Berlin's Latest Tourist Attraction: A Box?

Posted Jun 29th 2011 12:30 PM


Berlin's latest tourist attraction: A box?

Associated Press

First there was that crazy glass pyramid at the Louvre, and now Berlin is the latest European city to acquire its own geometric tourist attraction.

The Humboldt Box will sit for two years in a downtown square where a replica Prussian palace is also to be built. The futuristic-looking structure is almost hexagonal in shape, and stands 92 feet high above one end of the Berlin's Uter den Linden Boulevard, across from the neoclassical Museum Island complex.

The silver-and-blue building hosts exhibitions for the under-construction palace, to be completed in 2019, reports the Associated Press.

City officials told the agency that the box's modern appearance was a deliberate choice.

Visitors may be "surprised by the architecture...and want to see what's in there," Hermann Parzinger, who oversees Berlin's museums, said Tuesday.

We're as curious as they are.

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Eva Schweitzer

Does Berlin Love You?
Tourists love Berlin, but does Berlin love them back? Especially those young tourists that stay in cheap hostels, and hang out in sidewalk bars until long after midnight, and, when the bar closes, still hang out on the street? Drinking straight from the bottle? And some of those bars never close, of course.

Some Berliners start to get a little grumpy, especially in these residential areas that have been singled out as the new in-places. One of those is Admiralbrücke in Kreuzberg, a small bridge, for pedestrians only, where people from Australia, Italy, Brazil and the good ole USA gather, and party, and play music, and drink until 4 am. The people who live there ain't that fond of this kind of international flair. So now, the police is organizing some sort of mediation, somewhat tricky if you are dealing with a new batch of tourists every day, if you ask me.

Likewise unhappy are the residents of Simon-Dach-Straße in Friedichshain, a quiet residential street that has turned into bar row. I don't even know why. It was boring twenty years ago. When I walked by an apparel store in Prenzlauer Berg yesterday, they had T-shirts saying "Welcome to Berlin. Now go home". In English.

I can somewhat relate; recently, I was woken up in the middle of the night by a crowd of drunken Canadians on the street. How do I know that? They were singing "Oh, Canada." Anyway, Friedrichhain is now debating to zone out new hostels. So, if you need a drink in Berlin, you better hurry up.

July 08 2011 at 5:23 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply