Potsdamer Platz, Berlin

4 out of 5 stars 99 Reviews

Potsdamer Platz, Berlin-Tiergarten 30 6883150
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  • EasyMalc's Profile Photo

    Panoramapunkt

    by EasyMalc Updated Jun 25, 2016

    4 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Potsdamer Platz has been changed out of all recognition since The Wall came down and is now full of modern skyscrapers including the Kollhoff Tower.
    Named after Hans Kollhoff, a Berlin architect who helped to design the new Potsdamer Platz, the Kollhoff Tower is the building that isn’t constructed out of glass and steel - and just in case you’re interested - it was made from peat-fired bricks instead.
    The building was finished in 1999, and apart from some shops and restaurants at street level it is primarily office space. You may wonder then why I’m including this building in one of the things to do in Berlin.
    If I tell you that the fastest elevator in Europe catapults you up to the 24th floor in 20 seconds, that might just give you a clue.
    You’ve probably guessed by now that the reason to come up here is for the views. The good news is that it’s an open air viewing platform, but as you can imagine, the safety railings weren’t put here to help photographers, but don’t let that put you off.
    There’s an exhibition called ‘Views of Berlin’ on both the 24th and 25th floors including a piece of the Berlin Wall which seems to just attract graffiti - but then again it always did I suppose.
    To be whisked up to the top of the Kollhoff Tower for some of the most remarkable views in Berlin costs a full paying adult €6.50 (June 2016) and there’s a ‘Panoramacafé’ as well, should you need to sit down after your rocket ride to the top.



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    A Place to be again

    by EasyMalc Updated Jun 25, 2016

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    At a point where five roads converged at the old Potsdam Gate, Potsdamer Platz became the busiest and most recognized intersection in Germany - if not Europe. It became so busy that Europe’s first recognised traffic lights were installed in 1924 to help keep things moving.
    Its heyday was during the Roaring Twenties, when film stars such as Marlene Dietrich helped catapult Berlin onto the world stage of show business. It was the place to be, and be seen. Grand hotels were built to accommodate the rich and famous, as did luxury stores, bars, and restaurants. The inter-war years had been good to Berlin, but it wasn’t to last.
    WWII dealt it a devastating blow. Situated as it was, near to Hitler’s Reich Chancellery, it took the full brunt of several air raids that reduced it to rubble. Very few buildings were left standing - the Weinhaus Huth being one notable exception.
    After the war was over, the square fared little better. The Soviet, American, and British zones collided at Potsdamer Platz and when the Berlin Wall was built it ran straight through the middle, leaving the area a total wasteland between the eastern and western sectors.
    With re-unification came a blank canvas for Europe’s largest building site and the area is now a thriving intersection once again. The modern architecture may not appeal to everybody, but whatever your thoughts about it are, there’s no denying that Potsdamer Platz has now become one of Berlin’s places to come to once again.

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    Cecilienhof Palace

    by Drever Written Jan 3, 2016

    During a city break in Berlin to see the Christmas Markets my wife and I took a tour out to Potsdam to see Cecilienhof Palace.

    German Emperor Wilhelm II, Kaiser during World War I, had Cecilienhof Palace built in Potsdam for his son Prince Wilhelm and his wife, Princess Cecilie. The design of the palace is English Tudor-style, featuring half-timbered walls, brickwork and numerous decorative chimney stacks.

    During July and August 1945 the final Allied conference of the Second World War took place in this Palace. It brought drastic changes to the furnishings and décor of several of its rooms. Even so Cecilienhof Palace still has an authentic air, making it easy to gain a feeling for the important events of the summer of 1945 but a wealth of historical photographs and information boards assist.

    This Conference was the last of the wartime summits among the Big Three Allied leaders. The leaders were Harry Truman (USA), Josef Stalin (Soviet Union) and Winston Churchill (Great Britain). Churchill was replaced midway by Clement Atlee as a result of elections that brought Labour to power. Stalin had little time or respect for him and put him down at every opportunity.

    The purpose of the meeting was the implementation of the Yalta agreements. Germany had surrendered in May and the problem was how to ensure that Germany never again threatened its neighbours and how to rebuild a shattered Europe. The Allies had to eradicate German militarism and Nazism.

    During the first week outside the negotiations, the Big Three hosted several dinner parties and concerts in the mansion houses that they had taken over. The atmosphere was friendly during this first week but then deteriorated as the real discussions began.

