Club Alla closed
MAASTRICHT. With the closure of Club Alla, Maastricht has lost a popular place of entertainment. The night pub was liked especially by students because of the very long opening hours. They now largely take to the Feesfebrik or stay at home. Observant carried out a small random check.
Many UM students found the Alla a useless club: “It had a hostile atmosphere, the music was not good, and the bouncers were creepy,” are some of the comments on the Facebook page sharing is caring. Nevertheless, the place was popular – in particular among foreign students - especially because of the central location and the long opening hours, until six in the morning.
A small random check among about 25 students showed that some of them now go to the Feesfebrik when the regular pubs close at two or three o'clock in the morning. Places such as FM Kaffee, Complex, and Defile were also mentioned occasionally. Just like the Alla, they stay open until later. But according to Anne de Graaf, student of Photography & Art Direction at Hogeschool Zuyd, these alternatives are not comparable: “They are full your standard fraternity and sorority members, and there is less hip-hop and R&B music.”
There are also students who go home after the regular closing hours: “Such a pity,” says Anna-Luca Niemeyer, third-year student of International Business from Germany.
Half-way through October, Club Alla was shut down by order of mayoress Penn-te Strake when 33.5 grams of cocaine, seven grams of soft drugs, two knives, and a knuckle-duster were found during a police raid. In her eyes, manager Fred Leenders should have acted against the drug dealing and drug use in his club.
Leenders contested the mayoress' decision in court on Thursday, 16 November. According to him, only very small amounts of drugs were found. In addition, for the more than 25 years that he has been running the club, he has never had anything to do with drugs. “The Netherlands has a huge drugs problem. The catering operators are saddled with this and ultimately punished for it, no matter how many precautionary measures they take,” said Leenders’ solicitor Richard Wagemans. The case was reported by daily newspaper Dagblad De Limburger.
The solicitor accused the municipality of abuse of power. The mayoress closed down Club Alla mainly to increase the number of visitors to the Muziekgieterij, which is subsidised by the municipality, he argued. Richard Loomans, managing director of the Muziekgieterij, opposes this accusation. According to him, his business cannot be compared to a club like Alla. The latter was open seven days a week; Muziekgieterij is only open to visitors who have bought a ticket for an event.