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Hot in the city: Where to stay cool

Looking to escape the scorching heat? Here's a few spots where they use the (in Germany) mythical Klimaanlage (air-conditioning).

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Photo by bark (Flickr; CC BY 2.0)

It doesn’t take a weather app to figure out it’s scorching outside at the moment, but internationals much more than Germans may notice that there’s a lack of refuge from the heat indoors. That’s right, Germany is averse to Klimaanlagen (air-conditioning). But that’s not entirely true. Thankfully, kind soul, programmer and Berliner Jesse Pinho has created the Klima Karte (Air-conditioning map). Unsurprisingly, there’s a lot of supermarkets, chain shops and Einstein/Starbucks on there, but in a pinch, those will do too. Here are five that we found ‘cool’, but we encourage you click the link and bookmark that mother.

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MITTE Of course, SoHo House, the centre of Mitte’s wannabe-cool elite has air-conditioning, so if you want to shell out €9 for a “Paper Plane” cocktail (cynar, bourbon, Aperol and lemon), hanging out in The Store could chill you out. Or, if you’re a little turned off by the Cappuccino –Schlampe vibe at SoHo, just head off to Galeria Kaufhof on Alex to mingle with old ladies and tourists.

PRENZLAUER BERG Aside from supermarkets, P’Berg’s more sparse than Mitte, but according to the map, expat Irish bar BadFish has the AC. Add to that its so-called “Angry Hour” where you can get 2-4-1 beers from 5pm to 7pm in a jovial atmosphere, BadFish might just be the best place to get soused in the summer heat.

POTSDAMER PLATZ It’s not so surprising, but easy to forget in hot weather: CineStar Original can cool you down while you watch a hot blockbuster. For an early evening reprieve, we whole-heartedly recommend Toni Collette thriller Hereditary at 5pm, otherwise, check our OV search engine.

CHARLOTTENBURG/SCHÖNEBERG KaDeWe is the place to be on Ku’Damm if you want ocular candy instead of mass produced Swedish-branded clothing. Pricey it is, but if you can’t afford the Austernbar, you could just browse the ridiculous (and colourful) assortment of Pop-Tarts on the sixth floor.

KREUZBERG 61 Drinks, shopping or the darkness of a Kino not your thing? For a more quiet respite, the American Memorial Library at Hallesches Tor is where to go – large, open and with plenty of natural light, it also has a stellar DVD section where you can take home a movie for later in the night… for free!

NEUKÖLLN As for Kreuzberg 36, John Reed’s pretty much your only bet. So unless working out right now sounds appealing, cruise on down and hit up the cafe upstairs at Karstadt. Our own Jane Silver calls it the “geriatric Klunkerkranich” – but with Klimaanlage and a pretty decent salad bar to boot.