Fri, May 19, 2006 - Page 21 News List

Berlin's new luxury public bathroom

A public bathroom in Paris, which is certainly not as luxurious as the new one in Berlin. 巴黎的公共廁所,顯然不如柏林新公廁奢華。 (照片:法新社)


It has soft lights, gleaming red and blue surfaces and a relaxing video of bubbles swirling underwater that plays on the wall.

This isn't a fancy hotel; it's Europe's most expensive public restroom.

The super-restroom, which opened earlier this month in Berlin, is the latest word in modern architecture. It has an elevator and a 24-hour reception, and it costs .50 euros (about NT$20) to use.

There are five bathrooms for men and five for women. Each has air-conditioning and relaxing music.

Hans Wall, the German businessman who built the bathroom, said it cost him 750,000 euros to build, but it was worth it. "I'm very pleased with it. It's been done with love, intelligence and the best of German design. ... It's an oasis from the outside world. Everything is clean and hygienic. You feel refreshed after using it. The mayor of London should pay us a visit and see how it can be done."

The area where the restroom is located used to be run down, but new stores are improving it. "This place used to be full of drug addicts. It was very dark. I didn't fancy using it much. I was worried about being robbed," said Wolfgang Gellesch, 62, who works near there. "Now the facilities are excellent. It's a symbol of the new Germany."

The underground restroom opened just weeks before Germany hosts the World Cup, with thousands of visitors expected to visit the capital.

Berlin's government has thanked Mr Wall for his work by offering him free advertising space. (Guardian)






Reading Comprehension

1. The super-restroom has everything except ...

a. a receptionist.

b. an elevator.

c. free telephones.

2. According to Hall, how does one feel after using it?

a. Sleepy.

b. Refreshed.

c. Loved.

3. The super-bathroom is located ...

a. underground.

b. in a fancy hotel.

c. in a new store.

4. How has the German government thanked Hall?

a. It has given him free advertising space.

b. He will be honored at the World Cup.

c. His taxes will be lowered.





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