Zaphod’s sold, shows will go on, says Haslam

Downtown nightclub Zaphod Beeblebrox has a “new lease on life,” owner Eugene Haslam said Wednesday when he announced he has sold the York Street establishment.


Calling it a bittersweet day, Mr. Haslam issued a news release saying one of his staff members is the new owner and will take possession of the storied live music club on Feb. 1.
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“Once some legal and regulatory hurdles are cleared, this venerable venue will continue with a new lease on life and will, hopefully, with the strong support of Ottawans, continue the legacy of our past 26+ years,” he said.

“I will take a break and enjoy life, spend time in Ottawa and Montebello, travel, eat well, stay fit and surround myself with the company of good friends. In time, I will explore new opportunities and challenges in Ottawa and continue to be of service to my community.”

Mr. Haslam said he will be available to help with the ownership transition, but since all the staff is staying on, he expects it to be a smooth process.

“They essentially run the place,” he said. “I’m sure the new owner will have their own way of doing things and have new ideas and events in due time. I followed my own dream and I think it is great that the new owner wants to essentially keep the legacy, move the club forward and update it for future generations.”

Mr. Haslam would not identify the new owner, saying he has agreed to keep the name of the buyer confidential.

“The new owner wishes to release that info in their own time,” he said in an e-mail to OBJ.

Mr. Haslam originally announced plans to step away in September 2014, but at the time had no set timetable for his departure.

His last six weeks at the helm will be busy with the club’s annual 10 Days of Christmas programming and a concert calendar that is filling up.

“Bands that want to play their last shows of my tenure in December and January should get in touch a.s.a.p.,” he said.

Since the club opened at its ByWard Market location in the early ’90s, it has hosted a wide variety of acts, including Alanis Morissette, The Proclaimers and Jewel. The Rolling Stones also shot the music video for their single Streets of Love at the venue in 2005.

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