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.
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."