The legendary Rhino Bar and Pumphouse, popular with Georgetown University students, will close Feb. 28.
Business owner and restaurateur Britt Swan told The Georgetowner the he was willing to go with a new lease that doubled the rent but the owner of the building at 3295 M St. NW declined. “Georgetown has changed,” Swan said. “It’s all about high-end retail.”
There will be a big reunion party and last hurrah for all old timers and past and present staff Sunday, Feb. 22, at Rhino Bar, which opened in 1998.
An insider told The Georgetowner: “From 1953 until this Feb. 28, there has been a long-term lease in place that moved from bar owner to bar owner. As I understand it, this is the first time that the lease will expire after all of these years. Many of us will gather at Rhino on its last Sunday night.”
Known for its collegiate atmosphere and sports bar verve — along with nicely priced drinks and good food — the bar was a big fan zone of the Boston Red Sox, often displaying the team’s name in building-wide signage. The place also attracted a clientele of “bros and basics,” according to one Yelp comment.
The bartender with the longest tenure in Georgetown is Rhino’s own Jeff Stiles, who just celebrated 23 years Feb. 8. Stiles worked at Sports Fans before moving to Rhino Bar. The property previously housed the equally legendary Winston’s and, before that, the Shamrock.