Subject: Berlin in a week ...
Dear Georgia and other Ziners,

I have finally booked a room at the Askanischer Hof (Linda, I also checked that hotel out and I wanted to try it, they have been quite nice and fast when answering my queries). Last year I spent two weeks in that amazing city, and I have been thinking of staying this year in the East. I was specially interested in the area surrounding the Hackeschen H#fe, but my first option, the Hotel Hackescher Markt, was booked out during the time of my stay. At the end, I opted for the Ku´Damm because it will come handy for my travel up to Hamburg to visit some friends (and shortly after booking, the Westin Grand came up with a great offer of 100 Euro per night ...). Anyway, the public transport in Berlin is great, so the only big problem will be to dress warmly (while going carry-on ...).

The Postdamer Platz area is like a candy shop for a lover of modern architecture. I bought a great book called Architecture in Berlin last year. It lists the 100 most important buildings and urban settings in Berlin, anything from the Middle Ages, Schinkel to Daniel Liebeskind, and I am planning on carrying it with me during my stay. These books can be bought at the BerlinOnline bookshop : http://tinyurl.com/vzk3

Another interesting place (and near the Postdamer Platz) is the Martin-Gropius-Bau. It was the former Museum of Arts and Crafts, and its name comes from its architect, the great-uncle of the great Walter Gropius. I was able to watch there a moving photography exhibition about 9/11 last year, This is New York. This year I am planning on visiting their current exhibition Berlin-Moscow 1950-2000, before it leaves for the Gallery Tretiakof in Moscow.

And I did a very easy booking for the Staatsoper. I will be watching and listening to Mozart´s Le nozze di Figaro on the 4th of December. I booked it online, and 5 days later I received the ticket per post at home : http://www.staatsoper-berlin.org/en/intro.htm

So ... if anyone will be in Berlin between the 2nd and the 4th of December (I am leaving on the 5th for Hamburg, to stay with friends), I´ll be more than happy to meet you. We can do something traditional (there are lots of Christmas Markets) or visit some of the new art galleries in the East

Kind regards,

Covadonga Bilbao - Spain