Pots­damer Platz sprang back to life in the late 1990s, with one shop­ping cen­ter in the mid­dle of it all. Hilda Hoy paid a visit to Pots­damer Platz Arkaden for gelato and more.

Where Berlin - - CONTENTS -

Pots­damer Platz Arkaden is the Platz to be for gelato, shoes, and more.

Once the com­mer­cial heart of the city, not to men­tion a hub for Ber­lin’s much-famed nightlife, Pots­damer Platz spent much of the 20th cen­tury in ru­ins. Bombed to smithereens in WWII, the sprawl­ing square was sub­se­quently left des­o­late dur­ing the Cold War be­cause the Ber­lin Wall ran straight through this area. Af­ter the Wall came down, it was fi­nally time to rebuild and Pots­damer Platz be­came the big­gest con­struc­tion site in Europe. By the end of the 1990s the square had trans­formed into a bustling com­mer­cial dis­trict once again, with ho­tels, sky­scrapers, restau­rants, mu­se­ums, movie the­aters, and Pots­damer Platz Arkaden, one of the city’s first post-re­uni­fi­ca­tion shop­ping cen­ters and to this day one of Ber­lin­ers’ fa­vorite malls to pass an af­ter­noon.

It’s the cen­ter’s airy, gen­er­ously sized atrium that makes it an at­trac­tive place to kill some time, to­gether with the famed Caffè e Gelato café up­stairs – many lo­cals swear this is the best place for gelato in the city. And of course there’s the Arkaden’s prime lo­ca­tion, mak­ing it a popular itin­er­ary stop for city vis­i­tors wan­der­ing down af­ter a visit to the Bran­den­burg Gate or the Me­mo­rial to the Mud­ered Jews of Europe, or post-stroll in Tier­garten park.

Once you’ve filled up on gelato, you’ll no doubt be tempted to fol­low the crowds into TK Maxx. This is the popular dis­count depart­ment store’s only out­let in cen­tral Ber­lin, car­ry­ing ev­ery­thing from fash­ion for all ages to home dé­cor. Shoe lovers won’t want to miss the Camper store, car­ry­ing quirky and fash­ion­able footwear from the Span­ish la­bel, and there’s also Natura, a Mother Na­ture-in­spired shop stock­ing gifts galore. For a fla­vor­ful sou­venir, stop by the Tee Han­del­skon­tor Bre­men shop and pick up one of their unique tea blends from the East Frisia re­gion of north­west Ger­many.

"This is one of Ber­lin's fa­vorite malls to pass an af­ter­noon."

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