Cologne’s Geestemunder Strasse is home to numerous heavy industrial machines and smokestacks that emit metal fumes. Buildings can be covered in blinking lights. One such building houses Pascha brothel.
Even after being forbidden to host due to probable coronavirus infections, this place and others similar remain open, labeled flat rate brothels with hourly rates for their workers. Germany legalized prostitution in 2002, and since then, its prostitution industry has seen dramatic growth. An estimated 400,000 women now work at brothels and eros centers throughout Germany. With Pascha being Europe’s largest mega-brothel.
But that hasn’t stopped women and men from meeting privately. Often in the back rooms of clubs where customers sit covered in robes or towels. Most clubs are brothels located within houses or more significant buildings with meet-and-greet areas, pools, saunas, and bedrooms on upper levels for customers to use as brothels.
Legalizing prostitution was intended to push out pimps and make ficken safer for women. Germany’s sex industry is big business. Regulated and taxed accordingly, yet it remains a stigmatized job requiring many sex workers to keep quiet about it from friends and family.
Germany is one of the more liberal nations in Europe regarding prostitution
Mega brothels that hold up to 650 customers at once and offer two-for-one deals are plentiful here. Germany is seeing an explosion of brothels – also known as eros centers – popping up. These large buildings contain public meeting and greeting rooms and private bedrooms on upper floors where women sell their services directly to clients they meet in person and negotiate directly.
Fetishism is big business, selling everything from bondage starter kits to dildos and vibrators at trade fairs. There’s often an atmosphere of business as usual at these fairs, with plenty of open discussions about orgasms, safe fisting techniques, and finding ways to tie someone up securely.
Prostitution is legal in Germany and governed by local authorities. Cities restrict how and where sex workers operate, yet it still represents a profitable venture. Natalie runs Pascha brothel in Cologne and makes good money, like any job. However, Natalie worried about the coronavirus pandemic closing down her business as it puts sex workers and herself at risk of contracting the virus and infecting others, affecting her pension fund.
Germans tend to view prostitution differently from Americans
This is due to being free from puritanic roots that constrain more conservative views towards sexuality, viewing it as an enjoyable means of having fun and making money. Furthermore, many young people want to try prostitution as a career; some like it for CV purposes, while others, like Ari Denaro at KitKat Fetish Club Berlin, enjoy working and have become known as Kamasutra Ninjas.
Swingers’ clubs, naked German grandmothers at the seaside, or ethical discussions surrounding free love all play a role in Germany’s complex sexual landscape. However, according to a new report by Friendly Venus conference, one more pressing concern remains sexual violence and harassment on university campuses.
Germany legalized and regulated sex work with brothels, paying taxes and following rules to limit human trafficking while providing access to essential health and government services.
Ari Denaro is the 28-year-old KitKat Fetish Club in Berlin’s 28-year-old Dungeon Master. He parades five women of various degrees of undress behind him on harnesses as he proudly displays the KitKat Academy vest advertising bondage workshops.
“This is my job; therefore, it must be done correctly. If I fail at being an effective Dungeon Master, then no one will come back.”
Lutz Sauerteig, a historian of sexuality at Newcastle University, believes he may know one answer to that question. He points to a recent government website that seeks to educate migrants about sexual behavior in Germany – specifically how men should approach women in public spaces – using carrots rather than sticks. Some see this approach as condescending towards migrants who do not know how best to interact with women, as evidenced by several incidents involving migrants on New Year’s Eve in Cologne.
It’s understandable why this debate can be contentious: sexual behavior in Germany and colonial knowledge have attracted greater scrutiny since 1900 than other aspects of sexology, with increasing evidence pointing towards its emancipatory elements being balanced against its regressive tendencies. Yet, it remains essential to explore all sides equally if an accurate picture is to be achieved.
Is Germany kinky?
Germany has to overcome many international stereotypes regarding its sexuality, one being “Germans are famously gay.” But is Germany as gay-friendly as it has been made out to be?
German porn is most renowned for its bukkake and golden shower content produced by John Thompson Productions; however, other studios specialize in niche German fetish content such as scheisse porn.
Germany is one of Europe’s few fully legal nations for prostitution, making it a prime spot for sexual diversity. There are BDSM clubs throughout Germany, while brothels provide anything from sex toys to “all you can fuck” services.
Although Germany still maintains some stigma surrounding fetish culture, it’s dwindling quickly. Indira, a former stripper turned natural lubricants retailer, says: “I think the stigma attached to the fetish scene in Germany is slowly dissipating. Whatever people choose to do with their bodies should remain their business – if it brings pleasure, then great.”
Germany has long been celebrated for its welcoming attitude toward sexuality and nudity
Many consider German culture and art sexy. “Germany has an open mindset regarding sexuality and nudity,” according to Dave Davies, author of Kink: A History. “It’s not something repressed.”
At events like Tyrone Rontgagner’s Leather Meets Classic Church Concert in Berlin’s gay-friendly district Schoeneberg at Twelve Apostles Evangelical Church, openness toward fetish culture is evident. This concert brings queer community members, the fetish world, and classical music fans together in one space.
Many international stereotypes of Germans depict them as serious, punctual individuals with an affinity for beer and sausage (Wurst). Yet this nation and its people possess many quirky fetishes of their own.
Germany’s sex industry is well-established
With FKK clubs, brothels, and sex cinemas popular destinations among locals and tourists seeking sexual encounters. Furthermore, Germany maintains an accommodating approach towards sexual activity; most citizens accept sexual work for compensation without romantic interest and extramarital affairs without hesitation.
GeSiD) conducted by face-to-face interviews across Germany, as well as computer-assisted personal interviews and self-administered questionnaires, has shown that sexually explicit content is broadly accepted by the German population.
A similar survey revealed that many Germans are open to bondage or body-sexual stimulation fetishes such as BDSM; examining pornhub search trends confirms this finding. A substantial segment of Germany’s population seems fascinated with such forms of activity.