Discover Germany | Issue 24 | March 2015

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Issue 24 | March 2015

PLUS

THE SCORPIONS C E L E B R AT I N G 50 Y E A R S O N STAG E

CEBIT 2015 GREAT EASTER ESCAPES TOP BUSINESS CONSULTANTS DESIGN, FASHION, CULTURE & LIFESTYLE


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June 24 – July 31 2015 Munich Opera Festival www.staatsoper.de festspiele@staatsoper.de


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Discover Germany | Contents

Contents MARCH 2015

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The MuseumsQuartier Wien. Photo: Hertha Hurnaus

Park Hotel Vitznau

COVER FEATURE 6

The Scorpions 100 million sold records over a period of half a century speak for themselves. We have talked to Klaus Meine, frontman of Germany’s most successful band ever to find out why the Scorpions have come so far.

SPECIAL THEMES 42

Easter temptations

REGULARS & COLUMNS 10

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CeBIT 2015

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Legal Experts Germany

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Outstanding Business Consultants Getting the right consultant on board makes all the difference in business. Find out more in this section.

A busy bunny, coloured eggs and fields of flowers Read about the weird and wonderful ways to celebrate Easter in Germany.

Exhibition of the Month Go girls! The Women’s Expo Switzerland is a unique platform where only female business owners present their businesses, products and services.

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International School of the Month For over 20 years, the private Berlin British School (BBS) has turned students from more than 60 different countries into confident learners and creative thinkers.

Culture

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Attractions of the Month Extraordinary art is on display in the Kunsthalle Mannheim since 1909.This year, the museum honours Ernst Ludwig Kirchner.

Business Our legal expert Gregor Kleinknecht’s treats us to part two about the‘old Greeks’. Great lawyers, fantastic consultants, career boosting institutions and a lot more to be discovered in this month’s business section.

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Back to medieval splendour! One of the most significant Austrian ruined castles, the Burgruine Aggstein brings history alive.

Hotels of the Month

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Culture Calendar

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Swiss Park Hotel Vitznau at the shore of the Vierwaldstättersee – Lake Lucerne – is the perfect place to retreat and enjoy a sweeping mountain landscape.

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Munich’s new relexa hotel is an ideal starting point to get to know Bavaria’s beautiful capital.

FEATURE 42

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Wine & Dine

Discover the island of Langeoog, the amazing city of Bremen, Austria’s special cultural treasures and the joy of playing golf .

Read about Germany’s smartest lawyers and find out what makes each one so very special. 80

Fashion

Wine expert Iris Ellmann focuses on the Baden region. Plus a selection of truly wonderful places to stay and enjoy great hospitality.

This March the digitally savvy gather in Hannover to discover the latest trends and technologies. 68

Design

With cute and sexy fashion and accessories, we embrace the first sunbeams of 2015.

Restaurant of the Month A 60-year-long succession of legendary chefs and excellent cuisine has made the restaurant de l’Hôtel de Ville in Crissier near Lausanne a household name for connossieurs far beyond the Swiss border.

Busy Easter bunny and beyond is the motto of this month’s design section.

All about the art of Swiss Chocolate making and what lies behind the myth of the Easter bunny. 47

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Save the date! Discover Germany’s Culture Calendar is your perfect guide to what not to miss in March. 94

Barbara Geier Barbara Geier explains why she is truly missing German breakfast in the UK.

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Dear Reader,

Discover Germany

Sales & Key Account Managers

Issue 24, March 2015

Emma Fabritius Nørregaard

Published 02.03.2014 ISSN 2051-7718

Welcome to our March 2015 issue.You may have identified our cover band by the looks. The incredible Scorpions have been ruling the hard rock stages of the world for half a century. In our star interview, frontman Klaus Meine spills the beans about key career moments, the upcoming world tour and what it is like to be living the dream.

Laura Hummer Antonietta Cutarelli Noura Draoui Stefan Cameron

Published by Scan Magazine Ltd.

Advertising info@discovergermany.com

Design & Print Liquid Graphic Ltd. Executive Editor Thomas Winther

Discover Germany is published by: SCAN GROUP Scan Magazine Ltd. 15B Bell Yard Mews Bermondsey Street London SE1 3TY United Kingdom

Creative Director Mads E. Petersen Editor Tina Awtani Art Director

Phone +44 (0)870 933 0423 info@discovergermany.com

Svetlana Slizova Feature Writer

For further information, please visit www.discovergermany.com

Nane Steinhoff Copy-Editor Mark Rogers Contributors Emmie Collinge Iris Ellmann

Hometown of the Scorpions, the city of Hannover gets a special mention in this issue. The city, famous for its magnificent gardens, is also a magnet for the world’s IT elite this month. We covered the digital community’s most significant annual business IT event in our CeBIT 2015 special theme. And it is not only the digital community we focus on this month, we also take a closer look at Germany’s legal experts. Highly specialised professionals from an array of totally different legal fields such as criminal law, employement law, art related matters and more, are opening up about the secrets of the trade. More business issues are discussed in our consulting theme, where some of the finest industry specialists share their valuable knowledge on how to improve business performance. Enough business talk.The first signs of spring are clearly visible and although Easter takes place at the beginning of April, it is never too early to plan ahead. In our culture section, you will find a carefully selected choice of wonderful hideaways for a short recreational break, be it high up in the mountains or on a remote seaside island, even medieval castles are featured ready to take you back to forgotten times. May all this and much more spark your inspiration while flipping through the following pages. Enjoy the magazine!

Barbara Geier Meryem Hauer Jessica Holzhausen Gregor Kleinknecht Jessica Pommer

Tina Awtani

Dorina Reichhold Nane Steinhoff Marilena Stracke

© All rights reserved. Material contained in this publication may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without prior permission of Scan Magazine Ltd. This magazine contains advertorials/promotional articles

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SEB voted best Private Bank in German-speaking Europe Over 100 private banks were tested by Fuchsbriefe publishing house with IQF and risk analysis specialists Quanvest. Their conclusion in 2014 noted, “SEB Private Banking Luxembourg stands out in almost every category: in addition to brilliant advice, the competition cannot keep up in terms of either investment proposals or transparency.” Our international network of private banking offices will look after all aspects of your family finances, from daily transactions to long term investments. Its services cover everything from tailored financial management, through to helping you to optimise the legal and tax structures within which your assets are held. As one of the world’s strongest banks* and with more than 150 years of experience in private banking, we have just what it takes to ensure your future prosperity. To find out what SEB can do for your personal wealth, contact us in London or Luxembourg: Christian A. Hvamstad +44 (0) 20 7246 4307 privatebanking@seb.co.uk

Ulrich Graner +352 (0) 2623 2310 kontakt@sebgroup.lu

Gregor Neumann +352 (0) 2623 2881 kontakt@sebgroup.lu

*SEB is ranked 9th in the world according to Bloomberg report June 2014

Sweden • Norway • Denmark • Finland • Luxembourg • Switzerland • United Kingdom • Singapore • Estonia • Latvia • Lithuania


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Discover Germany | Cover Feature | The Scorpions

Klaus Meine The Scorpions celebrate 50 years on stage For an entire half a century the Scorpions have been rocking the world, been an inspiration to millions and left a musical footprint that is second to none. A life dedicated to rock, true passion for what they do and unparalleled team-spirit is what keeps Germany’s most successful band ever together and, it seems, retirement plans are definitely off the table with the 50th Anniversary World Tour kicking off in May. TEXT: TINA AWTANI | PHOTOS: OLIVER RATH

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Discover Germany | Cover Feature | The Scorpions

1965 was a time when the Swinging Sixties ruled London’s roads, Mary Quant revolutionised fashion with the invention of the mini skirt and the young Beatles just rose to fame. But it was also the year when fullblooded musician Rudolf Schenker started a band in his hometown Hannover. It took a while to gather the ideal cast, but when Klaus Meine joined the Scorpions a few years later, little did they know that their efforts would lead to about 100 million records sold five decades later. The Scorpions played up to 100 concerts in up to 30 countries per year, leaving hardly any blank

spot on the world map. “We clicked instantly. The chemistry has been just perfect right from the start,”Klaus remembers his first encounter with Rudolf. His mind drifts for a fraction of a second and he adds:“One of the reasons the Scorpions came this far is the fact that the philosophy of friendship and teamwork was our top priority in all these years.“ Apart from the two founding members, today the Scorpions team comprises guitarist Matthias Jabs, James Kottak on the drums and bassist Pawel Maciwoda. Twenty-five albums, many of them reaching multiple platinum status, have wowed

hard rock fans across the globe. The latest one, Return To Forever, was launched as this issue goes to print and we can be sure that it will strike the chords of the Scorpions devotees. Klaus gives us a hint of what to expect:“The Scorpions-typical DNA: strong riffs, melodic songs, go-ahead-songs, power-songs, just straight-in-the-face rock-n-roll plus two or three power ballads.” “History was written” Asked about the very magic moments from the past, Klaus takes a deep breath and ad-

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Discover Germany | Cover Feature | The Scorpions

mits: “This is a tough one, we had so many very special moments. There was the US Festival in California, the first Rock in Rio in the 80s or the Russian Woodstock back then in Moscow, the Moscow Music Peace Festival.” Cumatatively, these three concerts alone counted over 2.2 million visitors. A milestone was definitely the string of concerts in the former Soviet Union.“History was written and we as a German band were able to see it happen. It was the inspiration for Wind of Change, a song that conquered the world in 1991 and became the soundtrack to the end of the cold war for so many,”Klaus fondly reflects. But there were also difficult times, times of “personal tragedy”, as the charismatic singer puts it. In 1982 Klaus Meine lost his voice completely with no sign of hope for recovery. He begged Schenker to look out for another frontman, but the band blandly refused to write him off. Almost a year and two surgeries later, against all odds, Klaus was back on the Scorpions’ micro.“It was the triumph of friendship. The band stood behind me and then this incredible worldspanning career was taken to a new height for all of us,“ he recalls. “We were supposed to say ‘you’re too late, we just split up’” Despite the lavish lifestyle, private jets and glamorous parties, the Scorpions are surprisingly down to earth, enjoying a heaven of normality off stage. The usual bad boys heavy metal superstar cliché couldn’t be more deceptive. Rudolf Schenker frequently hails the benefits of yoga and meditation, while Klaus once famously confessed that, despite being a rock star, he never cheated on his wife Gabi. He never fails to rave about the mother of his son and love of his life, and soon the couple will celebrate its golden wedding anniversary. While their peers, apart from the Rolling Stones, play golf and enjoy the fruits of their work in some sunny backyard, the Scorpions have no intention to take it slow. It would be fair to say that they tried though – until a new challenge came up. “MTV Unplugged

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approached us the beginning of 2013 and we were supposed to say ‘you’re too late, we just split up’, but we just couldn’t. After all it is hard to slow down from full throttle to 0 in no time,” Klaus explains. The MTV Unplugged event in Athens released new creative potential and the Scorpions just couldn’t let go. “The passion to discover new things and make new experiences never died. The curiosity is still there, even after having played concerts all over the world,” Klaus confesses. On 26 March the movie Forever and a Day will hit the cinemas. German director Katja von Garnier escorted the group for 1.5 years in order to create this spellbinding documentary. Living the dream Shortly the 50th Anniversary World Tour takes off. Klaus Meine will be in charge of the vocals, wearing his signature cap and sunglasses, bouncing up and down the stage like a teenager roaring songs like Rock You like a hurricane or Still loving you.“We want to celebrate our 50th anniversary with our fans across the globe and we won’t just be touring countries we have been visiting for many years, we will enter new territory, e.g. with the concert in China on 1 May, where we will perform for the very first time.” The tour will also cover Europe, Russia, North America and Canada. Klaus and his buddies wrote music history and as the interview draws to an end he says: “We are fully booked until mid 2016 and it looks like we are living our dream a little bit longer.”

Right: Klaus Meine


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Discover Germany | Cover Feature | The Scorpions

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Discover Germany | Design | Dedicated to Design

Dedicated to Design... 2

Gear up for the Easter season and get ready to face cute little spring chickens, even more adorable Easter bunnies, endless fields of daffodils and countless yummy chocolate eggs. Spring into action and live this wonderful time of the year to the fullest. Discover Germany hand-picked a selection of cool design items which will make your Easter even more enjoyable.

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EDITOR'S PICKS

Not only for Easter and really practical all year round is the wooden country style egg cupboard. Holds 12 eggs and looks fab. £22. www.landschuppen.de This gorgeous two-seater is suitable for home and corporate use alike. Sleek form featuring a wonderful spring-inspired design. £611. www.sophisticated-living.de

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Brave Classics acquired a huge fan base with their signature style retro bike design. Ideal to get rid of the extra calories, added in the form of chocolate eggs, and eco-friendly too. £500 to £1,400. www.braveclassics.com Luigi, the felt bunny by Leschi sits nicely on the breakfast table and keeps the eggs warm for up to 60 minutes. £5.50 each. www.leschi.de Wall clock ROBBIE the RABBIT by LAX Tapeten und Uhren is made of wood and makes a nice minimalistic statement piece on your kitchen wall. 25 x 24,5cm. £22. www.tapetenunduhren.de

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BEER CULTURE AT THE BEST WESTERN DESIGN HOTEL

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The beer culture city Ehingen is located at the foot of the biosphere reserve Swabian Alb. With over 20 destinations in direct nearby, exciting and interesting vacation days are guaranteed. The area is ideal for walkers and cyclists. Experience pure beer culture in our modern design hotel in the middle of Ehingen. It features 50 original and individually furnished rooms with every comfort. Whether beer crates rooms, town wall maisonette or beer suites, it is for everyones taste. And everything revolves around the beer theme, true to the motto:

„Even water change to noble drop, if mixed with malt and hop!“

Enjoy modern Swabian kitchen in our cozy restaurant with own brewery and distillery. Look behind the scenes at our brewerytours or Micha‘s brewing seminars.

Bierkulturhotel Schwanen GmbH · Schwanengasse 18-20 · 89584 Ehingen (0 73 91) 77 0 85-0 · info@bierkulturhotel.de · www.bierkulturhotel.de


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Discover Germany | Design | Fashion Finds

Fashion Finds The first signs of spring are pampering our senses. Myriads of crocuses in white, orange and purple are popping up across the country and the first bits of blue sky and warming sunshine instantly make us feel good. Time for a wardrobe clearout; store the thick woolly jumpers away, put the boots in the basement and make space for airy outfits that allow our skin to absorb some of the much needed vitamin D. BY TINA AWTANI | PHOTOS: PRESS IMAGES

Enterpreneur Gerhard Weber is the mastermind behind German fashion labels such as Gerry Weber, Gerry Weber Edition, G.W., Taifun and Samoon by Gerry Weber. Founded in 1973, his fashion empire is spanning the globe and constantly growing. We like the fresh Taifun Spring 2015 collection. Cardigan £125, shirt £44, shorts £44. www.house-of-gerryweber.eu

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Discover Germany | Design | Fashion Finds

Since Breakfast at Tiffany’s, sunglasses are the ultimate fashion accessory. It does not always have to be black: a splash of colour adds a bit of a quirky twist to any outfit. Give it a try, you’ll be surprised. £110. www.fielmann.de

Swiss label Lalla Alia is an Orient-inspired luxury brand for shoes, handbags and clothing. The house strives to redefine fashion by reviving oriental magnificence. The Ketch Purple two-pocket clutch is made of lasered calf leather and comes in various colours. £123. www.lallaalia.com

More oriental elegance created by Lalla Alia. The Indigo Marrakech shoes feature 276 Swarovski crystal central logo elements and adjustable gemstone buckles. Platform shoes are perfect to add the extra bit of length to the legs and make the entire silhouette appear more slender. £530. www.lallaalia.com

Another sample from the new Taifun Spring 2015 collection, just perfect for a sunny day and ideal to wear in the office too. Shirt £52, shorts £44. (right) www.house-of-gerryweber.eu

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Discover Germany | Wine & Dine | The WineBarn Column

Working the Vineyards in spring TEXT: IRIS ELLMANN | PHOTOS: THE WINEBARN

As at any time of year, the weather in Germany can be unpredictable, and sometimes spring seems to arrive hesitantly: it can still snow in March, and the weather in April may change from sun to rain or hail showers in a couple of hours.This makes the work of the vigneron very challenging but it is also what gives us the subtle differences between the different vintages. This month I want to share with you what work is required to ensure the resulting harvest is a good one.

vines to reduce the number of eyes per shoot. It is a labour-intensive task but one that is essential to the goal of producing superb wines. It is also important to repair the training wires which guide the young shoots and to position the fruiting canes onto the lowest wire. As the sap is retained in the one year old wood the shoots are able to develop evenly. When there is a warm start to the spring the shoots develop early and the danger of a spring frost is what the vignerons fear most.

Dr Heger – Baden 2012 Weissburgunder Sonett dry Pinot Blanc dry (£174.60 case / £14.55 bottle) This is a textbook pinot blanc with a pleasantly fruity and slightly floral scent. An aroma of ripe yellow fruits and hints of citrus. Its nicely balanced acidity cuts through the fruity body very pleasantly. Long and zippy finish. Because of manual harvesting and careful vinification, this Weissburgunder is ready to drink now but can also be stored for another 2 – 3 years. For an alternative choice I would suggest: Laible – Baden 2013 Riesling Alte Reben (Old Vines) *** Riesling dry (£197.40 case / £16.45 bottle) This wonderfully dry Riesling enjoys the glorious scent of a delicious passion fruit sorbet. Delicious! On the palate, hints of peach, mango and gooseberry. This wine has an elegant, smooth and succulent finish Happy Drinking! Iris

Careful pruning on the Dr Heger estate I am going to focus my attention on Baden – an area I like to think of as a wine universe! It is Germany’s warmest and sunniest region and has over 39,000 acres of vineyards. A start to the vintage year Temperatures in the early spring are often surprisingly warm – indeed in 2014 they reached as much as 15°C in the middle of February. In the vineyards the early spring work is key to creating the foundations of quality and quantity for the coming vintage. The first stage is the careful pruning of the

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Baden Producers We have four wonderful producers in Baden: Dr Heger, Bercher, Franz Keller and Alexander Laible. The Dr Heger vineyard combines three superlatives in equal measure: extremely steep, extremely hot and extremely stony. It is a true "grand cru" site, known around the world as one of the most famous, and most sought after sites in Germany, thanks to its outstanding eco-balance and extraordinary terroir.

Iris Ellmann (above) is managing director at The WineBarn, an award-winning merchant of German wine based in beautiful Hampshire. The WineBarn, Clump Farm Barn, Farleigh Lane, Dummer, Hampshire RG25 2AF E-mail: iris@thewinebarn.co.uk

As as introduction to Dr Heger’s wines I would recommend you try:

www.thewinebarn.co.uk


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Restaurant of the Month Switzerland

Restaurant de l’Hôtel de Ville Excellence as leitmotif for a special dining experience Savour the moment in an exceptional atmosphere. The Restaurant de l’Hôtel de Ville in Crissier near Lausanne impresses with a 60-year-long succession of legendary chefs, excellent cuisine which awakens every sense, a light, cosy, elegant and modern ambience, 52 gastronomic experts and a remarkable history. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: PIERRE-MICHEL DELESSERT

Celebrating its 60th anniversary in 2015, the restaurant has become an internationally famous legend due to its succession of Michelin-starred chefs such as Frédy Girardet or Philippe Rochat. Today it is the turn of BenoîtViolier to oversee the famous kitchens in Crissier. He remains true to the philosophy of the restaurant and his predecessors through a product-centred cuisine, respecting seasonality and emphasising products of local origin. Restaurant owners, chef Benoît and his wife Brigitte combine a modern vision of cooking with the restaurant’s traditions, while bringing a fresh new side and their own character to this symbolic Swiss address.

Benoît’s refined and exceptional cooking emphasises the produce as the key element. Why not try some of his signature dishes, such as the ‘Scarlet’ tomato, pulp and pip consommé with Imperial Oscetra or the yellow and brown wild morel mushrooms from the Auvergne mountains with a meadow mushroom jus? Always on a quest to find the best possible local products and respecting the environment, the team of employees have all been trained in prestigious establishments in Switzerland, in France and abroad. Everyone shares their savoir-faire, professionalism and passion to bring that special dining experience to Crissier.

