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Exploring Berlin: A Guide To Schöneberg

Urban Nation One Wall 2

photo: Urban Nation / Nika Kramer

Schöneberg, oh Schöneberg. You are underestimated. Although you have so much to offer! The late and beloved David Bowie wasn’t the only one to notice your charm, but also numerous artists such as Iggy Pop and Klaus Kinski lived in your hemisphere. There’s something about you, something mature and unagitated but still exciting. Something that feels like home yet still comes up with surprises of the unknown.

Founded as a tiny village and first documented in 1264 (that’s… a long time ago), Schöneberg was merged in 2001 with the adjacent district Tempelhof and is now called: Tempelhof-Schöneberg. We will focus on the Schöneberg-part of the district today, presenting you the best options to eat & drink, see some art, spend some leisure time in the most beautiful spots and learn something about the history of the ‘beautiful mountain’ aka Schöneberg.

FYI: Even though the district is located at a quite elevated spot, the name ‘Schöneberg’ that includes the ‘mountain-theme’ is rather a wishful-thinking-name than a geographically correct one. But who cares, right? Let’s start with our guide to Schöneberg!

Yasmin by Yasmin
on January 20th, 2016
in Bars, Cafés, Galleries, Market, Restaurants, Schöneberg, Shops

The Future Arriving: A Guide to Mobile Payment in Berlin

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Berlin is a modern, contemporary city like any other, but in one respect it has an awfully bad reputation: Credit cards – let alone any other modern-day form of payment – not accepted! You will read this as a warning in any guide book or hear this from any visitor of the city who complains that they had to pay in cash in the restaurant, couldn’t pay with credit cards in a big electronic stores or with any card whatsoever at the cinema. Germans really seem to value cold hard cash…

But this is changing right now, we just haven’t noticed it yet! With my last visits to the IFA consumer electronics fair I have come across new forms of digital payment multiple times and I wondered, how these are already implemented in Berlin so far. I investigated a bit and made some practical tests.

One of the technologies that I found especially intriguing is the so called mobile wallet that you have on your smartphone. They exist on multiple platforms, the one being interesting for me as an Android user is called MyWallet and it’s available for free at the play app store. What it is is a digital version of your wallet that includes your credit cards, right on your smartphone. Another technology that I tested is the mobile app of Paypal that let’s you use your Paypal credit to pay in stores. More about that and my favorite stores, cafes and restaurants that offer mobile payment after the jump.

Frank by Frank
on January 19th, 2016
in Bars, Cafés, Kreuzberg, Mitte, Neukölln, Prenzlauer Berg, Restaurants, Shops

Turkish Lifestyle in Berlin

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Danny & Melisa (renk.), photo: Ferhat Topal

Berlin is a city made of puzzle pieces, a mosaic of multitudes. Its irresistable charm and distinctive difference is made of the people that shape the city culturally. A Berlin without its cultural diversity is not only hard to imagine – it just wouldn’t even be as interesting probably. The contributions of inhabitants from all over the world helped forming a colorful kaleidoscope of ethnic elements.

I could go into some history now, explaining the Foreign Policy of Germany, how in the 1950s and 60′s, Germany invited guest workers to work in Germany and help with the economy. But I won’t.

I will invite you to take a look at the present, cause as we know: the present is a gift. And if you look around today in Berlin, you’ll see it’s a gift that keeps on giving. You see Poland, you see Vietnam, you see practically every country in Berlin. Be it in the food you eat, the Yoga Studio you frequent, the store where you buy your vegetables. The luxurious freedom to get the best of countless cultures is a main point for me to why Berlin is so comfortable to live in.

We want to take a closer look at the possibilities and present to you the manifold ways of experiencing Berlin. Today: The Turkish Edition!

Yasmin by Yasmin
on January 15th, 2016
in Art, Fashion, Music, Restaurants

A Parents Guide To Berlin

Parents in Berlin

photo: Petteri Sulonen

Oh, the bliss. Your parents are in town, visiting you, worrying about your hygiene at home and the number of emptied out wine bottles in the hallway. Since you don’t want them to also see your questionable choice of clothes it’s time to get them out of your place into the world.
But what to do?

Your usual hangouts are not exactly what you want them to see, probably. Although the Späti around the corner has a very nice owner, and KitKat Club has really good drinks – it’s not really SFP (safe for parents). There must be other things to do with your parents that both parties – you and them – will enjoy. Luckily, we picked 10 things to do with your parents! Here are 10 spots and places to experience beyond Brandenburger Tor and Siegessäule that close the generation gap.

We arranged them in parts – daytime, evening and nightlife, so you have experiences for pretty much every part of the day. Get some inspiration after the jump.

Yasmin by Yasmin
on November 25th, 2015
in Bars, City Guide, Market, Restaurants

Exploring Berlin: The Hottest New Places in Neukölln

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Neukölln is constantly evolving and has been the place to be for a while now. Today we want to update you guys on the newest hotspots in the area. We talked to Laura, who is organizing the regular Neukölln Shopping Night, about her ideas and of course the new spots you can’t miss in Neukölln.

Laura grew up in Paris, but has been living in Berlin for the past three years. A period during which she’s been more involved in organizing the unique city life than a lot of us Berliners. She co-manages the Bass Cadet Recordstore / Down by Retro on Weserstraße and has brought the Neukölln Shopping Night to life. The idea of the shopping night is to bring cool people into the unique neighborhood, to share the good vibe, delicious food, drinks and to find the hidden treasures.

