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by Reed Ide
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When calling from the United States, first dial 011-49-30.

Getting There
Air Berlin recently began flights from the US that originate in Los Angeles, New York, Fort Meyers, Miami, and San Francisco. Flights go to Dusseldorf, avoiding the nightmare of Franfurt Airport. Low fares and free drinks and meals are a plus.

Discovering Gay Berlin
Berlin is geographically a huge city. A map is essential and Siegessaule, the city’s gay magazine. has created an excellent one highlighting all the queer venues. You can get it in the gay booklet produced jointly with Berlin Tourism and Marketing (available in most gay establishments throughout the city). Or you can download it directly.

Berlin has many top-notch hotels and many of the familiar chain hotels. Increasingly, Prenzlauer Berg is seeing new smaller boutique hotels that offer wonderful value for money.

Ackselhaus Hotel and Blue Home, Belforter Straße 21, Berlin-Prenzlauer Berg. Tel: 44337633. Elegant themed rooms in a carefully restored 19th century building with sumptuous garden, honor bar for guests, and fine German breakfasts. Blue Home offers tourist apartments that are beautifully furnished, each with fully equipped kitchen. Breakfast is served in the relaxing Club del Mar on the ground floor. On warm days, the outside patio is a great place to relax over coffee. Rooms from US$162.

Enjoy Bed and Breakfast is a website that offers listings of gay people who provide accommodation in their homes. It’s very popular with Berlin queer visitors. Rates are extremely reasonable, as little as US$20, and high standards must be met in order to list on the site. Most rooms offer accommodations for one or two people. Breakfast is usually included, and many rooms have private bath. Book early! Listings are searchable for other countries and cities as well.

Myer’s Hotel, Metzer Straße 26, Berlin-Prenzlauer Berg. Tel: 440140. Fifty-five rooms in an elegantly restored 19th century neoclassical building in the heart of a chic neighborhood dotted with great restaurants and chic shops. A few steps from public transportation. Elegant buffet breakfast in charming surroundings is a great way to begin the day. Doubles from US$125.

Schall und Rauch, Gleimstraße 23, Berlin-Prenzlauer Berg. Tel: 33970. Spacious, modern rooms with sleek furnishings and warm color tones for those who are more budget conscious, or who want to stay in a gay-owned venue in the heart of Prenzlauer Berg’s gay scene. Bars and clubs are just steps away. On the ground floor is Schall und Rauch the Restaurant, serving great food and excellent breakfasts, including its popular Saturday morning breakfast buffet. Doubles from US$122.

GLBT Culture and Nightlife
Berghain, Am Wriezener Bahnhof Berlin-Friedrichshain, (behind S Ostbahnhof). The city’s hottest dance and party venue. Music is Techno, Minimal Techno and Dubstep. Always crowded, always hot, always an anything goes atmosphere. From the S. Ostbahnhof, walk down the Strasse der Prisien Kommune to Am Wriezener Bahnhof on the right.

Café Berio, Maassen Straße. 7, Berlin Schoeneberg Tel: 2161946. The place to see and be seen during daylight hours. In summer the crowd spills out to the sidewalk for some of the best people-watching in the city. Always tres tres gai.

Haus B, Warschauer Platz 18 Berlin-Friedrichshain. Tel: 2960800. Berlin’s largest gay/lesbian club, situated at the border of Friedrichshain and Kreuzberg. One of the holdovers from the GDR, it continues to host a younger crowd attracted by its rich mix of music (anything from 70s charts to House and Techno). Leave all attitude at the door and you’ll have a great time.

Schwules Museum, Mehringdamm 61 Berlin-Kreuzberg. Tel: 69599050. Established in 1985, this ever-growing museum is a rich archive of gay/lesbian materials, arguably the world’s most comprehensive. The museum’s permanent exhibit details 200 years of queer history. Other special exhibits are mounted throughout the year.

SchwuZ, Mehringdamm 61, Berlin-Kreuzberg. Tel: 629088. A variety of theme parties make up the lively schedule at this popular dance club that includes two dance floors, three bars, and a cocktail lounge.

Helpful Websites
Berlin Tourism and Marketing: General information on sights, accommodation, restaurants, and much more.

Patroc Gay travel Guides Online: Comprehensive queer guide to Berlin with online maps, current happenings, and nightlife listings.


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2012 Gay Event Calendars

International Gay Pride Calendar 2012
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