Visually, Brigitte and Benoît Violier have created something very special too as the restaurant has been completely refurbished. Two new dining rooms have a welcoming and cosy atmosphere, which is on purpose sober so that everyone’s attention can be directed to tasting the dishes. Restaurant de l’Hôtel de Ville’s leitmotif is excellence as they constantly focus on giving guests the best possible. Believing in simplicity, Benoît Violier often says that a product of excellent quality does not need much to reveal its flavours: good cooking, a good seasoning, and a combination of one or two ingredients and flavours. www.restaurantcrissier.com

Top: Restaurant de l’Hôtel de Ville’s team. Above: The restaurant’s interior. (left) Yellow and brown wild morel mushrooms from the Auvergne mountains with a meadow mushroom jus. (middle) Benoît Violier (right) and his wife. Photo: lenaka.net (right)

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Hotel

of the Month Switzerland

Park Hotel Vitznau Where the natural beauty of the Alps unites with history and culture Next to the famous “queen of mountains”, the Rigi, Park Hotel Vitznau lies in an iconic landscape that takes the visitor’s breath away, ideally when the sun slowly rises behind the mountains on a beautiful summer day. Culture and history, nature and calmness are never far away. TEXT: JESSICA HOLZHAUSEN | PHOTOS: PARK HOTEL VITZNAU

Clear blue water is glistening in the sunlight. The hiker stops on his way up towards the mountain range, green meadows line the way from the shore towards the rocks high above the lake’s surface. Here and there snow and ice create a sharp contrast to the grey stone and the pale blue sky. On a gloomier day the mountaintops hide in the clouds. And while down in the valley it might rain, on the mountaintops

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the sun still shines. Holidays at the Park HotelVitznau at the shore of theVierwaldstättersee – Lake Lucerne – allow to retreat and enjoy a sweeping landscape while never being far away from city life, history and culture. A landscape created by ice and water The lake has its origin in the last glacial period. When the ice began to melt about

12,000 years ago, the lake emerged. The lake and its surrounding mountains form an impressive and unforgettable panorama. The region around Lake Lucerne is an iconic historical place. On the western shore of the Urnersee, a sidearm of Lake Lucerne, lies the so called Rütli, today a idyllic alpine meadow. In the year 1291 representatives of the three cantons Uri, Schwyz and Unterwalden met here to swear an oath against the stewards representing the detested Habsburg rule – so says the legend that in the 19th century became an important myth about how Switzerland was originally founded. In a popular version of this story one of the representatives is called Wilhelm Tell, exactly


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Discover Germany | Hotel of the Month | Switzerland

The luxurious Park Hotel Vitznau is history itself, opening its doors over 100 years ago in 1903 it became an iconic building of the Belle Époque era. In 1871 just around the corner the Vitznau-Rigi Railway had established Europe’s first cogwheel railway making the region around Lake Lucerne even more attractive as a tourist destination. When Mark Twain, while working as a journalist, described his Rigi ascent in A Tramp Abroad he started a real travel boom in America making Switzerland popular with rich American tourists. In 1842 William Turner captured the Rigi in one of his iconic watercolour paintings The Blue Rigi – Lake of Lucerne – Sunrise, the mountain range a mere shadow while the lake bathes in pale blue light. The painting today is part of the Tate’s collection.

trip away from Lucerne with its cultural attractions. With a ferry connection to Lucerne guests have easy access to this most charming city. During the Easter holidays and the Lucerne summer festival musicians from all over the world will perform here. This year’s Easter festival starting on March 21 is dedicated to sacred and liturgical music: John Elliot Gardiner conducts Bach’s Mass in B-Minor while the Symphonic Orchestra of the Bavarian Broadcaster BR plays Dvorák’s Stabat Mater. On the website www.lucernefestival.ch music enthusiasts will find everything they need to know about the Easter and summer programme. In summer the festival answers the question “how funny and entertaining can classical music be” with music from Hayden to Prokofiev and of courseVerdi’s late opera comedy Falstaff. To enjoy the festival season at its fullest the Park Hotel Vitznau offers the most perfect place to stay: Luxurious rooms with a view towards the lake, award-winning gastronomy and a modern spa area. In 2014 Park HotelVitznau was awarded the title “Gault Millau Hotel of theYear”. www.parkhotel-vitznau.ch

For a good reason the Rigi is also called “queen of the moutains”. The mountain range is situated between three lakes – theVierwaldstättersee, the Zugersee and the Lauerzersee. The highest peak and well loved by tourists is the Rigi-Kulm at about 1,797 metres. the same man about whom Friedrich Schiller later wrote his famous play. Guests staying at the Park Hotel Vitznau can reach the valley by taking a boat trip on the lake or by foot. Park Hotel Vitznau is an iconic historical building, modernised only a few years ago

Only a boat trip away from a buzzing cultural life The Park HotelVitznau’s founder Josef Anton Bon was inspired not only by the new cogwheel technology and the region’s potential as a tourist hotspot but especially by the idyllic setting: The glistening blue lake, the Alps covered in snow in winter and full of life in summer – and all that only a boat

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Hotel

of the Month Germany

Above: Edeltraud Ulbing, Hotel Director

Tasteful accommodation in the heart of Munich Combining a modern touch with a great deal of individuality, the relexa hotel is a wonderful starting point to get to know Bavaria’s beautiful capital. Within walking distance of the famous Oktoberfest and various exciting sights, it is a great choice of luxury accommodation during both a holiday or business trip.

with a large bed, an LCD flat screen TV and bathrobes amongst other things. This new concept will certainly attract the attention it deserves.

TEXT: MARILENA STRACKE | PHOTOS: RELEXA HOTEL

As the hotel has only been receiving guests for a couple of months there are a few goals the enthusiastic team at relexa hotel would like to achieve.“Of course we are hoping for a successful place within Munich’s hotel market,”says Ulbing. “We are looking forward to turning first-timers into regulars and continue to provide a heartfelt service, where the guest matters most.”

In 2013, after searching for a long time, hotel owner Axel Steinwarz finally found the perfect site for his new hotel in Munich’s city centre. Built from scratch, the relexa hotel opened its doors in late 2014 and is already in high demand. The interior design of the rooms convinces with subtle elegance and a timeless yet warm colour scheme. Each room has soundproof windows that leave Munich’s hustle and bustle outside, and attention is paid to the quality of the mattresses to ensure a restful night. The tasty breakfast, which is prepared using local fresh produce from Munich’s region and the Bavarian countryside, gives guests a great start to the day.

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A unique concept is the fabulous Ladies Executive Floor. Hotel director Edeltraud Ulbing explains: “The Ladies Floor has been specifically created for the modern business woman or sophisticated female guest. A total of 11 rooms, all of them with fantastic views over the rooftops of Munich, have been lovingly designed and particularly furnished for women of all ages.” There are various well-thought through details, which are aimed at comforting the female guest as Ulbing adds: “The rooms include yoga mats, fresh fruit, wellness products, books and magazines. We added a feminine touch, which female guest may miss in other hotels.” With extra pillows and the München for Women city guide by Kera Till, these rooms are also equipped

www.relexa-hotel-muenchen.de


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Discover Germany | Wine&Dine | Romantik Landhotel Knippschild

Leave all stress behind At the Romantik Landhotel Knippschild in the idyllic mountain village of Kallenhardt right in the heart of North Rhine Westphalia’s Sauerland, clocks are ticking a little slower and even the most stressed out visitor unwinds instantly in the relaxing environment. TEXT: TINA AWTANI | PHOTOS: ROMANTIK LANDHOTEL KNIPPSCHILD

Run by the Knippschild family, the convenient four star hotel is an oasis of calm while still offering a plentitude of leisure activities in an unbeatable location in the Arnsberg Forest Nature Park – a hiker’s paradise.“We are striving to be the perfect hiking hotel. We just acquired new digital hiking guides, created new routes and we have hidden a Geo-cache. Hiking and wellness are blending together better than ever in 2015,”Klaus Knippschild explains. “Within seconds of arrival, our guests leave all stress behind. As if he isn’t the same, he calmly strolls along in his bathrobe towards the sauna 30 minutes after he checked in at the front desk. All stress is left at the door just

like a coat on a rack,”the owner continues. The Knippschild SaunaVillage allows guests to comfortably move from one sauna to the next, take a dip in the Jacuzzi or have a nap in a cosy lounger. The extensive hotel’s spa and wellness area offers a wide range of pampering treatments using Pharmos Natur Green Luxury cosmetics, which are natural, holistic and sensual for ultimate wellbeing.

Corporate clients from the nearby cities of Paderborn, Warstein, Lippstadt and Soest in Kallenhardt appreciate the inviting conference and seminar facilities at the Romantik Landhotel Knippschild, but the venue with the feel-good factor has long become a household name for event organisers beyond the Sauerland borders. Business function or wedding, team-building weekend or family anniversary: Together with their friendly team, Annette and Klaus Knippschild make sure guests – private or corporate – leave the Romantik Landhotel Knippschild with warm and positive memories. www.hotel-knippschild.de

Culinary needs are catered for in four different restaurant rooms, reaching from the cosy and intimate Friesenstube to the large Bauernstube, thus all group sizes and tastes are catered for. Given the hotel’s location, freshly prepared game is naturally one of the menu’s specialities.

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Discovering the Allgäu region with ease and vitality High mountains, dreamy valleys, crystal clear lakes and the sound of ringing cowbells – the Allgäu region has many facets to offer and explore. The four-star superior Hotel Oberstdorf, with its feel-good atmosphere, attracts sports-active visitors who appreciate modern design and living tradition as well as casual sociability. TEXT: MERYEM HAUER | PHOTOS: HOTEL OBERSTDORF

The lush green fields and a fantastic panoramic view are the first impressions on arrival at the Oberstdorf valley. The first feel-good hotel in the Allgäu region provides highlights such as a unique atmosphere in its big Alpine Wellness World, a 300 sqm natural bathing lake near the garden of the hotel and an attractive and versatile programme for guests. Each room offers hidden details to explore and takes the guest on a journey throughout this beautiful place. Even in the design of the guest rooms, the deep relationship with nature can be found everywhere. Besides many

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guest programmes such as live music, cooking afternoons, hiking trips and whiskey tastings, the Hotel Oberstdorf at-

taches great importance to personal connection for each guest. Wellness based on the Allgäuer nature An area of over 800 sqm offers pure relaxation and enables visitors to forget everyday life. The wellness area is designed on the model of nature, using only materials such as recycled wood and stones. A heated outdoor salt water pool, eight saunas and baths, cosy oases of calmness as well as cosmetic treatments with regional products ensure a totally relaxing stay. Where tradition meets modernity The Allgäu region is one of the most versatile holiday destinations for sporty and active guests as well as for nature lovers. During the summer, over 200 kilometres of marked hiking paths on three different levels of altitude are waiting to be discovered.


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Discover Germany | Wine&Dine | Hotel Oberstdorf

slopes and fun parks for snowboarders. Beginners and experts will both find ideal winter sports possibilities. Regional delicacies and fine Whiskey There is no perfect holiday without enjoying magnificent cuisine. Regional delicacies and gourmand specialities are served at the Alpine Restaurant, a fusion of tradition and modernity.The unique breakfast buffet leaves nothing to be desired. Visitors are delighted by the seasonal highlights such as the Allegro con Gusto or the regularly occurring gala evenings. Additionally, a rich afternoon buffet with specialities from the Allgäu region is offered and in the evening, the Schlemmerbuffet, with various themes, seduces the hungry guests (both included in half-board). At this point it is wrong to think that it cannot be better – it can be. The Hotel Oberstdorf also attracts Whisky lovers. With one of the biggest Whisky collections within the Allgäu region, the hotel encourages tasting a little of the famous drink with its far reaching history. Several distilleries from Ireland, Scotland, Canada and the USA supply the Hotel Oberstdorf with the oldest liquor of our society.

their meetings here. The four-star superior hotel offers enough space for workshops, company trips and conferences within a beautiful setting surrounded by the Alps. Extensive and delicious catering is also one part of this offer. Either in the form of a lunch buffet, a cosy coffee break or one of the various evening events. It is possible to join an outdoor Barbecue, a cooking workshop or the Allgäuer Tapas buffet.Technical requirements can be booked easily and will be implemented professionally. In order to complete a conference, it is possible to integrate outdoor programmes – a great way to spend a break. Maybe a snow shoe tour in beautiful winter scenery, a cheese workshop, playing cross golf or just strengthening the team spirit while building a raft.There is the right activity for every taste. The Allgäu region – one of the most beautiful places in Germany It is the perfect location for business and leisure at the same time. With their welcoming hospitality, the staff of the Hotel Oberstdorf ensures that every stay will remain an unforgettable memory. www.hotel-oberstdorf.de

Creative meetings in the mountains Mountain railway tickets for the Nebelhorn, Fellhorn, Kanzelwand, Söllereck, Walmendingerhorn and Ifen are already included within the hiking and family offers. It is recommended to visit sights such as the ski jumping hill, the Erdinger Arena or the deepest rocky gorge in Central Europe. Canyoning, Tubing, visiting the SkywalkPark are just some activities to do during the summer. The offered programmes have all the same motto “Get out, into nature!” – here you will find something for everyone.

Four big and light-flooded conference rooms are available for companies to hold

With 120 kilometres of slopes, Oberstdorf and the Kleinwalsertal are ideal destinations for all winter sport enthusiasts. Ultimate winter fun is guaranteed from the middle of December to April every year. There is much to explore within the biggest skiing area in Germany, from tricky slopes to family-friendly skiing areas, deep snow

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Explore authentic romanticism Looking for a romantic getaway? For an authentic and exciting experience where you can relax and get some peace? Rosenheim’s Hotel San Gabriele looks like a centuries-old monastery building from 1600 – yet, the appearance is deceptive. Newly built from 2002 until 2005, the luxury hotel impresses with an authentic charm, combined with all the modern facilities comfort seekers desire.

can dream. I wanted to make romance accessible to everyone, while creating a space for repose and while not focussing on commercial success,”he adds.

TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: HOTEL SAN GABRIELE

The new building convinces with a sensational love for detail, which carries guests off to bygone times. From its authentic façade to the interior, which is characterised by seemingly old arches, indirect light sources, wall art from church painters or deliberately uneven floors made of stone or long floorboards, the hotel offers an extraordinary hotel concept. “It always surprises visitors when they notice that the pictures on the internet still don’t do justice to the reality, the actual

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beauty and the comfort of the hotel,”Mario Mattera, owner of Hotel San Gabriele, says. Visitors can admire small details everywhere, which will remind them of the Middle Ages. Watch out for chair backs, resembling tower walls or small wall niches with hundreds of candles, which warmly illuminate the murals in the evening. “We planned a hotel which is so old that it can no longer become old,”Mario Mattera explains.“I had this vision of creating something romantic with my own two hands. I wanted to establish a place where people

The owners, Mario Mattera and his wife wearing monk’s cowls. Photo: © Il Monastero


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Discover Germany | Wine&Dine | Hotel San Gabriele

terbeds, kitchens, whirlpools or TVs are provided. The hotel’s restaurant Il Convento impresses with a big wine cellar stocking over 3,000 exquisite wines. Open fireplaces and candle light add to the cosy ambience and waiters are dressed authentic monk’s cowls. The exclusive menu features premium Mediterranean cuisine prepared with only the finest and freshest ingredients. “The background music alongside the interior design and the warm candle light offer a wonderful experience.You will feel as if you have been taken back 400 years,” Mario Mattera says. Why not try the Filetto di Manzo al Tartufo or the Luccio in Umido at a romantic table for two, which was modelled on a confessional box? From flower seller to hotel owner The story behind the hotel’s development is rather an interesting one. Italian Mario Mattera started off his career as a flower seller, dishwasher, pizza baker and waiter. Originally from the beautiful island of Ischia, Mario came ashore while on a world trip and decided spontaneously to stay in Germany.

special experience not to be missed is the medieval dinner, where guests are treated to experience the customs, language or special food of the Middle Ages, even meeting a damsel and a knight. Situated close to Munich but far from the city’s hustle, the hotel’s location allows a remarkable range of activities.“Visit Salzburg and explore Mozart’s traces or see Innsbruck, the Lake Chiemsee or the Chiemgau Alps, which is probably the most beautiful landscape in Germany,”Mario Mattera recommends. Exciting news include plans to add a wellness, spa, pool and sauna landscape to the place in the near future, so that visitors can enjoy a relaxing massage and more in the hotel’s premises. Be sure to experience passion in every stone in the Hotel San Gabriele. www.hotel-sangabriele.de

He became a restaurateur without a formal education in this field and started off with two restaurants by the age of 26, before realising his vision of an extraordinary hotel. “Many people come up to me and say that I’m a role model to show what many Italians, who seek to move to Germany, can achieve,” Mario Mattera says. The hotel is devoted to his father Gabriele. “He was a true romantic and poet and simply the best father in this world,”Mario Mattera explains.

Luckily, the romantic style of an old monastery doesn’t mean that visitors need to go without warm water or comfortable bedding. The luxury hotel comprises everything that today’s modern comforts have to offer. Chose between 38 rooms from three categories – each one individually designed and furnished in a medieval style. Comfortable canopy beds, wa-

Being a hotel for vacationers, mini-breaks or passing travellers, the facilities are well suited for business travellers too. A conference room for meetings, private congresses or seminars, impresses with its special ambience and open fire place. Modern conference devices, individual chair arrangements plus additional entertainment activities, such as a cooking course or a flight in an air balloon, can be arranged. Wedding, birthday or other special events for up to 60 persons can be booked too. A

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Top Island Destination

Langeoog Experience untouched nature and the power of the sea in a peaceful retreat Taking the ferry towards the island of Langeoog is like stepping through a gate into quite a different world – a calmer and slower one. The East Frisian island has its own and more relaxed way of life, cars for example are not allowed here. The island is a place for lovers of nature and bird watchers as well as sports enthusiasts.

Untouched nature in the middle of the Wadden Sea

first impression of the untouched nature awaiting them on the island. Seagulls fly around the ship in hope of nicking some leftover food; if lucky one may also spot a seal drifting through the water.The Wadden Sea is an important nature habitat and home for many endangered species. For those in a hurry or keen to see the island from above, the island can also be reached by airplane from Harle – though a regular service only runs during the summer months.

The ferry from Bensersiel on the East Frisian North Sea Coast to Langeoog takes visitors through the famous Wadden Sea at either high and low tide. So even on the trip to the island tourists will be able to gain a

Langeoog became famous for tourists in the middle of the 19th century: the first officially registered spa visitor was a District Judge from nearby town Aurich in the year

TEXT: JESSICA HOLZHAUSEN | PHOTOS: PRESS IMAGES

Langeoog may not be very far from the mainland – the southernmost part of the island is only four kilometres away from the East Frisian coast – but the rhythm here is a different one: The sea and its tides determine everything on the island. Wind and water create a special atmosphere, a relaxing tranquillity broken only by autumn or winter storms raging over the island. Waves wash up shells and driftwood

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on the long sandy beach, blades of grass dance in the wind.


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Discover Germany | Top Island Destination | Langeoog

carriages have a long tradition: Established in 1901 as a horse tramway the service had been operating for over 30 years before, in 1937, two new diesel engines replaced the horsepower. Apart from the fire brigade, the ambulance service and some tractors the railway is the only fuel driven vehicle on the island. Cars are not allowed. Horse carriages, people on foot and especially bikes are characteristic of the island’s traffic system.

1830. From this year on a regular ferry service between Langeoog and the mainland was established. A train takes visitors over the island and into the village The ferry from Bensersiel today takes about 45 minutes to reach the island’s harbour where the small island railway waits to take visitors towards the village on the other side of the island.The colourful engine and

The village is the cultural and historical centre of the island. Here not only lie cafés and restaurants, where guests can enjoy regional delicacies in a calm environment, but also the many small bed and breakfasts, hotels and the iconic water tower built in 1909 – the island’s landmark that can be visited and ascended in summer. The top of the tower offers a splendid view not only over the village but also the dunes that lie between the village and the 14 kilometres long sandy beach. Following the beach on foot leads into an amazing dune landscape. The highest dune, the so-called Melkhörndüne, has a height of about 20 metres and once was the highest elevation in all of Eastern Friesland, a very flat landscape at the border towards the Netherlands. Melkhörn means milking corner and refers to a dairy farm that was situated at that place until the 1950s.

lanes creates a new perspective. Moving more slowly through the landscape allows taking it in more deeply, to spot plants and animals, to breathe fresh air and to memorize what one has just seen. Many parts of the island have become a refuge for birds and other wildlife, making the island a perfect spot for nature lovers and especially bird enthusiasts. In the south-western part of the island for example lies the so-called Flinthörn, a nature reserve under protection since 1963. It is not allowed to enter the area apart from a nature path, the Naturpfad Flinthörn, that leads towards an observation platform 1.5 kilometres into the foreshore and the beach. Whoever likes a more active holiday will enjoy Langeoog’s landscape as well: From some rounds on the modern golf course to discovering the island on horseback, from beach volleyball to beach soccer, swimming or power walking – the possibilities are endless. www.langeoog.de

Slow movement in the tourism sector: Langeoog is the ideal place Slow tourism for Langeoog is a magic word: Whoever wants to discover the island has to slow down, walking over the island or riding along one of the many bicycle

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Discover Germany | Culture | Bremen

Bremen is…surprising The Hanseatic city of Bremen is the home of the aviation and aerospace industries, the home of science and knowledge and home to one of Europe’s most substantial urban development projects. TEXT & PHOTOS: BTZ BREMER TOURISTIK-ZENTRALE | TRANSLATION: EMMIE COLLINGE

“Well, I certainly didn’t expect that!”has to be the most commonly uttered phrase by first-time tourists to Bremen. A historic town by all measures, Bremen is both charmingly fairytale-esque and cosmopolitan. The tenth largest city in Germany, Bremen is simultaneously the European centre of aviation and aerospace, the city of science and the location of one of Europe’s most extensive urban development projects, known as the Überseestadt. The city of Bremen has one objective, and that’s to amaze and enthral its guests. Is it a silver whale or a giant mussel? Seductive at first sight, the structure of the Science Center awakens your curiosity. When the Universum Bremen first opened

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in September 2000, it consisted solely of this striking building, but it now has evolved into a land of discovery. The Science Center alone has over 250 exhibits, with hands-on interaction positively encouraged. The open-air EntdeckerPark (ExplorerPark) is the first of its kind in Germany, with exciting areas dedicated to movement that captivate young visitors. Defy gravity as you play with the giant water screw, and experience how a yo-yo feels as you’re propelled into the air. At the Science Center visitors from every generation dive into a world of discovery, learning about humans, nature and technology. Confronting all the senses, visitors learn about the effects of the Big Bang, how tornadoes begin and just how many languages the world has.

In the heart of the stunning Rhododendron Park you’ll find botanika, the green Science Centre. Spread across 4,000 square metres, visitors get up and close and personal with the world of rhododendrons from the roots to the flowers. In the first part of the Science Centre, the Entdeckerzentrum (Explorer Centre), expect an onslaught on your senses with interactive experiments and multimedia-based exhibits captivating visitors with an exploratory tour through nature’s various smells and noises. The neighbouring greenhouses are home to rhododendrons from Nepal, Tibet, Yunnan and Burma, as well as authentic statues from these regions of southeast Asian. Asia and Africa are separated by just a matter of metres in the Übersee-Museum (Ethnological Museum). Inaugurated in 1896, this museum has a remarkable and unique collection of artefacts concerning trade, tribes and cultural history. With over 1.1 million exhibits within this venerable ancient building, the museum is well though-


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out and lovingly curated. With its light 17metre high atrium, a visit to this museum is unlike any other.

where weightlessness has been made possible, a feat that was once only conceivable in space or on a parabolic flight.

For over a century Bremen has been considered a vital location for the sciences, and can now rightly claim to be the home of aviation and aerospace. From ship and aeroplane building right through to space laboratories and rocket stages, the Hanseatic city of Bremen has already experienced vast technological successes across a broad spectrum. At the Airbus Defence & Space in Bremen, visitors can observe firsthand the construction of the Ariane 5 rocket and the unmanned Automated TransportVehicle (ATV). During a fascinating two-hour guided space travel tour organised by the Bremer Touristik Zentrale (BTZ), participants will discover on location exactly how those colleagues in space keep in contact with those on the ground.

The Hanseatic city is also home to globallyknown products, including Beck’s beer, Jacobs Kaffee, Milka chocolate and Mercedes-Benz. A tour of this illustrious car manufacturer gives visitors a behind-thescenes look at the one of the most modern automobile creators, responsible for the SL, SLK, C-class, E-class Coupé and the GLK. For those who like a bit of excitement, have a go at ‘The Rock’, the thrilling MercedesBenz off-road course.

Soaring high above the city, the 146-metre high Drop Tower of the Centre of Applied Space Technology and Microgravity (ZARM) towers above the University of Bremen. During a tour, the inner workings of this monument are uncovered. This is

Taking their cue from this automobile culture, the Schuppen Eins in Bremen’s Überseestadt was devised. Not just an oldsmobile and mobility centre, Schuppen Eins is also a residential project. On the first floor of this historic brick building, 20 high quality apartments with views over the Europe harbour have been developed – each with direct access via a car-lift. On the ground floor of the two-storey Schuppen, a 150-metre long boulevard lined with stylish boutiques and eateries is also home to glass-fronted providers of restoration, re-

pair work, distribution, and upkeep of oldsmobiles and modern cars. The Überseestadt has been a vital addition to the west of the Hanseatic city of Bremen for the past 13 years.This redevelopment of the former harbour area has assumed huge importance for town planners over the decades. European metropolises, such as Rotterdam and London, have demonstrated how derelict harbour districts can be revitalised. The “Überseestadt Bremen” project has fitted seamlessly into the ranks of remarkable European harbour developments and is one of the largest urban development projects in Europe. www.bremen-tourism.de

Opposite page, top: Bremen”s market square with the iconic Roland. (left) ”botanika” - the green Science Centre (right) Above, clockwise: Übersee-Museum Universum Bremen Überseestadt Bremen Guided tour through to the Mercedes-Benz production facilities.

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Attraction of the Month Germany

non – Kirchner’s double-sided paintings as an independent artwork category. Explore 17 exemplary canvasses with pictures on both sides.“When we restored Ernst Ludwig Kirchner’s painting Gelbes Engelufer, Berlin in 2010, the long-forgotten reverse side reappeared and showed the painting of a Moroccan.That’s how, for the first time, the idea emerged to acknowledge this unusual phenomenon in an exhibition,” Dr. Inge Herold, curator and associate museum director, explains.

Explore an extraordinary art phenomenon Established in 1909, the Kunsthalle Mannheim has fascinated modern and contemporary art fans since. This year, the museum honours Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, one of the most significant painters of the early 20th century, with the exhibition Der doppelte Kirchner. Die zwei Seiten der Leinwand. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF PHOTOS: ACHIM KUKULIES/ MARTIN FROMMHAGEN/ WILHELM-HACK-MUSEUM/ CEM YÜCETAS/ MARKUS SCHWETASCH

The cooperative project between the Kunsthalle Mannheim, the Kirchner Museum Davos and the Ernst Ludwig Kirchner Archive in Wichtrach/Bern, emphasises Kirchner’s avant-garde approach to life and

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his liberated dealing with form and colour which revolutionised painting. Until the end of May, the exhibition will thematise one extraordinary art phenome-

A fascinating aspect of Kirchner’s work technique is that it seems like the reverse side characteristic is not a marginal feature of his work, but rather a working method which stretches through his entire body of work. The facts speak for the truth of this theory: The Kirchner catalogue raisonné lists 1,045 paintings from 1968 and 138 of these are painted on both sides. “The reverse sides were ignored for decades even though they offer important insights into the stylistic development of Kirchner’s specific dealings with his own works, whose perception the artist always influenced – through backdating, overpainting or art criticism. This is why the topic carries great weight,”Dr. Inge Herold says. One reason for Kirchner’s double-sided paintings is said to be linked to a famous letter from 1919: “Now I need to save something too, and the material has become very costly. But thankfully the canvas has two sides.” Many believe that it wasn’t easy for Kirchner to obtain painting material from 1917 onwards when he had moved to Davos. That’s why he is said to have chosen to


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Discover Germany | Attraction of the Month | Germany

paint on already used canvasses. “In my opinion, the pragmatic aspect shouldn’t be overrated. One should always remember that Kirchner was an artist, who deliberately controlled the perception of his artworks,” Dr. Inge Herold says. An interesting fact about Kirchner’s works is that almost no recurring pattern or systematics in the processing of the canvas sides can be found.“The paintings’history of origins and their history of oeuvre is as different as their quality. A big part of the reverse sides are works which have been signed by the artist and which have therefore been marked as completed.There are also paintings with strongly varying front and reverse side quality, which stem from different work phases. Most of the time, the painting itself never shows a context between front and reverse side,”the curator adds. Another distinctive characteristic to explore at the Kunsthalle Mannheim is that Kirchner upended the majority of canvasses before he painted on them again. That’s why, for example, the Gelbes Engelufer, Berlin has a landscape format, whereas the reverse side has a portrait format. One of the main goals of the exhibition is to outline the disparate perspectives of this work category. A question, which will be explored, is who gets to choose which side

of the painting is seen as the main picture and which one as the reverse side. Dr. Inge Herold argues that “in principal, the decision rests with the picture owner but the work’s integrity is another important factor to be considered. Can we simply ignore the will of the artist because we like one side more than the other or because we can sell one side for more money?” The exhibition in the Kunsthalle Mannheim offers a special opportunity to discover the previously hidden.“Not many large-format early works survived in their original state.Therefore, the verso is an important contribution for the understanding of the artist’s oeuvre. It’s definitely relevant to document Kirchner’s work history and to make it transparent for the art’s audience,” Dr. Inge Herold explains. The works are presented chronologically and they consider the artist’s definitions of the works’ rectos on the one hand. On the other, the Kunsthalle Mannheim tries not to evaluate the main and reverse side problem so that the audience is allowed to make their own observation and evaluation. “That’s why we fundamentally present the paintings double-sided in special custombuilt, detached frame constructions, which enable visitors to look at both sides,” Dr. Inge Herold says.

www.kunsthalle-mannheim.de

Opposite page: Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Marrokaner, 1909/1910. Photo: Kunsthalle Mannheim / Cem Yücetas Above: Dr. Inge Herold. Photo: Markus Schwetasch Below: Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Fraenzi, 1911, Kunsthalle zu Kiel. Photo: Martin Frommhagen Bottom: Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Zwei Frauen auf der Straße, 1914/ Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf. Photo: Achim Kukulies, Düsseldorf (left) Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Urteil des Paris, 1913. Photo: Wilhelm-Hack-Museum, Ludwigshafen am Rhein (middle) Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Weiblicher Akt im Tub, 1911/ Kunsthalle zu Kiel. Photo: Martin Frommhagen (right)

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Magic moments from medieval times Often referred to as one of the most significant Austrian castle ruins and nestled high above the Danube river between the cities of Vienna and Linz, the Burgruine Aggstein ancient castle ruins bring history alive, while being the perfect backdrop for a medieval style feast. TEXT: TINA AWTANI | PHOTOS: SCHLOSSGUT SCHÖNBÜHEL AGGSTEIN AG

The Burgruine Aggstein in the country’s Wachau region dates back to the years around 1200. The up to five metres thick ancient walls are full of history. Hidden

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stairways, an old chapel, the beautiful knight’s hall and an original tavern couldn’t be more authentic and do not fail to impress visitors of all age groups.

Attraction of the Month Austria

When approaching the Burgruine Aggstein one is greeted by the old coat of arms of Georg Scheck vom Wald above the main gate, stating the year 1419. One can feel the power of the impressive building, which has been fought over for centuries due to its superb strategic position. “Being located 360m high on a rock above the Danube river is a spectacular location offering an unparalleled view across the Danube valley, and still the ruins are easily accessible,”


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Discover Germany | Attraction of the Month | Austria

figures, which surprise our visitors: The prisoners in the little Rose Garden dungeon, the knight who sharpens his sword and the henchman who’s just doing his job,”Jäger says with a twinkle in her eye.

Lower Austria and the European Agricultural Guidance and Guarantee Fund (EAGGF) allowed major refurbishment and today the Burgruine Aggstein is owned by decedents of count Graf Oswald von Seilern-Aspang. Celebrate in knight style

The enchanting name Rose Garden is a bit deceptive, as under the reign of robber knight Georg von Scheck vom Wald the “garden” served as an execution place. The evil knight used to capture boats, travelling upriver demanding a ransom. Those who refused payment were taken to the Rose Garden, where they either starved or jump down the cliff to die. Myth-enshrouded object of desire

event manager Christine Jäger explains. On-site activities include tours led by the castle ghost, knights’games or a praxis-orientated lecture in forestry. Climbing up the “Bürgl” – formerly the location of a huge catapult for defence – or the“Hochburg”is rewarded with breath-taking views and not only those with a passion for knights and rivalry have a lot to discover in and around the ruins, which just recently welcomed a few new residents.“We have five life-size

Legends and myths surrounding the ancient walls are plentiful. Originally erected by Nizzo von Gobatsburg between 1100 and 1113, the fortress was established to protect trade ships on their passage up the Danube river. But when the right to collect tolls from passing ships was introduced, Aggstein became the exact opposite as the actions of cruel Georg von Schreck vom Wald very clearly proved a few hundred years later. In the past, Aggstein has been completely destroyed twice and was under siege at least four times. First in 1213 under Hadmar III, nicknamed The Dog of Kuenring, again in 1296 under the residency of Leopold I von Kuenring. Lord of the manor Georg von Scheck vom Wald was attacked here in 1463 and three years later Aggstein was the object of dispute once more under the possession of Georg von Stain. In more recent times the ruins were neglected and swapped ownership on several occasions. It was after WWII when the restoration started again. A decade ago the Aggstein Castle Restoration project, partly funded by the federal state of

Live it up as Lord of the castle or do what the damsels did back in the good old times, while enjoying authentic culinary treats and music from the Middle Ages.The Burgruine Aggstein is a reknowned corporate as well as private event location, where guests are immersed in a different world. Weddings, in particular, are most romantic in the Burgruine Aggstein. An enchanting chapel still features some original gothic arches. After vows have been completed in the ruin’s chapel, the party gets started in the magnificent knights’ hall. Hearty food such as home made pork ribs or castle chicken drumsticks are to be washed down with plenty of wine, pear juice or water while the medieval band performs authentic tunes with drums or bagpipes. www.ruineaggstein.at

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Discover Germany | Culture | Guttenberg Castle & Eurotours

The eagle castle High above the romantic Neckar valley, surrounded by vineyards and broad forests, Germany’s only undestroyed Staufer era castle opens its gates for visitors seeking spectacular eagle air displays, a prizewinning castle museum and tasty eatertainment. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: KONRAD PLANK, BERNOLPH VON GEMMINGEN

One of the many striking features of the Guttenberg Castle is that it has always been inhabited. Today it is still occupied by its owner family, the barons of Gemmingen – in the 16th generation by now. “Extraordinary experiences are the air shows with free-flying eagles, owls and vultures, which are rare to find in Europe,” Bernolph von Gemmingen, baron and owner of the castle, says. “Furthermore, the castle museum tells a lot of exciting stories about the adventurous life of this castle,”Bernolph von Gemmingen adds. Fascinating exhibits, such as real knight’s armour or the torture chamber, bring the Middle Ages to life. Another

highlight is the unique xylotheque, which is over 200 years old. After a fun-filled day, embrace the great themed gastronomy. “Our motto is ‘how grandma cooked it and granddad liked it.’ Look forward to delicacies out of jelly jars, and fresh meals which are prepared in front of the visitors’ eyes,” Bernolph von Gemmingen says. “The authentic overall experience is the reason for visitors to always come back,” Bernolph von Gemmingen concludes. Highlights of 2015 will be the opening of a new gastronomic concept with regional delicacies, cooking events, which are offered by the new restaurateur for compa-

Eurotours satisfies your holiday desires Eurotours International, Austria’s largest direct tour operator and Central Europe’s largest incoming agency, takes care of the holidays of more than 1.3 million clients every year, offering everything from individual trips to group travel for up to thousands of participants. TEXT & PHOTOS: EUROTOURS | TRANSLATION: EMMIE COLLINGE

With 350 employees, Eurotours International handles approximately 1.3 million customers each year. Their spectrum is diverse, with everything from a long weekend in the Alps, city breaks, wellness holidays, sport-orientated getaways, and cultural breaks right through to trips on which you’ll encounter some of the world’s most exciting destinations. As a tour operator, Eurotours supplies around 800 tourism companies from across the globe with attractive offers. Individually-tailored group trips and incen-

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tives are yet another core competence within the company. Eurotours achieved a

Guttenberg Castle

nies, the new terrace with a fantastic view onto the Neckar Valley, a big castle festival for children and various unforgettable weddings in the new registry office and the medieval chapel. www.burg-guttenberg.de

turnover of roughly 270 million euros in 2014, employing 350 members of staff both at home and abroad. A veritable ‘one stop shop’ for its customers, Eurotours guarantees a comprehensive service. Since 1998 it has been a member of the ‘Verkehrsbüro Group’, Austria’s largest tourism group. For the past year offers have been available on the online travel platform www.justaway.com, a novel concept that allows you to book online. Since January, Eurotours in cooperation with the Deutsche Post has been the exclusive provider of www.postreisen.de www.eurotours.at

Below: CEO Hans-Dieter Toth with the postreisen.de brochure (left). The headquarters of Eurotours International in Kitzbühel (right)


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Culture Guide Austria

Visiting ”Vienna’s living room” The MuseumsQuartier Wien displays the city’s unique sense of art and culture in its magnificent spaces, housing numerous internationally renowned museums and exhibitions. TEXT: DORINA REICHHOLD | PHOTOS: HERTHA HURNAUS

Austria’s capital is a treat for art lovers, aesthetes and anyone interested in a rich cultural history.Visitors can experience all these things combined in the MuseumsQuartier Wien, a large indoor and outdoor area dedicated to art and culture. Situated in the city’s 7th district, this large 90,000 m² area is home to about 60 different facilities, from large museums to small exhibition spaces. The mix of buildings dating from the 18th and 19th centuries along with contempo-

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rary architecture doesn’t just house museums and exhibitions, but also plays host to various art and cultural events and shows. The cultural fields covered are immensely diverse, covering architecture, fashion, photography, dance, theatre, literature, street art, design, game culture, music and children’s culture, to name but a few.The artists whose works are shown are just as diverse. They include internationally renowned artists as well as younger artists, who have

only recently started making a name for themselves. ”The MuseumsQuartier Wien is one of the greatest art and cultural areas in the world,” explains Barbara Pölz, manager of events and tourism marketing.“At the same time it is an urban living space with generous resting areas, courtyards, diverse cafés and shops. It is a meeting point for Viennese and tourists from all over the world.” The MuseumsQuartier Wien, or MQ, has a long history. Originally built as the Imperial stables for the Austrian Emperor at the beginning of the 18th century, the area was rebuilt several times and used for various


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Discover Germany | Culture Guide | Austria

door areas. A special type of furniture, ”the MQ furniture” is displayed everywhere, inviting visitors to sit down and enjoy the vibrant surroundings.Throughout the year, the courtyards are used for a varied cultural programme, including readings, dance performances or sculpture exhibitions, free of charge for visitors.The atmosphere in the courtyards radiates creativity, enabling visitors to closely experience Vienna’s unique sense of art and culture. In addition, numerous festivals are hosted during the year, including several internationally famous festivals such as the Wiener Festwochen and the Viennale film festival. Next to numerous small exhibitions, the MQ is home to world famous art collections. One of the internationally renowned museums housed in the MQ is the Leopold Museum which is home to one of the largest collections of modern Austrian art. It also has the world’s largest collection of the 20th century expressionist Egon Schiele. From the end of February until June 1st the museum will show the exhibition WALLY NEUZIL – Her Life with Egon Schiele about the woman who was a major influence on Schiele’s life and work.

purposes. In the 20th century it housed trade fairs until the MQ area opened in 2001. A special atmosphere can be experienced in the many courtyards around the large out-

Another internationally important museum is the mumok, with its extraordinary collection of modern and contemporary art and its large collection ofViennese Actionism, an art movement of the 1960s which provoked a lot of controversy. From the middle of February until September 13th mumok will play host with Ludwig Goes Pop to an overview of the work of some of

the most important American pop artists such as Duance Hanson, Roy Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol. The MQ is very popular with theViennese, hence its nickname ”Vienna’s living room”. Situated close to the famous sites of the Ringstraße, such as the Hofburg Palace, it is also a magnet for tourists from all over the world who come to experience the rich art collections and the unique atmosphere. In 2015, the Ringstraße will celebrate its 150th anniversary and from May until the end of August the MQ is offering guided tours to explore the famous street’s history. Another highlight will be Sommer im MQ, which will see a series of open air readings as well as the film festival frame[o]ut.To ensure visitors are able to unwind during their stay, a number of cafés, restaurant and bars offer high quality food and drink as well as a place to sit down and relax. The MQ is an oasis of calm where visitors can rest, enjoy a light meal and a glass of wine, or maybe a frozen yoghurt, and take in the stunning views of the surroundings. ”Creating art and experiencing art, recreational activities and resting become an inseparable unit and convey the authentic Viennese way of living,”is how Pölz summarizes a visit to the MQ. What better invitation could there be to come and experience ”Vienna’s living room” for oneself? www.mqw.at

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Discover Germany | Culture Guide | Austria

Where Mozart comes alive Combining museum, research centre and concert venue, the non-profit Salzburg Mozarteum Foundation carefully preserves the heritage of one of the world’s greatest composers. The works of Wolfgang Amadé Mozart are continuously researched by cutting-edge scientists and frequently put into a contemporary context to embrace the future. TEXT: TINA AWTANI | PHOTOS: CHRISTIAN SCHNEIDER

Mozart’s Birthplace, the house where the famous composer was born on 27 January 1756, is part of the museum. Located in Salzburg’s iconic Getreidegasse, a permanent exhibition of memorabilia from the artist’s personal life such as his childhood violin, his clavichord and an astonishing selection of artefacts, give the impression that young Mozart is just around the corner. Mozart’s Residence is also open to the public and part of the foundation. Here, the musician spent a large part of his life before he moved to Vienna and the famous family portrait still graces the wall of the Tanzmeistersaal.

The Great Hall in the main building of the Mozarteum Foundation is renownded for its impeccable acoustics and worldleading artists frequently pay tribute to the

former resident in the form of superb concerts. These performances are absolute highlights for Mozart devotees. “It is our aim to spark new perspectives and new cause for thought in the dialogue with the composer and bridging the gap beween the preservation of tradition and contemporary culture,“ CEO and artistic director Matthias Schulz explains. The foundation’s academic research department comprises the Mozart Institute, the Digital Mozart Edition as well as the library and collections centre. No other place in the world offers such profound expertise. www.mozarteum.at

Below: Mozart's Birthplace (left). Great Hall (middle). TheTanzmeistersaal (right)

A jewel of Austrian theatre art The historic Schauspielhaus Graz is one of the biggest theatres in Austria since its reconstruction in 1825 after a big fire destroyed almost the entire building. Putting a special emphasis on international cooperation and inviting stage directors and actors from all over the world, the theatre gained itself a reputation of an artistic home “at the centre of Europe”. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: LUPI SPUMA

In 2008, Austria’s famous theatre became a member of the UNION DES THÉÂTRES DE L´EUROPE – as the first and as the only Austrian one so far. Since then, the theatre has toured outside of Austria and made guest performances in Budapest or Moscow. Being a price-winning theatre, the Schauspielhaus Graz has won the Nestroy Theatre Price six times. An interesting and diverse playbill, which is characterised by many premieres as well as classical plays, is combined with numerous music and dance performances, readings, discussions and co-productions with young artists.

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“The rehearsal stage and level three are also used as performance space in addition to the main stage since 2000. They can also be rented as event venues for special occasions,” Martina Maier, marketing officer, says. Theatre enthusiasts can look forward to an exciting program in 2015. With 20 new productions, such as Viktor Bodós ‘Motel’, the premiere of ‘Le Passé – Das Vergangene’, Georg Buechner’s ‘Woyzeck’ and many more, the upcoming season offers plenty of cultural treasures. www.schauspielhaus-graz.com

Top: Schauspielhaus Graz. Above: Auditorium of the theatre’s main stage, which offers space for 540 people.


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This festival makes you want to see more SCHĂ„XPIR ranks among the most important festivals in the area of theatre for a young audience. The unusual spelling can be interpreted as a reference to the famous William Shakespeare. New and extraordinary approaches mark the programme; thereby the festival tries to remain faithful to its principle of showing only demanding and high-quality productions. TEXT: MERYEM HAUER

For ten days during this summer, Linz will turn into the ultimate hotspot to be for all theatre lovers. The international theatre festival takes place between 25th June and 4th July and provides an innovative and courageous programme for young people and those who are young at heart.The general principle of SCHĂ„XPIR is to show demanding and high-quality productions, without exception. To facilitate creativity and intercultural encounters, the SCHĂ„XPIR festival unites different nationalities and cultures, renowned theatre groups from all over the world come together to give a personal touch to this special festival. Dialogues and workshops convey to the audience the aesthetic character and the cultural environment of each production. The visitors are mostly impressed by the innovative approaches of this festival. SCHĂ„XPIR always tries to reflect and discuss the latest trends within the theatre world. What is unique about this festival is its wide range of theatre groups, from internationally established groups to young talents. It marks new trends for the Austrian and European theatre world, especially for Austrian youth culture. A major aim of SCHĂ„XPIR is to excite and to establish the theatre for a young audience as a serious and important art form. www.schaexpir.at

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Culture

Golf to enjoy

Spring into Golf

- on the doorstep of Vienna Just a 20 minute drive from Vienna, the golf club Spillern takes the fun of playing golf to new heights, making the amazing sport accessible and enjoyable for golfers of all levels and age groups in a spectacular setting.

absolute beginner to professional tour player would enjoy a round of golf in an inviting and casual environment.

