berghain is officially a cultural institution
Germany recognises that techno is as culturally significant as classical music.
There are many things the United Kingdom could learn from its German cousins. The country's open armed approach to the refugee crisis for example; its long-termism in international football; that spicy ketchup they use in currywurst. And now, following the news that Berghain is to have a newly reduced tax rate, we can add the cultural significance it places on nightclubs.
With Britain still reeling from London venue Fabric losing its license following a controversial investigation, a German court has ruled that Berghain should be allowed to pay a lower tax rate as its legendary parties may be classed as "culture" rather than "entertainment".
As Der Spiegel reports, the club is now eligible to pay the lower rate of 7% following a landmark case that arose after being threatened by an increased 19% entertainment tax. The lower rate is typically applied to cultural establishments such as classical music venues, to which the finance ministry had argued Berghain fell short due to its lack of stage and musical performances without a strict beginning and end. And while we can see what they were saying about the lack of an end (at least that's how it can feel on a Sunday afternoon in the former power station), the ruling ultimately came down in Berghain's favour: a piece of good news in an exceptionally bad week for nightclubs.
Text Matthew Whitehouse
Image via Flickr