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GKD: Shining Highlight In Hamburg

Metallic mesh lends a special shine to a sky bar at the city’s port

The residents of Hamburg often refer to their port as the gateway to the world – and are clearly proud of this international trade and tourism hub. Even those not arriving by ship should make sure they do not leave the city without first seeing the port – ideally from above! Hamburg’s Hafenkrone port cityscape lies between the cult St. Pauli district and the jetties. It is a virtually new district with three skyscrapers that stretch up like the points of a crown. The most westerly of these buildings is the Empire Riverside Hotel, which was designed by renowned London architect David Chipperfield and opened in 2007. With its “20up” cocktail bar, set at a height of around 90 metres, it attracts both tourists and residents of the city. Beside the fantastic views on offer, the bar impresses with its wall cladding, consisting of 200 square metres of “Mandarin” bronze metallic mesh from GKD – Gebr. Kufferath AG.

Located some 20 storeys above Hamburg’s port, the bar of the hotel has become the location in the city. At the weekend, visitors queue up for the lift up to the 20th floor and enjoy the incredible view while sipping on a cosmopolitan or caipirinha – or even one of the local specialities such as “Hakuna Matata” and “St. Pauli Killer”. The 7-metre high panorama windows provide unimpaired views in three directions. Those not afraid of heights can enjoy a great view over the Speicherstadt warehouse district, the jetties, the “The Lion King” musical theatre, the port’s tankers and cranes, all the way to the Elbe river beach. Architect David Chipperfield also worked wonders with the interior design of the hotel. While the completely glazed exterior walls grant unrestricted views, the bar’s internal walls are fully clad from floor to ceiling in GKD’s “Mandarin” bronze metallic mesh. 56 rectangular panels of the fine cable mesh form a symmetrical surface with a luxurious look and feel here. Small spotlights in the ceiling provide targeted illumination of the metallic mesh and convert the wall cladding into an indirect source of shimmering, golden light at twilight. The contrast with the black synthetic stone floor serves to underline this effect, also providing those guests of “20up” who do not like heights with a shining highlight they can enjoy in Hamburg.

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