REISE BANK: Exchange Currency, Cash AMEX Traveler's Checks
If you haven't done so at the airport & you need to exchange money while in town, REISE BANK has come in very handy at the beginning or end of trips ,as well as during day-long shopping marathons with friends vacationing from other countries. The money center is also convenient for folks staying for a longer time who are in need of Western Union money transfer services. With several locations throughout Hamburg, the two I have utilized most are those at Hamburg Hauptbahnhof (Main/Central Station, upstairs) and Altona Bahnhof (Regional Station, upstairs), where they provide money exchange into any currency, Western Union sending and receiving, phone calling cards, prepaid credit card services, and AMERICAN EXPRESS Traveler's Checks. Reise Bank also has extended travel related services connected to partnerships with booking.com and ADAC Travel.
REISE BANK AG - Hamburg Hauptbahnhof
Hachmannplatz 10, 200099 Hamburg, GE
+49 40 323 483
7:30 am- 10 pm
REISE BANK AG- Altona Bahnhof
Paul-Nevermann-Platz, 22765 Hamburg, GE
+49 40 390 3770
9:00 am- 2 pm, 3:45- 5:00 pm
REISE BANK AG - Dammtor Bahnhof (by University of Hamburg and international consulates)
Dag-Hammarskjöld-Platz, 20354 Hamburg, GE
+49 40 414 97017
(CLOSED SAT & SUN)
- Budget Travel
BUDNIKOWSKY: No Drugs @ German Drugstores, but Everything Else!
BUDIKOWSKY is Germany's leading drugstore chain in Hamburg and surrounding areas, featuring beauty, bath and household products, plus decorations. Although synthetic drugs of any kind are only allowed to be sold in pharmacies, dugstores like Budikowsky (nicknamed BUDNI) actually maintain a LARGE assortment of homeopathic medicines in pill, extract, powder, and tea leaf form that is really gives you an idea of how heavily German health culture is impacted by homeopathy. So if you are a person who is open to natural remedy healing or have access to a homeopathic medicine lexicon, you will enjoy the width and breath of products offered. Also, similarly to American drugstores, BUDNI does carry some food items. But there's a catch to it: you won't find any frozen pizzas or sugary ice cream here, but you'll find a great assortment of organic products and/or items generally recognized as health foods; like gluten free or whole food items courtesy of the "ALLNATURA" brand- an organic food store chain with its own private label catering to the healthy lifestyle demographic.
What to buy: Although special needs food items are slowly becoming more visible in German grocery stores, Budni has always led the pack in being one of the first retailers to feature food products catering to vegetarian, non-white sugar, gluten-free, whole grains eaters. They also feature an array of organic items ranging from whole-foods-sweetend cookies to pestos to packaged fresh pastas & pasta sauces.
One other category of goods I can recommend is all that lies in the bath & beauty isle. Germans have a love for "water wellness" and spa culture, and it is reflected in their bath & beauty products. The vast array of inexpensive soaps, scrubs, soaks, and moisturizers infused with herbs and flowers you can find here fantastic. Budni also has more expensive collections of hand made luxury soaps infused with flowers, herbs, and natural fragrances, and overall, I've found that collecting an assortment of bath and beauty goods make for fine gifts to take home to family and friends overseas.
What to pay: Shower Gel= from 85 cents
Spray Deoderant= from 85 cents
Herbal Toothpaste = from 65 cents
Ladies Toiletries = from 1.45 for sanitary items
Detergent= from 3,00
Whole Grains= average about 2,50 per kilo bag
Snacks sweetened with brown sugar/agave syrup= 1,50
Tofu (different flavors)= 1,99
Organic Pesto, Indian Ghee butter, Tahini Paste = 3,00
Private label luxury bath items= about 8,00
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REWE: LARGE Sized Grocery Chain, International Foods
As with most cities in Germany, Hamburg is a town that celebrates boutique shopping and supporting small establishments. This same tradition also applies to the way people generally shop for food, although with changing times American style "supermarkets" are becoming more present than ever.
REWE is one such example of the standard German supermarket; a large grocery store chain that has a a sizable amount and variation of goods to meet nearly every taste. In addition to the standard fresh produced & packaged goods, you can also find books & magazines, beauty & grooming, isles devoted to special-needs eating ( diabetic, gluten-free, ect), international food isles (Thai, Indian, or Mexican style ingredients), and large selection of household products and massive wine & spirits selection. REWE has fresh fish & meat counters, and additional counters featuring fresh deli meats, salads, & cheese where you can purchase delicious cured meats and dozens of cheeses from all across Europe. Along with TOOM market (its sister franchise), REWE is generally the largest supermarket (in terms of physical space and product assortment) before you hit the massive "superstore" category of food shop that has been trending in grocery shopping over the last 3-5 years or so.
