“Fancy a threesome?” you overhear a woman murmuring as she takes over a bar stool, puffing a cigarette vigorously. At every turnaround, the club’s walls are soaking in leather-clad fetish pieces. Bowls of condoms dotted around everywhere must be the star of the night since everybody shoves their hands in them. No, this is not Christian Grey’s infamous Red Room. This is just a typical Berlin sex club.
In dungeon-like nightlife spaces, Europe’s party capital merges the Berlin-born socialite with globetrotters that have one thing in common – a greedy thirst for sexual liberation. While Berlin hosts the type of events where the party starts after people go down on each other, its sex clubs don’t (necessarily) hinge on the drug-fuelled craze where everybody is swapping partners in dingy places.
The German capital’s soaring popularity is fuelled by two factors – bullet-hard techno beats and strict door policy. The latter is such a baffling concept that even The New York Times interviewed Berghain’s gatekeeper, AKA the man whose nod is a one-way ticket to Berlin’s toughest door to break. Like the average bouncer, his rule of thumb when it comes to letting people in is the dress code.
In those fucking palaces, the go-to outfit consists of staple accessories like chain-link thongs and bondage rope. Frankly, if you want to cherish the anarchically horny fever hiding behind Berlin sex clubs’ industrial doors, you should only wear accessories. Fetish and bondage wear are a plus, while jewels adorning your genitals are de rigueur, of course.
“Less is more” is undoubtedly the fashion mantra that Berlin party-goers devotedly follow – at least the ones who transform fucking into a versatile art. Looking at legendary sex clubs like KitKat, Insomnia, and Berghain, it seems that if you resemble The Gimp from Pulp Fiction or describe yourself as a devotee of the Free the Nipple cult, you are all set.
Clothes are a mood killer.
The noisy darkness of Berlin sex clubs easily translates into a realm where the line between reality and fantasy gets blurry. A woman getting fingerbanged six inches away from the bar where men freshly out of sex sessions nurse bottled beer is an impossible picture to paint – if it’s not on PornHub.
But in a land ruled by unfettered hedonism and kink culture, everything becomes possible. From unisex bathroom stalls large enough to foster orgies to velvety king-sized beds placed in the middle of the dancefloor, public banging is omnipresent. You can fuck pretty much everywhere. Laser beams, crowds of strangers chasing a feeling of bold release, and naked individuals caressing each other’s intimate parts are all part of the narrative.
Not to mention the leather fetishists who monopolize the Dominatrix-like chairs or lock their next prey into the sex clubs’ metal cages. Depends on the mood.
This sounds like a debauched way of cherishing a clubbing session, but it is one of KitKat Club’s dark rooms. In the city where you are less likely to see a celebrity than two people having full-on sex on a bar stool, this Berlin sex club opened its doors almost three decades ago.
In a bid to break moral, yet superficial guidelines, Simon Thaur (who unsurprisingly is a porn movie maker) tailored this hub for sexcapades, fuelling Berliners’ appetite for impromptu acts of lovemaking.
Spawning across several rooms, KitKat fosters a dancefloor, hidden bar, pool, and a few murky, tunnel-like spaces where condom vending machines and comfy couches scatter the place.
When it comes to the soundtrack of a sex-filled night, nothing goes better with X-rated sights and hedonistic pleasure than panty-wetting techno.
Back in the day when KitKat Club was seeing daylight for the first time, Berghain was merely a twinkle in the investors’ eyes. Fast forward to today, the club’s 20-meters high ceilings shelter sexual mayhems. Like any party having sex all over the menu, this Berlin sex club has nookie sessions as its gist.
In other words, half-naked men whose sweat and testosterone are dripping off their chest are part of the routine. Same goes for the dark play areas one shouldn’t approach if he is not willing to join. Obviously, hypnotic techno dominates the cavernous dance floor. There is a reason why Berghain is dubbed as the “Church of Techno”.
But Berlin’s underbelly of public sex doesn’t stop there. Saturday Night Fuck, an appropriately (or inappropriately) named event hosted by the Insomnia Club puts Roman orgies on a pedestal. Just like the club name suggests, you won’t do much sleeping. Instead, whoever passes its doors will get a taste of the avant-garde swinger lifestyle. Besides the usual handcuffs and BDSM dungeon, this bad boy also has a nude spa.
In a clubbing scene where individuals are open to everything that they can legally do to each other, it is hard to imagine that consent is needed. Despite the sexually charged atmosphere and meaningful glances between the clubbers, Berlin sex clubs are as much about respect as they are about liberation. Seeing two people banging together is not a “let’s do a threesome” invitation.
And nobody will rub their genitalia against your leg – if you aren’t into that.
Part of the international hype making Berlin the third most-visited city in Europe, with one in three tourists setting foot on the capital’s grounds for the clubbing culture is deeply rooted in Germany’s history. The extreme individualism laid-out in Berlin sex clubs is a reflection of the city’s isolation days.
For decades before the fall of the Berlin Wall, the already unstable East German government was gradually weakening. The poverty that followed – best characterized by the high rise in unemployment – led to a large group of people with no reason to wake up early on Monday. This is how the appetite for marathon-length parties and antipathy for closing times were born.
Mix the acid-house-infused underground subculture brought by Berlin’s reunification with the Weimar Republic’s homosexual emancipation. You will get an amalgamate of sexual permissiveness, fetish-charged parties, and individual anarchism. Pretty much how Europe’s party capital presents itself today.
What many of us would call an outrageously notorious event found shelter in Berlin’s nightlife. As NSFW as they get sometimes, those clubs encapsulate a dirty, raw, and uninhibited version of sex. Just how it should be. After all, Berlin sex clubs are fine gentlemen. They don’t kiss and tell.