Officially I am not allowed to fly anymore because I am heavily pregnant, but I’m always up for a city trip by car a few hours away from home. It’s a kind of tradition that we visit every year one of Germany’s beautiful cities and its surroundings. This time the modern business city, Frankfurt am Main located in the state of Hesse.
Frankfurt, located at the same latitude as Luxembourg is the fifth largest city in Germany. With my “flight case” (read first aid for a pregnant woman) and Maxi Cosi in the back of the car (otherwise you cannot leave the hospital with your baby) we took the scenic route through Sauerland on our way to Frankfurt am Main.
Frankfurt along the river Main
Frankfurt is situated along the River Main and has a stunning skyline. It is Germany’s financial and business center. A few years ago, the New York Times mentioned Frankfurt as one of the top 52 cities to visit. So, I was even more curious about what this modern city had to offer and I went on a culinary exploration.
Frankfurt was heavily bombed during the Second World War, and the famous medieval center got back then heavily destroyed. Nevertheless, you will still find nice old buildings that contrast with the modern skyscrapers in the background.
The heart of Frankfurt is located on the north side of the river Main; here you will also find the old town, also called Römer. From the Eiserner Steg pedestrian bridge, you have a gorgeous view on both sides of the bank.
For the ultimate romantic feeling, you don’t need to travel up to Paris. Here on the Eiserner Steg bridge, couples can solidify their love forever by putting a love heart through the bridge locks. I can assure you, there is still plenty left over 🙂
Who thinks Frankfurt is only a business city is wrong. During my visit to this marvelous place by the water, I was amazed at how much “German Gemütlichkeit” and culture you can find here. The Römerberg is a perfect example; this square in the heart of the old town boasts many cozy bars and restaurants.
Sofitel Opera Hotel Frankfurt *****
After a day of exploring the city, you like of course to stay in an excellent hideaway. I tested the recently opened 5-star hotel Sofitel Opera for you and made my way into the world of French elegance and German hospitality.
The Sofitel Opera Hotel is located right on the Opera Square with its famous opera house. The “Alte Oper” is the former opera house in Frankfurt which is still operational and now used as a concert hall. In each room of the Sofitel Opera Hotel, you can find a program booklet with the concerts for the coming year.
The new Sofitel Opera Hotel stands on a prime location in the heart of Frankfurt’s city center. The front of the hotel is right next to the park, and the back is giving direct access to the trendy shopping district with lovely boutiques.
The Sofitel Opera Hotel oozes luxury. The interior is a Walhalla of art objects, and each painting has its own story. What I like about the decor is that the hotel is very homely and intimate.
Deluxe room Sofitel Opera Hotel
The luxurious rooms are all equipped with a king-size bed and a modern bathroom with exclusive Hermes toiletries. For the best panoramas, be sure to book a room overlooking the park.
Famous quotes from Faust
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe is perhaps the most well-known German novelist who became famous with his book Faust. Each room has a sign with a different quote of him painted in various colors that are reflected in the rest of the decor.
Also, on each bedside table, you find a book of “The Little Prince” by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. The concept of Sofitel is carried out to perfection; in every detail, you find back the connection to the French and German culture.
Indulge in the Sofitel’s 5-star So Spa, a splendid salon that uses only exclusive care products including the French brand Carita Paris. I took a “Carita Peau de Satin” treatment, and my skin was glowing for days afterward. Ask for Lisa, she is outstanding and has a lot of experience with facial treatments.
Culinary Restaurant Schönemann
Restaurant Schönemann is the 5-star restaurant of the Sofitel Opera Hotel, where you can also have breakfast in the morning. The restaurant has a stunning view of the old opera and is neighboring the Opera Square.
The patisserie of the hotel prepares her own snacks in an authentic Parisian style. The menu offers refined gourmet dished, that are prepared with regional products and accompanied by local wines.
The dessert is delicious!
The surprise 🙂
Interior Restaurant Schönemann
The vineyards of the Rheintal
In less than half an hour from Frankfurt, you find yourself amidst the vineyards of the Rheintal (Rhine Valley). Germany is also known as the country of the Royal Riesling and gastronomy.
A visit to one of the vineyards around Frankfurt is therefore a must. Not only do you learn to recognize the different types of wine, but you can also enjoy the stunning views.
Go wine tasting at schloss Johannisberg.
The rose garden of Schloss Johannisberg.
Schloss Johannisberg is situated in the Rheingau and produces the most prestigious wines of Germany. Especially the Riesling wine is very popular here. After the wine tasting, you can buy your favorite wines in the castle.
If you are not a wine connoisseur, but still want to take a good wine home, then I suggest also visiting the smaller wineries in the surrounding.
As a visitor to Schloss Johannisberg, you are free to wander around the vineyards, do a wine tasting or just sit on a bench and enjoy the amazing view.
When we were visiting the chateau, a wedding took place. The castle has a beautiful wedding venue, and the surroundings are very romantic. I felt like being in France, and for a moment imagined myself in a fairy tale landscape.
Not far from Geisenheim on the way to the typical German town of Assmanshausen you pass this beautiful grain field. I was surprised by the diversity of the German bocage landscape. The route along the Rhine valley combined with a city trip to Frankfurt is an absolute must if you want to learn more about the state of Hesse.
I enjoyed the exquisite food and smelled the delicious local wines. I brought a few wines from a local winery home for later when the little one will be there because after nine months I cannot wait to drink a good glass of wine again 🙂