Berlin’s answer to Fifth Avenue is a glittering collection of stores, galleries, restaurants, and street cafés. It’s where prestigious and on-trend big names congregate, including Barbour, Loewe, Nike, and Danish design emporium Kartell; the surrounding streets of Fasenenstrasse and Grolmanstrasse are lined with cool boutiques. Designers including Jean-Paul Gaultier and Gianni Versace have their flagship stores around Olivaer Platz, while further down towards Tauentziennestrasse the boulevard is dominated by Europe’s biggest department store, Kaufhaus Des Westens – more commonly referred to as ‘KaDaWe’. Its seven floors are packed with designer labels and there is a sublime food hall on the top floor plus a glass-covered winter garden in which to drink champagne and enjoy the views.
A city thoroughfare since the 1500s, 3.5km-Kudamm was once lined with neo-classical mansions, many destroyed in WW2. It was restored to something of its former glory as the main shopping street in West Berlin but suffered following unification; today is has maintained its reputation in the face of heavy competition from East Berlin’s shiny new shopping malls. The plane-tree-lined sidewalks of Kudamm are once more popular places for strolling, shopping, and kicking back in cafés.