TEXT: TINA AWTANI | PHOTOS: WOLGANG NELSEN

All a golfer needs

When Austrian Claudia Moriggl and British Dylan Bawden, Advanced PGA Professional BSc, teamed up to take over an unin-

38 | Issue 24 | March 2015

spiring golf course in the Viennese outskirts, they were determined to establish a golf centre, where literally everyone from

Bringing the 18 hole golf course built in 1996 into shape was quite a challenge. Although naturally hilly, with a little stream running right through it and well stocked


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Discover Germany | Culture | Spring into Golf

with old trees, 86 hectares of fairways needed a complete makeover. The greens were in poor shape and the bunkers could only be seen once reached.“We have completely revamped the whole course, created 48 new bunkers, and made it all much more picturesque than before,”Claudia explains. Now the bunkers can been spotted from a distance and taken into consideration when strategically playing the new layout. “Our members are jumping up and down with excitement over the new course structure,”the sympathetic golf pro Dylan says. Apart from the main course a three hole course is available to anyone who wishes to practise. No handicap or Platzreife is required making this par 4, par 3, par 5 course very attractive. Added to that, the two sided 350 metre long driving range and 2 short game areas offer plenty of opportunity to improve your game. 12 undercover bays are also on the range for those rainy moments. After finishing a round of golf, the newly refurbished clubhouse is the perfect place to socialise in a welcoming ambience. Open daily from 9am, the kitchen offers freshly prepared dishes from a mouthwatering menu throughout the day. Other facilities include the newly fitted Pro Shop stocked and operated by the renowned Golf Star Shop offering every article to do with golf you can imagine. “Great service and quality is our top priority. We focus on sustainability rather than a quick buck,”Claudia explains.

A new state of the art fitting centre is being built onto the range for golfers to get the best possible brand and specifications for their swing and ability. Dylan Golf Dylan Bawden has been passionate about golf for almost 30 years: he learned the game in England and studied in 3 golf-related Universities where he qualified in Sports Psychology, Golf Course Studies and Recreational Management, while completing his PGA membership finals. He worked intensely with British Open winner Vivien Saunders O.B.E (PhD).“Golf is my life and I love sharing it,” says the passionate pro. Based on the theories of his acclaimed dissertation on golf teaching which has gained him Advanced Status from the British PGA he has developed a completely natural teaching approach. Today Dylan brings out the best in his students by identifying their natural potential, using easily understood explanations of the act of playing golf well, steering away from the term "paralysis by analysis" to help his students develop their ideal individual swing. His students adore him and great results speak for themselves. The DylanGolf school wouldn’t be Dylan style without the fun factor. As one of his students points out he has “an excellent sense of humour – very important when you know that golf can be a really frustrating sport at times“.

green, named and designed after the iconic mountains. It will be the first of its kind in Austria taking people of all age groups, equipped with a putter and ball, over such a breathtaking putting experience that you won't want to stop playing. Today many people still consider golf an elite sport in a snobby environment with countless strict rules and thus are reluctant to take the plunge.“We want to show people who do not play golf, that golf can be fun,” Dylan explains. Another similar famous putting green named The Himalayas graces the grounds of the home of golf in St. Andrews, Scotland. The Alps, which will be open in July, is one of the major intrigues of the area. Easter marks the start of the golf season in Northern Europe and those who consider discovering the joy of golf are well recommended to give it a go in Spillern. There is nothing to lose, but an incredible amount of life quality to be gained. www.dylangolf.com www.gcspillern.at

The Alps An exciting new Spillern Golf project is the new adventure 3,500 square metre putting

Issue 24 | March 2015 | 39


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Discover Germany | Culture | Spring into Golf

A small name with big achievements Not your usual caddy trader: Switzerland’s TOPCADDY stands for top design, top quality and top prices, while distinguishing itself from other caddy suppliers with a profound interest in meeting clients’ needs in a friendly, attentive, flexible and inexpensive way.

Roger Fehr seeks to be a reliable supplier who customers can fully trust. With TOPCADDY, Roger Fehr managed to realise a desire of many golfers: the desire to find a caddy in between the existing low-cost junk and the too expensive high end caddies. www.topcaddy.ch

Top: Product range of TOPCADDY. Photo: Roger Fehr Below: Roger Fehr, TOPCADDY’s owner. Photo: Foto Basler Aarau, Schweiz

TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: PRESS IMAGES

Established in 2013, company owner Roger Fehr sells the inexpensive TOPCADDY Push alongside the luxurious TOP ECADDY. Both models impress with an unmatched price-performance ratio, which is achieved through a reduction of distribution channels and model diversity. “My market competitor from Zurich offers the same product and until I entered the market, its price was exorbitantly expensive.Then TOPCADDY came and immediately created an astonishing market penetration because the price was decent, the product great and the service perfect,”Roger Fehr explains.

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“I take time to individually and personally advise each customer. Quite often, my customers come over to have a drink with me after golfing. It’s all about being able to offer customers something special. I can adjust or reconstruct the product, as well as undertake colour individualisation in my own workshop if the customer wishes,” Roger Fehr says. “I unpack each caddy, test and grease every screw and hinge and test all of the functions. My customers are 99.9 % satisfied,” he adds.


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Special Theme

Easter Temptations

Easter in Germany A busy bunny, painted eggs and endless fields of crocuses Germans love the Easter weekend, which marks the start of spring – and as soon as the first warming sunbeams and colourful, blossoming flowers after a long winter appear, you can be sure to expect the entire nation to celebrate appropriately with some wonderful and some rather slightly unusual traditions. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF

One of the biggest festivals in Germany, Easter originally was a Christian tradition to remember the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. However, a recent study suggests that one in five Germans has no idea what the original Christian liturgical mean-

42 | Issue 24 | March 2015

ing of Easter is. Instead, nearly all were familiar with the Easter Bunny. “Frohe Ostern” {FRO-Huh OS-tern} – be sure to know these words for the weekend 3 to 6 April, because many smiley people will be likely to impose them on wherever you are,

be it a street corner, in a café, shop or hotel you will set foot in. The Easter weekend in Germany comprises a wide range of interesting traditions and local customs. People rummage through their kitchens, decorating every little corner of the house with colourful chocolate eggs, bunnies and other Easter related ornaments. The hardest task of the Easter weekend preparation, which gives many Germans a severe headache and a feeling of dizziness, is blowing out the yolk and egg


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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Easter Temptations

The Easter bunny itself leaves much room for speculation as no one really knows its origins. One theory says that the bunny was most likely the symbol of the fertility god Eostre and because this animal is known to love rapid reproduction, the connection seems somehow legitimate. Ostara, the festival of Eostre, was celebrated in spring and then became Easter with Christianisation: the bunny as a prominent Easter symbol for life and rebirth was born, which the Christian church started to integrate into the Easter mythology and used as symbol for Christ’s resurrection since the late Middle Ages. However, the first mention of the Easter bunny occurrs at the end of the 17th century and it didn’t gain real popularity until 200 years later. Since then, no one has been able to withdraw from the influence of the cute, tiny creature. Interestingly, the job of hiding the eggs wasn’t always the bunny’s task until the 19th century. Other animals pursued its job before: the Easter hen in Tyrol, in Schleswig-Holstein, Westphalia, Bavaria and Lower Saxony, the fox or the Easter rooster, the common cuckoo in Switzerland or the stork in Thuringia were the bunny’s forerunners. Marching for peace white of the raw egg before painting the shell as creatively as possible. Egg painting is a custom which started in Germany to symbolise new life and fertility. The finished masterpieces are hung inside, or on a tree in the front yard of the home, dangling from the twigs and ready to be admired by passers by. The big hunt A well-known tradition, the Sunday morning Easter egg hunt, is the most exciting part for the young ones. Sweets and chocolate eggs, hidden by the Easter bunny (alias mum or dad), are to be found in the gardens in the early hours on Easter Sunday. Germans buy over 120 million chocolate bunnies and eat approximately 570 million eggs around the Easter Weekend, which equals seven Easter eggs per person.

their ancient customs are still celebrated today.That’s why every Easter Saturday, big bonfires take place throughout the country to drive out the winter and evil spirits. The bonfires are a great occasion to socialise. Despite the large fire it is important to keep warm, so usually a few shots or some beer is part of the deal – rumour has it that the number of people suffering from hangovers is high above average on Easter Monday. A feast for the senses Apart from sweets and extensive brunches, traditional food includes fresh fish on Good Friday and succulent lamb on Easter Sunday. Many bakeries specialise in creating tasty cakes shaped like little lambs. Easter is a great time to spend a long weekend in Germany as the spring’s awakening is sure to impress with endless meadows full of daffodils and crocuses. For some it is the most beautiful time of the year.

Opposite page: Ahrensburg Castle in spring. Photo: Tourismus-Agentur Schleswig-Holstein GmbH (TASH), Jürgen Jobst. Left: The village of Oberprechtal celebrates Easter. Photo: AK Tourismus Oberprechtal (top) Hollfeld in Bavaria: Marienplatz, fountain decorated for Easter. Photo: Touristinfo Hollfeld / Gerhard Leikam (below) Below: Sorbian Easter eggs, painted using wax-resist techniques. Photo: Colorvision; Hans R. Uthoff

Another unusual tradition is that Germans gather for annual peace marches around the Easter weekend. Thousands of people take part in these‘Easter Marches’, a tradition to support freedom movements and to advocate non-violence all over the world since the 1960s. What started as a protest against atomic weapons, grew in significance during the Cold War. The largest turnout was recorded in 1968 when the Vietnam War escalated. Even though attendance is tiny by comparison today, the Left Party’s Willi van Ooyen, a spokesman for the Easter Marches movement, said the event“remains a political signal and a boost for the pacifist society”. Bonfire against evil For thousands of years, Teutons have been celebrating spring festivals and some of

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Home of the Baumerfladen – Voland’s fine confectionary Made in Switzerland’s Töss Valley in the canton of Zürich, Voland’s most original and exquisite baking and confectionary creations, such as the authentic Baumerfladen, are a top tip not only amongst insiders. TEXT: TINA AWTANI | PHOTOS: VOLAND

Fresh rolls, smooth chocolates, fine pralines and a selection of seasonal products such as the most delicious chocolate Easter bunnies are carefully hand-made according to traditional recipies in the Bauma based headquarters andVoland’s four subsidiaries in Steg, Wald, Rüti and Bäretswil. “Confectioner’s art for afficionados“ is how owner René Schweizer describes his produce and he continues:“Each creation is a feast for the senses, a real personality, a surprise like the sound that comes out a musical instrument or the voice of an opera singer." Quality is key and all chemical preservatives and artificial flavours are banned in Voland manufacturing. All ingredients are carefully sourced, ideally from regional suppliers, and turned into confectionary masterpieces by the skilled members of theVoland team. Employees are re-

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warded with a partnership programme, thus every single one is highly motivated and loyal. Certainly one of Switzerland’s best kept secrets, an absolute must-try and house specialty is the Baumerfladen, a unique hazelnut-filled type of gingerbread. For over a century the precious recipe formula has been handed down from generation to generation in the Voland bakery and confectionary house. “This tradition lives on through my craftsmanship. Being the only one who knows the original recipe, I personally create the gingerbread and guarantee the authenticity of the original Baumerfladen with its home-made nutty stuffing,” Schweizer proudly explains. At Voland the art of confectionary comes alive; upon registration, groups of three or

Main image: René Schweizer with the famous Baumerfladen From top down: Colani Easter bunnies Hand-made with love Fine patisserie for every occasion

more are welcome to participate in a confectionary masterclass and learn how to garnish gingerbread, make braided bread or create chocolate in the Steg branch. 2015 is an exciting year for theVoland bakery as the Bäretswil branch will undergo a complete refurbishment programme and be extended by a cosy coffee lounge; also a brand new water cutting machine has been acquired allowing even more precisely cut production in a contemporary manner. Catering by Voland for private and corporate events reaches from fine tea-time bakery products to the more hearty apéro (apéritif) small bites selection, and a selection of gifts including personalised Baumerfladen are available in-store and online. www.baumerfladen.ch


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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Easter Temptations

Below: Speciality ‘Wyssesteinerli’ (left) Speciality ‘Schlossgeistli’ (middle) The Goldstaengeli, a chocolate bar (right)

Family business with a sweet tooth The Dorfbeck Nyfeler AG, a confectioner, cake shop and bakery, as well as a chocolate shop, stands for family tradition, loving handmade goodies and high-quality products through the use of regional, flawless raw materials. For 85 years, the prizewinning company has emphasised quality over quantity and guarantees that clients can always expect something very special and mouth-watering. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: CHRISTOF LANG

“Our bakery was founded 85 years ago by my grandfather. Now in its third generation, our product range has been constantly broadened and adjusted to meet the spirit of the time and our clients’ individual wishes. Our homemade chocolate delicacies are an especially important pillar for us today,”Daniel Nyfeler, owner, says. With homes in Switzerland’s Aarwangen, Langenthal, Solothurn and Zuchwil, the traditional business offers a wide range of exclusive chocolate products and specialities, which are largely regionally rooted. A big truffle, cake, bonbon or chocolate bar range is produced by professional confectioners with longstanding experience and

expertise in creating smooth, tasty and creative chocolate creations. Regular participation in quality competitions guarantees that the product’s nature remains the best possible. In 2012/2013, the ‘Wyssensteinerli’ milk chocolate with 42 per cent cocoa and a tasty caramel filling were granted a gold award. In 2014/2015 the ‘Schlossgeistli’, small white- and milk chocolate ghosts with a raspberry filling, where a prize winning product. The‘Goldstaengeli’– a true mega bonbon – was also awarded gold at the Swiss Bakery Trophy in 2014/2015.“I have to admit that the‘Goldstaengeli’, which is made of Grand Cru chocolate from Ecuador and covered

with roasted hazelnuts is my favourite product at the moment,”Daniel Nyfeler admits. “We produce our handmade high-quality products in small quantities as this guarantees freshness and we, of course, develop and refine our own recipes,”Daniel Nyfeler says. Using flawless, certified raw material, as well as regional partners and suppliers seems to pay off as the company was elected Departement Master of Bern twice already in the Swiss Bakery Trophy in 2012/2013 and in 2014/2015. “We work with trained specialists in a family atmosphere.The constant education and further training is really important for us as the client is always at the core of our work,”Daniel Nyfeler concludes. From breakfast and lunch delivery, to event catering, creative chocolate confections, wedding cakes and party service – the Dorfbeck Nyfeler AG is sure to fulfil every client’s individual wish with a passion for chocolate and an inventive sweet tooth. www.znueni-beck.com

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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Easter Temptations

Exclusive chocolates made to order Switzerland’s Schwander Chocolatier Suisse conjures truly unique sweet creations. The exclusively handmade and personalised chocolates, exciting taste blends wrapped in designer packaging, are one of a kind. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: IVO SCHWANDER

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“Our chocolate is 100% handmade, one can see and taste the exclusivity and the passion of the chocolatier,“ Manuela Chiesa Schwander, owner of the small business, explains. Focussing on product personalisation, Schwander Chocolatier creates individual carrés, confettis or truffes for clients, for weddings, birthdays or other special occasions.“We produce freshly according to our customers‘ individual orders which ensures the great taste,“ the owner says. The couple’s family business has been constantly growing since its foundation in Merenschwand five years ago and is Ivo Schwander’s childhood dream come true. “He lives for chocolate,“ his wife ads. Only the freshest and finest ingredients

are used in the traditional manufacturing process.The quality, sustainability and origin of the cocoa bean plays the most important role, while producing small quantities ensures uncompromising freshness. “The design of our packaging is really special too. Little chocolate squares are affectionately

wrapped in premium and beautifully designed paper.They don’t look like your normal chocolate bar,“ Mrs Schwander says. Unusual combinations, also available online, include chocolate with lassi or truffes with champagne. Clients favour the white chocolate with orange yoghurt and the white chocolate with passion fruit combinations.“Even customers who aren’t usually fond of white chocolate love these,“ Mrs Schwander reveals. Schwander Chocolatier also offers team events, where one can produce one’s very own chocolate bar or chocolate bunny. www.schwander-chocolatier.ch

Below: Box of pralines.(left) Schwander Chocolatier offers a wide range of chocolate carrés. (middle) Chocolate bunny – perfect for Easter. (right)

GALERIE AM ROTEN HOF ARCHAIC - IN WOOD AND LINEN Sculptures by Evgenia KUDRINA (Moscow) Tapestries by Beate von HARTEN (Vienna)

EXHIBITION 03/27 - 04/23 "Slow art for a fast time" - the motto of Beate von Harten – her textile works grow slowly, almost organically from all-natural, high quality materials on simple looms; just as slowly and organically, the figures of Evgenia Kudrina emerge from a tree trunk, ridding themselves gradually of all that is unnecessary and foreign until a sculpture of symbolic and magical power is revealed. Piaristengasse 1, 1080 Wien +43 676 783 55 25 www.amrotenhof.at WED to FRI, 1pm-7pm & SAT, 11am-3pm and by appointment.


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Special Theme

CeBIT 2015

Welcome to CeBIT 2015 On 16 March the most important trade fair for IT and digitalisation will begin in Hannover, Germany, with well over 3,500 companies from 70 different countries and more than 200,000 visitors as well as all the answers to questions on digital business. TEXT & PHOTOS: DEUTSCHE MESSE AG | TRANSLATION: EMMIE COLLINGE

CeBIT’s headline theme this year is‘d!conomy.’ A concept, described by the Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel in her opening speech as:“describing no less than the far reaching revolution through the digital transformation. It covers nearly all aspects of our leisure and work lives in both the business world and society.” CeBIT will reveal just how drastically the role of IT has changed. Whereas it was once the role of IT’s hardware and software to in-

crease the efficiency of businesses, now it is the catalyst for and driver of innovation in all branches of the economy.“Every firm, in every sector, must embrace digitisation,” says Oliver Frese, chair of the board of Deutschen Messe AG (German Trade Fairs), who are organising CeBIT.“Digitisation offers infinite opportunities to further develop traditional business models with completely new models for supply chains, breaking into established areas or completely new business through complete

Above: Oliver Frese, member of the board, Deutsche Messe AG, Hannover

digital thinking. Digital transformation is a strategic task for every enterprise.” The organisers have developed a tailormade offer, especially created for small and medium size businesses – from the special lounge at the trade fair for small to medium size businesses to the online tests for their degree of digitisation. www.cebit.com

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Welcome to Hannover Few regions can boast as many diverse and appealing leisure opportunities as Hannover. Whether you’re strolling through the Royal Herrenhäuser Gardens or soaking up the Mediterranean flair around the Maschsee Lake in the heart of the city. Highlights of the region include Lake Steinhude, the Deister forest and the Marienburg Castle. With its generous pedestrian zone, the Ernst-August-Galerie shopping centre and the sophisticated boutique-lined streets, the city of Hannover is a lively shopping haven. In the old town, let the medieval alleyways entrance you, before opting for a relaxing drink on the banks of the River Leine or in one of the many cafes. Alongside a host of fascinating museums and monuments, Hannover’s firstrate theatre productions, concerts and art exhibitions draw in the culture lover from all over the world. As a city that excels at trade fairs, events and sports, Hannover has a veritable international flair and its annual Maschsee Festival and the Schützenfest funfair are among the biggest in the world. Hannover – discover the diversity! TEXT & PHOTOS: HANNOVER MARKETING UND TOURISMUS GMBH | TRANSLATION: EMMIE COLLINGE

Royal Hannover - Admire Royal landscape architecture in the Herrenhäuser Gardens The Great Garden – a true gem of a Baroque garden – was originally created by one of Hannover’s most extraordinary women: the Electress Sophia of Hannover. Inspired by the Sun King Louis XIV, her life’s work was the grandiose transformation of the Great Garden at the end of the

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17th century as a homage to the French style. One of the best-preserved in Europe, this Baroque garden and its remarkable flair enrapture around half a million visitors annually. Since 2013, the Great Garden has housed a further attraction: the new Herrenhausen Palace Museum, which invites guests to delve into the diversity of the palace and gardens of Herrenhausen.

Where could be better to stage stunning productions and events than here? The Herrenhausen Gardens are renowned for their extensive event programme, which includes the International Fireworks Competition, the KunstFestSpiele Herrenhausen and many top class concerts, musicals and dance performances. Allow yourself to be enchanted! Within the historic Berggarten [Mountain Garden], over 12,000 types of plants are waiting to be discovered in this impressive botanical garden. The greenhouses, home to up to 800 blossoming orchids, tropical


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Main image: Herrenhäuser Gardens, Great Garden. © Nik Barlo jr. Above: Herrenhäuser Gardens, Golden Gate. © Hassan Mahramzadeh Opposite page, below: Exklusive Shopping at Möller und Möller. © Möller & Möller Right: Marienburg Castle. © EAC GmbH (top) Marienburg Castle, „On the way to the crown“ exhibition. © EAC GmbH/Patrice Kunte (below) Below: Meiers Lebenslust. © Meiers Lebenslust (left) Brauhaus Ernst-August. © Brauhaus Ernst-August (middle) Kastens Hotel Luisenhof. © Kastens Hotel Luisenhof (right)

rarities, cacti and succulents, can be visited all year round. The royal garden inspector Christian Schaumberg employed extensive landscaping to create the stunning Georgengarten, an idyllic English-inspired landscape full of water, meadows and rare trees. Since 1727, the 1,800-metre long, four-row lime tree Herrenhäuser Allee has traversed this idyll, and it has long been the ideal stretch for a walk or a ride in a horse-drawn carriage. Marienburg Castle – a neo-gothic dream Your love as a monument: When King George V of Hannover wished to present his wife, Queen Marie, with the Marienburg Castle as gift, he had no idea that his declaration of love would one day be considered one of Germany’s most impressive and most significant neo-Gothic architectural monuments. Awoken from a Sleeping

Beauty-esque sleep, the Marienburg Castle (built between 1858 and 1867) fascinates visitors even today with its fairy-tale appearance. With battlements, towers and turrets seducing at first glance, the interior has been kept virtually intact. The Marienburg Castle is still in the hands of its familial owners. The head of the household, HRH Crown Prince Ernst August of Hannover, is the great-great-great-grandson of Queen Marie and King George. Marienburg Castle remains open to the public, and during the season visitors attend popular themed tours of the castle, concerts and events. While the castle’s restaurant is gastronomically impressive, the climb up the Castle Tower is an inimitable opportunity to enjoy an extraordinary view over the Leine valley and the Calenberg Land right across to Hannover.The former stables and coach house have been transformed into a restaurant and event space for weddings and other occasions. Shopping paradise par excellence Didn’t you know? Hannover’s Georgstraße and the adjacent Bahnhofstraße are considered among Germany’s most popular shopping streets. But there’s much more for shoppers; look no further than the host of shops on the Niki-de-Saint-PhallePromenade, the boutiques in the ErnstAugust-Galerie and the Galerie Luise, as well as the charming Old Town. Everything that can be exclusive, is: Just take a visit to the El Dorado of the Georgstraße vis-à-vis the Hannover Opera House.

casually low-key, be it a bar, disco, club or pub – you’ll find everything from hard rock to funk and soul right through to Schlager. Hannover’s craft beer pubs are a brilliantly quirky way to start the party. Home-brewed beers of many types go han- in-hand with the chef’s mouth-watering delicacies at both Meiers Lebenlust and the Brauhaus Ernst-August.

From the glamorous to the quirky – Hannover’s nightlife has it all

Regardless of how long the night goes on, Hannover can be relied upon to provide excellent accommodation. In the heart of Hannover you’ll find the stylish, charming and modern 5 Star Superior hotel, the Kastens Hotel Luisenhof. From the four Star spectrum, the city centre has a host of offerings, which all guarantee a pleasant and comfortable stay in Hannover.

In the evenings we take to the slopes. Whatever you’re after, be it glamorous or

www.visit-hannover.com/en

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Your specialist for smartphone and tablet accessory products Located in Heilbronn, AIV offers accessory products with the highest quality alongside innovation, reliability and competent advice and service for more than 30 years. A true specialist for professional HiFi-cabling and modern accessory components, the distributor specialises in high-quality mobile phone products. Discover the variety of the latest technology and individual solutions they have to offer.

with regulatory, contractual and operational requirements, the importance of cooperation and high quality principles throughout their work – hence AIV’s corporate slogan is‘get connected’.

TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: AIV

“The motto refers to the continuous progression of our products’ interconnection, but also stands for the close, networked relationship, which we strive to achieve with partners and customers to enable a successful cooperation for all sides. We are committed to a continuous expansion and specialisation of our accessory range and we put special emphasis on reliable product quality and customer-oriented service,” Armin Straßburger explains.

AIV is renowned for offering a comprehensive product range of smartphone and tablet accessories: from the classical mobile phone cases and charging equipment from brands such as Puro, Spada and Tylt, to earphones and Bluetooth speakers from the Italian manufacturer Macrom or the exceptionally stable holder from Brodit and PanaVise – AIV offers everything for businesses, which seek to provide their customers a broad product portfolio for today’s active smartphone and tablet user.

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“We have particularly expanded strongly in the App-Gadget and Smart Home sector, where we often work with young start-up companies, such as Sphero, Olloclip and AllDock, which are developing new, innovative products for this market segment, which is fast gaining in importance, and which want to establish themselves on the German market,” Armin Straßburger, CEO, says. Targeting customer satisfaction is the main priority, just as is emphasising compliance

AIV’s business branches are divided into three categories: Car, Home and Mobile. Alongside selling tablet and smartphone


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Primarily being active as distributor for mobile phone accessories, the company has an extensive portfolio of various app gadgets – from entertaining and funny to helpful, smart and innovative. Narrative Clip Hilarious authentic moments, sudden surprises or your baby’s first step. The Narrative Clip camera lets you stay in the moment while also capturing it. With this gadget you will have your hands free when it matters, while still being able to collect and share your stories with your friends online. “We think that this app gadget is particularly interesting at the moment,” Armin Straßburger states. Narrative Clip is a gadget that you can simply clip onto your clothing and which automatically takes a photo every 30 seconds. The small camera makes it possible for users to take photos and to track their lives without having to take out their phone or even manually take a photo.“The accompanying Narrative App automatically arranges and groups the pictures through an algorithm,” Armin Straßburger says.“This app gadget is perfect for every life-logger or every person who desires to take pictures of a certain event without spoiling the moment with a camera,” Armin Straßburger adds. products, the company with 130 employees also distributes car accessories – especially in the Car HiFi sector, where their successful home brand Rainbow reinforces their market share. Furthermore, AIV offers everything in the area of cable systems for the smaller Home category, such as HiFi- and Sat receivers, as well as more and more brands and products from the Smart Home sector, such as the iHealth and BeeWi brand.

family with games or interesting programming software so that it never gets boring. Kill zombies with ‘The Rolling Dead’, play golf in your living room or share the fun with your friends and family over the multiplayer mode or tabletop mode. The app Sphero MacroLab lets you create small programmes and macros easily – and you definitely won’t need previous programming knowledge. Advanced coders can develop high-performance pro-

Main image: Active holder for the iPhone 6 with cig-plug and Apple approved charging cable. Photo: Brodit holder for iPhone 6 Left: Smart Travel Charger. Photo: TYLT – ENERGI 2K (top) You can answer the phone, read text messages and see push notifications, all without opening the frontal flap. Photo: Puro – Sense Collection iPhone6 (middle) Colorful protection for your Smartphone. Photo: Spada – IMD Design Covers (below) Above: A tiny, automatic camera and app that gives you a searchable and shareable photographic memory. Photo: Narrative - Narrative Clip Below: The world's first app-controlled robotic ball. Photo: Sphero – Sphero 2.0

Sphero 2.0 This app gadget describes an app-controlled ball-robot, which is waterproof, dirtrepellant and shockproof. Additionally, it is equipped with multi-coloured LED lights which glow in the dark. More than 25 free apps are available to entertain the whole

“Reward for our work is the quality of our products and services as well as the satisfaction of our customers. Quality starts with the first contact to a business partner and only ends with the solution for a product or service problem. Quality is a value in itself applying throughout for every employee,” Armin Straßburger says.

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Left: The app-controlled robot driven by adrenaline. Photo: Sphero – Ollie Below: Take control of your home security with an easy-to-use system controlled from your smart phone. Photo: iHealth – iSmartAlarm

Contact sensors, which immediately notify you about open doors, windows or cupboards, are flexible and wireless, while the motion detector is wireless and portable. It enables you to place the sensors everywhere you want and it will immediately notify you about intruders or activities around your house.

grammes and apps for the Sphero with orbBasics. “This gadget guarantees fun which will last for hours. From multiplayer games to augmented reality in your own living room – everything is possible,”Armin Straßburger says. Sphero 2.0 is compatible with iOS, Android and Windows Phone. Ollie – Robotic Gaming System Ollie is a cylinder-shaped, super-fast, appcontrolled roboter, which is better and more versatile than every racing car and which can be individually designed – thanks to interchangeable tyres and hub caps. Thanks to the combination of the Sphero 2.0 technologies with innovative control functions and integrated gameplay, the robot creates a completely new experience, which you can easily control from your phone or tablet. “Run, jump, do tricks and receive automatic feedback and points, according to the difficulty level of your manoeuvre. Coding apps are available too,” Armin Straßburger describes. The concept is that you get points for your driving skills, which you can collect and with which you can develop new skills or styles of driving. The ultimate goal is to achieve the master level with the fast robot that can reach over six metres per second. Compatible with iOS and Android, the app gadget will definitely change the way you used to play.

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iSmartAlarm If you search for an app gadget that is helpful, innovative and smart and which will facilitate your life, look no further. iSmartAlarm is an alarm system, which everyone can install in their homes by themselves. Simply check on your house on the go with your mobile phone. With no contracts or monthly fees, the alarm system comprises several different components, which all – or in part – can be installed. The‘CubeOne’is the brain of the system, the central plug-n-play hub, which is extendable almost without limit.

If you don’t have your iOS or Android device at hand, you can simply control the system or deactivate the panic alarm with the remote control. The system also identifies children or pets who carry the remote control.“The app informs you about who is in your house, who enters and leaves the door or about the operating status of each sensor. Furthermore, it warns all authorised members with a push notification and sends an email if the iSmartAlarm security system observes a burglary or a non-authorised activity,”Armin Straßburger concludes. www.aiv.de


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Main image: Management team with general manager Marcel Etzel (middle) Left: Technical details apiOmat Enterprise Middle: Graphics picturing connections made by apiOmat Enterprise

Mobile in business apiOmat Enterprise is a mobile middleware solution made in Germany Mobility, flexibility and speed are key words when talking about the future of business. And for that companies not only need a mobile strategy but also the right IT infrastructure that allows using business data whenever and wherever. Smartphones and tablets have become the new offices and soon wearables will find their way into workplaces. TEXT: JESSICA HOLZHAUSEN | PHOTOS: APIOMAT

apiOmat Enterprise makes integrated mobile business processes possible.“We mobilise complex business structures and processes by offering a mobile middleware as connector between existing IT-systems and mobile devices,”says Marcel Etzel head and founder of Apinauten GmbH and responsible for apiOmat Enterprise.The middleware can be directly installed in a company’s datacentre; the connectors create a secure linkage to the IT systems allowing employees to work with data via apps and websites no matter where they are. “We are an experienced but dynamic team working on the mobile market since the beginning

of the smartphone era,”says Marcel Etzel. After starting business with a small team in Jena, Marcel Etzel founded Apinauten GmbH in Leipzig in 2013. apiOmat Enterprise is the perfect base for mobile strategies. Developed completely in Germany it has the highest security standards when it comes to connecting IT systems and cloud services with mobile platforms. Data in a business context should not only be downloadable: Mobile devices have to become offices-to-go. “Employees today like to work more flexibly, choosing their own space, time and even preferred

hardware.”Transferring data and working in a mobile business network based on already existing IT systems is a rather complex challenge made easier with apiOmat Enterprise. Customisable modules not only create the necessary connections but can also be extended according to a company’s needs. A mobile infrastructure is the future of business. “Changing business structures in Europe, demographic changes and the challenges of disruptive business models have an impact on every company,”says Marcel Etzel. “The dynamics of our mobile world – whether they be related to devices or software – not only change business structures but complete branches. Every company has to find its own strategy answering the overall question of how to integrate new information technologies and appliances to increase productivity and gain competitive advantages.” apiOmat Enterprise allows customers to gain independence but also to reclaim security considering the necessary but sometimes frightening dynamics of mobile hardand software use, explains Etzel:“We help to make the transition towards a successful mobile enterprise.” www.apiomat.enterprises

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Infrastructure as a Service Cloud Computing and its transformative affects on a company’s Information Technology processes, budgets, software and hardware deployments is one of the biggest stories of 2015. In fact, it’s estimated that Europe’s total cloud expenditures will be upwards of €600 billion by 2020. The pressure to be more agile and leverage technology to drive new initiatives while taking advantage of the inherent benefits of cloud computing (rapid IT deployments, OPEX vs. CAPEX spending, automation) is increasing.

the unique needs of EU businesses.“The customers are always the centre of our attention. We enable them to access and control the cloud as easily as possible. Our solid technical features, data security measures and a simple, extremely flexible graphic user interface help make their transition to the cloud easier,”Petra-Maria Grohs, CSO, says.

TEXT & PHOTOS: PROFITBRICKS

Infrastructure as a Service, or IaaS, is the foundation of cloud computing, and is now becoming the default model for transforming traditional IT deployments. Germany’s ProfitBricks is at the forefront of the EUbased cloud transition movement and offers easy to use cloud computing resources that are flexible enough to replace aging, nonscalable IT deployments, while helping teams launch new IT initiatives with lower costs and less risk – in part due to German data protection laws that ProfitBricks reinforces.

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ProfitBricks, a second generation cloud computing provider, designed the service to meet

Founded in 2010, ProfitBricks employs 125 people from 23 countries. Achim Weiß and Andreas Gauger, two pioneers of the hosting industry, former board members of 1&1, and founders of ProfitBricks, wanted to offer the most simple, flexible and efficient virtual datacentres to businesses; to combine the advantages of cloud computing with the familiar look and feel of a traditional datacentre. Halving the prices for both CPU cores and RAM in August 2013, the company gained


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solutely safe.Thanks to Germany’s rigorous data protection principles, customers of ProfitBricks don’t need to worry about their data,”Andreas Gauger, founder and CMO explains. Depending on the company you use, third parties are able to gain access to your data in storage – even if the foreign provider has a datacentre location in Germany. As a German owned cloud-hosting company and being located in Germany, ProfitBricks does not have this issue. ProfitBricks is subject to German law only – enabling you to benefit from Germany’s Federal Data Protection Act, which is one of the toughest in the world.

Main image: The world is getting smaller with Cloud Computing, but in terms of data protection there are differences between countries. Photo: Fotolia Above: Cloud Computing is a new hype? No, it is already there. Photos: ProfitBricks Opposite page, bottom: ProfitBricks has it‘s offices in the middle of Berlin and employs 125 people from 23 countries. Photo: ProfitBricks Right below: ProfitBricks, founded in 2010, has it‘s headquarters in Berlin. Photo: Fotolia

With datacentres in Karlsruhe, Las Vegas, and most recently, Frankfurt am Main, Germany the market prognosis for ProfitBricks “is rising as cloud and virtual IT services become more and more popular,”Grohs says. “The new high-performance datacentre in Frankfurt am Main was opened to “continue ProfitBricks’ course of growth,” according to Achim Weiß, CEO and founder of ProfitBricks. “We are reacting to the growing demand for our high-quality, flexible, and budget-friendly IaaS solutions. We chose a German location because we

wanted to continue to offer our customers the safety of German data security,” he adds. ProfitBricks includes a graphical ProfitBricks Data Center Designer (DCD) for every customer at no extra charge. The ProfitBricks DCD R2 enables customers to configure, design, deploy and manage an entire virtual datacentre by themselves, including servers, networks, storage, loadbalancers, and firewalls – transforming traditionally complex and time consuming tasks into simple mouse clicks. “The configuration of IaaS-resources becomes as simple and flexible as cloud computing promised to be with this exceptional tool,”Weiß explains. If this article was interesting, why not try ProfitBricks’complimentary, 14-day test account – offered exclusively for interested Discover Germany readers. www.profitbricks.co.uk

an important competitive advantage, as they were immediately able to offer a service that is ‘half the price, twice the performance’ in the market.“We offer the simplest pricing model in the industry and the best price/performance ratio. Customers can immediately see what their infrastructure will cost when they start planning because we have clear, comprehensible price points, and because we charge for resources consumed by the minute,”Grohs explains. The innovative service from ProfitBricks won the Best in Cloud Award of the Computerwoche in 2012, the 2014 Frost and Sullivan Cloud Computing Innovation award and continually tops performance benchmarking tests. German Data Protection Standards “The NSA scandal left many customers worried about data security, but it is one of our core tenets to make them feel ab-

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Enjoy sending letters Imagine a time when sending a letter is not a strenuous effort. When walking to the post office and using printers, paper, envelopes or stamps is a thing of the past. Pingen made it their goal to facilitate your life with the creation of a special online service. Sending letters has never been easier. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF

“Our goal is to provide an easy-to-use, automated solution that has no setup costs and enables you to send the first letter within minutes. Basically we make the process of sending letters a commodity,” Sandro Kunz, CEO, says.The business from Zurich aims for the substitution of manual procedures.“We try to automate and standardise the process so that posting letters becomes very simple with just one click,” Sandro Kunz explains. Today, about 90 per cent of Pingen‘s letter volume is invoices. “Postal invoices are a very interesting market segment for us as

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corporate customers are looking for opportunities to further enhance and automate their billing processes,”Sandro Kunz says. Just one click Pingen facilitates sending documents via postmail from anywhere in the world. Just create the letter and Pingen will take care of the rest. Register with your email address, top up your credit balance via credit card, PayPal or via invoice. Write your first letter online or upload existing documents and have them sent as physical letters by the push of a button.

Business customers, who send more than 1,000 letters per month, can benefit from mass discounts and monthly subscriptionpossibilities.“The more you buy, the better the prices we offer,”Sandro Kunz says. Customers have a choice of uploading letters to their website, send them via email, directly connecting to the company’s open API or integrating Pingen with cloud storage services like OneDrive, Dropbox or Google drive. “Thanks to our open API, business customers can seamlessly integrate Pingen into their workflows or connect us to their existing software solutions,” Sandro Kunz explains. A special focus is put on the security of the clients’data.“Confidentiality has the highest priority in our company. All data is used exclusively to deliver your letter


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to use and that delieveries between Switzerland, Austria and Germany are simply cheaper and faster,” Sandro Kunz explains. “We thought about the international dimension. When a letter gets sent from England to Germany in the conventional way, it can take several days for the letter to arrive. However, if you use our internet service, the letter gets printed and dispatched directly in Germany so the British client can expect the letter to arrive much quicker,”he discloses. Explaining that Pingen’s competitors primarily focus on either private persons or on enterprise customers, Pingen tried to fill a gap in the market as they tailored their services especially for small and medium sized companies.“This didn’t exist before,” he states.

Main image: Photo: Andrey Popov Right: Sandro Kunz, CEO of Pingen GmbH. Photo: Pingen GmbH (top) Photo: Nata-Lia (below) Photo: Madrugada Verde (bottom)

based on your specifications,” Sandro Kunz says. How it works When customers send their letters electronically, Pingen’s algorithms will scan them and confirm that the address is located in the correct position or if the address has been written according to the standards of the destination country.The document is accepted only when it has been confirmed that the printed letter is 100 per cent what they received from the customer. The accepted letter will then be forwarded to large print centres where it gets printed, stamped using matrix code stamps and sent through the post. This whole process is fully automated and no humans are involved to ensure confidentiality.

The idea of Pingen was born in 2010. While Pingen was a simple website to send a letter at the start, the current business model has been developed at the end of 2012. Since then, the three IT, finance and technology geniuses and founders Sandro Kunz, Andreas Keller and Graem Lourens seek to expand to 50 employees in five years. “It has been going great so far. Last year we had a growth of 12 per cent each month. And we think this will happen again in 2015. If everything plays out, we can even expect a growth of around 15 per cent,”Sandro Kunz says.

Based on experiencing a huge success, the Swiss company also seeks to expand into international markets. Being present in Switzerland, Austria and Germany at the moment, Pingen wants to enhance its position to additional international markets, such as Canada, China or Latin America. “We believe that international markets will like our idea. I see there is a huge demand for our service as, for example, sending a letter to China normally takes two or three weeks. Who wouldn’t like the idea of sending a letter to China in a few days?”Sandro Kunz concludes. www.pingen.com

“Our main advantages are that we have no setup fee, that our service is instantly ready

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Discover Germany | Special Theme | CeBIT 2015

FRITZ & MACZIOL FRITZ & MACZIOL introduce the expanded Dynamic Power Cloud Manager and new Business Analytics-Appliances with IBM Power 8. TEXT & PHOTOS: FRITZ & MACZIOL | TRANSLATION: EMMIE COLLINGE

FRITZ & MACZIOL present the latest 1.6 version of their Dynamic Power Cloud Manager (DPCM) and introduce two new Business Analytics-Appliances for IBM Power 8. The further developed DPCM is now available after AIX, for operating systems IBM i and Linux on Power. Enterprises can use this convenient management solution across platforms for IBM Power environments. A genuine added value is also offered by the two new appliances for business analytics. In Hannover we are also introducing an AIX based edition with IBM DB2 BLU Acceleration as well as a version for Power with proof of performance with Linux and Hadoop. The trade fair appearance comes under the slogan “practice tested solutions that are already in use with many other clients.” Dynamic Power Cloud Manager With the Dynamic Power Cloud Manager FRITZ & MACZIOL offer a solution that will automate and manage the deployment of virtual servers for IBM Power systems under AIX, IBM i and Linux. The heart of the solution is an intuitive-to-operate web-

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based front-end through which the user can optimize or alter the system environment. Version 1.6 makes the creation and management of LPAR-Profiles easier. This can be done, for example, without an OS-installation. This is of special benefit to IBM i and Linux on Power environments whether installed automatically by an existing installation server or manually. DPCM is an instrument outside HMC, Virtual I/OServer and POWER-firmware which contains all the information necessary for recovery of the system environment. In a worst-case scenario LPAR-profiles, as well as AIX- and VIO operating systems can be automatically be restored on another system or the same system in minutes. A special user tool (Viewer) for IT / Accounting Managers allows a quick overview of the system, capacity management and performance graphs. Business Analytics – myAppliance for medium to large clients. With two new Power-8 based appliances for the area of business analytics FRITZ &

MACZIOL make access easy to edited information from various sources for medium to large clients. Its special feature is that based on the usual requirements of analysing data volumes, “myAppliances” can be configured on a made-to-measure basis. Alongside AIX based versions with IBM BLU Acceleration firms can also have versions in various configuration levels for Power with Linux and Hadoop. In these, evaluation tools from various sources can be incorporated in the front-end. F&M are at CeBIT 2015 on the IBM partner-stand in Hall 2, Stand A10. www.fum.de


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Discover Germany | Special Theme | CeBIT 2015

Main image: The SE846 Sound Isolating Earphones. Below: The microphone MOTIV MV88’s app for the iPhone. (left) The microphone MOTIV MV88 impresses with a 90-degree hinge with built-in rotation. (middle) The legendary Shure 55, the “Elvis mic”. (right)

Legendary Performance The name Shure has stood for unparalleled sound and reliable products for musicians and music enthusiasts since 1925. Devotion and passion characterise the company’s audio technology which seeks to make the perfect product for artists, audio engineers and you. From microphones and headphones to wireless systems and in-ear-monitoring – innovation and outstanding product development embrace Shure’s corporate history. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: SHURE INC.

