A popular watering hole on the Granville strip will shut down forever at the end of this month.
Doolin's Irish Pub was launched at 654 Nelson Street in 2002. The building owner, Pacific Reach, has decided to turn the historic structure into a boutique hotel.
“The city over the past 20years has evolved beyond what any of us could have imagined,” Pacific Reach president and CEO Azim Jamal said in a news release. “The decision to close these storied venues was not an easy one. But, we want to focus on the future of the city and what we believe will be a renaissance for a new and invigorated Granville Street. We are very excited for what’s next and to do our part to rid Vancouver of its ‘No fun city’ moniker.”
And that means saying goodbye to Doolin's, as well as to the Belmont Bar and the Comfort Inn.
Doolin's, which re-created a slice of Dublin in downtown Vancouver, was created by entrepreneur Blaine Culling, who was one of the prime movers of the Granville Entertainment District.
“I was a great believer in Granville Street in the early years before it became the entertainment district,” Culling told the Straight in 2006. “I felt that we could convert the strip bar into a fun place and we could also convert the beer parlour into a classy, fun lounge.”
The building is more than a century old, beginning as the Barron Hotel in 1912.
For many years, it was known as the Nelson Place Hotel, and featured a strip club, Champagne Charlie's, on the lower floor.
The upstairs bar was transformed into Babalu Tapas Lounge, which used to feature a singer by the name of Michael Bublé.
“I think it confirmed the idea that he wanted to be an entertainer,” Culling said back in 2006. “I think it gave him a good opportunity to continue his career with a good launching pad.”