While hotel rooms are fairly easy to come by in Hamburg-there are some 26,000 guest beds in the city to accommodate roughly 2.4 million guests annually-inexpensive ones, unfortunately, are scarce.
This stately white house on the Alster was built in 1912 and maintains an intimate, romantic atmosphere in a central location near the main train station.
The Prem's lobby, done in marble floors with deep red walls, leads into a comfortable lounge that faces the lake. At the back of the building, the house restaurant, decorated in slate blue and peach tones and flooded with morning sunlight, stretches into a lush garden. The adjoining Swiss Chalet restaurant, with its pine walls and benches, copper pots, and upholstered chairs, offers fondues and other traditional Swiss dishes.
Don't be deceived by the Prem's stark white hallways, colored only by the occasional Chagall print. All 53 rooms are individually decorated in one of two distinct styles: antique or modern. Room Number 106 is lavishly adorned with deep-colored floral linens and white walls with Baroque era gold accents. An elegant veil floats over the queen bed. The bath is decorated in black marble and features both tub and shower.
By contrast, room Number 203, with teal carpet and king-sized bed, offers simpler, but still antique decor. A balcony presents a view of the lake; the bath is relatively small with a shower stall and brass fixtures.
For a more contemporary feel, request Number 204. This double is large enough to be billed as a junior suite, and with its garden view, is quieter than lakeside rooms.
Daily Rates: Doubles €207.
Contact: An der Alster 8-10, D-20099 Hamburg, tel. +49/040/2417 28-8, fax 280 38 15. Toll-free reservations: 800-457-4000.
Rating: Quality 18/20, Value 15/20