Words: Ellen Kenny
Pret a Manger is taking over Crawdaddy. Can someone wake us up from this bland fever dream?
Following the arrivial of Dublin’s first Pret a Manger on Dawson Street this summer, the British-owned French-named coffee chain has continued to spread its terror over Dublin and is setting up a second location on Harcourt Street.
A business is a business, and Pret was always bound to expand. But Twitter users have spotted that Pret a Manger is setting up a second shop in none other than the former home of Crawdaddy.
Is nothing sacred anymore? Can haunted nightclubs of the naughties not rest in peace?
Crawdaddy was one of Dublin’s classic nightclubs, with each of its three rooms offering its own unique energy. Opening in 2004, the spot quickly became famous for its club nights and indie reputation, hosting acts like LCD Soundsystem.
It was for real music, fans of Crawdaddy would insist, as they race to club nights like Antics and C.U.N.T. The club space unfortunately closed down in 2012 under the weight of recession pressure.
From the three euro entry before midnight, the sparkly tunnel leading to the dance floor, and a smoking area the size of Europe, Crawdaddy represented a simpler time. A time now being replaced by over-priced coffee.
This isn’t the first time an abandoned night Dublin club has become a food spot. In February 2022, Tír Deli opened in the space previously used by Tripod, Crawdaddy’s more sophisticated neighbour. But at least in that situation, the club was being replaced by an independent Irish-owned business and not an exported chain.
It’s a disappointing moment, but a hardly a surprising one. Hopefully this will help us emotionally prepare for the next replacement. Just watch them turn the recently-closed Vegan Sandwich Co into a Starbucks.
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