18 best night clubs in Berlin (you need to know)
- 21 September 2022, Wednesday
Global electronic music, including genres such as techno, house, or trance, was strongly influenced by the music scene in the German capital, Berlin - particularly in the 1990s. To this day, the city is home to numerous electronic music parties, festivals, and clubs. Are you an electronic music artist looking for the perfect club? In this article, we have listed 18 of the best nightclubs in Berlin where you can showcase your music!
1. Salon zur wilden Renate
Location: Alt-Stralau 70, 10245 Berlin
Established in 2007, Salon zur wilden Renate (also known as ‘Wilde Renate’) is a techno club located in the city part called Friedrichshain. The club is split into three main rooms across multiple floors. The ‘Schwarzer Raum’ on the ground floor is focused entirely on techno while the ‘Grüner Raum’ upstairs is dedicated to house. The last stage, the ‘Roter Raum’ is all about fancy disco.
Unlike other clubs, Wilde Renate has an atmosphere of a rather theatrical, extremely colorful house party. The rooms are decorated in a colorful and a bit delirious fashion with a large outdoor area that is open during summer offering another bar with food.
It’s the avant-garde decoration and sense of extravagant creativity and exploration which has garnered Wilde Renate a reputation as one of the most beautiful clubs in Berlin. Additionally, the club definitely has a hint of underground character with a bit of a crazy vibe to it.
The door policy of Salon zur wilden Renate
The door policies of individual clubs is something we will mention a few times in our article. That’s because the rules to follow to get into a club in Berlin are considered rather particular. In the case of Wilde Renate, the door policy is rather relaxed.
What’s not so usual in other Berlin-based clubs is that here, in Wilde Renate, you are welcome to experiment with your clothes! So, don't hesitate to bring your glittering and grandiose outfits to the dance floor.
However, what will not be welcomed are big groups, particularly men. Additionally, it’s a must to be polite to the local bouncer and it’s recommended that you know which DJ is playing that night.
Location: Hauptstraße 15, 10317 Berlin
If Berghain's parties are considered long, the ones organized in the nightclub Sisyphos may feel never-ending. This nightclub, also located in Friedrichshain, throws some of the craziest and most manic parties in Berlin. They are often running from Friday till Monday with no break at all.
Sisyphos is, in terms of size, a bit smaller but, on the other hand, crazier, and consists of two rooms and one outdoor area. The main, warehouse-styled room is rather focused on techno or tech-house while the second room is more oriented on pure house.
The outdoor garden is ‘decorated’, particularly with abandoned cars and other junk. This all gives the place a feeling of a small party village rather than a single nightclub. The lineup is usually not announced in advance but sometimes includes big and international DJs and musicians.
The club's door policy is said to be a bit similar to the one of Berghain, described as a strict and rather intimidating process. Additionally, be prepared to walk a lot as Sisyphos is located 20-minutes on foot from the nearest station. The club is said to get better as the night goes on so coming around 1 PM may get you to the best party in the city.
More interesting facts about Sisyphos
The club has been named after the Greek king Sisyphus, who, according to Greek mythology, betrayed the trust of Zeus and outsmarted the Greek God Hades. As a punishment, Sisyphus was made to roll a huge boulder up a steep hill in Tartarus. However, each time he was to reach the top, the boulder was enchanted into rolling away from him. Therefore, naming the club after the king refers to its tendency and mission to organize parties that seem to never end.
What’s also interesting, and perhaps good to know, is that the club has its dress code. Luckily it’s a simple one: dress comfortably but make sure that your clothes look clean and ironed, which applies to both men and women. A black outfit will probably be most suitable.
Lastly, Sisyphos is particularly serious about its ‘no-photo’ policy (like Berghain, which we will discuss later). Therefore, avoid taking photos with your phone or taking a camera with you.
3. ://about blank
Location: Markgrafendamm 24c, 10245 Berlin
Located in the party-loving area of Friedrichshain, ://about blank is a techno-oriented, formerly illegal club placed just by the Ostkreuz S-Bahnhof. The club was opened in 2010 in a newly-renovated, graffiti-reach building consisting of two main dance floors. There you can encounter local and international DJs spanning all electronic music genres. There’s also an outdoor garden area which is open in both summer and winter (often with a bonfire so that visitors can stay warm).
The nightclub is described as having a powerful, gritty, hardcore atmosphere with parties often running well into the next day’s afternoon or evening. Additionally, ://about blank tends to be described as an elite nightlife spot in Berlin so it’s worth checking out.
The door policy of ://about blank
Reportedly, ://about blank is very easy to reach and has reportedly a very lax door policy. When it comes to the outfit, yours should fit the party. Therefore, check what kind of music will be played or what particular topic the party you’re going to will have and dress accordingly.
