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Poll 2023: Watergate

Location: Berlin, Germany 

Capacity: 800 

Watergate, which sits at the foot of Oberbaumbrücke in Berlin’s Kreuzberg, celebrated its 20th anniversary last year. Its run of party celebrations included sets by Anja Schneider, Charlotte de Witte, Biesmans, ANNA, Richie Hawtin, Kerri Chandler, Solomun and Sven Väth, showing just how much of an impact the club has had on the global scene.  

The venue might be small in comparison to its contemporaries (Berghain, Tresor), but it holds its own with progressive programming that takes in the newer developments in house music. Take for example its RISE party series, a night showcasing the most forward-thinking 4/4 sounds coming out of the African continent, or its unique Sunday events such as Multisex, Club Heartbroken and Teenage Dreams.  

The club opened in October 2002, when the city was still finding its feet following reunification, but the vision has remained the same — affordable partying in a location with a stunning view. As club founder Uli Wombacher told DJ Mag in a recent interview: “My dream situation is for this new generation to be able to do what I’ve done. It doesn’t have to look the same, but if people with the same passion are able to fulfil their dreams in locations like this, that would be amazing.”