In news that hit the Berlin electronic techno and electronic music hard, the iconic club Griessmuehle was forced to close, at least temporarily, in early January 2020 due to having trouble keeping the support of its landlord. The good news is that the club remains strong as a collective and is organizing events at different venues. Essentially, the spirit of Griessmuehle is very much alive, but its events have fragmented to different locations. The club’s will to survive shows that it has always been more than a mere business venture and is about providing a relaxed, safe and non-stop venue for cutting-edge electronic music and culture.
A cultural icon
Griessmuehle, which was launched in 2012, was always the cool scene to make for the techno crowd. The music was never limited to a single style under the banner of techno, and parties often ran well into the mornings after they began. The club, located by a canal, even had a tree fort outside of it, and the management were as much about creating a cohesive scene as they were about selling drinks. Many clubbers in the know say that Griessmuehle had the best dance floor in all of Europe.
The final night ran in typical Griessmuehle style. Disc jockeys from the glory years of the club were given two-hour blocks of time to do their thing, and the attendance was very high as past patrons came back to the space where they had had so many good times.
Devastating news for the techno scene
The news of the closing of Griessmuehle comes at a time when Berlin nightlife is going through a hard time. Other clubs are threatened with a similar fate even though they are bringing in good numbers of guests. Part of the problem is rising rents and the gentrification of culturally hot parts of Berlin in recent years.
In the case of Griessmuehle, the problem is that the landlord has gotten a good offer from a group that wants to build office towers at the location. There are no problems or complaints about Griessmuehle or its patrons, rather the issue is that there is an opportunity for short-term profit, and this is being given priority over preserving a valuable part of the vibrant nightlife of Berlin that makes the whole city a popular European tourist destination.
There’s Still Hope
The collective forces behind Griessmuehle are not giving up. Not only are they running their traditional events in other locations, but they are also lobbying the government hard for funding as a cultural institution worth protecting. They have had some positive results so far as politicians of different parties agree that Griessmuehle is preserving. Furthermore, the management of Griessmuehle is reaching out on a variety of platforms on social media for support. The overwhelming number of people posting online about their good memories of the club and its larger scene indicate that there is definitely hope that Griessmuehle can return to its former glory.