photo: Funkhaus Berlin.
In all of the years that I have been living in Berlin the city never ceases to surprise me with new incredible places, no matter if they are incredible buildings, stunning interiors, unusual locations or innovative concepts. When people who are planning to come to Berlin or are already here but want to experience something new, they often ask me about places like that and where they can find them. My first reaction is always that I am missing the right answers because all the places are so familiar to me, after 18 years, what can truly still surprise me. But then I think back to the moments when I first discovered those incredible places, sometimes even before I had seen pictures of them, and how they made me feel. With this memory in mind I curated the following list of amazing places that will take you by surprise when you first visit them. Our readers who are more familiar with the city might know a lot of them already, but maybe we manage to have at least a couple that you don’t know yet.
Oh, Spain…How to describe you? Besides everything, Spain is a country that keeps charming and surprising both its new visitors and its inhabitants. Envied because of the weather, admired for its historical, cultural and artistic legacy and desired for it’s rich, healthy and extremely varied gastronomy, Spain never leaves you indifferent. That’s why if you are a Spaniard like me, you’ll find yourself missing the smells, the flavors and the warmth of the country that you have left behind. So if you are feeling the weight of the nostalgia bringing you down or just asking yourself how did you end up in this cold and rainy (but always amazing) city, here we have put together some great places that will, hopefully, make you feel a little bit like home. And of course, don’t forget to make a toast ¡salud!
Schöneberg, Schöneberg…? Surely, some people who aren’t yet familiar with the city won’t know that Schöneberg is one of Berlin’s neighborhoods because that’s exactly what happened to me. For decades Schöneberg was the epicenter of Berlin’s creative underground, but today you will find Berlin’s interesting, cool, and artsy vibe in most of the Eastern neighborhoods. This unique atmosphere that makes people from all over the globe want to move to the German capital. That way some neighborhoods like Kreuzberg have kept their cool and edgy reputation over the years. But, as you can already imagine, there’s much more than meets the eye in Berlin’s west, especially in Schöneberg. Yes, if you are new in town Schöneberg is still worth a visit and we are going to explore some of its curious locations and little wonders.
FYI: Because Schöneberg is quite an extense neighborhood, I have focused on a specific area which it’s the Akazienkiez and places near The Red Island. In a map, you can see a distinctive triangle-shaped area of Schöneberg bordered by railway lines S1, U7 and the Ringbahn of Berlin. It was called like that due to the left-wing supporters that lived in that specific neighborhood.
photos: Amanda Artiaga
There are so many reasons why we heart Berlin. In a fast-paced city like ours, it’s hard to keep track. People move in and out, places come and go. What one person loves about this city, might be completely unknown to others, and possibly gone before they even find out about it. Every city guide, every restaurant recommendation, list of cafés, clubs or bars can only give little indications and reflect someone else’s love for this city, but in the end why you love Berlin, is your own story.
Those who have been born and raised in Berlin, and, after all these years, still decide to call Berlin their home, have a genuine love story to tell. We asked some of these ‘Ur-Berliners’, with lifelong experience how they would spend a day in Berlin. The results are a collection of hidden gems and nostalgic places that never lose their charm. #whyiheartberlin
photo: Herr Lindemann
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, we came across Zitronenstraße – a project that highlights Berlin’s most romantic spots such as bars, cafes, restaurants and parks on an interactive map. Although the town is full of bars and cafes, sometimes you still end up clueless as to where can you take your date. This is especially common during Winter, when even the most tenacious Berliners have to seek shelter from the cold. We’ve asked Valerio – the creator of the romantic places in Berlin map – to share his 7 favorite bars that he thinks are perfect for a romantic date.
Last week, we were invited to a special master class about the art and tradition of whiskey serving called Masters of American Whiskey. The two-day programme was organized by the three whiskey brands: Jack Daniels, Woodford Reserve and Gentleman Jack. They created a unique course and competition to teach German bartenders about the art of whiskey.
For us non-bartenders, it was exciting and educational to deep-dive on such a specific topic. but for the 60 young bartenders who attended the event, it was serious business. Luckily for us, it felt merely like observing a final test of a big exam, whilst casually sipping on barrel-aged libations.
From the history of whiskey making to the ins and out of crafting good whiskey cocktails, we learned about the depth of history of this classic liquor and breadth of its aromatic qualities. The location of the event was atmospheric, to say the least- an old manor house from the 18th century, situated on a lake, just a bit outside Berlin- there was lots of prussian flair going on.
Below we gathered some insights from the whiskey master class and photographic impression from the event.
Probably the most dreaded characteristic of Berlin is its continental climate – especially the ruthless winters. It feels like many expats would happily switch from a full-time residency to summer guest appearances – but as avowed Berliners, we have a bunch of strategies to cope with the cold and make sure you enjoy our beautiful Hauptstadt all year round. Read on to find out what keeps us warm and entertained!
photo: Urte Kaunas
There are so many stories written about Berlin: a city of inspiration, creativity, lost and found spirit, art and music, crazy dance floor love fairytales and never ending discoveries. In the end, every story reflects its personal angle and puts a different color pallet to fill the page. Berlin is made of many different routes – so let’s ride.
Getting into the streets by a city bike, having a cup of beautiful coffee on the way, observing the people in the streets, having spontaneous chats and exploring the local cafes and restaurants sounds like a perfect idyll of a day in Berlin.
For our brand new guide we got together with the charming Edoardo, head barista of Refinery High End Coffee in Mitte and Kreuzberg, and teamed up with Creme Cycles and the bikecitizens app to create a bike tour that unites the spirits of Berlin, delicious coffee and beautiful bikes.
Our tour starts in the most beloved and diverse districts of Berlin: “Kreuzberg is purely bizarre: you never know what to expect from the people, it’s ever changing and there is always something odd to discover,” says Edo before we start our tour…
Berlin is many things, but undeniably, Berlin is pretty damn gay. The capital is so famous as a vibrating LGBTQ hotspot with countless bars, clubs, parties, different places, different styles, scenes and people that it can all become pretty confusing. You have something for everyone here, and that can be a bit overwhelming at times. So, we put together a little list of places a Berlin gay should know.
Music, is a magical ordeal. An escape from ordinary into a vast sea of feeling, vibes and sensations. To professionals, music is not only a job, but also a way to express themselves through creativity and poetry. But what for the average “9 to 5” Mensch?
Recently I have stumbled along something deep that doesn’t normally meet the eye. Open Mic, Jam sessions where professionals and amateurs alike can express their feeling of passion. This is something truly amazing, that Berlin has to offer.
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday, locals and travelling musicians flock to bars that post Open Mic on their webpages. Lines and lists of these creative souls pour out their emotions, talent and comedic gestures as they blast out tunes from their piano or acoustic guitars.