Where were you born?
St Petersburg, Russia.
Where do you live?
Berlin’s Mitte district.
What’s best about your neighbourhood?
I never have to go elsewhere. When I am at home instead of touring for work, I try not to go anywhere further than a 15-minute walk from my house. There is everything one could need here: shops, fantastic restaurants, cafés and parks. Most importantly, my closest friends are all here.
If money were no object, where would you live?
Still in Berlin’s Mitte but in a huge apartment on a rooftop with lots of rooms for guests and a big open kitchen and a terrace and a sauna.
Which are your favourite Berlin stores?
Herr von Eden for suits, the Apartment and the Corner are my favourite local and concept stores. But I also love going west to Hermès and Chanel. I like custom-made corsets from Tomto on Torstrasse. Walking up and down in the area of Alte and Neue Schönhauser Strasse can be entertaining, but I am not a fan of big brand names. My own wardrobe is all very special things that I have collected and bought all over the world. Some things are custom made and some are things I changed or altered. I like unusual combinations and eccentric accessories such as seamed stockings and bright shoes.
And your favourite restaurants?
Dudu on Torstrasse is like my kitchen. Whenever I am in Berlin, I eat there. Then there are classics like Grill Royal, Borchardt and Soho House, where I do dinner meetings. If you are in the west, then Mr Hai on Olivaer Platz is best for sushi, which is one of my favourite foods. In general I like pleasant gastronomic surprises such as unknown small restaurants and events like Pret A Diner. I think Berlin is one of the best cities for wide gastronomic culture.
Any recommendations for local dishes to try?
I would say that the seafood bowl at Dudu is a typical Berlin-Mitte dish, even though it is a fusion-Vietnamese restaurant. Personally, I like simple food and raw food, though sometimes a kalbsschnitzel is not entirely out of order. In Volkspark Friedrichshain, there is a nice restaurant in the middle of the park.
Where do you take out-of-town friends?
I try to take them to all of the above clubs and restaurants, then to shows, variety theatre and comedy clubs. Berlin’s art gallery world is not to be underestimated.
Where do you like to celebrate?
Anywhere, the more unusual the better, from derelict buildings to fancy, dressed-up places. I always try to dress up, independently of where I am going. And I like swing dancing, although only with certain partners. To me, that is a party.
Do you have a favourite walk in Berlin?
Mauerpark flea market on Sundays. I like all my walks, I walk a lot.
How do you like to travel around the city?
I am a taxi diva. Taxi and walking are my modes of transport.
Which do you think is Berlin’s best museum?
Where are the best bargains to be found?
Everywhere during the winter sales, of course!
What can’t you live without?
My dear friends, my sword and my high heels, all of them! And red lipstick, if it is allowed on the list.