Q: What is betahaus?
A: betahaus is a coworking space in Berlin, Hamburg, Sofia and Barcelona. We opened the first location in April 2009 in Berlin right at Moritzplatz. betahaus is for people who want to work on their own projects while exchanging knowledge, ideas, and inspiration with others. It’s there to foster entrepreneurship, creativity, rapid prototyping and innovative product development. The community consists of startups, entrepreneurs, corporate teams, freelancers, and makers, who to various degrees collaborate and cooperate. betahaus | Berlin currently counts over 500 members.
Q: What is coworking?
A: Wikipedia gives a comprehensive definition:
“Coworking is an emerging trend for a new pattern for working. Typically work-at-home professionals or independent contractors or people who travel frequently end up working in relative isolation. Coworking is the social gathering of a group of people, who are still working independently, but who share values and who are interested in the synergy that can happen from working with talented people in the same space.
Some coworking spaces were developed by nomadic internet entrepreneurs seeking an alternative to working in coffeeshops and cafes, or to isolation in independent or home offices.
Business accelerators, business incubators and executive suites do not seem to fit into the coworking model, because they often miss the social, collaborative, and informal aspects of the process, with management practices closer to that of a Cooperative, including a focus on community rather than profit. Many of the coworking participants are also participants in BarCamp and other related open source technology activities.”
Q: Why should I choose betahaus?
A: The betahaus is the hotspot for startup and freelancers in Berlin! People who are looking for a flexible working space in a collaborative work environment. Many betahaus members are freelancers who are fed up with sitting at home alone and working on their projects in isolation. Others are looking for synergies in order to be able to master bigger projects. Around 30% are startup-founders, who are looking for a flexible opportunity for growth. Check out our blog for more member stories.
Q: What kinds of people work at betahaus?
A: All kinds of people work at betahaus – from journalists, photographers, translators, graphic designers, designers, programmers, academics, architects, artists, non-governmental organizations and clubs to startups and corporate companies – a creative mix, for sure. We introduce our members and startups on our blog on a regular basis.
Q: Why the name betahaus?
A: To express our idea of a new workplace, we first came up with terms from the area of software development, such as “beta version” or “beta phase”. They best describe the way we’d like to design and develop the betahaus: as an open-ended process. We constantly develop the concept further with our users. This is the only possible way as this kind of space is based on a completely new concept. At the same time we are convinced that the presence each new user enriches the betahaus. „Perpetual beta”: the betahaus is never really complete, but keeps on evolving. During our research, we stumbled across the history of the Greek letter „betha”. Its predecessor originates from Aramaic, and describes the symbol of a rectangular floor plan of a yard or house with an open door. Finally the word „betahaus” was created from this symbol: a real place in the digital world; a fixed point and physical home for creative professionals and other “digital Bohemians”.
Q: How did you come up with the idea of founding betahaus?
A: The reason is because we ourselves couldn’t find a place suitable to our way of working. As freelance professionals, we needed a flexible infrastructure that fit between our digital and real worlds, as well as our work and personal lives. We needed a place where networks could be perpetuated continuously, making them visible and tangible.
Q: Who are you?
A.: Originally founded by 6 students in 2009 we now have a large international team which is running the daily betahaus activities.
Q: What’s the working atmosphere like?
A: betahaus is a mixture between open-plan office and library: in the spacious, luminous loftish coworking area there’s also talking on the phone and brainstorming, but it’s understood to be considerate of the other users. Partitions, shelves and plants provide for generally good acoustics. If you need silence, you can go to our old telephone booth and work there without being disturbed. Apart from that, there are meeting rooms available for extended discussions and meetings. Anyone looking for complete peace and silence can book one of the meeting rooms. Then, for chats and conversations, people go to the Café.
Q: Can I make phone calls at betahaus in peace and quiet?
A: There are various possibilities for making phone calls at betahaus without being disturbed. For the extra important phone call you just book one of the meeting rooms. Then there are a number of lounges in secluded corners.
Q: Are conference/ event rooms available?
A: Yes, conference rooms are available and can hold up to 12 people. Projector/flatscreen, flip chart and presentation-equipment can be booked easily with the meeting room. For larger groups (up to 150 people), and for events like lectures or panel discussions, exhibitions and wild parties you can rent the Café, the Innovation Space, Arena or the Loft. Here you find an overview of all the possibilities. Our event managers will take your requests (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Q: Can I bring clients or guests with me to betahaus?
A: Certainly! Business conferences and meetings are part of the day-to-day-business. For longer meetings or bigger groups, just book one of the meeting rooms. For an informal get together the Café is probably the best place.
Q: Can I safely store my belongings and valuables at betahaus?
