Looking at the New Town Hall (Neues Rathaus) in Hannover, Germany, I actually found myself thinking that the term "new" was some sort of a prank played on silly tourists like me who live in a part of the world where old generally isn’t compared to Europe. It doesn’t look particularly new and I figured it was reasonably old and simply newer than the actually old buildings like the Marktkirche which dates to the 1400s. The building has a gothic castle vibe which belies its true age. It turns out that the New Town Hall actually is relatively new: it was completed in 1913 after 12 years of construction.
The exterior of the building is impressive, to be certain. And looking out our hotel window at it lit up at night was quite spectacular. But don’t settle for just looking at the outside; the interior is equally amazing.
The building is still used as city hall (shouldn’t be too surprising, I suppose). Even on Saturday morning there was official business being conducted. It turns out that people still go to City Hall to get married in Germany.
We saw a few wedding parties come in, take care of the official business and head right back out to celebrate their nuptials. There was also some sort of party going on inside the building but I don’t really know what that was about and I was talked out of trying to crash it.
The building has an observation deck on top of the tower, nearly 100 meters above the city below. Alas, it was closed the day we visited so we didn’t get to ride the awesome arced elevators up to the top. I suppose that just means we’ll need to go back.
The other major draw of the building is the four large dioramas of the town at different points in history. There is one from the Holy Roman Empire days, one showing the damage of WWII and one showing the relatively recent rebuilt city (I don’t remember the 4th, but I know it was there).
The main draw remains the architecture. And for good reason.
Well worth stopping by when you’re in Hannover. And check out the museum next door, too. Decent collection there.
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How I missed going here while living in Hanau, is beyond me.
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