What to buy: As far as the "Supermarket" category goes, REWE (and it's slightly lower-priced, sibling franchise "TOOM") is great for one-stop food shopping if you initially find it challenging to traverse a wide variety of stores, as is usually the German custom. For those who are staying with a host while in Hamburg, housed in accommodations with cooking facilities, or staying for a longer time for school or work, you'll appreciate the amount and variation of products all offered under one roof.
What to pay: On a scale of 5 to 10, I would say price-wise of all categories of grocery store in Germany, REWE falls on the 7.5 to 8 scale, depending on if you purchase generic & store label brands vs. commercial brands. (ex. REWE Spaghetti = 50 cents)
They have a large assortment of items that have the same prices as their budget competitors, especially Generic label brands bearing the JA! label on items like ground beef, canned goods, pasta, detergent, breakfast items, condiments and other goods. They also have their own personal food brand bearing a green REWE label, marketed towards a slightly more upscale demographic with focus on organic products, and it is slightly more expensive than the JA! products. (eg. REWE BIO Spaghetti = 99 cents)
Next is the general assortment of products, from standard to high-end (like a normal milk by a national brand vs. semi-luxury glass-bottled milk from a regional German farm) which will always be 30% more expensive than shopping at a budget grocery store.
- Work Abroad
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TCHIBO: Tchibo: Every Week, A New World !
Tchibo is a Hamburg based German chain of retail cafes- specializing in coffee (& signature desserts), home, fashion, gift items, small electronics, and travel packages. It was formed shortly after World War 2, and the title for this review comes from the company's trademark advertising slogan, "Jede Woche Ein Neuer Welt", as their marketing strategy changes the shop's range of products every week to fit a singular theme. As a new theme emerges each week, items from previous weeks are moved away from front store prominence to the back or sides of the shop near the cafe section. The cafe section of the shop features (affordably priced) Tchibo brand gourmet coffees and cake slices, perfect for a shopping break if you're having a day of marathon shopping and need a few moments to relax.
What to buy: Tchibo manages to reach a wide variety of audiences in its normally small shops: there is the coffee-cake lover who needs a shopping break; there is the housewife looking for home items for kitchen, bedroom, or general household goods (sewing machines during Sewing Week, stylish trash can during Bathroom Week); the electronics person (who wants a new smartphone of stylish set of headphones; sportswear of classic German style clothing (Kids Week featuring rainwear, Lingerie Week featuring fine undergarments, Mens Week featuring henley shirts, leather belts, stainless steel chronographic watches, and all things "manly"). They also keep brochure books of their latest travel services offering adventure, romantic, exotic, and spa themed vacation packages to various destinations throughout Germany, the EU, and the Caribbean.
I find that TCHIBO is fantastic for gifts as well as useful household items; I am a big fan of their kitchen items as they really are suited for European culinary lifestyle which is very epicurean in feel and aesthetic. The kinds of household gifts you find at Tchibo are comparable to those you could find via Restoration Hardware, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Williams-Sonoma, but at a budget-friendly price far less than the American equivalents. You could compare the house and gift items to TARGET Stores in price. I buy Tchibo cotton bed linens, have purchased seasonal holiday and travel gifts there, and chic-simple culinary items for the home like stylish serving platters, cheese boards, grated parmesean cheese jars.
There are Tchibos in every mall or major shopping area in Hamburg, but to make it easy to find one, if you can't see one immediately in the vicinity of your accommodations in town, you can always head to the super-large Tchibo flagship store, located just across the street from Hamburg Rathaus. Otherwise, if you plan to visit any malls, strip shopping centers, or high-traffic shopping boulevards, you will inevitably run into one!
What to pay: Coffe and Cake is generally under €2,50, with Apple Cake or other specially featured desserts priced at €1 as the deal of the week. Weekly changing theme items generally range from €5-€50, unless you're talking about big ticket items like leather goods, fine jewelry, Tchibo expresso machines, and electronics.
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HUSSEL Confiserie: Delicious, Delectable Chocolates
more to come!
What to buy: Chocolate pralines, truffles, bars, and gift assortments in whole milk or dark chocolate- with or without nougat, liquors, and Germany's famous Marzipan fillings. Perfect indulgence for the chocolate connoisseur or as a gift spot for the chocolate lover in your life.
