Tag Archives: Berlin bars

The Scene meets Horns & Hooves

A man in a compellingly tight blue bunny costume, a woman sitting in a bath tub who looks like she just broke out of the Moulin Rouge and a whole crowd of unrestrained strange looking people armed with generously filled champagne glasses see themselves confronted with an ochestra of the senses…what does that get you? One thing for sure. A whole lot of fun.

Last month saw the opening of the brand new venue Horns & Hooves in Prenzlauer Berg. Eccentric, bizzare and unpredictable – that’s what the folks behind this bar/club are going for and that’s what they’re achieving. The owner is no one less than The Beautiful Jewels who’s known for her unusual habit of swallowing swords and possibly other objects for training purposes. She’s toured through 22 countries and has had a very successful season with Mugler Follies in Paris before returning to the best city in the world. As entrepreneur in the burlesque scene she has opened a legendary, exciting landmark in Berlin’s nightlife scene, which is likely to draw a colourful audience seven days a week.

Her venue is a really promising attempt of breathing some fresh air into the nightlife in Prenzlauer Berg – it’s the ideal place for artists, eccentrics, performers and anyone who doesn’t mind the chance of being chased by a gay rabbit drinking vodka on the rocks all evening. The pre-opening party featured a slightly irritating magic show (just HOW did she know all these things?!), a big-breasted lady jiggling along with more hula hoops than we thought physically possible, an excess supply of champagne and the lively chatter of numerous loose-tongued guests trying to figure out just how those magic tricks worked. Last but not least it delivered the promise of a bright future as a bar. And as a club. And a cabaret. And a circus. And if this still isn’t enough, you can get access to a private magician show for some extra euros. Be prepared for some hocus-pocus. This concept could very well turn out to be great – this is Berlin after all!

Henrik’s world … Red carpet or the green carpet? You choose.

Foto 1

When the sun shines and the temperatures hit 30 plus degrees, Berlin erupts in partying euphoria. May and June are big party months here in Berlin, so it came as no surprise to be invited to three events in one night, including the opening of the Fox Bar at Hotel Q!, a new bar and contemporary exhibition space. Moet & Chandon Champagne were sponsoring, so naturally we RSVP’d.  But that night, there were two other not to be missed events. It was summer, it was sexy, it was Berlin, it was 33 degrees! Bring on the night.

First stop was the opening of the UMAMI on Knaackstrasse 16 in Kollowitzkietz in leafy Prinzelauerberg. 200 sexy people filled the beautifully designed restaurant that has high design concept – from the Asian lounge vibe, quaint little outdoor bird cages, all the way through to the cleverly written and designed menus. Not a detail is missed and this restaurant has successful chain in the making, written all over it.

Umami is actually the only recently recognised (by western scientists, at least) as the “fifth taste”, after salt, sweet, sour and bitter. The food at UMAMI is Indo-Chine, focusing on fresh healthy quality ingredients. We were particularly impressed with the mango salad, the Asian mini burgers and the Surf and Turf. Don’t miss the Saigon Mule, for a drink with more than a kick. 

Then it was off to Tiergarten for a night picnic. Henrik had been invited as the VIP guest to the birthday of Markus Müller-Tenckhoff, one of Berlin’s foremost guides (yes, there are other great guides in Berlin!). Stopping along the way, we picked up two bottles of champagne. Then we walked into the darkness of the park, lured by the sounds of distinct crackle of a record player playing 1920’s jazz. It was summer party paradise – lanterns, picnic blankets, a spread of food and fabulous people enjoying the long summer night. The green carpet of Mother Nature (and lots of Moet) held us spellbound until sun rise. Ah, why can’t more VIP events be held on ‘green carpet’ in summer time?

Another fun night was hitting up the opening of The House of Weekend, who have had a refit and now have the most fabulous outdoor rooftop terrace up in the clouds, with one of the best views over the city. It’s all sophisticated and glamorous with a picture postcard view. There’s great food, courtesy of Hartmann BBQ, cool drinks and the sweet, sweet sounds of Berlin’s best DJ’s on a hot summer’s night.