Some also say that when reaching the doorman of the club, you should better be prepared for numerous questions. This may be concerned with who’s playing that night, why you’re coming to the club, or whether you’ve been there before. If you’re asked to name some rules of the club, the ‘No photo’ policy is one of the good answers.
4. The Matrix
Location: Warschauer Pl. 18, 10245 Berlin
Matrix is a large-scale nightclub located at Warschauer Platz 18 occupying ten basement vaults of the Warschauer Straße railway station. Established in 1996, the club is one of the oldest, and biggest on our list, having an overall size of 2,100 square meters. Overall, the club comprises 9 bars, 5 dancefloors, and an outdoor area.
Throughout its existence, Matrix has hosted many internationally acclaimed DJs and electronic music artists, including Paul Van Dyke, Josh Wink, Lady B, Marusha or Westbam, and Underground Resistance. Around 2003, the club decided to expand its program and cover other music genres and subgenres. These include reggae, hip-hop, reggaeton, R&B as well as chart music (e. g. top40).
What’s also special about the club is that it offers so-called ‘365 night parties’ meaning it’s open every day of the year. So, whenever you feel like it, Matrix will be open for you to explore. However be aware that the club is reportedly full of German tourists, particularly from the countryside, so be prepared for a rather overcrowded place.
Location: Falckensteinstraße 49, 10997 Berlin
Watergate is mostly an EDM-oriented nightclub, located in the city district of Kreuzberg. Originating in 2002, the club is split over two floors with the location overlooking the Spree river and offering a wonderful panoramic view. In 2008, the club started its own record label called Watergate Records.
What makes the club stand out is, above all, its particular focus on music. The club offers globally acclaimed DJs and artists and organizes amazing events and line-ups. It’s also known for its LED ceiling lights that shine over the entire length of the club’s top dance floor. On the other hand, Watergate is said to be rather tiny with no space to chill out, so be prepared that the club may be overcrowded.
Additionally, it may happen that you’ll be turned away if you don’t know which DJ is playing that night. This is to maintain a consistent atmosphere in the club as well as the overall quality of the visitor experience. We’d therefore recommend checking who’s playing before you decide to go there!
Location: Am Wriezener bhf, 10243 Berlin
The famous club Berghain, also internationally known as the ‘world capital of techno’ or ‘church of techno’, was established back in 2004. Named after a Berlin city part, Berghain is famous for two things: its focus on techno and being, reportedly, ‘the most extreme sex club in Berlin’. You can find the club near the border between Kreuzberg (former West Berlin) and Friedrichshain (former East Berlin).
The club, located in a former heating plant, has three stages: Berghain, Säule, and Panorama Bar, which focuses on House, too. Additionally, there are numerous dark rooms, and the basement is occupied by an establishment called ‘Lab.Oratory’, which is open as part of the club for certain parties throughout the year.
Berghain is particularly notorious for its strict and extremely exclusive door policy that makes the public debate and speculate about how to actually get in. The partygoers have to often wait up to three hours in the queue to get into the club.
Each weekend, hundreds of visitors are turned away for reasons only known to the doormen, some of whom are viewed as minor celebrities (e. g. Sven Marquardt). In total, up to 1,500 visitors can fit within the capacity of the club.
The majority of the parties held in Berghain are extremely long. Parties starting on Friday can last up to Saturday afternoon while parties that start on Saturday evening may well run into Monday morning.
There is also a ‘no-photo policy’, meaning that visitors need to cover their smartphone cameras with stickers. It’s this and many more aspects that make Berghain mysterious and so much desired.
How to get a better chance to get into Berghain?
The first thing to have in mind when you try to enter Berghain, is a plan B. Simply be prepared in the case that you don’t get in. However, there are a few tips that may increase your chance of getting in.
Firstly, try to blend in! Black is generally considered the best color to wear. Nevertheless, how you behave in line may be a bit more important (crucial: don’t push in). Other sources also say that acting as if you’re indifferent to whether or not you’ll be let in may also be helpful. This however may rather be fiction than reality.
Secondly, getting to the club outside the prime hours (1:00-4:00 AM) may help, too. It’s also very important to know who’s playing and how many people in your group want to enter. The smaller the group, the higher the chance of you getting to dance in Berghain. Furthermore, speaking German or at least trying to may also help you get in just as being relatively sober and not having (too many) drugs on yourself.
Last but not least, whatever the verdict of the renowned bodyguard Sven is, accept it! The chance of him changing his mind is around 0% so don’t try to convince him or even bribe him to get in. His words are final!
You can also watch the video below to get more tips on how to get into Berghain.
7. Tresor Club
Location: Köpenicker Str. 70, 10179 Berlin
Tresor is an underground techno club and a music label in Berlin. Just like Matrix, Tresor is also one of the oldest nightclubs in Berlin, established in 1991.
