Visiting one of our InterNations events in Munich always feels like playing on home turf to me. The local InterNations Community is big in numbers (we have almost ten thousand members in south-east Germany), and the members have a great community spirit, too.
For the November Get-Together, we had to limit the guest list to 500 participants. The venue we chose, the Paradiso Tanzbar, is smaller than the usual clubs and bars where our Munich events take place. Paradiso is the “in-place” of night-life in Munich at the moment. Owner Jürgen Maier has managed to create an exclusive club for the 30-45 year old crowd. Here, you will find the trendy avant-garde of Munich’s older party scene – those who don’t feel comfortable in some of the usual posh places with young whipper-snappers showing off their magnum bottles of champagne which they just bought with daddy’s credit card. The Paradiso used to be a gay strip club in the Munich’s most liberal neighbourhood, the Glockenbachviertel. Today, however, it has the look and feel of a classy 1920s nightclub with red velvet, plush, and crystal chandeliers, and a reputation for gaudy 1970s / 80s retro flair. It’s always packed on week-ends, and it’s hard to find approval from the stern-looking bouncers.
Tonight, though, it is the exclusive venue for our November InterNations event. Members from over 50 different nations are happy to enter the club, and the cozy atmosphere quickly helps them to mix and mingle. I spot many familiar faces, but also a lot of new arrivals, who are thronging around the newcomers’ desk, which is being managed by Oliver Detjen and Rachel Senior, two long-term InterNations members, tonight. They make all new guests feel immediately welcome by answering all their questions and introducing them to each other.
Whereas one of the two Patricks, the famous Munich Ambassador team from the States, is currently out of town on a business trip, Patrick Kessler is greeting every single member personally and thus helps everyone to start off the evening nicely. By 9pm, there is already a long queue at the door. At least our Albatross Members enjoy quick and easy access through the Albatross Entrance.
When around 22.30 the DJ turns up the volume, the general socializing turns into a roaring party. Old classics and a few newer chart hits lure everyone onto the dance-floor; just a few tired folks are relaxing in the red satin cushions of the VIP lounge. There is a great vibe, and our members are really getting closer to each other. The Italian consultant is dancing with the French teacher, the Irish party-queen with the Latino salsa king. The mood is definitely exuberant right now! The party goes on until 3 am in the morning and many members might have a tough time going to work on the next day. I, for one, feel that I might have needed a little more sleep since I’ll be back at the InterNations office at 9 o’clock sharp. But then, the get-together has indeed been worth it…!
(Thanks to InterNations member and professional photographer Hagen von Deylen, who braved the crowd to get all his incredible pictures from that night!)