Cosy Karolinenviertel (Karoviertel for short) stands in glaring contrast to the modern hangars of the neighbouring Messehallen convention centre. With its narrow streets lined with hip boutiques, cafés and bars, the quarter is much more reminiscent of the neighbouring Schanzenviertel. In fact, it is only the former abattoir that separates the two quarters. To the south, Karoviertel borders the Heiligengeistfeld square with Hamburg Dom, the St. Pauli football stadium and the Planten un Blomen park.
In the 1980s and 1990s, Karoviertel was a rather run-down neighbourhood where students and working class residents lived in poorly maintained Gründerzeit and Art Nouveau houses or in the Bambule trailer park. Gentrification brought about a more upscale housing situation, as well as the heavily protested demolition of the Bambule project in 2002.
Today, fashion fans browse the second-hand stores and designer boutiques of Marktstrasse, Karolinenviertel’s unofficial centrepiece. Herr von Eden offers designer fashion from Hamburg, Hot Dogs is all about sneakers and Goldig offers a potpourri of different styles.
Nightlife and music
At night, bars like Dschungel, Kleines Phi or Feldstern are the place to be. The live music club Knust, located inside an old abattoir, hosts concerts by international rock and pop artists, disco nights and live screenings of football games. The Lattenplatz square in front of Knust is a popular hangout spot for young and music-savvy Hamburgers. It seems fitting that all the trendy indie record labels responsible for the city’s reputation as a destination for music lovers are located around this square.
Perhaps with the exception of Berlin Friedrichshain, there isn’t a place in Germany where music plays a bigger role. The density of record stores bears witness to this, and one of them — Groove City on Feldstrasse — was actually listed among the top 10 record stores in the world by CNN.com.
U3 exit Feldstraße / U2 exit Messehallen