RTL

Audio Center

Berlin

Client

RTL Audio Center Berlin

Kurfürstendamm 208

Berlin, Germany

 

Floor Area:  2’700 m2

Completion:  2021

 

PHOTOGRAPHY:     

Sebastian Dörken/Max Schroeder

TV NOW/Kevin Schünemann

Broadcasting and media production company RTL has relocated its Berlin-based audio units to a new location. Inspired by the energy of the music industry and Berlin’s gritty nature, the project transforms radio and audio production and delivers a technologically advanced hub with interiors that inspire media workers and visitors alike.

Layout

Interiors reflect user journeys through the space. The reception is the first point of entry and the most public area. It is designed to surprise and impress visitors and to give an insight into the workings of a radio station. The rock-shaped reception desk is decorated with microphone lights and vertical baffles lit in the form of a soundwave. Facing the reception is the Wall of Fame – an impressive display of RTL’s golden records and awards. The visitor’s lounge has been styled as an interactive experience: a faux brick wall, inspired by Pink Floyd’s album The Wall, accommodates media screens and features more of RTL’s award trophies. Another glazed and fully transparent wall reveals the IT server room, which has been artfully lit to transform it into a striking visual feature.

The heart of the social life in the office is the loft-inspired hub – a semi-public space that encourages employees, guests and music stars to get together, socialise and entertain. It comes complete with a professionally equipped stage that enables RTL to organise in-house concerts with German music stars.

Look and feel

The design of the entire space is linked by a Roter Faden, or common thread: a journey into the world of music. Design elements such as light profiles, neon lights, wall graphics and furniture pieces – all in RTL’s trademark red – curl throughout the space.

The unmistakable character of the center is further enhanced by visual references to Berlin’s edgy urban life: meeting rooms styled as famous brick-walled Berlin bars, cosy shared flats and verdant parks, pay homage to the iconic city.

To create a loft-like interior, finishes such as gunmetal, plywood and solid wood were used alongside glazed partition walls, perforated cladding panels, denim-textured carpets and custom-made graffiti-style murals. Handrails sourced from Berlin’s U-Bahn add an urban touch. Striking lighting solutions, including custom-made lights resembling microphones and a lighting feature that suggests sunshine filtering through treetops, further evoke both the music industry and city life.

Challenges

The project faced two key challenges. The production and broadcasting studios required specialised construction – including double-studded thick gypsum walls set at angles, and interior glazing set at a slant – in order to deliver an optimum sound environment. A second challenge lay in creating interiors that reflect the energy of the music industry but retain an air of timelessness – they should not date too quickly – and which also cater for the wide variety of musical styles played by the four stations.

Summary

Derived from a desire to rethink radio production, the RTL audio center in Berlin is a state-of-the-art radio hub, offering a creative and technologically advanced environment that creates vital synergies between the audio units located at the center. Inspired by the energy of the music industry, interiors deliver a journey into the world of music for staff and stars alike, while references to Berlin’s edgy urban vibe further enhance the center’s unique identity.