We recognised many famous faces from the Berlin scene, as the paparazzi flashed away. This is the crowd that used to rave hard to electro beats eight years ago at Weekend. Now they’ve been transformed into a mature audience in glitterati outfits, high heels, suits and bow ties. It’s great to be back in this reborn and pimped up venue, once again!

We’re so high, it feels like heaven!

The scene: Berlin’s hottest beach bars.

Holzmarkt

From the legends that were Kater Holtzig and famed Bar 25 comes Holzmarkt, in the same spot that was the old Bar 25. The massive HolzMarket has a big vision to realise – a luxury hotel, cheap accommodation, cultural centre plus a start up incubator. Right now, it’s a super cool club with great sounds, food and drinks. The future is wide open. Watch this space.

Sage Restaurant 

In absolute prime position on the Spree, Sage Restaurant opens its sandy terrace up for chilling, dancing, relaxing, eating and drinking. Fab and glam.

Strandbar

This was the first Berlin beach bar. Watch the tourist boats float by, whilst chill out music floats on the steamy hot air creating a chilled out atmosphere. Nighttime, the outdoor dance floor rocks to DJ’s or couples showing off their ballroom and salsa dancing skills.

Kiki Blofeld

Back in the day, Bar 25′s across the river neighbour was Kiki Blofeld. Now, they’ve opened up further up the Spree in Oberschoeneweide in the Köpenick district. Situated in one of the old Reinbeck industrial halls, the beach bar is right on the waterfront. It makes for the perfect summer spot, for drinks, dancing and there’s even a volleyball court for the active. Look out for Canadian rock singer Bryan Adams, who is converting the old industrial hall next door into an exhibition space and studio.

Badeschiff

Berliners really know how to rock a pool. Literally translated Badeschiff means the Bath Ship, which is essentially what is it. Made from a recycled hull of a river cargo ship, the swimming pool floats on the river Spree. Don’t expect to be doing laps as the pool gets packed during the height of summer and sizzles with overt sexiness and trendy good-looking people. Connected by wooden boardwalks, there’s a sandy beach area perfect for sunbathing and an open-air bar open that until midnight, where you can hear the best of Berlin’s music scene.

Berlinagenten’s Tenth Anniversary Party

Berlinagenten celebrates its 10-year-anniversary in June! 10 years of hard work, long days, late nights, boozing, flirting, mingling, travelling, networking, crazy clients, celebs, VIP guests, and companies, etc. We wouldn’t change a second of it for the world! To celebrate, Berlinagenten will be throwing the mother of all parties in September. Henrik has been scheming and coming up with a party that will blow your mind, and your brain cells. So be prepared to cancel your holiday, get your sister to change her wedding date, because you don’t want to miss this one. Here’s Henrik to give us a recap on the last ten years. A decade already! How much of it do you remember?

Hahaha, what kind of question is that? :) Sometimes, I remember everything perfectly  and sometimes, it is really blur if the clients want me to eat, drink, party and dance with them for days.

 What the sparked the idea for Berlinagenten?

I moved to Berlin 2001 and realised that Berlin does not have the usual infrastructure of a  major city centre and visible neighbourhoods to visit. In Berlin, everything totally random and spread out, with East and West as the main cities and on each side,  you will find many “centres” with totally different styles and lifestyles.

During the daytime, it seems like the historical central Mitte or Kudamm in West that are the centres, but at night, they are dead. In most capitals around Europe, you go into the centre and can get lost in the buzz with people, restaurants, cafes, clubs, shops, etc but in Berlin its the opposite – you need to leave the centre and find your way to the buzz in the hoods, surrounding the major down town areas.

It’s very confusing for tourists/first time visitors and they could find Berlin boring if they don’t know where to look. As a result, I felt that somebody had to be “Mother Theresa” and show all lost visitors the right way to go in order to see the real city.

I started with the “Urban Insider” in mind and developed different lifestyle tours in order to discover Berlin’s hidden gem from a edgier angle. The gastro-rallye was the first product I developed and now is the most popular!

Who was on the first tour?

A judge and a bear

Naturally, can your recall your wildest nightlife tour?

