Cupid Strikes

Berlin may not have the bridges of Venice, the pic­ture-per­fect views of Mont­martre, or the fairy­tale roofs of Prague, but the vi­brant neigh­bor­hood life of its Kieze, the city’s im­por­tant cul­tural scene, its gor­geous views, and stel­lar food have given the

Where Berlin - - CONTENTS - BY SOLVEIG STEINHARDT AND ANNABELLE MALLIA

In­spi­ra­tion for mark­ing this Valen­tine's Day with the one you love.

THE "ALL LOVED-UP" COU­PLE

There have been plenty of Casanovas in the past who have per­fected the art of love, so why try to rein­vent the wheel? Be­sides, if you can't be cheesy with the one you love, where's the fun? For max­i­mum cliché love, the typ­i­cal

Ger­man Le­bkuchen heart dec­o­rated with sweet de­vo­tions is ab­so­lutely es­sen­tial, to­gether with the finest cho­co­lates and the red­dest roses you can find at lux­ury depart­ment store KaDeWe (Tauentzien­str. 2124). For 100%-pre­dictable Berlin ro­mance, get lost in each other’s eyes and wan­der aim­lessly in the Baroque gar­dens of yes­ter­year at Char­lot­ten­burg Palace, com­mis­sioned by Elec­tor Friederich III in 1699 as a sum­mer res­i­dence for his beau­ti­ful wife Sophie Char­lotte…ah, what a true gift of love! If the weather per­mits, in­dulge in a lit­tle pic­nic by the duck pond feed­ing each other grapes, and in the evening head to Ital­ian restau­rant Al Con­tadino

Sotto Le Stelle (Au­gust­str. 36) and share a de­li­cious plate of home­made spaghetti, suck­ing up ev­ery last strand in true Lady

and the Tramp style… un­til you end up kiss­ing.

READY FOR THE BIG "YES"

So, you are think­ing of pop­ping the ques­tion, and be­lieve that Berlin will in­spire an af­fir­ma­tive an­swer from your loved one? Good choice! But given the weather, you must be sure to do it right: it would be point­less to climb to the top of the TV Tower if the only view you are go­ing to get is fog. Start in­stead with a stroll hand in hand to dis­cover the small, lit-up bou­tiques of Bleib­treustraße, stop­ping at Nibs Ca­cao (n. 46) for a thick hot choco­late with lots of whipped cream. Where the street meets the Ku’damm boule­vard, you’ll ac­ci­den­tally bump into the Bucherer jew­elry store, where you can de­cide to sur­prise her with a small gift, say, a col­lier from their Lacrima col­lec­tion. Once you’re all shopped out, take a cab across town to Gen­dar­men­markt and kneel down for the all-im­por­tant ques­tion in the per­fect sym­me­try of this 18th­cen­tury square. Now that you have of­fi­cially united your souls, it’s time to sat­isfy more earthly de­sires with melted cheese and wine by the fire­place at cozy La Ra­clette (Lausitzer Str. 34) in Kreuzberg.

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