Jonty Skrufff Does Berlin

The legendary Sisyphos Club/Berlin Berlin resident gives us the do’s and don’ts of the Berlin party scene…


Don’t: Try to Get into Berghain To Tick off a Bucket List/ To Boast You’ve Been There or To Prove You Can

Speaking about Berghain’s door policy recently Sven Marquardt said it’s to protect the club’s function as a sanctuary for misfits, explaining in an interview ‘we have a protective role for these people who want to be free.’

“We don’t look at race or at sexual orientation,” the club’s head of security continued.” We just know that we have to protect these people that have no other place to go.” (Preen Inquirer: )

Are you a misfit? Do you struggle to get in elsewhere? If not, then don’t even try to go to Berghain. Firstly, whether you’re dressed all in black, have arrived at the perfect time and queued in silent devotion, they’ll be reading your vibe and probably make you and secondly if you’re not a genuine outsider but do manage to get in, you probably won’t enjoy it anyway.

Do: Check out DJ line-ups in advance

Hundreds of great DJs play in Berlin every weekend so if you’re interested primarily in music you’ll be sure to find someone you love. Turning up with that knowledge will also help you get in – for tough doors, remember it’s about vibe not image, plus there are many clubs with great music and no door policy.

Do: Dress down

If you’re the type of person who loves designer labels, flash cars and fancy watches then avoid Berlin altogether, but if your wardrobe’s more varied, leave logos behind. Flaunting money is passé and outré and while bottle service clubs and those with ‘VIP’ rooms do exist, if you find yourself in one, leave.

Do: Carry cash

Credit cards are equally frowned upon with many restaurants refusing them and cash generally dominating most nightlife transactions. Berlin remains relatively cheap, including taxis (€20 will cover most night club hopping trips) admission (€10-15 is standard) and drinks (under €10 for pretty much everything.

Do: Check the weather

Summers can be gloriously hot and (unlike London) fairly reliable. From May until September daytime temperatures rarely stray below 20º and often nudge 30º and there’s a lovely sense of the city slowing down as people strip off and chill out.  In winter, conversely it can easily dip below minus 10ºC; then stay there for weeks (even months). Gloves, hats, overcoats, boots and thermals can be vital.

Don’t: Go out too early

Though you can find great underground parties literally every night, Berlin’s nightlife is centred around the weekend, with the weekend generally defined as being Friday into Monday morning (sometimes Tuesday even Wednesday if public holidays/weather align). Midnight is basically opening time, 3am to 8am peak time, but afterhours (again depending on weather, club, season) is also often peak. So Sunday evening 6pm might well be the best time to be at Berghain, Kater Blau or Sisyphos, certainly in the summer. And pace yourself – partying/dancing for 12 hours (or more) is absolutely common).

Don’t: Worry Too Much about Not Speaking German

Berlin is packed with people from all over the world and the common language used by most is English. In reality everybody on the club/nightlife scene is fluent in English (including the Germans) though you may struggle with locals in shops and with your neighbours.

Don’t: Miss the Cultural Stuff

Berlin is littered with historical monuments and battle-scared buildings reflecting the city’s incredibly violent past and heritage. Don’t miss the gigantic Russian War Memorial in Treptow Park and the Stasi Musuem in Freidrichshein both of which provide powerful, somewhat frightening insights into life in the city in the not so distant past.

Do: Come to Berlin Berlin in October 15

I’m spinning again at Berlin Berlin on Saturday October 15 with my regular Sisyphos compadres Fidelity Kastrow and Juli-N. More, hosting another all-night Sisyphos showcase. Komm, und sagt Hallo.

Jonty Skrufff and Fidelity Kastrow head up the Sisyphos showcase at Berlin Berlin: Peep Show alongside Mark Henning and Berlin allstars Eveline Fink, Alexander Koning and David Delgado plus Egg London residents Kyle E, The Willers Brothers and Ireen Amnes on Saturday October 15th at Egg London. With a full list of performers such as Marnie Scarlet, Beatrix Carlotta, Cynth Icorn, Von Kuntz and Syban, all info at…