If the vibrant cultural, culinary, and design world of Berlin interests you, the Cee Cee newsletter should be appearing in your inbox every Thursday. Written by design-oriented tastemakers Nina and Sven, the weekly missive covers everything from small new cafes to pop-up shops peddling home design or vintage goods. Even if you don’t have a trip to Berlin planned (“don’t come now,” Nina told me, “it’s COLD!”), it’s perfect wanderlust fodder. And if you are planning a trip, be sure to visit the Highlights Nina and Sven posted on AFAR.com—you’ll want to hit all those spots.
Nina filled out our travel questionnaire—which includes even more helpful tips to save for your next trip to Berlin (or Sri Lanka).
Right now I’m in Berlin-Neukölln, Berlin’s most exciting neighborhood.
Though I would much prefer to be in Copenhagen, one of my favorite cities in Europe. Or in Manhattan’s Chinatown visiting friends.
Occupation: I’m a fashion/design/travel editor and writer (www.ninatrippel.net) and, jointly with Sven Hausherr, founder of Cee Cee, the weekly Berlin newsletter.
My next trip is to Stockholm, to visit one of my dearest friends. To me, the best reason to travel is to see my friends across the globe and jointly discover their city. But Stockholm is also a great place to watch nicely dressed people.
My last trip took me to Frankfurt am Main, a city most people know only by its airport, but it actually has a lot to offer, such as great art spots like the Museum für Moderne Kunst, Frankfurter Kunstverein or Schirn.
A multi-colored, handwoven scarf from Creel, a village in the Copper Canyon in Mexico, is my most treasured travel souvenir. And EVERYONE asks where I got it from.
Favorite hotel: Palm Villa, in Mirissa, Sri Lanka. A lovely little spot, right by the sea. Calm and peaceful. A mix of Sri Lankan and European flair. Just right.
Favorite restaurant: That’s ever-changing. But I currently love Sala da Mangiare in my neighborhood, Neukölln. Thanks to owner Mauro it feels like being at a friend’s place in Italy for a moment.
Favorite shopping destination: Mulackstrasse in Berlin’s district Mitte. There are plenty of lovely shops, vintage boutiques to browse, and local designers to discover.
Favorite local style/most stylish place: the Plus One Berlin Apartment is a unique and stylish place to stay in Berlin. The interior, partly made with vintage wood, was made-to-measure.
iPhone or DSLR? I currently love disposable cameras.
Plugged-in or unplugged? Plugged-in in cities. Unplugged in the countryside.
Public transportation, cab, or bike? Bike, whenever possible.
If you’re in Berlin in spring, don’t miss the “Umland” (the hinterlands of the city), there are lovely lakes to take a dip.
Staying at a private accommodation is the best way/place to connect with locals.
Five things you can’t travel without: a hooded jacket, a scarf, ear plugs, German Band-Aids (sorry, but they are simply the best) and Dr. Hauschka lip balm.
Jet lag: Nap, power through, pills, or herbal remedies? Power through.
Favorite airport and why? Frankfurt feels like home: My dad used to be a flight engineer, my mom was a stewardess. I’ve been there a trillion times.
First thing you do when you get home: Check my mailbox.
Where do you always take out-of-town friends? To Tempelhofer Freiheit, the former airport turned park.
Favorite travel book: A notebook.
Best memory of a trip with kids—either from your own childhood or with your own kids: Riding across California and Arizona in a motor home with my parents and my sister…the Grand Canyon and Las Vegas! Wow!
Biggest travel mistake? Choosing a cheap airline…
If I had a whole month to travel, I would go to Buenos Aires.
If I had a whole year to travel, I would go to Australia, New Zealand, the Philippines…
Favorite foreign word or phrase: Shalom & salaam alaikum!
Favorite foreign tradition: A Taiwanese tea ceremony.
Travel has taught me that I’m just one out of 7 billion. There are sooo many people on this planet.