“Our claim is‘Legendary Performance’and a quote of our founder Sidney N. Shure is: ‘We know very well that absolute perfection cannot be attained but we will never stop striving for it.’ That stands for itself,” Jens Rothenburger, Senior Manager of Shure, says. Shure has a long history in the professional audio business and is famous for the absolute reliability of its products so that most artists choose Shure. Having developed the Shure SM58, which is the best-selling dynamic microphone in the world, the Shure 55 (“Elvis mic”) is probably the most iconic microphone in the world and the technical

blueprint for every following dynamic microphone by any manufacturer. Innovative products The new portable digital stereo condenser microphone MOTIV MV88 is designed to capture clear, high-quality stereo sound on the go.The microphone directly connects to any iOS device with Lightning® connector such as Apple iPhone, iPod or iPad so that plug-and-play 24-bit/ 48kHz audio recordings are made possible. The MV88 also impresses with a 90-degree hinge with builtin rotation that offers flexible positioning options – even in video applications. Users are able to access five built-in preset modes

for voice and instruments using the ShurePlus MOTIV Mobile Recording App, which also offers real-time adjustments to gain, stereo width and EQ. Another great product from Shure are the SE846 Sound Isolating Earphones, which impress with Quad High-Definition MicroDrivers with a real subwoofer (the only one worldwide) to deliver extended high-end clarity and unparalleled bass performance. Customizable frequency response, a detachable cable with wireform fit and a wide variety of accessories ensure an unequalled, perfectly tailored listening experience. Like all other Shure earphones, the SE846 is equipped with Sound Isolating™ technology to block up to 90% of all outside noises.“Throughout our history, the success and reputation of the Shure brand has been defined by our continuous commitment to total Quality, and it shows with every product we make. From microphones to turntable cartridges to wireless gear, Shure makes products that help you define your sound,”Jens Rothenburger concludes. www.shure.de

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Discover Germany | Special Theme | CeBIT 2015

Main image: Smart communication solutions for your enterprise. Right: UC extensions for safe global communications solutions. (top) Modern IT architecture future-proofs your company. (below)

Are you using your communication infrastructure effectively? How observing time wasted on menial tasks pointed to the potential for smarter, more cost efficient business based on an all-IP-approach to unified communication. TEXT & PHOTOS: FERRARI ELECTRONIC

Arno Huber owns an architectural office that specializes in private homes. One day in 2014, while watching a student trainee scan fax order confirmations, he decided it was time for a change.“That’s not the best use of anybody’s time,”he explains.“We take pride in the houses we construct, but frankly our IT architecture was pretty make-shift.” Not long after, Huber started looking into computer fax solutions that would do away with any paper transfer.“I realized: That’s not taking the idea far enough. My partners and I decided to adopt a unified communication approach as a basis for smart business processes.” The problem was, Huber notes, that no two pieces of his company’s communica-

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tion infrastructure were truly working together. Contractors relied on fax orders, customers demanded prompt email responses and when conducting on-site inspections he and his partners used their smartphones to keep in touch with the office, which itself had an ISDN PBX switchboard completely separate from the servers connecting the workstations to the internet. Accounting was done on one platform, design work on another.“It worked, but it wasn’t efficient.” The impetus for Huber’s insight led him to the solution he ultimately chose. “Ferrari electronic has been a pioneer in computer fax integration. It turns out they have a solid solution for using ISDN phones in Voice-over-IP telephony and integrating it

within the IT infrastructure as well. No matter whether we send or receive messages via fax, email or SMS, they’re all delivered to the correct user digitally and stored centrally. We’ve converted the room we used to store paper files into a kitchenette.” Additionally, the move to an all-IP architecture is a future-proof idea. The end of supplier-provided ISDN in Germany is scheduled for 2018. For Huber and his company, this date holds no terror.The Ferrari electronic OfficeMaster media gateway, after 2018, will integrate analog ISDN end devices into all-IP networks, thereby providing investment protection for already expended capital.“This [responding to the end of supplier-provided ISDN in 2018] would have come up anyway. Helping our trainees spend their time in better ways just gave me the incentive to stay ahead of this and use it to our advantage.” bit.ly/fe-gate


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Discover Germany | Special Theme | CeBIT 2015

“InLine connects” The company motto of INTOS ELECTRONIC, the specialist manufacturer and distributor for IT products and accessories, stems from the company’s launch in 1991. Cables and connectors have been at the core of the Gießen-based company since the beginning. Today, the 80-strong company presents an extensive and diverse range of cables, adaptors, etc. TEXT & PHOTOS: INTOS | TRANSLATION: EMMIE COLLINGE

The INTOS ELECTRONIC portfolio contains numerous gadgets, IT accessories and products that enrich our media experiences and our on-the-go lifestyle. In 2003, the founder of Intos, Wolfgang Isenberg, introduced a new in-house brand called InLine. “I’m particularly satisfied with the success of our own brand InLine,” says Isenberg enthusiastically. With 6,000 products available in total, great headway has been made with InLine now producing 4,000 of these products. INTOS ELECTRONIC is presenting their latest product highlights for the on-the-go society at CeBIT. And the most important product for smart users is certainly a fullyfunctioning smart phone! Breaking out in a cold sweat when our smart phones threaten to run out of battery in a plug-free

area, the external power source InLine USB PowerBank 16,000 mAh can give it a charge once again. Bluetooth speaker WOOME 3D takes charge of the acoustics, with its heavy bass and room-filling surround sound emerging from this stylish and gleaming brushed-aluminium speaker. INTOS’s latest collection Woodline consists of seven gadgets with either form or detailing made from genuine wood. The mobile Bluetooth or induction speakers, pens and stylish headphones have been created with walnut wood to give them an enduring appeal. The uncoated cardboard packaging emphasises the environmentally friendly nature of this line. The brand new specification that renders USB users free of constraints is the USB OTG – USB OnThe-Go, which upgrades smartphones and

Main image: INTOS offices Above from top down: InLine woodline InLine WOOME Shop connection Powerbanks

tablets to the role of hosts and connects them seamlessly to USB flash drives. InLine has many USB OTG accessories and aids available. For business travellers, the compact InLine OTC Card Reader Dual Flex is of particular value. With this, the user can easily move music, photos and videos from the USB stick to the tablet or smart phone, allowing them to enjoy their favourite tracks as they travel or catch up on documents. If you’d like to find out more, come along to stand F17 in Hall 15 at the CeBit trade fair. www.inline-info.de

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Dive deep into virtual worlds Ever dreamed about virtually immersing yourself fully in videos or games? Shoogee, a consumer product as well as IT security start-up company based in Muenster, developed the revolutionary Durovis Dive, which makes the seemingly impossible possible. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: JANA SLIWON

All you need to experience virtual reality is a smartphone and the Durovis Dive, the world’s first and original hands-free VR headset for smartphones.

Google Project Tango in 2014. Project Tango wants "to give mobile devices a human scale understanding of space and motion,” Google announced.

Simply insert your phone and strap the head mask on.“Our software includes an extremely fast, low-latency head tracker, which is applied to movement in the virtual space. This is done using the gyroscopes, the accelerometer and prediction in the phone. The tracker is available to developers for free.”ArneVoigtlaender, manager of Shoogee, explains.

“You can watch 3D, 360 or 180 degree videos and experience videos as you never have before. Download VR gaming apps with a 360-degree view, which react to where you look. Go on a 3D rollercoaster ride, chase zombies or explore a virtual city. There are countless ideas that are being developed for the platform right now,”Arne Voigtlaender says.

“What makes it special is the immersive impression you get due to the big visual field, the lens system, which makes individual eye adjustment possible and balances short-sightedness, as well as the lowlatency tracking,”he adds.

Durovis Dive is also used to add virtual objects to the real world. An Augmented Reality Project from LIDA London and Land Rover made it possible to view the newest car model, which wasn’t on the market yet. A look through the glasses revealed the new car on a fixed marking spot.Visitors are able to walk around the car, open doors and move parts.

Having developed the glasses since 2012, Shoogee created a 7-inch version for

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Images: Dive into virtual worlds with the Durovis Dive.

If you are interested in the Durovis Dive, the company now sells it for under 60 Euros.“We love the way the market aroundVR has grown and is continuing to do so. 2015 will be a great year for this technology and we are looking forward to how even more ideas aroundVR can be brought to market,” Arne Voigtlaender says. www.shoogee.com


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Discover Germany | Special Theme | CeBIT 2015

Left: Photo: Cacaroot, Fotolia. Below: BOARD Far below: Photo: Paul Bradbury, GettyImages.

Better decicions. Better business. With the development of a unique easy-to-use toolkit that combines Business Intelligence and Corporate Performance Management in one single product, BOARD achieved global market leadership in a highly competitive industry and helped to improve the overall business success of numerous corporate clients.

to prepare plans and predictive data was reduced by 50%,”summarizes Stefan Gerlach, director of corporate planning at HanseMerkur their benefits of BOARD.

TEXT: TINA AWTANI

Big news for 2015 includes the launch of BOARD BEAM, a revolutionary solution, that effectively incorporates all the power of predictive analytics into daily business operations and the decision-making process. Most complex and company specific processes are easily turned into clear and elegant visuals, while neatly incorporated into the BOARD platform. Three different modules – Predictive Analytics, Clustering and Analytical Functions – are now available to users, enabling them to react instantly to changing circumstances.

Founded in 1994, BOARD is the industry’s only provider of a programming-free toolkit for Business Intelligence and Corporate Performance Management. The innovative and easy-to-use solution enables corporate users to maximise their daily business potential by creating understandable data analysis and planning. A great deal of independence from external IT service providers is achieved, as absolutely no programming skills are required and user-friendly drag and drop functions allow quick data synchronisation with the cost and time effective system. Corporate users benefit highly from reliable information, on which they can base strategic decisions for their company and most valuable work time is gained through the optimisation of internal work-

flows. The entire controlling area is supported in an unparalleled flexible and adjustable manner, improving overall company results significantly. The BOARD business network with its headquarters in Swiss Chiasso, spans four continents. A further 18 offices are strategically located in leading capitals around the globe, including the German cities of Munich and Frankfurt. Over 3,000 customers worldwide, such as Desigual, HanseMerkur, KUKA, PUMA, Ricola and Robinson Club, are already benefitting from the BOARD toolkit and the number is on the rise. “Through the implementation of the new controlling solution, work quality within the corporate planning department has been strongly improved, while the effort needed

Meet BOARD on the BI Forum (Hall 5, booth A36) at CeBIT 2015 and take part in one of the daily workshops“BI made easy“ for free. Register with BOARD online to receive a free CeBIT ticket. www.board.de

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Discover Germany | Business | Wenger & Vieli

The entrepreneurial, full-service boutique Swiss law firm Wenger & Vieli aims for individual solutions tailored to the needs of their clients, while offering high-quality and experienced specialists for services in all legal areas for more than 40 years. With offices in Zurich and Zug, more than 50 lawyers and tax experts are sure to provide some of the best legal advice around. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: JONAS KUHN & STEFAN ALTENBURGER

“Wenger & Vieli stands for loyalty, transparency and dedication in dealing with clients, law partners and employees,“ Dr. Roman Heiz, partner at Wenger & Vieli, says. Offering comprehensive specialist services in all legal areas which companies, entrepreneurs and wealthy private persons need, the attorney’s office provides independent legal and tax advice, while acting as a voice for their clients. “We act and think entrepreneurially when we develop and implement solutions, while always being appropriate, focussing on high-quality, being timely and offering suitable prices,“ Dr. Roman Heiz explains. Clients especially appreciate the strong anchorage in Zurich in combination with an extensive international orientation.“We are

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internationally networked because of personal relationships and our correspondence network ‘Meritas‘ through which we can draw on proved and firm contacts in literally ever country in the world. Today, economic services can barely be yielded without an international focus,“ Dr. Roman Heiz says. Putting special emphasis on business law, Wenger & Vieli’s size allows the firm to comprehensively support clients in economic matters.The right specialist for companies or for private persons is always available. “We love small- and medium-sized companies and solve their problems in an individual, committed and comprehensive way. We assume responsibility,“ Dr. Roman Heiz adds. Wenger &Vieli differs from other law firms because they offer personal support for

clients in small teams. Therefore, they are able to react individually and quickly to clients‘ needs, while the quality of their work is always at the forefront of the law firm’s thinking.“We want our clients to feel that they are in good hands, that they have direct access to the partners and that they get personally looked after by them and the law firm’s specialists,“ Dr. Roman Heiz says. “Our clients appreciate the personal relationships and our quick reaction times. We cultivate a very personal style, which will also shape Wenger &Vieli in the future,“ he concludes. www.wengervieli.ch

Dr. Roman Heiz


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Exhibition of the Month

Below: Founder Lisa Chuma. Photo: Sonja Ruckstuhl (left) Other images: The Women’s Expo Switzerland in 2014.

Switzerland

Making female businesses visible Being the largest exhibition for women in Switzerland, the Women’s Expo Switzerland is a unique platform where only female business owners present their businesses, products and services in person to potential clients and the public, while playing an active role in encouraging collaboration and connecting female business owners from different backgrounds, business sectors, locations and nationalities. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: RUTH HOFFMAN/ SONJA RUCKSTUHL

Since 2013, the largest and longest-running table exhibition in Switzerland has drawn many visitors to Zurich. “Our visitors can expect to connect and network with female business owners in a positive and inspiring environment. Discover new products, professional services and solutions for their personal and professional needs,”Lisa Chuma, founder of the Women’s Expo, explains. “More and more women are starting businesses today and it is important for us to strategically leverage community and collaboration to gain visibility for their businesses. It is important for female business owners to connect and build relationships with each other because trustworthy rela-

tionships are essential in business today. We need to inspire each other,”she adds. Due to Lisa Chuma’s personal struggle to establish her own business in the past, she vowed to help female business owners and decided to bring a“movement”to life, which connects as many women as possible. A truly inspirational and courageous role model, 30-year-old Lisa Chuma grew up in Zimbabwe, one of the poorest countries in the world. Lisa embraces the belief that life does not get better by chance – it gets better by change. In just a few short years, after making the move to Switzerland, she has already become a sought-after speaker,

role model and advocate for female business owners making a difference. This young, results-oriented entrepreneur is a strong-willed, powerful networker and connector. Her purpose in her work is larger than herself for her, and those who have spent time with her echo the same message:“She is one to watch”. “Our goal is for the Women’s Expo to promote and support female business owners in growing their client base, as well as their business reach,”Lisa Chuma says.“We believe people are curious to connect with the person behind a product or service,” she adds. From life coaching and interior design to doctors, beauty products, fashion or restaurants – the Women’s Expo will showcase more than 125 businesses on Sunday, 29th of March. www.womenexpo.ch

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A British international education in the heart of Berlin For over 20 years, the private Berlin British School (BBS) has turned students from more than 60 different countries into confident learners and creative thinkers, who are part of a caring community and capable of exploring global perspectives.

International School of the Month Germany

TEXT: TINA AWTANI | PHOTOS: BBS

Berlin is a melting pot of different cultures and choosing the right school can be quite a challenge for locals and ex-pats alike. By offering a truly international education, within the framework of the International Baccalaureate, the BBS, nestled in the beautiful and leafy Grunewald area, stands out from the crowd. All age groups – from two to eighteen years – are catered for, starting with the EarlyYears education, followed by Primary and Middle Years Programmes. In preparation for the final two years of school, students complete the two-year IGCSE (International General Certificate of Secondary Education). InYears 12 and 13 students work towards achieving the International Baccalaureate Diploma which opens the doors to the most prestigious universities worldwide. In comparison to other educational institutions, BBS IB Diploma graduates tend to achieve high above average results. In 2013 the pass rate was 95% with

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an average of 33 points compared to the global average of just under 30. In the future the BBS will introduce German as the second language of instruction, thus being a perfect bi-lingual option for locals. No matter what grade, all pupils are taught in small groups with faculty and staff being available for further support whenever needed. Pastoral care is also ranked highly in the BBS, which is a clear advantage over the local school system. Extracurricular activities are plenty such as tennis, tae kwon do, ballet, chess, Model United Nations, debating or a public speaking competition. And just as in Harry Potter’s Hogwarts, students are split over four houses to playfully introduce them to the concept of community. “The diversity in our Community of Thinkers gives students an opportunity to

explore issues from multiple perspectives and prepares them for the challenges they face in a rapidly changing and evermore competitive world,” headteacher Simon Walker says. The BBS is a member of the Council of International Schools, the European Council of International Schools, the Association of German International Schools as well as the Council of British International Schools. www.berlinbritishschool.de


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Discover Germany | Business | HTL Moedling

A unique success story in Europe The HTL Moedling with its comprehensive, technical education stands for innovation and first-class teaching facilities. International prizes and awards confirm the notion that the school is a high-quality establishment with a human-centred approach. TEXT NANE STEINHOFF | PHOTOS: PRESS IMAGES

T

The HTL Moedling, a vocational higher school for 14- to19-year-olds, covers everything education has to offer: from the building industry to the electronics sector, mechanical and industrial engineering or wood technology and interior design. Austria’s biggest school boasts a campus of 25 hectares, which includes modern student halls, large sports facilities, a modern restaurant with 600 seats, a theatre and a band. “Students especially appreciate the green surroundings and the informal atmosphere. Despite our size, we create a family atmosphere because our school is divided into eleven separate departments

with their own structures, workshops and top-class learning facilities,”Ing. Mag. Harald Hrdlicka, director, says. The school prides itself on participating in hundreds of national and international competitions every year.“Some of our students recently came second in an invention competition in Los Angeles,” Harald Hrdlicka adds. Job prospects look exceptional for HTL graduates as the school’s “unemployment rate is under one per cent”. Certainly, the HTL’s own ‘Recruiting Fair’ is one of the reasons for this as it invites over 60 Austrian companies to recruit graduates each year. To attract the future generations of HTL

students, the innovative ‘Kinder HTL’ invites children in the last week of their summer holidays to playfully learn how it is to study and live at the HTL Moedling. www.htl.moedling.at

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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Legal Experts Germany

Special Theme

Legal Experts Germany

German Lawyers Employment and Labour

The Employment and Labour Law is one of those fields of law being subjected to a huge number of changes and novelties in legislation and jurisdiction each year.

will have to wait for respective court decisions which will for sure not come earlier than in one year from now.

TEXT: CHRISTOPH J. HAUPTVOGEL, VICE PRESIDENTS OF THE ASSOCIATION OF GERMAN EMPLOYMENT LAWYERS (VDA - VERBAND DEUTSCHER ANWÄLTE E. V.)

