Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Recreating the Glory of Lubeck

One of my favorite holiday windows is in the Karstadt store half way between Marienplatz and Stachus, where they painstakinly re-created the Holsten Gate of the Northern German city of Lubeck. It took more than 400 man hours to recreate the signiture gate of Germany's largest port city. I'm not sure the significance in Munich for this re-creation, but I'm hoping they somehow used Marzipan, which is rumored to have been invented in Lubeck. The gate was one of only four entry points to the old city, and today is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Despite origins back to the 1400s, the gate was set to be demolished in 1808 when viewed as an annoying obstacle to an industrialized nation - it interfeared with train traffic. But the tower was later saved by a single vote, and the decision was made to instead extensively restore it. The gate has since become the pride of Lubeck, and is incorporated into many local company logos.

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