Brown Thomas to open bar to let shoppers 'anaesthetise themselves'
Reluctant husbands and boyfriends being dragged to Brown Thomas by their better halves will soon have the ultimate sanctuary and place of refuge - a bar.
The country's best-known department store on Grafton St received the drinks licence from a quiet village in east Limerick.
Dublin's Circuit Licensing Court was yesterday told that spouses who needed somewhere to go while their partner completed their shopping was the reason the luxury store was applying for a full licence.
Constance Cassidy SC told the court that refurbishment on the third floor of Brown Thomas in Grafton Street had been carried out in accordance with planning permission.
Ms Cassidy told Circuit Court President Mr Justice Raymond Groarke, who last month granted the store a Declaratory Order, that renovations and refurbishment had been completed and the store was now applying for a drinks licence.
The court had heard the luxury store had been operating a wine license in its restaurant for the last 40 years and wished to improve matters for their customers and in particular for partners and spouses who had to wait around while the shopping list was completed.
Ms Cassidy, who appeared with barrister Nicola-Jane Andrews and Compton Solicitors, said Brown Thomas & Co Ltd had bought out a full pub license from Falcon Irish Pubs Limited which owned Ned McKnights in Main Street, Cappamore, Co Limerick.
Architect Frank Kenny told the court that planning permission had been granted for a kitchen and carvery area, dry goods and refrigerated storage areas, dining areas and staff facilities. Lorraine Bedford, health and safety compliance manager with Brown Thomas, said the fire officer had inspected the premises and was satisfied with the project.
Ms Bedford last month told the court the store wished to make a full drinks menu, including beer and spirits, available to customers.
Ms Cassidy had told Judge Groarke that those in waiting could at least slightly anaesthetise themselves against what spouses and partners would spend.
Judge Groarke granted the store an ordinary seven-day publican's licence.