What to pay: Premium, pre-warpped pralines start at €,69 cents each. Freshly made individual pralines are about €1 each and are exquisite! There are praline packages (equally yummy) ranging in price from €1,98 to €5,00, to more expensive gift boxes up to €20. Bar chocolate starts at €2,90, and there are also candies and licorice available. Hussel also sells fine artisan oils from Italy and deluxe salts from France.
- Women's Travel
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- Food and Dining
Alligator Hamburg: Classic Style Leather Goods & Modern Luggage, Too
For those who love the luxurious look and feel of Old World style leather goods, Alligator is the place for you. For my job in fashion, I am often falling deeply in love with all the romantic leather accessories to be found on fall runways in the form of oversized bags and travel pieces---it harks back to a time of leisure travel when people actually carried leather weekenders out to the country or onto the train as they traveled to a few days on the coast of pick-a-destination. Traditionally styled leather goods always remind me of the beautiful editorials from Town & Country Magazine or Ralph Lauren ads from nearly any era, elegant, classic, more beautiful over time. For the person who still has that romantic attitude towards timeless accessories meant to last a lifetime in style and use, and may not necessarily want the $3000+ price tag that comes along with the design name from your favorite fashion runway- Alligator shops in Hamburg provide a reasonable resource to find the weekender or travel bag of your leisure travel dreams. The shops are generally open from 10 am- 8pm.
What to buy: Alligator offers modern style luggage as well from all the brands we know like Tumi, Samsonite, Rimowa, ect. They also offer a huge assortment of leather goods in purses, bags, wallets and so on of every color and style. But the real attention grabbers here are the extra large leather bags suitable for travel, that you can throw in the back seat of your car or into the overhead of your plain or train. Incredibly stylish, these sturdy, elegant leathers generally come in classic black or cognac, or in more adventurous colors like ruby red or vintage Jaguar (aka hunter) green. Much lower in cost than the runway counterparts designed by mega brands, the average classic weekender or oversized leather bag with run about €200-€300 here.
What to pay: Expect standard retail price for contemporary name brands, standard leather bags are about
€ 150 -€ 200 (the irony of this is that in true German fashion, most leather goods are a bit overpriced )- but the real reason to shop here is the soft leather luggage bags that have the Old World estate look to them- for a comfortable price not generally more than 300 Euros.
- Women's Travel
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Pfeifen Tesch: A Smoker's Paradise, Serving Hamburg for 125 Years
Stepping into Pfeifen Tesch is like stepping onto a film set, taking you back in time by a century. As a smoker's den with specialty tobaccos, pipes, and cigars, while they do have some pop culture items that remind you you are in the 21st century (like metal cigarette tins from Indian Spirit), the atmosphere, upholsteries and decor with it's vintage glass cases & deep, polished woods remind you a scene from a classic Sherlock Holmes film, or the elegant interiors from the days of magnates and robber barons of the 1800's (the shop first opened in 1880). The shopkeeper and his dapperly attired sales attendant are wonderfully pleasant, engaging gentlemen who patiently answer questions and help guide your purchases- in English, and with a smile.
What to buy: Try purchasing a fine cigar for the special gentleman in your life, or an elegant cigarette case for that stylish friend or loved one. There are classic versions of cases worthy of a James Bond film, as well as mid century modern metal tins with the logos of classic western brand cigarettes.
What to pay: Pop Art metal cigarette tins start as low as 5 euros.
- Business Travel
- Luxury Travel
- Historical Travel
Gia Pham: Authentic Asian Food Goods for Exotic Cooking
The only Asian supermarket in Hamburg-West, Gia-Pham offers a large assortment of food ingredients imported directly from Japan, Korea, Thailand, India, China and other Asian nations. Rich curry sauces, Thai mixes, noodles, misos, and fresh herbs& vegetables make up just a tiny portion of the exotic offerings here that can help you prepare some of your favorite restaurant style dishes in a snap, for a great price.
What to buy: Gia pham is the place to shop if you're in the mood to make Pad Thai noodles, Indian Rogan Josh, or Japanese miso soup or sushi. The ingredients for these dishes can be found at upscale supermarkets like the EDEKA chain, but at the latter you can expect such ingredients to be exhorbitantly priced.
What to pay: For Indian curry sauces, you'll pay about 3 Euros per jar, and freshly made Korean Kim Chi goes for about 2 Euros, and in addition to foods from these 2 countries there are isles of Thai, Chinese, Japanese ingredients from noodles of all kinds to Nori wrap starting as low as 1 euro going up to about 10 euros for frozen seafood by the kilo. Very well priced in comparison to their German supermarket counterparts who have made their own "versions" of Asian cuisine ingredients, most usually overpriced, and unfortunately not always authentic.
