One place immediately stands out from a myriad of bars and restaurants of Old Town in Riga, and it is not for the feint of heart. Hospitalis is a crossroad of fetishes. It is a burlesque, fetishy, kitsch world of an imagined twisted hospital from an age long gone, a place that Mark Ryden, Tim Burton or American McGee might feel at home.
The allure of Hospitalis restaurant is a peculiar mix of hedonism and aseptic dread of hospitals. Here bartenders wear lab coats and waitresses and are dressed in skimpy nurse uniforms and fluorescent orange wigs. They will strap you in a strait jacket and spoon feed you if you order that special item in the menu, and sign the mandatory agreement. Meals are served in stainless steel dishes and eaten with surgical utensils. Drinks are served in medical beakers and test tubes.
It’s a horror show meets dinning experience, one that takes your sense of reality, and possibly a sensitive stomach, for a dark, dream-like roller-coaster ride.
Hospitalis is no longer in business.