Caroline is on a work trip to Frankfurt, and the girls are both on school trips for the week, so we are now looking to see what's worth doing, where to stay and where to eat and drink.
The city's main shopping street for more than a century, the Zeil stretches roughly a mile across central Frankfurt.
The eastern half is motorized, the western half a broad pedestrian street spangled with trees, outdoor cafes, department stores and boutiques.
Anchor tenants like Karstadt and Kaufhof have been there for what seems like forever.
But the ever-evolving thoroughfare has newer shopping places, in particular the flashy MyZeil, an American-style shopping mall with a fitness center, food court, game arcades and child care to complement the diverse shopping.
MyZeil, Zeil 106, 60313 Frankfurt, Hesse Germany; +69 29 723 970
Germany's second oldest porcelain maker has been creating fine plates, cups and animal figurines since 1746, when it received a royal license from the crown prince and archbishop of Mainz.
The company's "transparent manufactory" in west Frankfurt includes a walkthrough factory tour, during which visitors see the entire creative process from start to finish, as well as a chance to browse the showroom for take-home treasures.
Höchster Porzellan-Manufaktur, Palleskestrasse 32, Höchst; +49 69 300 902 40
It may seem sacrilegious to dine on classic French cuisine in one of the most thoroughly German cities, but Lafleur is the kind of restaurant that begs you to break convention.
Unveiled in the fall of 2012, the Michelin-star restaurant is located in a gorgeous Bauhaus building inside the Palmengarten, near the city center.
Austrian-born chef Alfred Friedrich has created a menu that's among the best of Frankfurt, revolving around creative interpretations of traditional French dishes.
The menu ranges from suckling calf with broad beans, chanterelles and fregola sarda to fillet of St. Pierre in filo dough with crayfish and young leeks.
Lafleur, Palmengartenstrasse 11, 60325 Frankfurt, Hesse Germany; +49 69 9002 9100
Despite all of the great beer and wine produced in the region, Frankfurt's favorite libation is apfelwein (apple wine).
Sachsenhausen on the south bank is renowned for its apfelwein taverns, none better than Adolf Wagner, established in 1931 and still owned by the same family.
Braeburn single variety apfelwein, created from fruit grown just outside of Frankfurt, is the house specialty.
The tavern also serves traditional German dishes like pork knuckles, schnitzel, sausages, potato salad and sauerkraut.
It's a sprawling place with several distinct bar areas, and both indoor and outdoor seating during warmer weather.
Apfelwein Wagner, Schweizer Strasse 71 Frankfurt am Main, D-60594 Frankfurt, Hesse Germany; +49 69 61 25 65
This cobblestone square in the old town has been a hub of Frankfurt life since the 9th century.
It's served as a venue for many of the city's most important events, from imperial elections and medieval jousting to public executions and Christmas fairs.
Here are found historic buildings including the Old Nikolai Church, St. Paul's Church and the structure from which the square takes its name -- the exquisite Römer, home of Frankfurt's city government for more than 600 years. The Imperial Hall displays the portraits of the 52 Holy Roman emperors.
Due south of the square is the Frankfurt History Museum, highlighted by the permanent collection, "Collectors and Donors of Frankfurt," which features the private art and artifact collections of a dozen well-known Frankfurters.
Frankfurter Romer, Roemerberg 27, 60311 Frankfurt, Hesse Germany;
Enjoy an ultimate gin taste experience during your tasting. In the eighteenth century, London's signature Gin was particularly devoted. In the course of time, more and more of the recipe was filed until the drink was also noticed by the upper class. During this tasting, participants taste 6 high-quality gins, guided through the evening by a spirits professional, and will hear interesting facts about this drink. In between appetizers can be served and there is bread and water to neutralize. For those who would like to have food prior to or after the tasting, can do so at Gasthof Ziegelhütte (at own expense and prior or after the tasting), where the tasting will also take place.The tasting program entails the following whiskys (subject to change):
The Duke Munich Dry Gin
Ophir Oriental Gin
Mombasa Club London Dry Gin
Bobby's Schiedam Dry Gin
Tarquin's Dry Gin
The Eiserner Steg is a footbridge leading over the river Main in the city of Frankfurt, Germany, which connects the centre of Frankfurt with the district of Sachsenhausen. The first bridge of wrought iron was built in the year of 1868. Now lovers come to this bridge to hang a colourful padlock as a symbol of their love
Johann Wolfgang Goethe, Germany's most celebrated author, was born in this four-story townhouse in Frankfurt's old town in 1749.
A multi-talented bard, Goethe wrote poetry and prose, scientific papers and memoirs, and more than 10,000 letters.
Mozart and Beethoven were among the many composers who set his words to music.
Filled with period art and antiques, the house has exhibits on Goethe's life in Frankfurt as well as his early works and inspirations.
The adjoining museum, housed in a modern glass-fronted building, contains art by German painters of the Romantic period.
Goethe House, Grosser Hirschgraben 23 - 25, 60311 Frankfurt, Hesse Germany; +49 69 138 800
The neo-Gothic facade of this former family mansion (built in 1904) belies an edgy interior that mixes minimalist furnishings and intriguing modern art.
Guests gather in the back courtyard for drinks, chats and sunshine, but that's not the villa's only attraction.
In addition to a wide range of health and beauty treatments, the Villa Spa has a 15-meter indoor swimming pool flanked by potted palms.
Meanwhile, restaurant Gusto offers fine Italian cuisine and al fresco eating during the warmer months.
The resident mixologist at JFK's Bar dares you to name a cocktail that he can't create.
Villa Kennedy, Kennedyallee 70, 60596 Frankfurt, Hesse Germany; +49 69 717 120
Set amid the rolling vineyards of the Rheingau region on Frankfurt's outskirts, chef Claudio Urru's chic wine country eatery blends local and international ingredients into superb contemporary dishes.
Among the house specialties are veal with pumpkin and parsnip, guinea fowl with sweet potatoes, figs and mushrooms, and saddle of venison with walnut cream and cranberries.
The New York-style cheesecake is superb, as are the local Riesling and Spätburgunder (pinot noir) wines.
Though set on the grounds of Schwarzenstein Castle, the restaurant's architecture is dramatically modern, the dining room inside a giant glass box overlooking the Rhine.
Gourmet Restaurant - Burg Schwarzenstein, Rosengasse 32, 65366 Geisenheim, Hesse Germany; +49 67 22 99 500