Where a Berlin hotel is situated says everything you need to know. Berlin's rebuilt city center, Mitte, hosts opulent palace hotels—the Hotel Adlon Kempinski, the Regent, the Ritz-Carlton, the Hotel de Rome—all heavy on the marble and livery. Further east, the mix gets more interesting, with chilly design hotels (Lux 11) that clash somewhat with neighboring Socialist-era high-rises as well as warmer, more homey options on leafy side streets (Honigmond Garden Hotel). In western Berlin, it's as if the Cold War never ended: Take your pick of slightly rundown pensiones full of antique furnishings and architectural details (with concierges who wear a distinctly seen-it-all look) and 1980s glass-and-steel hotels that aren't aging well. We suggest you base yourself in Mitte for glitter, Prenzlauer Berg for post-Wall chic, and Charlottenburg for Old Europe and Cold War glamour.