Nude cafe closes doors as crisis curbs healthy appetite


IT WAS once a symbol of the Celtic Tiger boom but yesterday the Nude cafe on Dublin’s Suffolk Street, owned by Bono’s brother, Norman Hewson, appeared to be the latest high-profile casualty of the recession here.

The distinctive lime-green coloured flagship store was locked-up yesterday, with tables and chairs stacked inside.

The restaurant’s phones went unanswered.

Attempts to contact Mr Hewson were unsuccessful but suppliers were informed that the business had ceased trading.

At its height, Nude had a handful of cafes in Dublin but they closed one by one as the recession suppressed consumer appetites for its organic fare.

Latest accounts for Nude Ltd show that it had accumulated losses of more than €3 million at the end of 2007.

No accounts have been filed since then.

Nude gained a reputation in the boom for its fresh organic produce and smoothies.

The restaurant was also popular with vegetarians for the variety offered on its menu.

It was also a hit with lawyers for the Moriarty tribunal, which is investigating planning matters relating to Michael Lowry. It emerged last year that the tribunal’s legal team had run up a bill totalling €4,450 at Hewson’s trendy cafe.

Hewson, a former computer salesman, opened Nude on Suffolk Street in 2000.

He was also behind the Tosca restaurant on the same street, which closed some years ago.