On 5th July 2015 it was finally declared: the UNESCO “awarded” Hamburg with a World Cultural Heritage Site – the Warehouse District including the Kontorhaus District around the Chilehaus. At the end of the 19th century Hamburg was persuaded to join Bismarck’s newly found customs union – given that the city could still profit from their customs exemption. An agreement of the union let to the construction of the Speicherstadt – on top of thousands of oak stakes – in order to erect a free port area. 15-20 thousand people had to find a new home. But today, the UNESCO acknowledged “the extraordinary, universal value of this inner city ensemble of maritime warehouse complexes and office builiding from the early 20th century” and presented Hamburg with its first World Cultural Heritage Site.
Behind the ingenious architectural construction of the warehouses, which are accessible by water as well as by road, around 500,000 m² of storage space with the right temperature are hiding, which are partly still used as such. But since the free port area has been abolished, more and more touristic attractions have settled down in the Speicherstadt. Nowadays, you do not only find the Miniature Wonderland there but also the Hamburg Dungeon, Dialogue in the Dark, Spicy’s spice museum and the Speicherstadt museum. If you would like to get to know more about Hamburg’s new World Cultural Heritage Site, the Speicherstadt and Hamburg’s Kontorhausviertel, feel free to book a tour with me. I’m looking forward to explain you this new World Heritage.