The link between those two H manufacturers in Germany is even closer one might think. Both are located in the Frankonian music area and their facilities are less than 3 km away from each other!
Hanikas do sound brigther mostly due to the Savaraz ARJ carbon strings they install at the workshop. That’s what prevented me always from taking them in consideration though I must admit that there were a few exceptional Hanikas. But these were in the 10+k€ range and thus not what I would spend for a Hanika guitar.
Höfner guitars are more neutral in a good sense. Well balanced, grood volume and projection. The only reason not to put them on my short list was, that their standard nut width was 50 mm, which seems to have changed luckily.
I think you made a good decision to go for the HM88. Please keep us informed how things developed.