One of Madrid’s most emblematic sites, Café Comercial, which closed its doors after 128 years of service in July 2015, is set to reopen.
Grupo El Escondite, which runs two restaurants and a catering company in Madrid, has acquired the rights to run the iconic café.
“The cafe will reopen its doors towards the end of 2016,” a spokeswoman for El Escondite said in a statement to The Local.
“And we can confirm that its name will not change,” she added, a fact that will reassure many of the café’s devotees, who feared the building would be taken over by a faceless chain or fast food outlet after it closed.
The café’s first floor often played host to poetry readings and concerts, something that the new owners want to continue.
“We are interested in maintaining the links between the cafe and the city’s cultural life, creating a meeting place for different artistic initiatives.”
Café Comercial, which opened in 1887, harked back to a bygone era, when the high-ceilinged room welcomed some of the city’s most famous tertulías, or literary salons, in the period following the Spanish Civil War.
The café was a regular haunt of the most famous of Spanish society, from writers and artists to singers and bullfighters, who flocked to the local to discuss the burning issues of the day over a cup of its much-lauded coffee.
The next step for the new owners will be to embark on the restoration of the cafe, with the support of Madrid’s City Hall.