Germany's sparkling jewel

Oliver Condy reports from the opening of Hamburg's spectacular new Elbphilharmonie


The wait is over. After years of spiralling costs and delays, Hamburg's much-anticipated Elbphilharmonie is finally open.

The extraordinary glass-clad building atop an old brick warehouse, looms over the city's harbour like a cruise ship waiting to dock.

Inside are two concert halls and their foyers (a 400-seat chamber venue and the main event, the 2,100-seat hall), a five-star hotel, apartments, spa, public areas and a car park. It's difficult to work out from the outside how they squeezed it all in.