The old red light district of Stuttgarter Platz is now a very chic upmarket place with barely a trace of its former naughty past left.
Chocolate night bar is now Antiquadrat bookshop
Hanky Panky and Mon Cheri (it was in the black bedrooms above these two clubs I lost my Berlin virginity) are now Medusa and Galander Cocktail Bar respectively
Some photos of Galander Cocktail Bar from their own website; this used to be Mon Cheri–the absolute heart of Berlin for me
Starlight, and Night-Light is now Albert’s cocktail bar
Golden Gate and Blue Bananas is now Arena sports bar
Only Sissi Bar and Monte Carlo kino bar remain (as well as Bon Bon further along the road)
For me Berlin is some kind of Holy City. For some people Jerusalem is a holy city, or Mecca; for me Berlin is a holy city. I feel very emotional just to be here. My last few visits have felt disappointing it is true but I still come back, because its holiness remains undiminished. All the same, this feels for me a make-or-break visit to Berlin. A last chance for Berlin. Can it still provide any excitement to compare with the old Stuttgarter Platz nights, going to Hanky Panky and Mon Cheri, to Chocolat, to Starlight, to Night Dreams, to Golden Gate, to Blue Bananas, to Sissi Bar, to Monte Carlo—all next to each other. Now? Last time only Sissi & Monte Carlo left, as well as Bon Bon over the road. Tonight we will see.
I always described the rooms above Mon Cheri and Hanky Panky (fka Stutti Frutti) in Berlin’s Stuttgarter Platz as being Cameron Rennie Mackintoshian, because of their Stygian blackness and massive canopied four poster beds; lit by nothing but a single heavily covered bedside red lamp; it was in one of these rooms that I lost my Berlin virginity one drunken night to Yulia, and then returned at least a couple more times with Berlin blonde Riccarda. I now discover it was THIS picture by James Pryde that I was thinking of all the time, and it was nothing to do with Mackintosh at all (a wonderful Freudian typing error made me initially write James Prude).