    Poland's western boundaries with Germany was particularly contentious. Stalin had already transferred to Polish administration the German territories east of the Oder-Neisse Rivers. Poland gained the historic city of Breslau and the rich industrial area of Silesia. During the conference, they also obtained the former free city of Danzig.

    Reparations was another problem. Stalin had arrived a week late at the Conference as he had chosen to travel by train. This allowed him to see the devastation that the war had wrought across the Soviet Union. As Germany had caused the war, he felt that they should pay for the damage. The sum he demanded was viewed by the Western powers as economically impossible and could even lead to a second war as such an approach after the first World War had done.

    The palace itself downplays its actual size of 176 rooms. By grouping individual building elements around courtyards, it appears smaller. Even compared to stately English country houses, it looks modest. It sits in magnificent gardens that border a lake, the Heiliger See.

    The greatness of the castle lies in its ingenious construction. The use of traditional building materials and half-timbered walls of dark wood blends the castle into its landscape. Its 55 different decorative chimney stacks add focal points of interest.

    Cecilienhof Palace Cecilienhof Palace Conference Room Conference Table Living Hall
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    New and modren

    by Turska Written Sep 21, 2014

    If you ask me, this was the place I could have skipped. O.k. Maybe you should see this kind of place. Just to see that there is something so different in the town.
    But I really can´t say we would have enjoyed to see these buildings. Maybe Sony center "inside" (it is not actually inside, when you go under the roof). But old buildings are much more interesting and nicer.

    Address: Potsdamer Platz, Berlin-Tiergarten

    Directions: U-Bahn: Potsdamer Platz

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    Potsdamer square

    by Raimix Updated Oct 7, 2013

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    Potsdamer square is like a symbol of Berlin modernity. Here you can see a few skyscrapers, among them - famous Sony center. the name of Potsdamer square comes from a road, that lead to historical town of Potsdam a few hundred years ago.

    During Second World War it was hardly damaged, so almost everything you see now - is modern. anyway, some architecture saves peaces of old style incorporated.

    Address: Potsdamer Platz, Berlin.

    Directions: U-Bahn: Potsdamer Platz.

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    Potsdamer Platz

    by shavy Written Sep 3, 2013

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    A busy intersection located on the site once occupied by the Wall. The wall was in fact built right on the Potsdamer Platz.. Potsdamer Platz has a turbulent history before World War II it was a lively square, after the war was totally in ruins
    And so, when in 1961, the Wall built right on the square. After the fall of the Wall in 1989, Potsdamer Platz was the largest construction site in Europe
    Today there are many new and modern buildings. Examples include DaimlerChrysler Quartier, the Sony Center and Bahn Tower
    In the last building you will find the headquarters of the (Deutsche Bahn), the German railways

    Address: Potsdamer Platz, Berlin-Tiergarten

    Directions: U-Bahn: Potsdamer Platz

    Potsdamer Platz

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    Potsdamer Platz

    by antistar Updated Jun 8, 2013

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    "Once the busiest traffic centres in all of Europe, the square was divided in two by the Berlin Wall, and subsequently became a ghost of its former self. In front of the main U-Bahn station we saw one of the few remnants of the wall, a tiny upright graffiti daubed slab, which groups of tourists huddled around for photographs." - from my travelogue

    Like much of what was great in Berlin, the once lively Potsdamer Platz was left in ruins by allied bombing in 1943. After the war it was split by the Berlin wall, and never quite regained its prominence until German re-unification in 1989. The area then became the scene of the biggest construction work in Europe, and during the 90s many of the great buildings that can be seen there today, like the awesome Sony Center, were built. The area now is again thriving, under a skyline of glass and neon that sets it apart from much of the rest of Berlin.

    Address: Potsdamer Platz, Berlin-Tiergarten

    Directions: U-Bahn: Potsdamer Platz

    Website: http://www.potsdamer-platz.net/

    Potsdamer Platz's Glory Days

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    Sony Centar

    by croisbeauty Updated Jun 1, 2013

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    I visited Potsdamerplatz during night only and it was fascinating experience. The whole area is perfectly illuminated in a way to highlight the most attractive buildings and the square entirely.
    Central place in the square is occupied by Sony Center building which is designed and illuminated in a way that awakenes the imagination. The vault of the building, I suppose, every viewer sees in his own way. To me personally it resembles the torn sail ship that is struggling with stormy weather. The color changes of lighting only reinforces that impression, at one point it was a lighting stike and in another giant wave that threatens ship.

    Address: Potsdamer Platz, Berlin-Tiergarten

    Directions: U-Bahn: Potsdamer Platz

    Sony Center Sony Center

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    Modern hub in Berlin

    by slothtraveller Written Nov 2, 2012

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Potsdamer Platz has been the centre of lots of regeneration over the post-war period, Today it is a thriving transport hub and home to many modern high rise buildings. It is also home to the popular Sony Center with its huge Sony store as well as the Potsdamer Platz Arkaden, a very shiny and modern shopping centre where you can spend money like it is going out of fashion. I didn't loiter in Potsdamer Platz for long- it was a bit too busy and bustling for my liking. I did however take a look at the Berlin Wall exhibits in the square, showing some of the slabs of the wall itself. Unfortunately most of them were covered in chewing gum- quite disgusting!
    Potsdamer Platz is served by U-Bahn and has a large S-Bahn station too.

    Address: Potsdamer Platz, Berlin

    Directions: U-Bahn: Potsdamer Platz

    Berlin Wall exhibits A slab of the Berlin Wall Chewing gum everywhere!
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  • Twan's Profile Photo

    Potsdamer Platz

    by Twan Updated Jul 30, 2012

    3 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Potsdamer Platz is one of the most famous squares in the center of Berlin and also an important traffic hub. The square is named after the nearby city of Potsdam. Before World War II was a lively square, but after the war consisted of a big mess. In 1961 the Berlin Wall built across the square. An interesting detail is that until 1989 just north of Potsdamer Platz a piece East Berlin territory west of the Wall was, namely the Lenne Dreieck. This triangular piece of land between Ebert Strasse, the Lennestraße and Bellevue Road, belonged to East Berlin, but was the east enclosed by the Wall in the shortest possible route from Potsdamer Platz to the Brandenburg Gate followed, namely through the Ebert Straße.

    After the demolition of the Berlin Wall in 1989 was the largest construction site in Europe. There were many new buildings put down on the empty space that had arisen. Examples of this are as follows:

    the DaimlerChrysler Quartier;
    the Sony-Center;
    the Bahn Tower, where the headquarters of Deutsche Bahn is located;
    the Beisheim Center.

    In 1990, shortly after the fall of the wall, was still on the sandy plain a rock concert performed by Roger Waters: The Wall.

    The square is known for its many theaters, movie houses and theaters. There are other two IMAX cinemas located in the largest cinema in Germany, where films can be viewed in 3D.

    Under the square is the station Potsdamer Platz, which through the Tiergarten Tunnel on the railway network is connected. Since May 28, 2006 regional trains stop there, before that it was only an S-Bahn. The square is also reachable by underground (line U2) and several bus lines.

    The former course of the Berlin Wall, in some places with stones in the road below.

    Address: Potsdamer Platz, Berlin-Tiergarten

    Directions: U-Bahn: Potsdamer Platz

    Potsdamer Platz Potsdamer Platz Potsdamer Platz Potsdamer Platz Potsdamer Platz
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  • Nikolay_Ivanov's Profile Photo

    Modern and classy

    by Nikolay_Ivanov Written Jul 19, 2012

    At Potsdamer platz are located the tallest buildings in Berlin (except the TV-tower).There are: Sony-centre, The Deutsche bahn offices, hotel Ritz, Kaisersaal, as well as the hall where the Berlin movie festival takes place every year.

    Address: Potsdamer Platz, Berlin-Tiergarten

    Directions: U-Bahn: Potsdamer Platz

    Deutsche bahn Sony centre
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  • Twan's Profile Photo

    Potsdamer Platz

    by Twan Updated Mar 15, 2012

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    The Potsdamer Platz is one of the most famous squares in the center of Berlin and also an important traffic hub. The square is named after the nearby city of Potsdam. Before World War II was a lively square, but after the war consisted of a big mess. In 1961 the Berlin Wall built across the square. An interesting detail is that until 1989 just north of Potsdamer Platz a piece East Berlin territory west of the Wall was, namely the Lenne Dreieck. This triangular piece of land between Ebert Strasse, the Lennestraße and Bellevue Road, belonged to East Berlin, but was the east enclosed by the Wall in the shortest possible route from Potsdamer Platz to the Brandenburg Gate followed, namely through the Ebert Straße.

    After the demolition of the Berlin Wall in 1989 was the largest construction site in Europe. There were many new buildings put down on the empty space that had arisen. Examples of this are as follows:

    the DaimlerChrysler Quartier;
    the Sony-Center;
    the Bahn Tower, where the headquarters of Deutsche Bahn is located;
    the Beisheim Center.

    In 1990, shortly after the fall of the wall, was still on the sandy plain a rock concert performed by Roger Waters: The Wall.

    The square is known for its many theaters, movie houses and theaters. There are other two IMAX cinemas located in the largest cinema in Germany, where films can be viewed in 3D.

    Under the square is the station Potsdamer Platz, which through the Tiergarten Tunnel on the railway network is connected. Since May 28, 2006 regional trains stop there, before that it was only an S-Bahn. The square is also reachable by underground (line U2) and several bus lines.

    The former course of the Berlin Wall, in some places with stones in the road below.

    Address: Potsdamer Platz, Berlin-Tiergarten

    Directions: U-Bahn: Potsdamer Platz

    Potsdamer Platz Potsdamer Platz Potsdamer Platz Potsdamer Platz (part of the wall) Potsdamer Platz (part of the wall)
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    Panorama Punkt

    by toonsarah Written Jun 17, 2011

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    One of several skyscrapers at the Potsdamer Platz is the Kollhoff-Tower. A modest (by New York standards) 25 storeys it is nevertheless a striking building due to the way it tapers to a sharp triangular point, to suit the shape of its plot. It has a restaurant and other public buildings on the ground floor, and offices above, but the main reason to visit is the Panorama Punkt, the name given to the public viewing terraces on the 24th and 25th floors. I saw a brief mention of these in our Lonely Planet “Berlin Encounter” book (“the best bird’s eye view in Berlin”) and we decided it sounded worth checking out – and so it proved to be.

    There is a charge to go up (in May 2011 €5.50) and in my view it is well worth it. You will be whisked up to the 24th floor in what it is claimed is the fastest lift in Europe, moving at a dizzying 8.4 metres per second. There you can enjoy some great views over the city and also see the exhibition "Views of Berlin" which lines the inner wall of the viewing terrace and which, despite its all-encompassing name, tells the story of the Potsdamer Platz below:
    ” No other city square in the world has undergone as many transformations as Potsdamer Platz: from a quiet green to the pulsing heart of a major city, from the height of luxury to a field of rubble, from a no man’s land to the new heart of Berlin.”

    But we found even better views, and fewer people, by climbing the steps to the 25th floor terrace above. Here you can walk around all three sides of the triangle, giving you a 360 degree panorama over the city. You can pick out famous landmarks such as the Reichstag, Brandenburg Gate, Tiergarten, Siegesaule (Victory Column), Television Tower, Rotes Rathaus and many more. And when you have had your fill of spotting and photographing the sights you can have a drink and maybe a bite to eat in the rather stylish café back on the 24th floor (see my separate Restaurant tip).

    Opening hours are 10.00 am to 8.00 pm, with last entry at 7:30 pm. The café is open from 11.00 am to 7.00 pm. Weather permitting, the terrace remains open until sunset in summer. If, no when, I go back to Berlin I will definitely go up the Panorama Punkt again, but I think will do so late in the day or early evening, as it must be a wonderful place in which to enjoy a cocktail and watch the sun go down over the city.

    Directions: The nearest station is Potsdamer Platz (S1, S2, S25, U2)

    Website: http://www.panoramapunkt.de/en/welcome.html

    View of Brandenburg Gate from Panorama Punkt Reichstag seen from the Panorama Punkt Siegesaule and Rotes Rathaus beyond South to what was No Man���s Land
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    A former wasteland

    by toonsarah Updated Jun 17, 2011

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    Of all the places in Berlin that has changed since the Wall came down, none has changed more than Potsdamer Platz. The former wasteland in the heart of the city is now a major traffic intersection and the site of Berlin’s most eye-catching skyscrapers. The contrast for us from our previous visit here was tremendous. But of course Potsdamer Platz wasn’t always a wasteland – far from it. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, when Berlin was one of the liveliest capitals in Europe, this was one of its liveliest quarters. But with the advent first of National Socialist rule, and then of war, the parties came to an abrupt end. Potsdamer Platz fell silent, and then, like much of the city, was reduced largely to rubble by the onslaught of Allied bombing raids. By the end of the war, only a handful of buildings remained. But whereas elsewhere in the city post-war reconstruction started to fill in the gaps left by bombs, Potsdamer Platz was left – because it had the misfortune to lie directly on the border between British, US and Soviet sectors. The line between them was marked first in the asphalt (in 1948) and then, in 1961, the Wall was driven through the heart of the city, and through the heart of Potsdamer Platz. At no other point on the Berlin Wall was there a wider death strip than here, and all buildings within the strip had to disappear. Furthermore, on the western side, the Berlin government purchased and destroyed unused ruins as they were considered dangerous, and not worth rebuilding so close to the Wall. This is the waste-landscape that we saw on our first visit, in 1985. Have a look at the postcard from that time which I have scanned as photo 3.

    In 1989 the square became the focus of world attention. Only three days after the fall of the Wall, a section here was removed, a stretch of road asphalted and a border crossing installed – traffic was moving again on Potsdamer Platz. A few months later Roger Waters organised a concert in the no-man's-land between Potsdamer Platz and Pariser Platz (in front of the Brandenburg Gate). It was the largest concert in the history of rock music.

    And with reunification came new life for Potsdamer Platz, its very emptiness becoming its strength, as it offered a blank canvas for the newly unified city planners. Soon this was the largest construction site in Europe, building “a city for the 21st century”.

    Today, with businesses, tourist draws, bars, restaurants, hotels and shopping, it is once again the lively urban hub that it was 100 years ago, albeit in a very modern style. Attractions include the Panorama Punkt viewing point (see my separate tip), a nineteen screen cinema (the CinemaxX), Legoland, a casino, several nightclubs, and the Daimler 20th century art collection (www.sammlung.daimler.com). Of these we only visited the Panorama Punkt, which was fantastic, but even if you’re not especially interested in any of them you should still put Potsdamer Platz on your Berlin itinerary, in my opinion. You won’t find a public square in the usual sense of the word, but rather a series of connected public spaces clustered around the thoroughfare of Potsdamer Straße. The area buzzes with activity – buskers (this is where we first encountered the lively Rupert’s Kitchen Orchestra whom we were to see again the next day in the Mauerpark), tourists taking photos, local workers hurrying (or trying to hurry) through the crowds to get to meetings ... It’s a great place for people watching!

    And as everywhere in this city, even here in its most modern manifestation, the past is with us. Look carefully and you will see the line of the Wall carefully recorded on the ground in a double row of darker stones (see photo in my Local Customs tip about the Wall). And there are actual fragments of the Wall too, which act as supports for a series of information boards about the history of the area (photo 4). Past, as so often in Berlin, meets present ...

    Directions: The nearest station is, naturally, Potsdamer Platz (S1, S2, S25, U2)

    Website: http://www.potsdamerplatz.de/en.html

    Potsdamer Platz architecture Potsdamer Platz architecture Postcard of Potsdamer Platz divided Tourists at Potsdamer Platz Potsdamer Platz from above
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    Visit The Sony Centre At Night

    by AnnS Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Postdamer Platz and The Sony Centre is a great place to visit if you like modern architecture. I visited in the evening when the huge glass buildings were all illuminated and it was wonderful.

    Just inside the entrance to the Sony Centre is the Kaisersaal, which was once part of the nearby Grand Hotel Esplanade, a luxury hotel which was almost destroyed in World War II. What remained was carefully moved to its current position and is now preserved behind a glass screen.

    Once inside the central Piazza, the most stunning part is the ornate glass roof which is lit with colours and looks truly spectacular. The Piazza is lined with restaurants, shops, Sony offices and a multiplex cinema and in the centre is a pool and fountain. Walk through to the back of the centre to see more impressive glass buildings.

    Outside the Centre, and just across the road is the Potsdamer Platz Arkaden, which is a large shopping mall.

    Address: Potsdamer Platz, Berlin-Tiergarten

    Directions: U-Bahn: Potsdamer Platz

    Sony Centre At Night Illuminated Sony Offices The Deutsche Bahn Building At Night Potsdamer Platz Arkaden
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