The Lotus Closes Tonight After 92 Years

The sign from The Lotus Cardroom will soon come down to make way for more Portland development. (FoystonFoto)
The sign from The Lotus Cardroom will soon come down to make way for more Portland development. (FoystonFoto)

7 p.m. Saturday Aug. 20, Lotus Cardroom, 932 S.W. Third Ave.; No cover.
Portland is losing another grand old bar to the relentless wave of downtown development: The Lotus Cardroom closes tonight, Saturday August 20 with an End of (almost) a Century Party to make way for a boutique hotel. Don’t expect a quiet contemplative communion with the spirits of Old Portland; I went there yesterday afternoon for my last pint and the place was wall-to-wall people and noise,  they had just run out of Maker’s and several taps had run dry. Still, respect must be paid and the Lotus — a venerable institution among Portland watering holes — deserves a farewell toast.

The Lotus Cardroom will open for the last day on Saturday, August 20, 2016. (FoystonFoto)
The Lotus Cardroom will open for the last day on Saturday, August 20, 2016. (FoystonFoto)

Here’s what the event website has to say about the history of the Lotus…

Since 1924, The Lotus has been a fixture in downtown Portland. From its roots as a pre-Prohibition soda bar, to its rumored connection to an underground depression-era brothel, to its role as the first legal gambling site in Portland, and ultimately its current day place as a staple dining establishment in the downtown corridor, The Lotus is an institution of Portland past and present. Even the bar itself is a significant piece of history. The thirty-foot cherry wood antique was made by the Brunswick Company in Chicago in the late 1880’s, before the opening of the Panama Canal. It traveled around Cape Horn in South America to arrive in Washington State, and then ultimately ending up in its current home in Portland.

On Saturday, August 20th the Lotus will host an “End of almost a Century” event from 7pm – close to celebrate the last day of business.  The card-room will feature a silent auction of art, photographs and beer signs with proceeds benefiting the Oregon Historical Society.  The event will also feature complementary food and music.   The Lotus would like to invite all its patrons, both past and current to come and enjoy one last night in the space that has truly been a Portland institution for year.

Swing by tonight for one last look and join in on the Silent Auction for art, neons, photography all benefiting the Oregon Historical Society.

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