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5 curious buildings in Europe

Ever passed a building on your train travel and became curious about its history or origin? Guess you’re fortunate for landing on this page. We would like to introduce 5 curious buildings you should check out when Interrailing in Europe. Many of the buildings in Europe are products of an architectural movement known as 'adaptive reuse', where a building's history is preserved and the waste of demolishing and rebuilding a new one is eliminated. Many of these beautiful buildings remain unknown to travellers, until now of course…

London, England | Battersea power station.

Since its opening, the Battersea Power Station has become a staple along London’s skyline. The power station was built due to the increasing population in the 1920s, which meant more electricity consumption, which also meant a better infrastructure was needed to make operations more efficient. So in 1925 ten smaller electricity companies decided to merge and form the London Power company. 


Fast forward to the present and the Battersea Power station and its surrounding area are being brought back to life as one of the most exciting and innovative, mixed-use neighbourhoods in the world. Locals, tourists, and residents come here to enjoy a unique blend of restaurants, shops, parks, and cultural spaces. Life doesn’t feel ordinary here, it feels extraordinary!


Hamburg, Germany | Elbphilharmonie concert hall

In 1875 the building was known as the Kaiserspeicher and was used as a 19,000 square metres storage facility. During WWII the building was destroyed and in 1966 Hamburg decided to blow up the ruins of the Kaiserspeicher. In its place, a new warehouse was erected which was used for storing goods such as cocoa, tea, and tobacco. 


Take a look at the building as it is today, and what you see is a magnificent complex that houses three world-class concert halls, as well as apartments, a hotel, and restaurants. As you make your way around the building, there's an amazing view at every turn, simply because this concert hall was built right in the middle of the Elbe River.


Utrecht, The Netherlands | BUNK

The BUNK hotel in Utrecht is a very original accommodation: enjoy a stay between the walls of a 130-year-old church. Initiated in 2015, this project redefined the concept of hospitality, bringing forward the dramatic and glorious environments of religious spaces. The former reformed-protestant church, known locally as the Westerkerk, is located in the center of Utrecht, near the famous shopping mall Hoog Catharijne. 


The Bunk hotel is in fact not only an accommodation facility, but it's also a social space where you can come to chill, dine, work, or even attend a concert. Another cool fact about this place is that the majestic Quellhorst-organ (which is over 200 years old!) is still fully functional and can be heard during the later hours of the night. 


Antwerpen, Belgium | The Jane

This intriguing building used to be a chapel of a military hospital that gives the restaurant that's residing here now the aura of a sacred place, mixed with a certain darkness. Located in Antwerp’s Groen Kwartier, The Jane is accompanied by lofts in other parts of the restored hospital in the trendy area. Some of the eye-popping aspects of The Jane are the scale of the space – its height, massive arches and large windows, the decaying ceiling, and the almost complete lack of colour. The interior reminds visitors of the building's history. 


Besides all this, The Jane strives to be sensual, exciting and chic. It has an attractive international air, but also a hint of darkness. It is tasteful and sophisticated, but also rock-‘n’-roll. The place to be for an unforgettable night out.


Bern, Switzerland | The tram depot

Located by the Aare river and nearby the bear park you'll find the Altes Tramdepot. The building is an old tramway depot that currently houses a brewery and restaurant. Many of the visitors are students, groups of friends and families, all coming to this historical plate to enjoy a local craft beer or a hearty traditional meal. But they don't just come for the food, from the restauraunt you have an amazing view over the old town of Bern and the Aare river.


The restaurant works with seasonal porducts and also offers vegetarian options. Enjoy the evenings in the fall on the deck with your friends with a nice glass of beer. Make sure to reserve a table if you plan to visit with a large group, you don't want to miss this perfect panorama of Bern.


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Your Global Pass can take you to over 40,000 stunning destinations across Europe this autumn.