Resident DJ Oona Bender said Rouge Cat, 101 W. Marcy St., had its last night on Saturday. Bender described the decision to close the restaurant and nightclub as a gradual one, but said ultimately the bar’s owner didn’t want to go further into debt.
“The irony is that business was just starting to pickup,” Bender said. “We had a good run. It’s just one of those things where we gave it the best we could.”
Bender attributed the closure to the not enough of the younger demographic in Santa Fe and a still-struggling economy.
Bender said she tried to ensure that the Rouge Cat was a favorite for DJs and electronic musicians, and she added that management had put money into a good electrical system for light shows.
She said events that had been planned at the Rouge Cat, such as the Valentine’s Day themed show called “Sex on Vinyl,” will be relocated, though she doesn’t yet know where.
“I am not ready to retire yet,” Bender said.
The New Mexican reported that the nightclub opened its doors in May 2010. Rouge Cat also held the distinction of being known as the town’s only gay bar, though Bender said the nightclub hadn’t aimed to be a gay bar. Bender also said she doesn’t think the town necessarily needs a gay bar as gay culture becomes more accepted. “The notion of a gay bar is starting to become less necessary,” she said.
In 2013, two other downtown bars, the Ore House at Milagro restaurant and bar and the Stats Sports Bar, also closed shop.
Source: The Santa Fe New Mexican