It has become fashionable to renovate industrial buildings into offices or cultural complexes. That process has already taken place in the centre of Berlin, in Schöneweide the playing field for adventurous people is still wide open and forms one of the hidden gems of the city.
Few people know that one of the biggest industrial estates of Europe was located along the borders of the Spree river. The AEG factories were the start, on the other side of the water a brewery soon followed, but both degraded very quickly after the fall of the wall.
The brewery has been deserted (and in steady decline) since its closure twenty years ago, waiting for investors to renovate it. In the halls on the other side are car workshops, but also the homebase of artists collective KAOS.
A bit further to the east is the Industriesalon, where several artists have confiscated the run-down halls and in july every year showcase their work during the Kunst Am Spreeknie festival. The former entrance building has been restyled into the lovely Schöneweile coffee house, that is open during office hours.
A bit further the biggest part of the former AEG factories have been converted into the University of Science and Economics. Along the Spree you will also find a coffeehouse in a former crane. Around the corner you can visit the Paul Behrens Haus, where you should really visit the entrance hall on the left.