Fixtures in my German apartment

Several years from now, when I am no longer living in my Heidelberg, Germany apartment, I hope I am able to remember some of the unique features of it. Some fixtures are truly German, and some may just be special to the building.

According to my landlords, the building was used as a nunnery in the 1920s, and later, it was a hospital during World War II. After the war, it was a rehabilitation facility before being converted into apartments and offices.

Some of the fixtures in my house give it so much character, while others make me laugh.

Multi-opening door

Chris and I are amazed by this door. Many European windows open this way; however, this door is the only window that we have that opens like a normal window or door and can also be converted to be slightly ajar on top from hinges on the bottom. You may also notice that we do not have any screens. Our German friends tell us that is because there are not bugs. I would like them to come over in the evening when I chase Oreo-sized moths out of my living room.

Purple kitchen

As renters, we own our kitchen, which was here when we arrived. If something breaks in it, we are responsible for it. We were not responsible for the color that a previous tenant selected.

Light fixtures

Tenants also own light fixtures in an apartment. We were lucky that our apartment came with all of the light fixtures and bulbs. We can change them if we want, but I don’t see the point.

Double windows

All of our windows have two sets, and the top window is smaller and opens with a lever. It is fun to have the option to open only part of a window.


While some outlets are located near the floor, most are underneath light switches. As a result of the European outlets, we have dozens of converters around the house for our computers and other American items.

Walk-in closet

We have a closet, one closet, and it is a lot to be thankful for in a German apartment. Many of the apartments we have seen do not have a closet. Ours is a very decent size. We installed a shower curtain to use as a clothing rod and a bookcase for storing towels and other linen closet items.


I love having shutters in the winter to block out light, noise, and the cold. We use an old crank to open and shut them; however, there is only one crank. So, we have to take it out and march around the house to close all of the shutters at night.

This will not be my home forever, but I’m glad to call it mine for now.

In case you missed it, my most pathetic appliance is Mein Kühlschrank: My German Refrigerator


10 responses to “Fixtures in my German apartment

      • When I was in high school, I babysat for a lady on my dad’s street that had a purple kitchen. My cousin who lived on the street behind my parents’ house had a lavendar bathroom–I am talking tub, toilet & sink! They eventually sold their house to be turned into a doctor’s office & I often wondered what happened to those lovely fixtures….

  1. Thanks for all of the nice comments! I realized that many of these things in my apartment are seeming “normal” to me now, and I never want to forget the fascination I have had with them during my first year living here.

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