Room 77, a restaurant and bar of renown within Germany, stands as reportedly the first-ever establishment of its kind to accept crypto as payment. Now, however, the establishment will close its doors. Permanently.
A Great Crypto Landmark Retiring
Joerg Platzer, the founder of Room 77, gave out a Reddit post on the 18th of October. In it, he stated that the first-ever brick-and-mortar business accepting Bitcoin has permanently shuttered its doors, and will no longer accept customers. The goodbye message itself was chock full of references to The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams. He thanked everyone for the generous tips and fish, after occupying “that little joint” within Berlin Kreuzberg for over 15 years.
Platzer stated that he had great fun, making many friends in the process. He noted that Bitcoin couldn’t be stopped, going as far as to claim that economic equality for humanity is only a matter of time, making war waging unfeasible.
Humble Roots In Berlin
Room 77, described as “The Restaurant at the end of Capitalism,” was located within the Kreuzberg district of the German capital, Berlin. Reportedly, it was the first brick-and-mortar location in the entire world to accept Bitcoin as a means of payment. According to Platzer, he had received the first crypto payment, for buying a pint of beer, back in May of 2011.
At that time, the BTC was valued at just above a USD in value. Meaning that this mysterious beer buyer had spent more than one Bitcoin for $4.10 worth of beer back in 2011. Fast forward today, with the current price for Bitcoin at around $11,400, that purchase seems downright insane.
COVID Takes Another Business
One of the bar’s patrons, Phil Lucsok, shared his own experience when he spent crypto in the real world for the first time. He claimed that he just wanted to spend the Bitcoin when he first got it, stumbling to Room 77 back in 2013. The man stated that he just ordered a coffee, since he didn’t really want beer or food. He simply wanted to have fun spending some decentralized currency for the first time in his life.
While Platzer had abstained from detailing why the bar must close, former patrons are assuming it’s to do with the restrictions imposed thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic. Just a week ago, German authorities mandated that Berlin bars need to shut down between 23:00 and 06:00, with the gatherings themselves forbidden from being more than 25 people in total.
While the ban itself has been lifted, businesses across the globe are seeing a massive drop in revenue thanks to tourism crashing and more people staying inside instead of going out.