If you’re smack dab in the middle of Hamburg’s new waterfront district you’d better make the most of your surroundings, and that’s exactly what this trendy outpost of a Hamburg-based, design-oriented hotel group does. Shipping crates, old timbers, and stacks of Oriental carpets (a nod to the surrounding warehouses that once stored the bounty of Eastern trade) fill the lounge areas, while bedrooms are cabin style, varying in size from snug to commodious enough for a captain and carrying out the nautical theme with tattoo-emblazoned wallpaper, crate-like furnishings, portholes, and logbooks in which you can follow the story of seafarers. It’s all great fun, creature comforts are not spared, and many rooms have phenomenal harbor views. If all this design gets to be a bit much, head up to the rooftop sauna to chill out while taking in the city below. The in-house bar serves simple meals, including a delicious and generous breakfast, and the desk will turn over the keys of an Austin Mini so you can take a spin around town.

Paul-Dessau-Strasse 2. [tel] 040/855070. www.25hours-hotel.com. 89 units. 125€–155€ double. V. Free parking. S-Bahn: Bahrenfeld. Amenities: Restaurant; 2 bars; babysitting; bikes; free in-room Wi-Fi.