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Die Turnhalle

Die Turnhalle

Address Holteistrasse 6-9; 10245 Berlin
between Sonntagstrasse and Wühlischstrasse
Neighbourhood Friedrichshain | See on map
S-Bahn/U-Bahn Frankfurter Tor [U5]
Telephone +49 30 2936 4816
Website http://www.dieturnhalle.de/
Price Brunch and lunch EUR 10-20. Dinner EUR 20-30.
Hours Mon-Sat 10-24. Sun 10-15.

Nobody except jocks actually liked gym class. Besides the hideous knee high socks and enforced team picking, there was the inevitable embarrassment of not quite making it up a climbing rope or fear of causing an episode in the showers. So whilst back then we may have been more concerned about stiffy control than stiff drinks in the locker room, these days you can relive the magic complete with cocktails at Berlin’s Die Turnhalle.

Literally, ‘the school gym’, this former P.E. punishment zone at the Max Kreuziger high school has been turned into a restaurant and bar with a tongue in cheek attitude to its former activities. Ladders still line the walls, as do basketball backboards, and the floor looks like it would give that haunting squeak should you run a trainer over it.

There’s no bandstand bullying to be had here though, as black tables and leather chairs take over where crash mats once lay and old tumbling horses are re-appropriated as barstools. There’s a gallery with comfy sofas upstairs overlooking the action, and come summer the terrace opens up with outdoor seating, BBQ buffets and a bar. The food on offer is also a world away from cafeteria grub, instead offering up hearty alternatives like Coq au Vin and Kalbschnitzel.

And you won’t even need to ask your parents for lunch money – come on a Saturday and take advantage of the EUR 6.50 breakfast buffet, and the Sunday brunch at EUR 9.50, both between 10-15. Sweet tooths will want to hang around for every child’s fantasy, an all you can eat cake afternoon for less than a fiver. Try not to go overboard – kids aren’t the only ones with ‘fattie fattie boom boom’ taunts in their pockets.