elegant glass vases, silver picture frames to polished seashells. Although the shop is large, the selection isn’t overwhelming; it’s obvious that a lot of thought has gone into choosing each item.
I step into the adjoining room, where chandeliers hang from the ceiling and an island of white stone and ceramic pots full of fresh cut flowers lies in the centre. As I get closer I realise that, in amongst the chrysanthemums and orchids, there are more pumpkins, this time much smaller and huddled together, as well as what look like marrows, artistically gnarled and spilling over the side of their ornate pot.
By now, the friendly assistant has finished serving his customers and is ready to show me round the back, where a surprisingly large team of florists are beavering away. Colourful twine, springy moss and discarded secateurs litter the surfaces. Everybody is hard at work, preparing arrangements for weddings or congresses, homes or workplaces. These are the people who, each week, arrive at the Concorde with flowers for the lobby, the Brasserie Le Faubourg and the VIP area. No two weeks are ever the same, and they’re not afraid to be creative. They’ve been arranging flowers for the hotel since it first opened back in 2005.
I decide to leave them to their work, and make the short walk back to the hotel for a nice hot latte in the lobby and a closer look at this week’s flowers.