The German legislature passes new Acts affecting Employment Law nearly every year. And the German Federal Labour Court in Erfurt passes so many decisions annually that they can publish an overview of more than 100 pages each year. Two examples may illustrate this dynamic of Employment and Labor Law quite precisely: – On 1 January 2015, the German legislature launched the new “Act on Minimum

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Wages”, which basically regulates that all employees in Germany are entitled to claim minimum wages of 8.50 Euros per hour they work (with only a few exceptions). However, given this new Act, a lot of new legal problems and questions will arise, such as“can remuneration in kind be considered as part of the wages?”, “what is with mini-jobs?”, “what is in case of disparate working hours?” The new Act does not give answers to these questions, so we

– Limited-term employment contracts may in Germany only be concluded when a specific reason (which is accepted by the Act on Fixed-Term Employment) is at hand. Without such a reason, they may only be concluded with “new”employees and only for a maximum of two years (a period within which they can be prolonged by a maximum of three times). But what is a “new” employee? According to the former opinion of the German Federal Labour Court, a “new” employee is an employee who has never ever before worked for the same em-


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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Legal Experts Germany

Photo: Dreamstime.com

Christoph J. Hauptvogel, Vice Presidents of the Association of German Employment Lawyers and employment law expert at Graf von Westphalen law firm in Munich.

ployer. A few years ago, however, the German Federal Labour Court changed their opinion. Now they regard an employee as “new”in cases where he/she has not been employed by the same employer for just the last three years. This massive change in German jurisdiction has no basis at all in the change of any law or the like.Therefore, German Regional Labour Courts are currently stating that they regard this “new opinion” of the German Federal Labour Court as legally incorrect. What will the future bring regarding this question? From these two examples, you can see quite clearly that it is crucial for a lawyer in the Employment and Labour Law sector to be

always up-to-date with the newest legislation and jurisdiction. This implies continuous training courses and specialist work in order to be able to advise clients creatively and accurately. Only specialist lawyers who are spending most of their professional working time in the Employment and Labour Law sector are able to catch up with all these new developments. Lawyers who are working as “generalists” are – simply for reasons of having no time – not able to be updated like this. In particular in this field of law, it is therefore strongly recommended to choose a specialist lawyer. How can you find such “specialist lawyers”? Well, there is a specific

name in Germany for that: Lawyers who specialise in Employment Law can be identified by the title“Certified Specialist in Employment Law” (in German “Fachanwalt für Arbeitsrecht”). In order to be able to use this title, lawyers must undergo theory courses and must pass a specific exam at the end of these courses. In addition to that, they must prove to a specific committee that they have at least worked on 100 labour law cases before they are entitled to this title. A lot of these“Certified Specialists in Employment Law”are members of the“Association of German Employment Lawyers” (VdAA e.V.). This Association is a consortium of about 800 specialist labour lawyers all over Germany. So in case you are looking for a “Certified Specialist in Employment Law”, you may find him/her by visiting the website www.vdaa.de.You can look for specialist labour lawyers nearby by just entering the name of a German city or a postal code. www.verband-deutscher-anwaelte.de

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When in doubt, for the accused Michael Stephan is one of Germany’s top lawyers in commercial criminal law If you take a look at the range of activities in which Michael Stephan is actively involved, you wonder how he can still find time to take a breath and rest. Stephan is not only a lawyer specializing in commercial criminal law. He is also an author, publisher, head of Saxony`s and Saxony-Anhalt`s criminal attorneys` association and lecturer and trainer for lawyers. Given the multi-faceted nature of commercial criminal law, Mr. Stephan’s daily job is quite challenging. TEXT: JESSICA POMMER | PHOTOS: PRESS IMAGES

White collar crime is a field where the damage is not visible immediately but has to be uncovered step by step. White collar crime can be defined as fraud committed by business or government officials. Typical cases

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are fraud, bribery, money laundering or identity theft. A 2014 report by the Federal Criminal Police Office of Germany (Bundeskriminalamt or BKA) states that in 2013 the number of recorded crimes decreased

by 12% to 71,663 cases. Yet, the damage caused by white collar crime in Germany increased by 2% to 3.82 billion Euros compared to 2012. More alarming is the share of white collar crime´s damage in relation to the total of all crimes recorded in the BKA´s annual statistical report: it comprises 50% but has only a share of 1.2% of all crimes. In the digital age commercial criminal law has become even more complicated as many frauds are committed online.The actual rate of white collar crime in business life is higher than the one reported as many cases remain unreported. Many companies


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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Legal Experts Germany

fear that their reputation becomes damaged or want to protect shareholder value. When a new investigation procedure unfolds, the department of public prosecution begins investigating. This is when Michael Stephan is contacted by the defendant. In some cases he also works in a team of defending lawyers. Although Stephan`s law office is located in Dresden, Saxony, he deals with defendants from all over Germany. He even handles cases where the origin of the crime can be traced to the US. The defendant lawyer´s aim is to prevent an indictment. If the defendant is charged, the defendant lawyer`s goal is to commute the sentence.“Of course the public has a negative view of the ‘bad boys’ of business life as they breached trust and abused their position of power. But as a lawyer I have to take a neutral stance and investigate the motives behind their corrupt behaviour,”says Michael Stephan.

nomic situation, resulting in a relatively mild verdict: A penalty fine of‘only’600,000 Euros plus a suspended sentence of two years, whereas initially it was unlikely that the defendant would walk out free. Michael Stephan was voted one of Germany´s best lawyers in commercial criminal law successively in 2013 and 2014 by more than 18,000 specialist lawyers in a survey conducted by the German news magazine Focus. He does not take that as an excuse to lean back and slow down. Rather he keeps on diversifying his channels of jurisdiction. He is co-publisher and co-editor of the criminal justice magazine “StrafRechtsRe-

port (StRR)“ (meaning “Criminal Justice Report”). He has also published books about criminal justice. Furthermore he is in charge of lecturing and testing future lawyers at the bar association of Saxony. He holds additional mandates in education. “Criminal Law is an interesting field where you can learn so much about the nature of human beings. Especially in commercial criminal law you can see how positions of power can entice people to strive to attain more power or money. But after all people in higher positions are only people,”summarizes Michael Stephan. www.stephan-rechtsanwaelte.de

Portrait: Michael Stephan

A recent case is the defence of the operators of a Thuringian concert agency.The owners, a couple, were charged with embezzlement. The employees` social insurance contributions, the rents for the concert halls and the artists´ salaries were withheld by the agency. Advertising partners were not paid either.The first verdict of the court of lay assessors had decided that even if the concert agency owners confessed, they would have to face at least a prison sentence of two and a half years – with a maximum of two years probation. Michael Stephan’s defence argued that further documents had to be reviewed to prove that repayment had already begun. This summer the court case will be further negotiated. In another case, Stephan took on the defence of an entrepreneur, who was under scrutiny for subsidy fraud in the region of several million Euros.The owner of a printing house in Saxony was accused of declaring wrong purchasing prices to the state in order to receive higher subsidies. Due to the 2002 European floods, which also heavily affected Saxony, the company was entitled to state subsidies in order to move to new premises. Michael Stephan convinced the court of the entrepreneur`s difficult eco-

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Portrait: Thomas Willers

Thomas Willers – the recall expert Munich-based lawyer Thomas Willers has been successfully operating for over a decade. Beside core competence in company and employment law, Willers has gained fame beyond the Bavarian borders in the area of contract law, where numerous verdicts and out-of-court settlements have been reached in favour of his clients. TEXT: TINA AWTANI | PHOTO: PRESS IMAGE

Currently Willers emphasizes on the revocation of life and personal insurances, an area which becomes ever more important

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for consumers. Once an important financial cornerstone for personal wealth management, life insurance now struggles due to

diminishing interest rates and also life insurance reform law. “Many people relied on the life insurance as a component of their retirement plan. But sometimes life does not go as planned, all of a sudden liquid assets are required or there are simply no funds available any longer to pay the insurance premium. Usually early cancellation results in a disappointing surrender payment. A successful life insurance recall process on the other hand recovers almost all of the previously paid fees,”Willers explains his field of expertise, which is based on two recent rulings of the European Court of Justice (ECJ) and the Bundesgerichtshofs (BGH). The new rules are yet to be firmly established in the market.“Unfortunately de facto many insurance companies still simply reject the recalls of their clients. Customers should not get discouraged by this as the legal framework is absolute explicit,” Wille reckons. The smart lawyer is not afraid to share his expertise in public and set up a specialised online portal containing plenty of information about the new rules on recalls. These do not only affect life and pension insurance. “The same principle applies to personal loan contracts. Those who have not been properly informed about their recall rights, can still be entitled to break out of their contracts even after years. A recall can be a suitable option to benefit from low interest rates without having to provide a surrender payment. Given the strong Swiss Franc compared to the Euro, a recall of a loan in Swiss Francs can be an interesting financial opportunity,” Willers explains. www.widerruf-lebensversicherung.de www.ra-willers.de


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Special Theme | Legal Experts Germany

Portrait: Magdale Labbe Henke

from Switzerland, Austria, the Americas, the Czech Republic, Russia, Africa, Scandinavia and the Middle East.

A special desire to assist Searching for experts with exceptional hands-on knowledge of U.S. immigration law and visa support? MLH Consular Consulting's team of licensed, experienced attorneys, along with firm principal, owner and native-born US citizen Magdale Labbe Henke, with over 10 years experience, offers personal advice and visa solutions in both German and English. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF I PHOTOS: ORHIDEA BRIEGEL, MAGDALE LABBE HENKE

Based in Munich, the firm handles complex immigration law matters, green card cases and work or travel visa processing issues for companies and individuals planning projects in the USA.The firm also liaises closely with U.S. tax advisors. Furthermore, supervising many cases in the entrepreneurial sector, helping small to mid-sized businesses and investors, as well as families with marriage-based permanent residence petitions, belong to their main tasks. Additionally, they have exten-

sive experience in facilitating and dealing with cases in the entertainment, media and sports sector. "We noticed that there was a special need for our law firm as there weren't that many specialised, personal and dedicated immigration law companies out there," says Magdale Labbe Henke, firm principal and owner. Standing out due to its American roots, extensive professional experience and fluent German and English skills, the law firm now boasts an international clientele

"Being able to assist people is a special desire for me and that's why I specialised in immigration services. The issue is close to my heart as I have my own immigration background and my parents are immigrants from Haiti," Magdale Labbe Henke adds."It's really great to see my clients happy after we have achieved their goals and when it has all finally worked out. When a spouse can finally reunite with their partner after years of waiting, it's just very rewarding," she concludes. NewYork-born Magdale Labbe Henke is a licensed U.S. attorney of over 10 years standing and has been living in Germany for over eight years. She studied abroad in Mainz, as well as attended U.S. Ivy League schools, studying German Language at Dartmouth College and International Affairs at Columbia University. She worked in media, sports and Public Relations before gaining professional law experience and decided to move to Germany in 2006 with her husband, where she established her own law firm in 2009. Since then, she has been selected as a Corporate International 2014 Global Awards Winner, and for inclusion in Who's Who Legal: Corporate Immigration 2013, 2014 and 2015, which lists the best legal practitioners in this field. www.consular-consulting.com

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The creative view on law Situated in Munich, the lawyers Constantin Mascher and Katrin Simonis put special emphasis on legal cases in the area of art law, contract design and insolvency law. The law firm stands for highly individual solutions for clients and the constant realisation of the legitimate interests of their principals in the best way possible. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF I PHOTOS: GINGER ROSELLI / ALEXANDRA WEHNER

“What makes us stand out most is that we actually try to conform to the precept of the incorrupt and objective consultant even though this is often considered outdated today. We don’t define ourselves through hourly rates and chargeable hours. We aren’t service providers, but rather define ourselves through the services which we provide and the mutual trust between the lawyer and the client,”Constantin Mascher, lawyer, says. Mascher and Simonis take a fresh approach on legal solutions: Taking their freedom not

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to think about conforming to the superficial and conventional stereotype which is expected of a lawyer, they allow themselves to decline dealing with mandates which don’t correspond with their attitude towards life. “We love our job and through this approach we keep this passion alive. Being a lawyer could also be boring – but this just doesn’t interest us,”Constantin Mascher explains. “Unconventional – but successful” Their operating principles are characterised by a clear, deductive method used in finding solutions for the given tasks. “We are

prepared to challenge everything, we only accept arguments and not authorities. Our approaches are often seen as unconventional – but successful. We work strategically and forward-looking. Law is like chess because mastering the rules of the game is only part of it. Strategy, tactics, psychology and the surprise of the opponent in a moment in which he feels superior create the actual allure and excitement,” Constantin Mascher adds. Besides the ongoing consultation and representation of medium-sized companies, the law firm specialises in consultation over art and cultural projects, as well as advising collectors, gallery owners and artists. The company focuses on copyright law, funding of the arts, culture management, substantive law, adjectival law in the arts, art warranty rights, art liability law and commercial law..


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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Legal Experts Germany

opment of a rehabilitation concept or the way into insolvency to make an organised new start possible. Established in Munich 10 years ago, lawyer Constantin Mascher’s cooperation with lawyer Simonis has proved itself for four years.“Our team comprises four members at the moment. From case to case we draw on a broad network of specialists who can support us,”Katrin Simonis says. Simonis decided to follow her family traditions when becoming a lawyer as her grandfather was already a lawyer and notary in Germany’s Wismar. Lawyer Mascher is unencumbered domestically in this respect. He noticed his passion for resolving disputes with the help of good reasoning very early in life, which led him directly into law studies in Hamburg, Bordeaux and Munich.

mother of two is the legal adviser of a professional association of filmmakers and also the vice president of a long-standing, traditional sports club in Munich. Constantin Mascher was born in Munich and grew up in Munich, Berlin and Hamburg. After his studies, he completed his legal clerkship in Bavaria and in South Africa’s Cape Town. He decided to become self-employed directly after his clerkship and has stayed self-employed until this day. Summarising the law firm’s business philosophy, Constantin Mascher and Katrin Simonis conclude: “The law has to serve the people instead of the people having to serve a positivist law. Therefore, the overall purpose of our actions is the optimal implementation of the legitimate interests of our clients.” www.mascher-simonis.com

Katrin Simonis claims German, as well as American citizenship. Coming from a very liberal and tolerant domestic environment, she completed her law studies in Augsburg and Munich while she took her first and second state examinations in Bavaria. The

Main image: Constantin Mascher Top left: Katrin Simonis (left) and Constantin Mascher (right) Middle and bottom left: The office building and entrance of the law firm Below right: Katrin Simonis

“Clients, who know our work, appreciate our approachability and our persistence in finding individual solutions to problems away from the schematic methods of operation, as well as our tendency to openly address and voice even the uncomfortable truth. Every client and every case is unique and they deserve individual solutions which are adapted to their needs. This is also the reason why owner-operated businesses primarily make use of our capabilities,”Katrin Simonis explains. Also offering comprehensive consultancy in the area of civil law, the law firm consultatively accompanies their clients from the first project idea to the contractual realisation and the realisation under corporate law or the operational business. If it doesn’t work out too well entrepreneurially, they are also dedicated to help with the devel-

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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Legal Experts Germany

Your expert for systemic legal consultation Because the existing jurisdiction and its generalising solutions often don’t do justice to the individuality and complexity of humans who are involved in disputes, lawyer Dr. Eva-Maria Reichert seeks to use the advantages of an exciting concept: the systemic legal consultation. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF I PHOTOS: ADRIENNE MEISTER

This form of legal advice is based on the notion that solutions already exist in a person’s subconsciousness. With the help of modern and psychological methods Dr. Eva-Maria Reichert, can help you to raise this solution from your subconsciousness to the consciousness and to make it visible. An important tool is client-centred conversation techniques, such as the Systemic Constellation process.

area. The self-reliant finding of solutions can often prevent long correspondence or endless discussions and we then use these solutions legally in marriage contracts, in lawsuits or in solving disputes for example,” she adds. Having worked as a lawyer since 2005, she specialised in inheritance law in 2009 and in family law in 2011. “It’s important for me to juridically advise my clients in the best way possible. That’s why I chose this strong specialisation,” the lawyer says. “After all, law serves the people and the people serve the law,”she concludes. So, if you are looking for a lawyer who combines legal assistance with the remits of systemic concepts to provide individual client-orientated solutions, look no further. www.kanzlei-dr-reichert.de

“Through this, I try to find individual and lasting solutions in a legal context,”Dr. EvaMaria Reichert explains.

“I have been in intensive training to become a systemic advisor for years and have worked closely with people active in this

Portrait: Dr. Eva-Maria Reichert

Your legal expert for art, culture and media Lawyer Stella von Malapert Neufville stands for extensive legal advice for the specific juristic concept on them, with which they can’t identify,”the lawyer adds. creative industries. While understanding the creative processes of her principals, she thoroughly examines economic Portrait: Stella von Malapert Neufville aspects and puts a special emphasis Always having had a personal on forward-looking solutions. interest in art and culture, she started to deal with music licenses or movie contracts and TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF I PHOTO: HEIKE FISCHER specialised early on. Since then, clients appreciate the caLocated in Cologne, the lawyer supports sual dealings offered in a proartists, movie makers, authors, producers, fessional atmosphere. “They musicians and others from the creative inlike that they don’t meet a stiff dustries, as well as small and mediumsized lawyer in a grey suit,”Stella von companies, freelancers and private persons. Malapert Neufville concludes. Having gained comprehensive experience A special emphasis on social in supporting clients with smart contract networking creates a faster way design, licenses in the film and media secof business communication. tor, image copyright, trade mark applica“More and more business ties result like tions and right of use, she always helps to so that my clients can concentrate on their this – especially in the media sector,” she find strategic solutions. work,”Stella von Malapert Neufville says. concludes. “Legal aspects often play a minor part in the The lawyer stands out due to her awareness www.von-malapert.de cultural sphere and I take over the legal focus of her clients’needs.“I don’t try to impose a

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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Legal Experts Germany

Top images: Law office Dr. Betzl is based at the “Palais an der Oper” in Munich. Bottom right: Dr. Karl Betzl

Law office Dr. Betzl Specialists in dealing with public authorities and administrations When dealing with public authorities there are more procedural and cultural obstacles than one might have thought of at the beginning. This is why the law office of Karl Betzl has specialised in consulting clients negotiating with administrative bodies. TEXT: JESSICA HOLZHAUSEN | PHOTOS: DR. KARL BETZL

“Everyone dealing with the authorities should consider consulting us first,” says Karl Betzl.“No matter if it concerns building licenses, subsidies, obligations or fines.” This is even more important for companies than it is for the private individual.“A DIY approach in this case is as presumptuous as fighting one’s own court case without a barrister.” Usually companies spend a lot of money taking in consultancies to save a few hundred thousands on tax, but when it comes to export transactions worth millions they rely on their own sales people risking a failure.

This is where Karl Betzl and his team come in. Born in 1947 Karl Betzl studied law and business administration in Munich. After finishing his PhD he started working for Bavarian governmental departments, among them the state chancellery. For more than 40 years Betzl dedicated his work to the federal state administration, making him an expert in how to deal with public servants on all levels of the hierarchy.

far more pragmatic and target-oriented than is generally believed. Sophisticated legal debates with public servants often enough lead to nothing.“Public servants most times ask themselves: Do we want that decision? And if not, are there legal terms that can force us to make it? If the answer to both questions is‘No’, it is hard to convince them to rethink their decision,” explains Karl Betzl. Betzl’s approach is not to discuss the already known legal terms but to find new aspects that might lead to a better evaluation and therefore a new and better decision. The probability of success is 25 to 50 per cent higher when working together with Karl Betzl than using a DIY approach. www.dr-betzl.de

In general an insight into how procedures are conducted is more important than extended legal argumentation. Authorities are

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Portrait: Alexander Wild. Photo: Chriss Wesser

Your legal expert for sports law Putting a special emphasis on expertise, foresight and customised solutions for clients, Falkenstein Rechtsanwälte have an extensive knowledge in almost all branches of law, while specialising in the exciting field of sports law. TEXT: NANE STEINHOFF

“If you have a concern, we have the solution. We bring together individual strengths in a team,”explains Alexander Wild, lawyer for Falkenstein Rechtsanwälte since 2010 and the law firm’s expert in sports law. Having established itself as an expert for the legal area of sports law, Falkenstein has offered comprehensive legal advice since Alexander Wild’s entry in 2010. The lawyer had been a scientific employee at the International Sports Law Centre of the T.M.C. Asser Institute Den Haag before and has deepened his focus on legal questions in the field of doping, especially in the area of licensed football recently. “We advise players, managers, clubs, sponsors and consultants. Sports law fascinates because of its diversity. It’s a so-called interdisciplinary matter and we at Falken-

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stein have the possibility of covering all areas of sports law – from criminal law to copyright law,”Alexander Wild concludes. His personal landmark achievement was the judicial prevention of the relegation of HBW Balingen Weilstetten from the Handball Bundesliga in 2014 so that 19 teams, instead of the usual 18, now play in the league. Comprehensively advising their clients without being a large law firm, makes the company with nine lawyers stand out.“This creates a personal and trusting relationship. Our clients have a regular contact person so that we know about the individual needs of the client,” Alexander Wild says. Special law office events give clients the opportunity to get to know the lawyers better and a good and distinctive network of contacts, especially the cooperation with

tax advisers, helps the law firm to achieve the best possible results for their clients. Automobile companies, car dealers, Bundesliga clubs, logistics companies, middle class companies, lotteries, real estate companies, building contractors, craft businesses, public authorities or private persons are amongst their clients. “We legally represent and advise nationally and internationally, regionally and nationally. We are connected to many of our clients through longstanding collaboration,” Alexander Wild says. Putting a special emphasis on incorporating economic perspectives in the juristic consultation, the law firm comprises experts with special expertise in many fields of law. Clients especially appreciate the special bond of trust, the available network, the individual consultation, the sustainability of the advice, the economic foresight and the continuity of the law firm’s structure. www.falkenstein-partner.de


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Discover Germany | Business | Solicitor Column

A Classical Repatriation Saga Explained (Part 2)

TEXT & PHOTO: GREGOR KLEINKNECHT

…It is easy to see why Greece wants to have the Marbles back and Britain wants to keep them: they are obviously an important part of classical Greek cultural heritage and extremely valuable in any sense of the word. The claim by Greece for their return relies both on legal arguments, in particular, the assertion that Lord Elgin did not have proper authority to remove the Marbles from the Parthenon site, as well as on moral arguments. Indeed, Lord Elgin does not appear to have been authorised to remove sculptures from the Parthenon structure (and to cause considerable damage to the building itself in the process), although such removal was apparently witnessed and described by contemporaneous travelers. Be that as it may, no legal claim for the return of the Marbles has ever been brought by Greece and settling a dispute about events that occurred now over two centuries ago by legal means will be problematic. Even diplomatic requests for their return did not start to be made until the 1980s. The basis for the moral arguments is that, even if the Marbles had become British property, they remain a key symbol of Greek cultural heritage and national identity. Their display in the British Museum does not put them in their historical context as part of a world-famous monument.They should therefore be returned to Greece and preserved in their totality and in their historic context for the citizens of Greece, as

well as for the benefit of the international community. The United Kingdom has consistently rejected calls for the return of the Marbles to Greece and has taken the position that the Marbles should remain in the British Museum due to their importance and prominence. It is argued that, even if Lord Elgin may not originally have had authority to remove the sculptures from the Parthenon, various subsequent acts of ratification by the Ottoman authorities have since removed any doubts as to the legality of the acquisition. Lord Elgin therefore acquired valid title to the Marbles which he in turn was able to transfer to the British government. Leaving aside purely legal considerations, many in fact regard Lord Elgin as the rescuer of the Marbles, which may well have suffered destruction or at least significant deterioration, had they not been removed from the Parthenon and from Greece. The United Kingdom also points to the British Museum’s track record in preserving the Marbles and making them accessible to the public and says that an appreciation of their cultural value as part of classical Greek heritage does not require them to be sent back to Greece. Some even go as far as arguing that they have now become part of British cultural heritage. Whatever the solution, the debate about the return of the Marbles and the wider debate about the merits of repatriation of

cultural property is likely to continue for some time to come. In the meantime, the old adage that“possession is nine tenths of the law” will continue to apply and the world at large can rest assured that the Marbles are safely kept in one of the world’s leading museums and continue to inspire public and scholarly interest and an appreciation of classical Greek art at its best.