Which story do you want to hear? The night when I caught a cab and the driver was so stoned, he crashed the cab into the fence of Berghain and jumped the queue with me, or when my crazy clients ordered a huge magnum bottle of champagne for just 8000 euro, which included a man dressed as Darth Vader and 8 dancing Go-Go-Girls, or when I was on standby for a night out with Katy Perry at Soho House? I say no more…

What is the most scandalous thing that ever happened?

Without doubt a visit to the notorious fetish club KitKat with American Pie-starlet Tara Reid, who was freaked out by all the naked skin she faced and suddenly left Berlin, the next morning. She turned out to be too weak for Berlin’s infamous nightlife and the scandal brought me into the spotlight of media! I loved it!

You are known for throwing outrageous parties. What can we expect for the 10th anniversary party? 

Oh, better you plan your holiday or sign up for Betty Ford the week after the party! It’s going to be massive.

The Scene – Henrik’s Wedding!

 

Weddings are romantic and glamourous. The same can’t be said for the Berlin district of Wedding, a pretty rough and tumble working class district, next to hip Mitte, trendy Pberg and residential Pankow. It has been constantly hyped in the media, as the next place ripe for gentrification, but it has yet to happen. Well, not on the surface anyway. The Wedding scene is happening but it’s very underground, which is why Wedding is such a cool place to go out.

Over the last few years, Wedding has been on the radar of students, artists and party hungry avangardists. I love talking to taxi drivers to get the gossip on where are the secret new bars, as well as finding out where they’ve been dropping off and picking up cool customers. Lately, the word on the street is they have more business in Wedding than the bourgeois neighbourhood of Pberg.

So, I set off on a mission to find what was really going on Wedding. First stop was the cool eatery Volta on Brunnenstrasse. Stephan Hentschel, the former chef at Cookies Cream, opened up his own restaurant/bar on the border of Bernauerstrasse, which separates Wedding from Mitte. It’s not a secret anymore, every table is occupied by an interesting crowd who love the creative interpretation of Hentschel’s kitchen, who also plays with some German favourites, breathing new life into them. The drinks are super strong too!

Next, I headed to the area between Gesundbrunnen and Wollankstrasse, where a bunch of alternative Kreuzberg look-a-like bars have popped up. First stop, Fos, a cool bar and lounge, full with gadgets and second hand furniture. At first glance at the drinks menu, I thought I’d travelled 15 years back when a wine glass costed approx. 3 euro. The bar’s most eye catching element is its DIY ceiling. If you don´t have money for professional sound isolation,  use egg cartons! The crowd were laidback in comparisson to Neuköll’s hipsters and expat inhabitants.

There I met a friendly, real Berliner from the ‘hood, who invited me to join him at the next bar. After a vodka shot in the bar Studio8, we walked a couple of blocks and reached the Barrikade bar. My new friend told me that is one of the last remaining squat bars in Berlin (although the squat itself doesn’t exist anymore). There wasn’t a single tourist or expat in sight. The crowd was as authentic as its neighbourhood itself: Turks screaming loudly in front of a football match on the TV screens, cheerful alternative types, Cindy von Marzahn look-a-likes, drunken workers still believing it is happy hour, lost house wives from Moabit and anti fascists planning their next coup.

After a longer conversation about GDR with a talkative woman, I said goodbye to my friend and headed north of Bornholmer Brücke, to the rough Soldinerkiez. Totally off the beaten track is Kugelbahn. When somebody opens a bar in the middle of nowhere and the place is packed with hip, sexy, chilled, mixed people of all ages, you know it’s already a success story.

It’s a retro lounge, cool bar, and event space. This is the tipping point of a new scene that is heading north of Berlin, as well as south. After a couple of nasty drinks, flirting with the bar man, it was time for some clubbing. The most famous club in Wedding is Stadtbad Wedding but instead I decided to visit Humboldthain under the station of S-Bahn with the same name. Inside were banging techno music, psychedelic lighting, smoke, loud party freaks and energetic youngsters. In the summer time, they offer after hours clubbing in garden.

Wedding has an emerging new bar/club scene that is so authentic and laid back, it makes you want to return. See you there next weekend.

The Wedding Hotspot Hit List

Here’s some other places to check out in Wedding

Laluz

Lottingers.  

The Castle Pub

Kikisol

Moritzbar

Jatz Bar

Wedding Soul Party

Supermarkt