The club was famously located in a former warehouse at the Leipziger Strasse, just in the heart of the Mitte district (close to the famous Potsdamer Platz). However, in 2005, Tresor had to close down after many years of short-term rent. The land with the club’s location was sold to investors urging the club to relocate.
The Tresor was reopened in 2007, this time occupying the former heating plant in Köpenicker Straße. Nowadays, the club is dedicated to all sub-genres of electronic music, particularly techno, hard-techno, industrial and acid house, or experimental music. Even despite its closing, Tresor is still considered one of the longest-running clubs in the whole world.
Regarding its vibe, it’s fairly compared to Berghain but with a friendlier door policy. The club consists of a labyrinth and hallways that spread across three floors. Additionally, its famous vault room can be reached through a 30m tunnel, making the club even more special.
In 2019, the club opened its branch in Dortmund, called Tresor.West. Also, to reflect on the club’s 30-year history, Tresor decided to release a photobook called Tresor: True Stories. The book was published in September this year.
What’s important if you want to get into Tresor
As said before, the door policy of Tresor is much more relaxed than Berghain. Due to its pretty much bare-bones and industrial style, extravagant clothes will not be appreciated. Focus rather on simple and comfortable, darkish clothes.
Furthermore, larger groups of partygoers or tourists will most likely not be let in. Some say that in Berlin it’s okay to leave your friends outside if they don’t get in but rather try to split into smaller groups. This way the chance of all of you getting in and having a fun night together is much higher!
8. Golden Gate Club
Location: Dircksenstraße 77-78, 10179 Berlin
Golden Gate is a rather small-sized nightclub located near the Jannowitzbrücke train and S-Bahn stop. However, despite being small, the Golden Gate is considered one of the most energetic and spunky clubs in Berlin. The interior is rather dark and with more or less no decoration. Overall, the club comprises two floors, one main dancefloor, a sitting area, and small outdoor space.
What goes hand in hand with the energetic vibes of the club is its impressively long operating hours. Usually, there is a party on Thursday that lasts until Friday afternoon followed by another party at Friday midnight that can run well into Monday morning. If you fancy rather small clubs playing some great up-front tech house music by Berlin-based DJs, Golden Gate may be an amazing idea!
9. Suicide Circus
Location: Warschauer Brücke, Revaler Straße 99
Suicide Circus (also known as the Suicide Club) is rather an alternative and edgy, yet very traditional techno club in terms of the layout. There is one main large dance floor in the center of the club, then an open-air floor and an outdoor terrace/beer garden.
The interior has a rather industrial style to it with rather mystical lighting and a quality sound system playing the best techno tunes. The name of the club is derived from the 1970s American band ‘Suicide’. The musical group was considered a pioneer in minimalistic electronic music commonly utilizing synthesizers and primitive drum machines.
The place is particularly known for its parties, particularly the ones supporting the local LQBTQ+ community. The very popular LGBTQ+ party called ‘Chantals House of Shame’ is organized there every Thursday showcasing the best DJs in town as well as various drag performances. Additionally, their door policy is also considered rather lax so you don’t have to worry about not getting in!
10. Kater Blau
Location: Holzmarktstraße 25, 10243 Berlin, Holzmarkt 25
Kater Blau is one of the city’s newer clubs situated in the alternative city part called Holzmarkt. Additionally, it's located not by but ON the river Spree. That’s right, the club is located on a boat! Founded in 2014, Kater Blau is situated in the area of the former bar25 and bar24. It was opened to replace the Kater Holzig, which, back then, was one of the coolest clubs in Berlin.
With a name translated into English as ‘Blue Hangover', the club comprises multiple indoor and outdoor areas, with each room offering a bit different styles of music. Overall, however, the place is said to showcase a rather bohemian and anarchic atmosphere with a lot of glitter and confetti. As it’s located on a boat, summer may be the best time of the year to go there to enjoy the sunny weather. Nevertheless, even in winter, the club is definitely worth visiting!
Door policy of Kater Blau
It’s said that getting into Kater Blau may be rough at times. It’s definitely important to be polite and know what party is happening at the moment and what DJ is playing there.
When it comes to your clothes, don’t hesitate to express your creativity and individuality with the outfit you choose. However, a simple black outfit will be just fine, too. What’s relevant, though, is that you wear your clothes with confidence!
Location: Wiesenweg 1-4, 10365 Berlin
OXI is also one of the newer clubs in Berlin, opened actively since 2013. The club is located in the city district of Victoriastadt, also not so far from the Berghain. Originally, the place was occupied by a cosmonaut club and then a polygon club.
Besides two indoor dance floors, the club also has an open-air area called ‘OXI Garten’. The club was shortly closed in August 2021 due to repeated complaints from residents and repression by the police. However, OXI was able to once again open its door to the public in November that year.