Gregor Kleinknecht LLM MCIArb is a German Rechtsanwalt and English solicitor, and a partner at Hunters Solicitors, a leading law firm in Lincoln’s Inn. Hunters Solicitors, 9 New Square, Lincoln’s Inn, London WC2A 3QN, E-mail: gjk@hunters-solicitors.co.uk www.hunters-solicitors.co.uk

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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Outstanding Business Consultants

Special Theme

Outstanding Business Consultants

Business consultants Unleashing corporate potential Hiring a business consultant can be a game-changing move for every business owner, as often an unbiased external view of matters results in surprisingly obvious ways to improve daily procedures as well as annual bottom line results. TEXT: TINA AWTANI | PHOTOS: PRESS IMAGE

Seeing the wood for the trees may just be a plain proverb, but in many cases this is exactly why an independent third party is better suited to identify and tackle issues, which go unnoticed in the routine and stress of a company’s daily procedures. Business consultants are often the last ones to be taken on board, because as long as the business figures look prosperous, one would barely think of hiring help. But when profit numbers are starting to go south and corporate performance is far from hitting the target, the search for a business consultant usually begins.

taken on board swiftly. The search for the right consultant can be a rocky road. As management consultancy columnist Mick James from the consultant-news.com puts it: “Everyone acknowledges that the consultancy market is imperfect: consultants don’t know who needs their services, and clients are only dimly aware of which consultants are best suited to their needs. It’s like a Jane Austen novel with no balls or parties. People waste a lot of time knocking on the wrong doors or vetting the wrong suitors – cost of sales is a non-value-adding item that drags the whole industry down.”

Better not wait until it is too late. If a business runs smoothly it is always recommendable to get a consultant in to unleash further potential or simply identify and eliminate future risks. If things turn sour, a suitable consultant has to be identified and

On the following pages we present a few of the finest specialist consultants and their fields of expertise. Ready to change tack, these industry experts are likely to be a safe bet on the road to success, thus knocking on the right door becomes an easy task.

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Executive Sparring – it can be lonely at the top For many people in leading positions, “lonely at the top“ is not just a simple cliché, but rather a sad reality. A personal sparring partner can make a crucial difference and this is exactly what renowned Swiss executive coach Thomas Gelmi specialises in.

leadership and communication but very often career related topics are discussed as well. Emulated from top-class sports

TEXT: MOVADIS | PHOTOS: PRESS IMAGES

A recent study of executive coaching which was published by the Stanford Graduate School of Business confirms: pressure and need for personal support on higher management levels are massive and the consequences of neglecting these facts can be fatal, both personally and economically. Europe’s shortcoming While in the U. S. various forms of personal coaching and consulting have steadily become a usual and legitimate way of support for managers and executives during the past 25 years, in Europe a rather prob-

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lem and deficit oriented perception is only beginning to shift towards a more resource and potential oriented way of seeing things, in which top-performers especially have a sparring partner at their side.This can support executives in improving their selfawareness, in reducing blind spots, in developing their personal strengths even more and in growing in areas that are important to them. Over all, this leads to more authenticity and lasting contentment – for themselves and for their environment. The topics usually range from self-awareness and self-management to coping with stress,

This kind of partnership can best be compared with top-class sports, where the function of a personal sparring partner or coach originally stems from. Top athletes like Roger Federer all have a personal coach and, regardless of their success, they don’t stop working with their coaches but have established long term relationships with them. If we look back in time, when terms such as ‘sparring partner’ or ‘coach’ didn’t even exist, personal and professional topics were often discussed with friends, family members, close confidants or even a priest. Of course, these persons can still be an excellent choice, provided that one has the opportunity and access to them.


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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Outstanding Business Consultants

enormous effort can quickly change through a culmination of various factors: suddenly, thoughts are blocked in a problem trance, solutions seem to be out of reach, the impression of failure becomes more and more present and the feeling of self-effectiveness drastically decreases.The old faith in one’s own capacities needs to be re-established. Executive Sparring – a comprehensive accompaniment Executive Sparring goes far beyond classic consulting or coaching. Most clients’situations are complex and require a dynamic mix of roles from the conversation partner. If specializing only in the role of a consultant or coach, it will hardly be possible to provide the comprehensive support that is needed. Therefore, a professional sparring partner must not only possess broad methodological competence, but most of all particularly human qualities. Only on this basis, co-creation can happen – a close collaboration on even par that is fertile ground for amazing insight and solutions, given that both parties are open and get involved in the process.

working with a sparring partner. They just cherish the regular exchange and room for trusting conversations with someone who is neutral, unbiased and who doesn’t have a personal agenda.These conversations can take place in various settings: in the sparring partner’s or the client’s premises, on a walk in the park, in hotels, on car rides or even during flights – of course utmost discretion and confidentiality are a given at all times. Conclusion Personal support for executives is no longer a luxury. It is fundamental in order to successfully face future challenges.The stigma of the manager that doesn’t seem to make it on his own is slowly giving way to an image that resembles one of a top athlete. Someone who can not only afford having a personal sparring partner but who confidently shows this as a privilege and sign of authenticity and the ability for self-reflection. www.gelmi-consulting.com

Just talking Finally, there are clients who don’t even necessarily follow a clearly set goal when

Main image: Office in Zurich Below: Thomas Gelmi

Social isolation and pressure have increased Ever since those days, our society has changed drastically. In the age of technology with its increasing possibilities of digital communication, genuine dialogue has fallen by the wayside and social isolation has massively increased. Rising up the career ladder can further increase the feeling of loneliness – and what that can lead to is described in the introduction of this article. This being said, for people in top-positions, it is absolutely fundamental to be able to exchange thoughts openly, to talk about their fears and concerns and discuss possible solutions. Leaders are expected to resolve seemingly unresolvable situations and make the right decisions. Pressure is often huge and what works for a certain period of time and with

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T +27 11 844 9060 southafrica@brainforce-ag.com

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INTERIM MANAGEMENT E.X.P.E.R.T.³-Solutions®


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From the idea to the market Roland Haas supports companies with their innovation process Nowadays, in a fast-changing world innovation is one of the most important assets for a company`s future success. But sometimes there are things which hinder or block successful innovation in a company: unclear objectives, different opinions across functions, or simply lack of knowledge or expertise. TEXT: JESSICA POMMER | PHOTOS: HAAS PROJEKTCONSULTING

This is where Roland Haas supports a business to thrive. Roland Haas has over 15 years’ experience as a management consultant focussing on innovation. He has an educational background in engineering and received his PhD from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich, where he still is a regular lecturer.Thus Haas is upto-date on the latest research about innovation and can integrate this knowledge in his day-to-day work. Haas mainly deals with industrial clients. Innovation is a complex process. When new strategic business areas are opened up or ideas are developed, unknown territory is entered. For an innovation project to be successful two challenges have to be mastered: Externally, find the right markets and create excitement amongst target cus-

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tomers. Internally, get a critical mass of committed people behind the project. ”My task is to orchestrate the team in this context until success is achieved,”says Haas. One of his clients is a large company, which produces power tools. The project required challenging one of the core products. Ralf Westerheide, Head Materials Research at Hilti, summarizes: ”Roland Haas organized a specific workshop in which our company team was animated to radically overthink our core product. Haas successfully prevented superfluous discussions, put the focus on the customer’s needs and pushed the participants out of their comfort zone. His method proved to be successful as it resulted in an intensive workout that produced some radical and most promising new prototypes.”

Above: Roland Haas

Market success is often based on the early stage of idea generation. The team members’ knowledge, interests and goals have to be integrated and balanced. Through his membership in the five-is innovation consulting network Roland Haas has access to a new strategic tool for coaching early stage innovation: the Innovation Project Canvas. Vague ideas are thus transformed into exciting concepts and reasonable plans. ”In the end I regard my mission accomplished when I have created and guided lean, efficient and reliable projects that yield products the market wants, and that pay off for innovative companies,” concludes Haas. www.projektconsulting.ch www.five-is.com


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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Outstanding Business Consultants

Main image: The Asian and especially Chinese market has become more and more important. Below: CEO and senior consultant Andreas Benoit.

Assessments with a multicultural approach Benoit Consulting Ltd is more than a specialist for the Chinese market “Think and act global” is the leitmotif, says Benoit Consulting’s CEO and senior consultant Andreas Benoit. Or to put it in Chinese: 思考与行动全球化 Based in the centre of Bern, Switzerland, Benoit Consulting has become an expert in dealing with clients from the Asian market and those based in Europe but requiring to expand their business, for example to China. TEXT: JESSICA HOLZHAUSEN | PHOTOS: PRESS IMAGES

Benoit Consulting provides professional services according to clients’ needs. The Asian market is becoming more and more important for European corporations – not only to sell products but also in cooperating with companies in this region. In recent years not only have European companies established manufacturing facilities in China, but also the Chinese direct investments are growing in Europe and, for example, Africa. According to a study conducted by the German Bertelsmann Stiftung Chinese investments in Germany alone could grow up to two billion US Dollars in 2020. Because of China’s growing importance Benoit Consulting has specialised in the Asian market – with a focus on China and Hong Kong. Doing business with China and Hong Kong issues special challenges: Not only

will European business partners face quite a different culture and way of life but also completely different handling of management and business. Benoit Consulting prepares European partners to deal with these challenges accordingly. Next to Benoit Consulting’s main office in Bern and Zurich, there are permanent offices in Hong Kong and Shanghai.

all consultants have long-term work experiences on the highest professional level. Benoit Consulting is a certified member of Swiss Assessment, an association of AC experts from large-scale enterprises, universities, administrations and consultancies. Above that Benoit Consulting is the Swiss representative of the Global Alliance for Performance Improvement (GAPI). With GAPI 13 independent firms with a total of 34 offices specialised in business psychology and a multicultural consulting approach have formed a successful partnership. www.abenco.ch

Since 2001 Andreas Benoit and his team and partners are using internationally recognized and scientifically proven assessment tools to optimize business structures and eliminate problems that have arisen in companies. With Benoit Consulting coaching is never a theoretical approach but always related to practice. Feedback and a detailed report are part of the service. Coaching and assessment are conducted in German, French, English and Chinese;

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Swiss Private Banking – back to a“New Normal”? “Since 2001, The Consulting Partnership, Zurich provides leading, specialized expertise in Management Consulting, Compensation Strategy and Executive Search dedicated to Private Banking and acts as experienced sparring partner to both decision makers as well as professionals in Private Banking,” says managing partner Robert Hemmi. TEXT: TCP | PHOTOS: PRESS IMAGES

With 26% market share, Switzerland is the world leader in cross-border wealth management and claims this place ahead of Singapore.To defend this position, the sector needs to continue its recovery from the forced regulatory change imposed during the past years. Is the Swiss Private Banking sector back on track? After six years of consolidation, many of the globally operating Swiss Private Banks demonstrate strong progress – they are able to attract new clients, grow their Asset base and increase their revenues. At the same time, many smaller banks are affected by the repatriation of assets; they cannot compensate for this outflow with Net New Money from Emerging Markets.This analysis is also confirmed by a recent study (KPMG / September

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2014: Clarity on Performance of Swiss Private Banks): the top third of the analyzed banks are performing strongly, whereas the bottom third is writing off losses or is in continuous decline. Although Operating Costs are 20% above the levels of 2007, the recent recovery has fuelled business development: against the backdrop of better foreseeable regulatory risks, there is a returning interest in opportunistic growth initiatives: the surge in recent mergers helps to accelerate the market consolidation: currently, there are 20 to 25 additional M & A projects in the pipeline. In parallel, there is also a strong need to invest in the shape of the future business model (stronger performance orientation, digital Private Banking, service based offering) to maintain competitiveness.

Altogether, the environment remains challenging. As such, our response to the initial question is “yes, but…”: the return to old paradigms and the short-term recovery will not secure the competitive edge. More banks will have to enter alliances and partnerships. We are not trying to impair the recent improvements, but innovation and strict cost management remain the key drivers to secure the long term future for the years to come. www.tcpgroup.ch

Robert Hemmi, TCP managing partner


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Discover Germany | Special Theme | Outstanding Business Consultants

When normal consultants leave, it is time for Better Solutions Better Solutions focuses on integral coaching and consulting to enable clients to help themselves. Relying on people’s ability to learn, transferring competences leads to a positive change: in a person and – in the long run – a company. Therefore the achieved new experiences and competences do not leave when a consultant does. Problems are solved and not concealed.

The project in the end will find its conclusion and at the same time clients are able to reorganize structures and workflows, learn to identify risks and find solutions on their own without requiring further consultation. www.better-solutions.cc Below: Manager Jörg Köck The buffalo – a symbol of sovereignty and steady progress.

TEXT JESSICA HOLZHAUSEN | PHOTOS: PRESS IMAGES

P

When companies seek the advice of consultancies, these usually achieve what they were called for, but when the consultant leaves after a project is finished, the underlying problems often still exist. Impeccable negotiation skills have become more and more important in a complex business-environment. What is needed is a reliable partner, explains Better Solutions manager Jörg Köck using the image of a buffalo: steadily moving forward, confident and sovereign but normally not aggressive. Better Solutions focuses on negotiations,

which lay the foundation for binding and good decisions. Working on current and client-relevant problems results in more in-depth learning: By discussing their own issues and daily work, clients learn to overcome underlying issues and problems. Coaching/consulting with Better Solutions goes beyond systematic and rational work and digs deeper into the roots of structural shortages in business. Emotional analysis identifies the critical issues that are most important for a change and deals with them adequately.

The best you, you can be. It’s all about who you are, what you have to offer, and what makes you unique. Let’s find it out.

www.markuspuettmann.de 20 min. apart Frankfurt Main Airport


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Culture Calendar Save the date as there are plenty of great events scheduled for the weeks to come. From music festivals and exciting exhibitions to fantastic sport events and social highlights, Discover Germany’s Culture Calendar is your perfect guide to what not to miss in March. 1200 years of Hildesheim (during 2015)

Engadin Ski Marathon, Maloja (8 March)

The historic town in Lower Saxony celebrates its 1200th anniversary with plenty of exciting events scheduled over the upcoming months. www.hildesheim2015.de

Attracting over 12,000 participants from approximately 50 nations each year, the crosscountry ski marathon between Maloja and S-chanf in Switzerland invites visitors as well as participants for a fun-filled day in the snow. www.engadin-skimarathon.ch

Munich Strong Beer Festival (until 14 March) Considered as the ‘fifth season’ by locals, the Strong Beer Festival celebrates the Bavarian Starkbier (stout) with three weeks of extensive partying and some of the best and freshest tasting beer on the planet. www.nockherberg.com

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Horn Sledge Race, Saas-Grund (8 March) The annual race has only one category – the fun category! Anybody who is up for a laugh and possesses plenty of team spirit is welcome to participate, wear a funny costume or watch the


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Discover Germany | Culture | Culture Calendar

Cologne Literature Festival (11 – 21 March)

Main image: 46th Engadin Skimarathon: Over 12,000 cross country skiers cross the frozen Silsersee. Photo: Andy Mettler/ swiss-image.ch Left below: Knochenbauer town hall. Photo: GNTB/Astrid Schwarz Top right: Atmosphere at the Loewenbraeu. Photo: Brauerei Löwenbräu/ Schottenhamel Christian Photo: Brauerei Löwenbräu/ Martin Rumberger

Known for its unusual locations and events, Europe’s biggest literature festival hosts a number of readings at unusual locations. Presenting internationally renowned authors from around the world, classical readings are complemented with discussions, talks, plays or cabaret shows. www.lit-cologne.de

Right: Entrance of the ITB 2014. Photo: Felix Müller/ © Messe Berlin Peru promotion on the ITB 2014. (middle) Photo: Tom Malsea / © Messe Berlin Curacao promotion on the ITB 2014. (bottom) Photo: Tom Malsea / © Messe Berlin

event. Sledges are provided but it is also okay to bring your own. www.saas-fee.ch/en ITB Berlin (11-15 March) The world’s biggest travel fair invites visitors to explore the world through 11,000 exhibitors, which seek to inform you about countries, travel destinations, tour operators, booking systems, transport carriers, hotels and much much more. www.itb-berlin.de/en

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Discover Germany | Culture | Culture Calendar

Left: Equivalent to Beatles Piano, Obertauern. Photo: © Tourismusverband Obertauern The Beatles in Obertauern (below) Photos: © TVB-Obertauern 2014 Below: Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany, Dr. Angela Merkel and Prime Minister of the UK David Cameron at the CeBIT 2014 Opening Tour. Photo: Deutsche Messe AG. Opposite page: The Landesmuseum Württemberg is open until late. Long Night of Museums, Stuttgart (top left) Photo: Landesmuseum Württemberg (top right) Swatch Freeride World Tour. (bottom left) Photo: ©freerideworldtour.com / DAVID CARLIER Swatch Freeride World Tour. (bottom right) Photo: ©freerideworldtour.com / DOM DAHER

“A Tribute to The Beatles” (14 – 21 March) Austria’s Obertauern will celebrate the 50-year anniversary of The Beatles’ visit to their town to shoot the film Help! and of their first and only concert in Austria. Visitors can expect a wide range of movie screenings, events and live acts – all in the name of the biggest pop-band of all times. www.obertauern.com/events/ a-tribute-to-the-beatles.html

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The Long Night of Museums, Stuttgart (14 March) More than 26,000 visitors enjoyed the broad spectrum of cultural offerings the long night had to offer in 2014. Appreciate a night full of unusual opening hours and a unique topical and artistic spectrum in more than 90 museums, galleries, art and exhibition locations. www.lange-nacht.de

CeBIT (16-22 March) According to German Chancellor Angela Merkel, “as a display window, market place or forum, the CeBIT has long been established as the world’s most important digital business fair.” www.cebit.de


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Discover Germany | Culture | Culture Calendar

Solar eclipse, all over Germany (20 March) Don’t miss this astronomic mega event – a partial solar eclipse will be seen from the German-speaking countries in March. The next chance to enjoy the total black sun will only come in 2081 or 2135. Expect 75 per cent of the sun’s surface to be covered in Munich and 83 per cent in Hamburg.

Bregenz Spring International Dance Festival (20 March – 22 March)

Swatch Xtreme Freeride World Tour Final, Verbier (28 March)

One of the most important and innovative dance festivals in the DACH countries, the festival in Bregenz will attract many internationally renowned choreographers and performance ensembles, which are sure to introduce audiences to contemporary dance. www.bregenzerfruehling.at

The off-piste freeride season ends with a special anniversary: the 20th edition of the Xtreme Verbier. An intimidating competition face, the Bec de Rosses, will be the ultimate challenge for daredevil snowboarders and skiers. www.freerideworldtour.com

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Discover Germany | Culture | Barbara Geier

Wanted: Proper breakfast Have you noticed? The UK is becoming more German. Yes, the windows might still be draughty which would obviously never happen in Germany (if you want to insult and upset a German, put them next to a window where they can feel the air coming in), but in other areas, notably food and drink, there’s a distinct advent of German things. Bavarian beer houses, sausage places, German bakers, not to speak of Aldi and Lidl who are seriously shaking up the British supermarket industry. However, however, there is, from my point of view, one very important thing missing: There’s nowhere to go, at least not in London, where you can get a proper German breakfast. TEXT: BARBARA GEIER

Why would that be so important? Well, first of all, it’s the one thing I’m missing here sometimes (I can easily do without beer houses and German sausages and actually also Aldi and Lidl). Because“going for breakfast” is not just about taking in some food, it’s a social occasion.You meet your friends for breakfast, preferably not before 10 am, on a weekend and then the whole affair can drag on until well into the afternoon. People do that here too, you might say now, and yes, that’s true, but there are some specific elements that are not always a given on these shores and which are essential to the German way of doing breakfast, not least the breakfast itself. So, here’s what my German breakfast place, to be opened in London at some point, would look like: First of all, there’s table service. Very important. No queuing at a counter, no carrying your own stuff around. The most important thing for the breakfast is Gemütlichkeit, and being served is part of this. As is the feeling that you can stay as long as you like and linger and talk, and read the paper – so, there’ll be papers provided – as long as you want. Without feeling obliged to leave your table as soon as you’ve finished to make space for someone else. Oh no, there’s no rush. Linger, please. Most importantly now, the menu. As much as I like the choices that you have here when you go for breakfast or brunch, the

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many types of eggs, scrambled and this and that, pancakes, porridge, French toast, bagels, etc etc, it always irks me a bit that you always have to make a decision between either this or that in the end and order everything individually. Apart from the typical English Breakfast which is indeed a plate full of things all at once, there’s nothing “packaged”. And this is what a German breakfast does so well. If you go to a café in Germany the breakfast menu will offer a variety of different breakfasts combining all the essentials that are part of a breakfast in different ways and sizes: There’s the‘big breakfast’, the‘small breakfast’, the‘healthy breakfast’, the‘breakfast for two’, the ‘Mediterranean breakfast’ or sometimes café owners get really imaginative and give their breakfast choices all kinds of weird and wonderful titles. For example, a very famous breakfast place in Frankfurt has named its breakfast choices using the city’s different neighbourhoods, so that you’ll order a ‘Bornheim’, a ‘Westend’, a ‘Bockenheim’. Whatever you might call it, the most important thing is the content: Every breakfast will always feature a number of things that are essential for a breakfast so there’s no need to order things individually. There will always be a basket of bread and bread rolls (vital!), butter, jam, honey, Nutella, and obviously coffee or tea, and then depending on your taste, you can order variations featuring eggs (boiled, scrambled, or otherwise), cheese (yes! We eat cheese

for breakfast, put on a piece of bread with butter, it’s great!), cold cuts, Müsli, fruits, yoghurt, smoked salmon etc etc. And there’s always one price for each breakfast “package”. So, you can basically get a table full of things for no more than EUR 10, and eat your way through it. Do you see now why I think there’s a gap in the market here for a proper German breakfast place? It’s practical, efficient, gemütlich and I feel London could do with a place like this. I already have a name: Frühstück. Two umlauts, I mean, can it get any more cool. The hipsters will love it. Am still working on finding a location that could be had rent free, though. Otherwise, German pricing will have to go out of the draughty windows straight away …

Barbara Geier is a London-based freelance writer, translator and communications consultant. She is also the face behind ww.germanyiswunderbar.com, a German travel and tourism guide and blog that was set up together with UK travel writer Andrew Eames in 2010.


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PEAK PERFORMANCE www.phh.at


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Into the trees and a little above. Dinner in the corner seat, le Chef knows how. In the family for years and years. Lumber has settled down. Private spa and a cosy chalet. Where the slope ends, you are home. Roomservice knocks with a picnic box. Terrine with brioche and local wine. A last glance of red covers the Matterhorn. www.cervo.ch

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