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Insider: Hamburg

Steffen Jagenburg

Photo: Steffen Jagenburg

SHOPPING
Europe's second-wealthiest city, Hamburg is fertile ground for great shopping.

If white's your thing, look to the Jil Sander minimalist flagship (43 Neuer Wall; 49-40/374-1290).

Savvy Petra Teufel (43 Neuer Wall; 49-40/378-6160) stocks Issey Miyake, Ann Demeulemeester, and Dries van Noten.

Bookish style fiends love to sort through the 40,000-odd art, photography, film, and design titles at Sautter + Lackmann (71—72 Admiralitätstrasse; 49-40/373-196).

Stewen's keen eye and his impressive collection of 17th- and 18th-century French antiques give Holger Stewen Interior Design (23 Hohe Bleichen; 49-40/348-470) a cult status.

RESTAURANTS
Die-hard culinary types know the three pillars of Hamburg cuisine: Josef Viehhauser's nouvelle Le Canard (139 Elbchaussee; 49-40/880-5057; dinner for two from $158), the traditional Landhaus Scherrer (130 Elbchaussee; 49-40/880-1325, dinner for two $150), and Christian Rach's innovative Tafelhaus (71 Holstenkamp; 49-40/892-760; dinner for two $100). But dare to break the faith at one of Hamburg's more casual restaurants, and you won't regret it.

The genre-blending Cox (68 Lange Reihe; 49-40/249-422; dinner for two $80) is popular with the city's actors, who love the velvety, red French décor and the tasty homemade Bratwurst.

The menu at Marinehof (77 Admiralitätstrasse; 49-40/367-655; lunch for two $35) offers classic German dishes—potato salad, milk rice—along with curries from India and Thailand. Tafelhaus's chef, Christian Rach, has opened Restaurant Engel (Klein-Flottbeck, Elbchaussee/Teufelsbruck; 49-40/824-187; dinner for two from $65), a smaller low-key fusion restaurant on the lazy, park-lined portion of the Elbe River.

The new design-driven seafood restaurant Au Quai (145 B—D Grosse Elbstrasse; 49-40/3803-7730; dinner for two $76) is farther down the Elbe on a more industrial stretch of river. Like a little interactivity with your dinner?Sit behind one of those glass walls: you'll feel close enough to reach out and touch the passing cargo ships.

The stalwart Wollenberg (35 Alsterufer; 49-40/450-1850; dinner for two $74), a haute classic in a two-story white villa, has done away with the dress code in favor of a more laid-back vibe. Stop by for veal medallions on a bed of truffles and asparagus ragout, then stick around for a drink at its hip new nightclub.

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