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Austin’s First Cat Cafe Signs Lease on East Side

Coming this September.

Blue Cat Cafe's future home on Navasota
Blue Cat Cafe's future home on Navasota
Nadia Chaudhury is the editor of Eater Austin covering food and pop culture, as well as a photographer, writer, and frequent panel moderator and podcast guest.

Austin’s first cat cafe has found its forever home at 95 Navasota Street. Blue Cat Cafe owner Rebecca Gray signed the lease to the building, and is working on getting contractors now, according to the Kickstarter update she sent last week. She's aiming to open the cafe in September.

The address is adjacent to the recently contested space on 1401 Cesar Chavez, where the demolished piñata store was located. In March, the owners of the property attempted to host a SXSW party at the site, which was cancelled due to protests. The same group later explored creating a food trailer park for a potential co-working space on the properties.

Gray launched the Blue Cat Cafe’s crowdfunding campaign in February. To help raise additional money, she also held kitten parties and pop-ups, and ran a pedicab during SXSW. By April, Gray raised $62,533. Once open, adoptable cats for petting and cuddling can be found in the "catio." All-vegan food trucks will be parked in the back. There will also be plenty of feline-punned Caturday events like kitty yoga, a "masquerade yarn ball," and art classes.

Gray has been working with Kate Benjamin, co-author of Catification and "cat style expert" at Hauspanther, to help figure out the design of the space. There will be a soft opening where Kickstarter contributors can explore and test out the cafe.

First animals at #catcafe are dogs. #whoops #buildingout

A photo posted by Blue Cat Cafe (@thebluecatcafe_austin) on

Cat cafe mania is all over the country: DC’s Crumbs & Whiskers opened last month. Philadelphia’s looking to get its own with Kawaii Kitty Cafe, as is Rhode Island with The Purrfect Cup.

Feline lovers will soon have a safe space in the dog-loving city.