Location: Seestraße 1, 13353 Berlin
Heideglühen was first opened in 2011 but had to find a new location just a year after due to demolition. Unlike the previous clubs in our list, this one is situated in the northern part of Berlin, a bit more alternative city district called Moabit. It’s said that the club is located pretty much in the middle of nowhere meaning far away from any residents.
The interior is based on wooden walls - resembling a ranch - with a glass roof and seating areas expanding along the walls. Heideglühen is one of the less commercial clubs in Berlin with an audience perhaps a bit older than in other clubs. There are also fewer tourists in the club. In terms of music, the club is mostly devoted to house music.
Location: Köpenicker Str. 70, 10179 Berlin
OHM is a nightclub located at Köpenicker Strasse in a former battery room of an abandoned power plant. Previously named ‘Shift’, the club was originally supposed to be an art room nearby the famous Tresor club. To this OHM is considered Tresor’s smaller underground brother.
OHM is considered one of the best clubs in Berlin filled with positive energy, a terrific music program across different genres, and a top tier sound system. Don’t miss this one!
14. Revier Südost - RSO.Berlin
Location: Schnellerstraße 137, 12439 Berlin
Situated to the southeast of the city (district Niederschöneweide), Revier Südost is a cultural center run by the team that was behind the former techno club Griessmühle. While Griessmühle doesn’t exist anymore, in 2020, the center moved to a new location formerly occupied by the Bärenquell brewery and a new club - RSO.Berlin - was opened.
The interior of the complex boasts itself with a powerful industrial and DIY decoration charm. Additionally, there’s also an inviting beer garden with an open-air area, great for summer. After changing locations, RSO. Berlin has become a popular club on the local techno scene. It's known particularly for a very well-curated line-up that aims to challenge the status quo of club music.
15. Anomalie Art Club
Location: Storkower Str. 123, 10407 Berlin
Just like Heideglühen, Anomalie Art Club is more situated to the north of the city, but rather in the eastern direction.
The place is not one of the most known clubs in Berlin but boasts itself with a wonderful atmosphere and great sound system and acoustics. If you’re looking for a rather small club with quality electronic music, Anomalie may serve you well!
Location: 16-18 Karl-Marx-Platz, 12043 Berlin
The nightclub Arkaoda is located nearby the famous Tempelhofer Field and is a branch of an originally Istanbul-based club that opened in 1999. The club in Berlin was opened quite recently, in 2018, and is placed in a former bowling area. During the day, the front area resembles a cafe that turns into a bar at night. The Persian carpet and relaxing music bring a bit of a Middle-Eastern vibe to the place
Downstairs, there is a big basement area with high walls and a small stage. The club itself can boast a very good sound system providing a platform and support for independent artists and musicians.
In terms of music, there’s something for everyone, from techno to reggae, to Latin music to rock’n’roll. The later in the night it gets, the more beat is present in the music. The experience that you will have in Arkaoda is definitely different from other clubs and therefore worth a visit!
17. Club der Visionäre
Location: Am Flutgraben, 12435 Berlin
Located in the biggest borough in Berlin, Treptow-Köpenick, Club der Visionäre, is an open-air festival placed in a former boathouse in a Flutgraben canal. Inside the brick building, there’s a small dance floor where you can see people dancing to, mostly, minimal music (refers to art music that utilizes limited or minimal musical materials).
Besides the indoor area, there is also an outdoor garden placed on a wooden deck below the club. There, visitors can relax and enjoy time drinking and chatting with one another, especially during summer. Unfortunately, a part of the area was destroyed by a fire back in 2019.
The club has also gained a reputation as an ‘after hours’ club, often organizing parties from Friday till Monday without any break. Some of the most renowned DJs that have played in the club include Chilean-born German music producer Ricardo Villalobos or British-Canadian musician Richie Hawtin.
Location: Schleusenufer 3, 10997 Berlin
ÆDEN is a nightclub located on the Lohmühleninsel, just opposite the previously mentioned Club de Visionäre. Additionally, just like that club, AEDEN, too, is divided into an indoor and outdoor area placed on a wooden deck - a so-called ‘modern pleasure garden’.
The club is known for its ‘elysian’ personality and a well-curated program showcasing quality music and both national and international DJs.
Berlin, the city of electronic music
Berlin, as an important European center of culture and art, offers a large variety of nightclubs dedicated to electronic music, as well as other genres. Whether you are a fan of house, techno, and EDM, or you’re more into dubstep, there’s always a club in the city that will satisfy your taste. This list should therefore guide you through the best dance clubs in Berlin.
If you’re rather more into music festivals, don’t hesitate to read our article about top global as well as US- and UK-based electronic music festivals!
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