Bloggers from all over Europe (and beyond) are coming to Berlin this weekend to attend the 2. European Blog Conference The Hive to meet, mingle, talk, listen and learn from each other. It is taking place at the Betahaus in Berlin-Kreuzberg - how convenient for me, it's my neighborhood.
So instead of preparing myself for the journey like most other attendees I thought I'd provide a little mini guide with a handful of places to see. They're all within walking distance of the betahaus because there won't be much time to drive or walk around the city during the conference weekend.
I picked 3 shops, 1 bar and 1 community gardening project in the neighborhood, 5 places that are unique and in their way typical for Berlin. (I think). Go see for yourself!
"Quality is the key to everything"
If you agree, you'll love Süper Store. It is a small gem in a lovely neighborhood called "Graefekiez". Their items are carefully selected and curated, they come from Berlin and other parts of the world and the owners' aim is to offer "favourite pieces" only. They do.
And if you're looking for something to bring home from Berlin, here's my tip: The local Vodka OUR/BERLIN, made from Berlin water and (close to Berlin-) wheat, distilled and filled in Berlin. It is the first part of an international cooperation project with Pernod/Ricard, other major cities will follow. You don't like Vodka? Doesn't matter, the packaging and the idea behind are too good to miss it.
Please note: Süper Store is closed on mondays.
Tuesday - Friday 11.00 - 19.00 h
Sturday 11.00 - 16.00 h
Dieffenbachstr. 12, 10967 Berlin
"The selection of designers and products play a key role, with an emphasis on design, creativity and good craftsmanship."
Voo Store is a concept store on Oranienstrasse, located on a 300 m2 floor of a former locksmith shop. Her you can find a rotating selection on collections and design objects and enjoy a cup of coffee from Voo’s in-store Companion Coffee Showroom.
Some people say that Voo Store is like a UFO from Mitte that landed in the heart of Kreuzberg. I say: Good that you don't have to leave Kreuberg anymore to experience a little bit of the Berlin-Mitte lifestyle. Now you go and see for yourself.
Monday – Saturday: 11 am – 8 pm
Oranienstraße 24, 10999 Berlin
"Eco-friendly, fair and wonderful"
...is the Motto of schœner.wærs.wenns.schœner.wær. The slightly long and complicated name means "it would be nicer if it was nicer". The owners follow their name and motto and offer a large selection of fair and eco-friendly produced items from postcards to furniture.
It is located directly at Moritzplatz, just a few steps from the betahaus.
Monday – Friday 11 am – 7 pm
Saturday 12 am – 4 pm
Oranienstr. 58 a (Moritzplatz), 10969 Berlin
"Imagine a future where every available space in big cities is used to let new green spaces bloom."
Prinzessinnengarten is located directly at Moritzplatz. In 2009 a group of friends, activists and neighbors cleared the former wasteland from rubbish, built transportable organic vegetable pots and started a unique cummunity gardening project, also often referred to as "urban agriculture" or "guerilla gardening". The project has since then gained worlwide fame and attention and inspired others all over the world. Find out more about it here.
There's is also a small organic garden café and restaurant. Please go and have a look - it's a must-see and also just a few steps away from betahaus.
cafe + restaurant 12 am - 18 pm
Prinzenstrasse 35 – 38 / Prinzessinnenstrasse 15 (Moritzplatz)
"A bit like Berlin itself, Das Hotel is romantic in a ramshackle sort of way. "
The Brits can't be wrong, right? Das Hotel started out as a tiny bar and became more and popular over the years. The bar is still tiny and usually packed, but now you can also dance in the cellar next door and grab something to eat in the bistro next to it. Check out their program here.
And yes, it's a bar called "Hotel" and not the bar of a hotel.
But pssst: There are private rooms above the bar and club that can be rented and applied for via email. Not officially. We're in Berlin, after all. I won't provide the email because I think that's how the owners want to keep it, but it's not difficult to find if you look for it.
7 days a week, 4 pm - the end
Thursday - Saturday, open at nighttime
Mariannenstr. 26a, Berlin-Kreuzberg
That's it! I hope you enjoyed my completely incomplete and totally biased mini-guide for you. Hive-attendees or anybody who's planning a trip to Berlin. Of course the list of places to see in Berlin is endless, you'll find many more yourself just by walking down the streets.
For those of you who have more free time in the city than just a few hours I suggest you have a look at the Best of Berlin list by Sylee from Berlin Reified and check out Sandra Juto's Berlin - Guide, as well as the brilliant Berlin Design Guide.
Have fun - and please let me know if you visited any of the places! I'd love to hear what you think.