With just under 80,000 inhabitants, the most populated part of Berlin’s ‘Mitte’ area has much more to offer than just a notorious prison and the largest criminal court in Europe. The first recorded reference to Moabit was in the 13th century as a pasture for livestock, and later, circa 1600, as a hunting ground for Brandenburg nobility. There are a number of theories regarding the origin of its name. The most obvious suggests that the word dates back to the Huguenots, who first settled in the area in 1717 and fruitlessly toiled at cultivating mulberry plantations and silkworms. Moabit came about as a reference to the biblical land of Moab, which offered refuge to the Israelites following their move from Egypt, and the French word for living, ‘habiter’. With the arrival of heavy industry such as the royal powder mills, the Borsig ironworks, and others, economic success grew and grew. This led to Moabit becoming part of Berlin in 1861, paving the way for the BOLLE dairy success story. Today, Moabit is a byword for diversity and potential, and it enjoys a central location in a city that’s bursting at the seams.
- Built in 1890 as a factory chapel and ballroom for the C. Bolle dairy
- Founded by entrepreneur Carl Julius Andreas Bolle
- Inaugurated in 1893 by the last German empress, Augusta Victoria
- Used as a margarine production hall, temporary church, cinema and theatre
The BOLLE event venue is a living testimony of Berlin’s first big economic boom. Built in the slipstream of the industrial era and inaugurated in 1893 before Augusta Victoria, the last German empress, these event spaces are marked by the entrepreneurial spirit and grandeur of those times. They exude a sense of vision, values being put into practice and unmistakable solidity. Ceilings up to eight metres high, bare brick walls, tall steel-framed windows, cast-iron pillars and the attention to detail radiating from every corner of this listed building make them a classic example of Berlin’s industrial architecture.
THE HISTORY OF MOABIT
FRESH MILK AND HOT GOSSIP
The spaces’ namesake, Carl Bolle, helped pave the way for Berlin’s economic boom. He burnished his reputation by building the city’s most advanced milk production company: the BOLLE dairy. In what is now the Spree-Bogen area, Bolle built production areas and workshops, accommodation for most of his 2,000 employees, social facilities, stables, fleets and animal sanctuaries. The trained master bricklayer got his nickname of ‘Bimmelbolle’, or ‘Bell-Bolle’, as hundreds of his horse-drawn carts travelled through the streets of Berlin, accompanied by coachmen and milkmaids swinging handbells, delivering fresh milk and the latest gossip from door to door.
C. BOLLE DAIRY PROMOTIONAL FILM from the 1920S
TREASURES OF THE GRÜNDERZEIT ERA
The event spaces originally served as a ballroom and factory chapel and later became a margarine production area. The silver screen then made its mark, as the building became one of Berlin’s first cinemas. Finally, it became a theatre. During the extensive renovation works, the unique charm of the industrial architecture was emphasised and given a modern touch. Treasures of the Gründerzeit era were brought to light, such as pitch pine planks, an old stairwell with beautiful winding iron decorations, the old offices and the event spaces.
GLIMPSES OF THE PAST
- One of Berlin’s most impressive event spaces
- Underwent extensive renovation in 2013/14 in line with strict conservation requirements
- Cinema projection room converted into Bolle’s Bar
- Premium technical facilities, roof terrace extension
NEW ADDITIONS – ROOF AND BAR
The newly extended roof terrace and the former film projection room converted into Bolle’s Bar are two new highlights. The spaces are shaped by their namesake’s entrepreneurial spirit, with many detailed restorations and the latest equipment.