Doubles from: $110 to $150
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Reviewed by EuroCheapo.com Editors
With a long history of providing “shelter-plus,” the splurge-worthy Hotel-Pension Dittberner stands out from the pension crowd with its museum-like breakfast room, old-fashioned library and light- and art-filled rooms. Tastemakers (including Wallpaper Magazine) have showered accolades on the Dittberner, but the attention hasn’t gone to the owners’ heads—they still make guests of all stripes feel welcome.
Pros: Gorgeous aesthetic. Friendly proprietors. Sweet history.
Cons: A bit pricey. Somewhat far from most tourist attractions. Staff can sometimes be surly. The older building can be noisy.
The pension has been a haven of hospitality since before the second World War. It all began in 1936, when sisters Anne-Louise and Wally Dittberner began offering accommodation for elderly women. As their guests were too infirm to make it to air-raid shelters during the war, Frau Wally took responsibility for their safety, and for comforting them through terrifying air raids.
Following the war, the Dittberner’s niece assisted in the restoration of the pension and building, which had been badly damaged by bombs. The pension became a sort of meeting place for displaced persons, who would return to see what was left of their former homes, and would gather to spend evenings in the Dittberner, reminiscing about pre-war Berlin. Elly Lange shepherded the pension throughout the hard Cold War years, and she and her husband Ludwig (who curates the hotel’s artwork) are still friendly fixtures in this special Berlin property.
The word "huge" is key in describing the Dittberner’s 21 plush and tasteful rooms. In addition to carefully selected artwork, they include big beds with fluffy white comforters, leather chairs and/or couches, a desk and plenty of storage space. Some of the largest rooms include a divan that could serve as an extra bed.
We were sorry that we couldn't visit the antiques-filled suite this time around (it’s always booked solid), but we did fall in love with a palatial, Asian-themed room with a little glassed-in winter garden facing the inner courtyard.
All rooms are outfitted with a TV, phone, safe and free wired Internet.
Tiled in white, the private bathrooms are almost the size of small hotel rooms. Many have bathtubs (ask ahead), and toiletries and a hair dryer are provided.
The Hotel-Pension Dittberner has a handful of lounges and seating areas. The small library with a little laptop nook is cozy, and the breakfast room is regal, with white wood-paneled walls, a reproduced Egyptian relief, and other impressive artifacts. Our favorite space, however, is the lobby—its cobalt blue ceiling, offset with white molding and illuminated by a crystal chandelier, is downright sophisticated.
The stunning mansion that houses the Dittberner is also home to the Hotel-Pension Modena, another EuroCheapo pick. Admittedly a bit less luxurious, this simple property is still terribly comfortable (and quite a bit cheaper).
Breakfast is included in the room rate. Wired Internet is available in the rooms and common areas, free of charge.
With double rates hovering around €99 in low season, the Pension Dittberner is definitely not a steal, especially in Berlin where there is no shortage of cheap (and perfectly fine) hotels. This is a hotel that falls into the category we call “Classy Cheapo,” a set reserved for those special few hotels with extra charm.
While the Dittberner falls outside our standard price guidelines for Berlin, it’s still quite affordable for the experience you’re getting—and we deem it worth the splurge for those looking for something special.
One of the benefits, and drawbacks, of the Hotel-Pension Dittberner is its location on a quiet street. Without a U-bahn or S-bahn station in close vicinity, you'll have a peaceful night's sleep, but the flip side is that the two closest public transportation stops (the "Adenauerplatz" U-Bahn and the "Savignyplatz" S-bahn) are about a half a mile away by foot. There are, however, several nearby buses.
Note: This hotel was visited by a EuroCheapo editor and is recommended based on cleanliness, location, price and overall quality. EuroCheapo did not charge this hotel to be listed.
- Breakfast Included
- Wi-Fi: Free
- Bathroom: Private
- Cable TV
- Handicap accessible rooms
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About the Hotel-Pension Dittberner neighborhood
The Kufürstendamm, or Ku'Damm, is Berlin's major shopping boulevard, the commercial heart of the former West Berlin. It features the utterly massive KaDeWe department store and about three million other retail experiences. Ok, we exaggerate, but not by much. For our purposes here, we claim hotels within a block or two of the Ku'Damm as "near." To the north is Charlottenburg and to the south is Wilmersdorf.