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Meyers Buromoebel ???: A Clever Bit Of Marketing
The main mantra of marketing is to catch people's attention in as cost-effective a manner as possible. OK this is just an excuse to use this pic which made me chuckle but it does illustrate the point.
Having an attractively female manequin posed as a window shopper outside this office furniture store certainly caught my eye (especially when her skirt blew up in a gust of wind LOL ;-)).
Come to think of it I could do with a new workdesk...
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Europa Passage: Central Shopping Mall
The Europa Passage offers a smallish, but bright shopping experience in the centre of Hamburg. Hemmed in between the gentile streets along the Binnenalster, and St. Peter's church on Mönckebergstraße, it's an easy break from touring the city, and you can enjoy a coffee under it's impressive arched glass roof.
Saturn: Vast electricals store
So, you arrive in Hamburg and find that you might have packed your camera, but not only does it not have an SD card inside, your spare that you ALWAYS pack isn't packed either! So what do you do? Simple, you visit Saturn on Mönckebergstraße. On the corner with Steintorwall, you will find a huge Saturn store which sells all sorts of computer and electrical goods.
The store sells a huge selection of computer-related goods as well as general eletrical goods. Here you will find all the camera supplies - and cameras - that you could possibly need.
What to buy: SD cards or any other camera accessories which you might have forgotten at home!
What to pay: Generally good, high street prices.
Scarpovino: Wine and Shoes: The Best of Italy in One Shop
In a rather unusual but quaint combination, Scarpovino is a casual shop in St. Pauli's ultra edgy and bohemian "Schanze" neighborhood that offers Italian fine wines and gourmet nibbles, right alongside finely crafted Italian shoes for men and women.
What to buy: Pick up that new pair of Italian shoes for the office, sandals for the summer, or boots for the winter. While there you can also grab a fantastic bottle of Tuscan red and gourmet snacks to share with friends after your shopping day is done.
What to pay: Shoes average about 70-150 Euro. Wine and aperatif liquors range from Euro 2,90 - Euro 290
- Wine Tasting
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Elfenreich: Unique and different
If you have an eye for the unusual you will truly enjoy a stop in this unique and quaint shop. Among others, Elfenreich carries such brands as Noa Noa, Eva & Claudi and St. Martin. Although small, the shop has an assortment of handmade jewelry, bags & totes, dresses and coats- a little bit of everything.
What to pay: Elfenreich has prices that range from moderate to expensive. But if something unusual is what you want--I'm sure you would find something here.
Hamburg was one of the first cities to introduce shopping galeries - small elegant shopping malls in the middle of the city. And when you walk along Jungfernstieg to Gänsemarkt and Neuer Wall you will find dozens of these galeries! They are expensive, but window shopping does not cost you much - plus they do have nice cafés and bars there as well!
EUROPA PASSAGE: Pleasant Shopping In The City's Center
Pleasant mall style shopping in the center of Hamburg's exclusive Neuestadt neighborhood, right next to the Alster Lake and Alster Pavillion on Jungfernstieg.
Operating Hours for Shopping Mall:
Mon-Weds, + Sat. 10am-8pm
Thurs + Fri 10am-10pm
Operating hours for Gastronomie:
What to buy: A general sampling of shops to keep your eyes open for:
Sasch ( trendy Italian casual street fashion boutique, based in Florence)
Steiff Kids Fashion & More
Build A Bear
Das Keline Konigreich
SHOES & ACCESORIES---
Bianco (trend conscious shoes from Italian based shoe chain)
Street Super Shoes (discount shoes)
BOOKS, CRAFT & FINE STATONARY---
GIFTS & HOME LIFESTYLE---
WMF (fine kitchen and servingwear)
FOOD & GOURMET---
Reformhaus Bacher (organic health foods and bakery)
Tchibo ( pastry & fine coffee shop with it's own signature line of lifestyle products and gifts)
RESTAURANT & CAFE
Yin & Yang (Japanese)
Punto Medio (Mediterranean & Italian)
Cha Cha Postive Eating ( trendy Thai casual kitchen )
Ballyn Bakery (Bagels, cakes, pastries & soups)
From soup to nuts, from smoothies to falaffel, the underground food court is an attractive environment spanning a large area with tasty choices including Becks Sports Bar, Indian, Portuguese, Lebanese, Italian bistro, Chinese, German Regional offerings and others.
What to pay: Being that it's a shopping center in an upscale area, yet with a wide range of shops, the prices range from quite average to above average in price. Shops like Kipling and the WMF home store would be considered the pricer shops there, although there are certainly a few others.
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