Spider House Cafe, a coffee shop and bar by the University of Texas at Austin campus, has officially closed its doors, as reported by Austin 360. Spider House was located at 2908 Fruth Street in the North Campus area.
Spider House opened in 1995, and the funky house quickly became known as a campus-area hangout open to all ages. It served coffee and alcoholic drinks, food (until its kitchen shut down in 2018), and was home to food trucks, like vegan burger truck Arlo’s. The cafe had been closed since the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020, and owner Conrad Bejarano told the publication there was “no point” in reopening elsewhere due to rising costs of operation.
Now, the cafe space has been leased to a group that includes Jason McNeely and Brian Tweedy (Hotel Vegas) and Amy Mullins (Yellow Jacket Social Club, Kinda Tropical). Mullins told Austin 360 the space will serve cocktails, but the exact plans are still under development.
Spider House Ballroom, the event space located adjacent to Spider House at 2906 Fruth Street, will remain open. That will soon operate under new ownership from Chris Baker, owner of Arlo’s. Bejarano also owned the now-closed I Luv Video, which is being turning into a second location of Lazarus Brewing.
The cafe has had its fair share of scandal over the years. Bejarano’s partner in opening Spider House, John Dorgan, was accused of sexual assault by a former employee and his partner for an incident that happened in 2014. When that incident came to light in 2018, Dorgan, facing demotion to silent partner and being banned from Spider House, sued his accusers and Bejarano for slander.