Tallinn to limit nightlife alcohol sales from September

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Alcoholic drinks (picture is illustrative). Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

Tallinn will restrict night alcohol sales from September, due to noise pollution and other disturbances, rather than coronavirus considerations. There are many opponents of the restrictions, however, who believe that the decision violates the quality of the capital's nightlife.

During the week, alcohol may not be sold in Tallinn from 2 a.m. to 6.a.m at night and from 3 a.m to 7 a.m on weekends, when the restrictions come into effect next month, ERR's online news in Estonian reports.

"Tallinn reached this decision after three years of analysis involving both residents and entrepreneurs. And in fact, the problem started in the Old Town, where the quality of life had suffered significantly due to unbridled partying," Aivar Riisalu (Center), Tallinn deputy mayor, said.

Kristen Michal (Center), deputy chair of Tallinn City Council, says however that such a restriction will not work.

"Some individuals wouldn't even follow these rules at 11 p.m., or 10 p.m. Time will not solve the problem," Michal said.

One of the main reasons for the restriction is the late opening of clubs and bars in the immediate vicinity of residential areas. One example is the Kolm Lõvi bar in Kalamaja.

The night sales restriction decision was made last year. Riisalu said that several companies, such as the Old Town residents' association, in cooperation with the police, wanted the sales ban to apply all over Tallinn, not only in the heart of the city. This also applies to those institutions which do not interfere with the surrounding area.

Another night-sport, Club Laev, is located next to the port, where there are no residential houses nearby. "Drinking alcohol in a regulated environment is definitely better than drinking alcohol at home or at apartment parties. Because here we can react much faster. We have the people we need, we cooperate with the police," club owner Maris Altsoo said.

Elena Natale, manager at another venue, Club Hall, also does not consider the ban on sales reasonable.

"In order to be attractive abroad, I think that a free attitude to partying, where an adult can still have fun and enjoy, has always been an advantage in Estonia, it's why people come to Tallinn and Estonia," she said.

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Editor: Roberta Vaino

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