In the spacious counter area the Gerling Group’s policy holders once paid their insurance premiums. Photo: Steve Herud
Originally the Gerling Insurance Group’s administration building, this spectacular circular construction in Cologne’s Friesen district now accommodates the guests of the 25hours Hotel Köln The Circle. Spread across floors one to seven, 207 rooms are available in a range of inspired themes. The renovation and comprehensive redesign were the work of the Cologne-based architecture firm O&O Baukunst.
The historic building inspired the hotel’s developers to engage intensively with the era of Germany’s economic miracle in the fifties and sixties and with the technological utopias conceived during that period. “After the successful opening of our new build in Düsseldorf, we’re proud to have breathed new life into such a legendary building in Cologne,” explains 25hours CEO Christoph Hoffmann.
Two circles - two worlds: retro style and future vision
The Inner Circle rooms with want to create a futuristic ambience, while the Outer Circle rooms offer a relaxed, retro atmosphere. Photo: Steve Herud
In collaboration with 25hours, the creative team from Studio Aisslinger in Berlin developed an innovative design concept for the listed building. While the Inner Circle rooms with their open-plan layout create a futuristic ambience, the Outer Circle rooms are flooded with light and offer a relaxed, retro atmosphere. Here, the bathrooms are located behind the beds and give guests a panoramic view of the city from the shower. The spacious counter area, where the Gerling Group’s policy holders once paid their insurance premiums, now houses a cafe, kiosk, bike shop, and co-working spaces for leisurely browsing, working and relaxing in a welcoming setting.
The restaurant and bar located on the 8th floor push the retro-futuristic look of The Circle to the extreme, with a penthouse level added to the historic building to accommodate the design. Among hanging plants, the celebrated Rhineland way of life is reinterpreted by the Molcho family. At NENI Cologne, they serve eclectic cuisine from the eastern Mediterranean.
Relaxed atmosphere with a view of Cologne’s cathedral
The guests can enjoy unique views of Cologne’s cathedral from every seat. Photo: Steve Herud
From its floor-to-ceiling windows and surrounding terrace, guests can enjoy unique views of Cologne’s cathedral from every seat. By contrast, the Monkey Bar located in the opposite side of the rotunda aims to provide a charming retreat that’s ideal for conversations or simply for relaxation. The creative mind behind the Monkey Bar is the internationally acclaimed barkeeper from Hamburg, Jörg Meyer.
25hours Hotel The Circle enjoys a central location in the Friesen district in the heart of Cologne’s Gerling Quarter, one of the city’s largest architectural monuments. Guests have a choice of 207 rooms in various categories and sizes, furnished to meet all the 25hours standards that urban nomads appreciate: comfortable beds for the best-quality sleep, air conditioning, sustainable toiletries, flat-screen TV, minibar, UE Boom Bluetooth speaker and free high-speed Wi-Fi.