When they first opened up their record store in 2013 the area was still young, so Laura and her friends picked up the idea of getting all the independent shops together to create this fabulous night of party and shopping – after all: sharing is caring. What she loves most about the nights is the dynamic and interaction of shop owners and the many guests. People value and appreciate the idea, so the nights are always a lot of fun.

Get ready and check out the best new places in Neukölln after the jump…

Kate by Kate
on November 2nd, 2015
in Bars, Cafés, Neukölln, Restaurants, Shops

Exploring Berlin: Our Favorites in the West

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Writing the different city guides for our ongoing series Exploring Berlin has been a true pleasure in the past months. It’s something that we haven’t done so much in the past, but have been really getting into especially within the last year. We love how it makes us explore parts of Berlin that we haven’t been so focused on before and to always look out for the new things popping up. We have also enjoyed the feedback that we get from you guys that add their personal favorites to our themed or district guides and most of all we love to read the comments how these guides have helped you find you way around in Berlin.

When Citadines asked us to compile one of our Berlin guides for their Travel Capsule campaign we were of course happy to do so. The Travel Capsule is an interactive experiences in Paris and London that combines the physical with the digital. In both cities, the brand will set up a studio in big train stations which is a recreation of a Citadines apart‘hotel. In this studio visitors will be able to travel to either Berlin, London or Paris via a big interactive screen where they will get special recommendations for each city curated by local bloggers. This is were we come in: We chose 20 places in Berlin in different categories including culture, food, business and shopping that will be shown on an interactive video map inside the Travel Capsules giving the visitor a digital tour of the town while snacking on specialties from each respective country. If they are lucky they can also win trips and hotel nights in one of those cities such as Berlin where the Citadines apart’hotel is located at Olivaer Platz right in the heart of Charlottenburg.

We want to share a part of this guide with you today and selected 10 places that are in the West of Berlin including Tiergarten, Charlottenburg and Schöneberg – those districts that we have neglected far too long and that we particularly enjoy to discover these days. Have a look at our selection after the jump!

Frank by Frank
on October 2nd, 2015
in Cafés, Charlottenburg, Galleries, Restaurants, Schöneberg, Shops, Tiergarten

100 Years of Clärchens Ballhaus

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Spiegelsaal, Clärchens Ballhaus

We love Clärchens Ballhaus! It’s one of the only remaining old houses on Auguststraße in Mitte and it radiates history like very few other buildings.

Here you can enjoy easy-going and yummy traditional German food and pizza along with a beer in the garden in a charming atmosphere between the old walls and you can feel the many years that this place has already existed. In the nights you can dine or listen to concerts in the famous “Spiegelsaal” ball room, a beautiful old hall of over 100 years – decorated, as the name suggests, with many mirrors. But the heart of Clärchens is its main ball room – day by day there are dancing events and you can also be active in courses like standard, salsa or tango.

Established in 1913 by the family Bühler the house is one of the last ball houses of Berlin. We wanted to learn more about it and found a wonderful book: Berlin tanzt in Clärchens Ballhaus: 100 Jahre Vergnügen – eine Kulturgeschichte. Learn more about it after the jump.

Olga by Olga
on October 1st, 2015
in Books, Mitte, Restaurants, Videos

The Best Hummus in Berlin

Zula

Appetizer or main meal in itself, when sharing food with friends hummus is always high up on the list. We all know it’s made of chickpeas but there is an art to making really good hummus, dressing it up and adding accompanying dishes. It already starts with the main ingredient chickpeas. Different people have different methods of peeling off the thin clear skin to make the hummus rich and less seamy. While we’re not able to share the ultimate trick of making the best hummus with you, we have our recommendation of best places in Berlin to fulfill your hummus craving. Best enjoyed with a group of your favorite people. Read more after the jump.

Yoori by Yoori
on September 24th, 2015
in Mitte, Neukölln, Prenzlauer Berg, Restaurants

Exploring Berlin: Hanging Out in Kreuzberg

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Following the spirit of our Exploring Berlin series we want to look at another district today and show you our favorite places there. This time we chose the one that we are surrounded by the most as our office at Blogfabrik is located right in the middle of it. I’m talking about Kreuzberg of course, probably one of the most popular districts of Berlin at the moment.

People who come to Berlin just love it here. It’s buzzing and it’s relaxed at the same time. It offers everything from delicious food, compelling art, pulsating nightlife and cultural entertainment. But apart from all of that Kreuzberg is particularly good for one thing: Just hanging out and having a good time. So we drove around in the past days dropping by the most beloved hang-out spots of the Berliners and snapping some photos for you. By the way all of the photos in this feature have been taken with the new Sony Xperia Z5 smartphone (versus the Z1 or my SLR that I normally use) which is being presented at the IFA these days. But now let’s dive into our favorite places in Kreuzberg.

Frank by Frank
on September 4th, 2015
in Bars, Cafés, Clubs, Galleries, Kreuzberg, Restaurants

Exploring Berlin: A Stroll down Kantstraße

Kantstrasse-19

photos: Alicia Kassebohm

Have you already tired yourself out following all summer events and hints and tips of the season? Maybe it’s time for a relaxed, yet not boring, weekend for you?

If this is you, we have assembled the highlights for culture lovers off the beaten path in the city for you – starting with a few spots in the versatile district Charlottenburg, where time seems to be running a bit slow to the beautiful facades and quiet parks in which you can meet original Berliners.

Attending a theater play, going to the movies or a gallery or meeting someone in one of the sometimes almost historical cafés – follow into the footsteps of Berlin’s artistic legends.

Alicia by Alicia
on August 27th, 2015
in Bars, Cafés, Charlottenburg, Galleries, Restaurants, Shops