A: You can easily book a locker for 25 €/ month.
Q: How do you ensure that mail is definitely „received” and ends up on my desk?
A: As a member you can book the extra “Mailbox” and name betahaus as your mailing address. You can pick up your mail at our reception desk at the first floor.
Q: Are printers, scanners etc. available?
A: We have 3 printers (scanner incl) at betahaus.
Q: There are four of us, what now?
A: That’s no problem. You can even save money in teams, if you only need one mailbox or some of your team members only need their desk part-time. There’s also the possibility to get you own, more or less separate workspace. See our team memberships here.
Q: Can I also work at night/ Sundays/ holidays?
A: Members can book the extra “24/7 access” and work at betahaus around the clock. Otherwise, our regular opening hours are Monday to Friday, 8.00am to 8.00pm.
Q: Can I bring my desk?
A: That would not be necessary as we already provide desks.
Q: Can betahaus also assist me with the formation/ management of my business?
A: For all betahaus members we provide free office hours in different fields. In addition to that, frequently there are all sorts of interesting workshops and courses. Just take a look at our program. You’re also welcome to present your start up at betabreakfast (contact: email@example.com).
Q: How about education?
A: betahaus Academy offers high quality speciality courses in the fields of diy & crafts, web & design and business & marketing. Taught by passionate experts, with hands–on content and lots of practice. Done in small groups so you get all the attention you need. Some of the courses are built for you to learn something new, others are meant to deepen your knowledge and make you an expert. betahaus members get a discount on the courses. Check out the program!
Q: Does betahaus offer secretarial services or anything similar?
A: As soon as there is demand for such features we do our best to organize them for you.
Q: As a member, is it possible to work at all the betahaus locations?
A: Yes, if you are a current member in betahaus berlin you can get 3 days for free in all the betahaus locations. To reserve a flexdesk at one of the other betahauses just click on this form.
Q: How often is betahaus cleaned? By whom?
A: The betahaus is cleaned daily. This is currently being carried out by an office cleaning service.
Q: Do you offer child care?
A: Unfortunately not at the moment. However we consider child care an essential service and we would like to offer it in the future.
FOOD & BEVERAGES
Q: Do you have good coffee?
A: Of course! From 8am to 10pm the betahaus I Café serves everything coffee-fanciers need. We get our Coffee from CoffeeCircle. By the way: the founders Robert, Martin and Moritz started in betahaus as well.
Q: If I feel hungry?
A: At betahaus I Café, between breakfast and coffee & cake, there’s fresh dishes for lunch every day – check out the weekly menu here. In addition to that there’s sandwiches, breakfast, soups, quiches, muffins, fruit, yoghurt and of course chocolate.
Q: Is there a kitchen?
A: There is a small kitchenette on the 1st and 3rd floor with fridge, coffee machine, water kettle and microwave.
Q: How much is a desk at betahaus?
A: The fee is variable and depends on what you need. You can find a detailed overview on betahaus.de.
Q: How are the membership periods of validity, cancellation periods etc. set out?
A: You can start your membership at any day of the month. Just talk to our reception team Mo – Fr 9:30am to 5:30pm. The open end membership can be terminated within 30 days with effect of the end of the following month.
Q: Can I check out the facilities without beeing a member?
A: To check out the coworking experience at betahaus and in order to see the house we warmly recommend to join our weekly community event betabreakfast (Thursdays at 9.30am, 1st floor) where you can mingle, meet our lovely community and take a guided tour around the house. Just get your ticket at the reception for the breakfast (10 EUR) or sign in for a trial day for 15 EUR (on Thursdays betabreakfast is incuded).
Q: What about guided tours for a bigger group of people?
A: We organise private guided tours for groups. To book please shoot an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: What exactly do I have to do to start working at betahaus?
A: Just decide which kind of membership you would like to get and sign up Mon-Fri 9.30am – 5.30pm at our reception desk. If you are not sure which kind of membership is the one for you – do not hesitate to drop email@example.com an email.
Q: Is the betahaus accessible by public transit?
A: The betahaus is just around the corner from the station U Moritzplatz, which is served by the U8 (Hermannplatz <> Wittenau). With the U8 you can reach Alexanderplatz in 3 minutes, and Kottbusser Tor in 1 minute. From those two major intersections you can travel just about anywhere in Berlin quite easily. Moritzplatz is also accessible with the M29 bus.
Q: Would you invite your parents to betahaus?
A: Of course! Our parents visit us regularly for a cup of coffee.
Q: Can I bring pets? Do others bring theirs?
A: For a short visit it’s no problem. Tranquil fellows, who take their nap under the desk, can also stay a little longer. But please, don’t let dogs run free in the coworking space.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.