The Halal Inn opened last December in Oldham, England, as the first Islamic pub in Britain. Buzzing (albeit a bit hesitantly) with a decidedly sobering business model, the place adheres to a strict no-alcohol policy, opting instead to serve fizzy non-alcoholic juices, drinks, and spritzers.
The Daily Mail explains:
Pubgoers can play snooker, darts or karam, an Indian board game similar to billiards. Islamic-themed quiz nights have also been organised.
Owners Azizur Rahman and business partner Muzahid Khan spotted the potential in the former Westwood Inn which was lying empty on the edge of the town centre.
Muslims are a major consumer group and they need somewhere to relax and socialise just like anybody else," said Mr Khan yesterday.
"But the presence of alcohol means traditional pubs are off-putting to those who want to follow strict Islamic rulings, so this is the perfect place for them to come.
I'm all for diverse businesses, especially ones that cater to under-represented demographics. And considering Britain is home to around two million Muslims, the concept certainly hits an untapped niche. But at the risk of sounding like a lush, I can't help but agree with Vagabondish: "Why not just call it a café instead?"