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The department store landscape in Düsseldorf once offered a varied and lively mix of different operators. Dated facades and the lack of investment on interior design led to a slippery decline in popularity. With consumer tastes constantly in flux and online sales ravaging high streets in Germany too, closures and mergers continue to reshape inner city landscapes.

Carsch Haus, Horten, Karstadt and Kaufhof have been synonymous with the city. However, at the time of writing, only one final merged entity remains and this once magnificent idea has seemingly passed its peak despite modernisation. Transition and rebranding to help attract new clientele will reveal how popular are to the residents of Düsseldorf. two traditional department stores on the Shadowstrasse are slated to close. 

Notably, Carsch Haus was dismantled piece by piece during the late 1970s to be preserved and rebuilt a few metres away during the early 1980s. This was to facilitate the creation of the new subway system. Another memorable feat connected with the project was shifting the position of the Oberkasseler bridge by several metres too.

By Vincent Green, Aug 18 2020


Original language movies are popular among expats in Düsseldorf. Films are frequently screened in English at a variety of cinemas in original with subtitles, known as OmU or Original mit Untertitel and without, portrayed as OV or Original Version. 

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We stand in a foreign culture finding ourselves pointing, gesticulating and hoping to be understood. Germans mostly speak at least some English. However, some expats relocating to Düsseldorf may wish to carry a few basic but helpful words with them for use in awkward moments.

Public Transport

The public transport system in Düsseldorf is safe and normally efficient. A dense network of trams, Strassenbahn, above and below ground as well as buses serve the city and its suburbs. Links via the S-Bahn train system reach further outlying areas and some neighbouring communities.