Nazi air raid shelter may become luxury penthouse

A German advertising executive has announced plans to turn a former Nazi air-raid shelter, designed to protect 2,000 Berliners from Second World War bombing, into a luxurious penthouse complete with its own art gallery.

The project is the brainchild of 40-year-old Christian Boros, a part-time art collector and Frankfurt-based adman who visited the seven-storey concrete bunker on eastern Berlin's Albrechtstrasse three years ago when it was hosting techno parties.

"It was love at first sight. I went out and bought the bunker right away," Mr Boros said of the building that is located only yards away from the site of Heinrich Himmler's Gestapo headquarters. The bunker was ordered and partially designed by Adolf Hitler in 1941 to protect Berlin residents from the increasing number of Allied air attacks that were devastating the capital of the Third Reich.

Its 2.6m-thick steel-reinforced concrete walls ensured that the structure survived the war, unlike most buildings around it. In 1945 it was occupied by the Red Army and used as a prison for German soldiers.

All post-war attempts to demolish the building failed because of the sheer strength of the massive walls. East Germany's Communist regime gave up and decided to use the bunker as a warehouse for clothing and dried fruit instead.

After German reunification in 1990, the bunker was briefly rented by artists and used as a venue for techno parties during the city's Love Parade.

Berlin's city government has been at a loss over what to do about the grey concrete eyesore for decades. Although the structure is a listed building, considered of historical importance, planners have pointed out that it occupies what would be a prime development site, slap in the centre of reunited Berlin.

Mr Boros may have come to the rescue with his plans to lend one of the city's ugliest buildings a touch of flair. He plans to turn the top of the bunker into a penthouse measuring 450 square metres that would be Berlin's most luxurious city centre apartment. However he refused to disclose what he paid for the building or how much the conversion will cost.

"It will be like James Bond - very cool - with exposed concrete and glass," he promised.

The rest of the bunker will house his own private art collection.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Guru Careers: .NET Developer / Web Developer

£35-45K (DOE) + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a .NET Developer / Web ...

Recruitment Genius: Full Time and Part Time Digital Designer - North Kent

£20000 - £23000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This successful web design/deve...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £25000 per annum + Commission: SThree: Are you great at building rela...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant - Dublin (based in London)

£20000 - £25000 per annum + commission: SThree: Real Staffing's Pharmaceutical...

Day In a Page

Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders