The Louis C. Jacob Hotel: A Sanctuary of Beauty on the Elbe

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If you travel to Northern Germany, make sure to visit a very special hotel in Hamburg called the Hotel Louis C.Jacob. While visiting Hamburg to witness the opening of the stunning new Elbphilamonie, I had the most wonderful surprise in discovering this five-star gem of a hotel.

Located away from the hustle-and-bustle of Hamburg in one of its most peaceful neighborhoods along the Elbe River, the Nienstedten, this German hotel feels like an invitation to step back to a time before technology put its stamp on every aspect of our life. Like a sanctuary, it transports you psychologically away from the pressures of contemporary life.

The 240-year-old hotel has the charm of a country inn but all the luxuries of a contemporary residence. The entrance hall sets the tone with its Persian carpets, polished old wooden floors, and antique furniture. Timeless decorative elements such as a stunning cupboard with china plates and leather-bound books impart the distinguished atmosphere of a 19th-century mansion. This is an abode for a very sophisticated public that appreciates historic Hamburg’s understated style.

Founded by French Huguenot Daniel Louis Jacques, who sought refuge on the Elbe from the turmoil of the French Revolution in 1781, this was a famous wine restaurant until the end of the 19th century – then Louis Carl Jacob, the founder’s grandson, converted it into a highly-regarded hotel. Prestigious guests from the world of politics, nobility, and high society stayed at the Jacob, which is aptly illustrated in Max Liebermann’s original “Lime Tree Terrace” painting found in the lovely lounge next to the restaurant.

The staff at the reception is very courteous and invested in making you feel as welcome as possible. Extremely genuine, they take the time to listen to your requests and try their best to make you feel as welcome and comfortable as possible. My suite was in the wing of the hotel across the street from the historical main building. You mysteriously enter through a majestic door with a heavy key, then walk through a hallway fashioned in Art Nouveau-style with stenciled wallpaper and a very high ceiling. I was amazed to discover original prints of European and American masters in bright colors everywhere in the residence, including Alexander Calder’s work.

My suite included a foyer, a drawing room with an elegant sofa, a small office area with a genuine antique desk, fine armchairs, and whimsical trompe l’oeil wallpaper featuring a wall full of books. A bottle with two crystal glasses contained fine port. Though the style is old Hamburg, the room is modern and fresh looking, with copious light pouring through the large windows. In the back, discover a very large luxe bathroom with amenities in fine glass jars, a bath and shower, and two wide sinks. The bedroom looks nothing less than inviting with its fine silky fabrics in soft dreamy colors.


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In the evening, dine in the excellent Louis Jacob restaurant and savor the renowned cuisine of chef Thomas Martin and his team, then sit quietly by the fire in a room filled with art and enjoy an after-dinner drink in a cozy environment. Don’t miss the opportunity to visit the oldest wine cellar in Hamburg lurking in an old stone room beneath the hotel. It had been forgotten and recently rediscovered, and is one of the most intriguing things about this charming hotel.

In the morning expect an exquisitely presented breakfast with fine cutlery and glassware, fresh goods such as fish, various types of bread, cheese, and unique breakfast delicacies such as yogurts, delicious juices, sparkling water, and champagne.The environment in the room is so serene and tasteful that you feel like you’re attending a high society event.

Guests at the Louis C. Jacob are known to always return. Some even make it their second home. Sought after by A-list guests in search of privacy, it offers extreme discretion in a dreamlike environment.

Special packages are organized throughout the year, including a stay at the hotel combined with reservations for the new unique Elbphilharmonie concert hall, and musical shows from local theaters. The hotel also organizes special farewell parties when the Queen Mary sails from Hamburg. After a dinner of baked beans, porridge, and other typical British fare, the guests and Jacob staff gather on the famous Lime Tree Terrace to bid farewell to the majestic boat – as large sheets are waved out of all the hotel room windows. You can also rent the hotel’s own sail boat for a special summer party on the Elbe. Check the website to discover more information about the hotel and its calendar of events at www.http://hotel-jacob.de/en/

Recipient of many awards, the Hotel Louis Jacob is an address that you mustn’t miss if you visit Hamburg. Whether you’re looking for old world charm or five-star accommodations on the Elbe, this unique abode has it all.

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