Overnight and early this morning, rumors began to circulate about the possible closure of The Bookworm, an international bookshop in Sanlitun. The shocking news was confirmed via The Bookworm’s official WeChat account, stating that they were unsuccessful in extending their lease and forced to move out by next week, with the possibility of halting operations as early as Monday, November 11. Until then, they are calling on their supporters to come by for the last few days, offering heavy discounts on books.
According to the venue’s statement, “Despite our best efforts, we appear to have fallen prey to the ongoing cleanup of “illegal structures,” and we have not been able to secure an extension of our lease.”
For the past 14 years, the celebrated space was an iconic part of the Beijing community, acting not only as a beloved bookshop, but as a venue for cultural events, literary festivals and informative talks, marking this unfortunate closure as the end of an era. Though uncertain, this may not be the last you see of The Bookworm, as they attempt to search for a new home.
The Bookworm’s official account had the following to say:
“A HUGE shout out to the countless authors, public intellectuals, policy makers, musicians, poets, performers, comedians, business leaders, embassies, international and domestic organizations and ad hoc community groups who we played host to over the years!!! You have our undying gratitude for the knowledge and insights so generously shared with the audiences which gathered under (and occasionally on top of) our roof. Your continued contributions and support have been and will remain essential in creating the uniquely vibrant, interesting and fun space we have enjoyed together. It is said that as soon as one door closes, another one opens, so we look forward to reconnecting with you as soon as possible.”
This news follows the closure of The Bookworm in Suzhou last year as well, along with its third location in Chengdu.
[Cover image via Pixabay]