Impact of Covid-19, Berlin-based Room 77 – the first to ever accept Bitcoin has permanently closed

Room 77, a legendary Berlin-based watering hole and Bitcoin hub closes down, according to an Oct. 18 Reddit post from Joerg Platzer, founder of the bar.

In a goodbye message riddled with references to Douglas Adams’ The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Platzer wrote:

“We are people from a solar system not yet discovered by humanity and have been watching your species for the last 30.000 years. We had reason to believe that Homo Sapiens will go the same way as Erectus, Neandethalensis and the Denisovans. However, when we discovered that the Nakamoto guy invented Bitcoin, we realised that you do have a future.

Once a civilisation has developed a planetary hard money system it usually does not take long until its members become peaceful and start putting their resources into developing longevity and space travel instead of governments and weapons. The first ten years of such a money are crucial, as there are always forces who want to hold back development and keep you in chains. We therefor stopped by, occupied that little joint in Berlin Kreuzberg and started promoting and explaining the importance of this step to the unaware public and offering a place where the development of the technology is being driven forward”.

“We had a great time,” said Platzer. “Having a lot of fun and making many friends. It is clear by now that nobody will stop Bitcoin anymore. Sound money on a global scale will soon make it unfeasable to wage wars and it will create economic equality amongst mankind.”

Image via Facebook’s Room 77

Opened in the early 2000s by Platzer, the bar started accepting the upstart payment method sometime in 2011. A simple gesture, but one made early enough for it to become a central hub for bitcoiners in one of Europe’s most popular capitals.

“I failed at mining, it infected my machine with malware two times, so I said, ‘Well, why don’t I sell beers and burgers for it,’” Platzer recalls.

Known now to locals simply as “the Room,” the bar has since lived through the ebbs and flows of the crypto market. In 2012, it became a curiosity for journalists.

“No organization created more media coverage than the Room that year,” Platzer says, adding: “A lot of people said that was the moment that bitcoin came down from the heavens and hit the ground into the real world.”

Given that the average price of beer in Germany is roughly $4.10 and Bitcoin had just reached parity with the U.S. dollar at that time, the patron could have easily paid for their drink with more than 1 BTC — now priced at $11,432.

“Blame it on COVID or blame it on gentrification,” said crypto economist Jon Matonis on Twitter. “Either way, this Kreuzberg landmark has served as a Bitcoin watering hole for over 10 years, with thousands making the obligatory pilgrimage.”

“Winter is coming”, Germany saw a record daily increase in new coronavirus cases on Sunday, reporting 5,248 new infections, according to Worldometer’s COVID-19 data.

The news comes a few days after Chancellor Angela Merkel announced tougher restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of the virus. In the latest update, Germany recorded 13 new deaths from the coronavirus, taking its total death toll to 9.866.

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