Date: May 2019
Author: Inspector Z

The Cat Jazz & Cigar bar reopened. The oldest cigar bar in The Netherlands reopened its doors last Sunday. For the last seven months, The Cat was closed. That was due to waiting on the right permits from the Rotterdam city council.


The Cat is the oldest cigar bar in The Netherlands. It was bought by cigar aficionado and Latin DJ David Zee in 2002. He named the bar after his DJ name, TinTin. Before that, it was the bar of Bolle Hans. And he is the one that turned it into a cigar bar.

Ten years later, Zee had to file for bankruptcy. That was due to personal and medical difficulties. Three of his longtime guests took over. They redecorated the place. And changed the name to The Cat, Jazz & Cigar Bar. That partnership didn’t last long. One by one the co-owners dropped out. And finally, the only member of trio standing was Sander van Oyen.

He sold the bar to JG Entertainment who, in their turn, sold The Cat to the current owner, Yilmaz Gungor. And Gungor has his work cut out for him. Due to mismanagement, most of the Dutch cigar distributors stopped doing business with The Cat. Those relationships are now being restored according to Gungor. 

Ministry of Cigars The Cat Jazz & Cigar bar

The humidor

The Cat reopened last Sunday and Gungor told us that he’s planning cigar events. For now, he carries brands like Gurkha, Royal Danish, Casdagli Cigars and Los Blancos. But he hopes to expand his selection of cigars on a short term. After restoring the relationships with other distributors, more brands should be available.

The Cat will be open from Monday till Friday from 6 pm till 1 am. During the weekends, The Cat will open at 4 pm till 4 am. And owner Yilmaz Gungor will be running the bar by himself. The Cat is located next to the Stadsshouwburg, Mauritsstraat 1B, in Rotterdam.

Rotterdam is the only Dutch city with a cigar bar. And they have two. Besides The Cat, there is another great cigar bar called Jacks’ Cigar Bar.

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