Berlin nightclubs are fighting for their lives as a wave of closings follow moves by developers to turn classic buildings into multi-story McUnit blocks. An explosive growth in property and land prices has sent valuations skyrocketing and started money-hungry businessmen salivating at the prospect of tearing down classic culture hubs and building them into generic lifeboxes for the white-collar class.
In recent months the Berlin nightlife scene has seen the likes of classic nightclubs Knaack, Icon and Klub der Republik closing their doors, with more bad news on the horizon as up to 15 venues see the writing on the wall, and unfortunately it’s not the type ofÂ graffiti they’re used to.
Thankfully Schokoladen has been saved
Anna Gerlich from nightclub favourite Schokoladen Â had this to add to the chorus of voices worried about a dramatic shift in the cities nightlife scene:
“We’re an oasis of fringe culture,â€ť she said. â€śWe need a fundamental rethink of the ambitions for this city. We don`t want to be an island in the middle of a town that has been gentrified, where people are being squeezed out and clubs are dying.â€ť
While Schokoladen has thankfully had a reprieve from certain death by negotiating a long-term lease, there are still many more Berlin nightclubs fighting for survival against some very deep pockets.Â Most out-of-towners might think of the big names like Berghain nightclub, Tresor and Water-gate, but there are also a slew of favourite venues known mainly to locals that serve as hubs for the artists, musicians and subculture that keep Berlin’s cultural heart pumping.
Berghain Nightclub in Berlin
Thankfully, some open-minded politicians have heard the call and have launched a campaign and set up a fund ofÂ â‚¬1 million to lend support to the scene. Funnily enough, money also seems to be the reason that they’ve decided to take action: the Berlin nightclub scene is famous world-wide and attracts tens-of-thousands of nightclubbing tourists who plane, train and automobile their way to the city for a weekend of clubbing.Â Best Clubs In is currently based in Berlin, so we’ll be keeping a close eye on the news as it happens.
Do you know any classic Berlin nightclubs that are in danger? Do you think it’s too late to save the scene?