Utrecht bar first in Netherlands to ban smoking completely

Pop venue De Helling in Utrecht banned smoking completely starting this week. According to the bar, it is the first nightlife venue in the Netherlands to do so, RTL Nieuws reports.

"We had wanted to organize our bar more flexibly for some time", the organization said. "Because of the smoking area we were short on space. In addition, the complete ban on smoking in hospitality establishments is imminent. So 1+1=2 actually."

The current smoking area will be turned into a second stage. Visitors who still want to smoke, can go outside to do so. They will get a stamp from the bouncer so that they can come back in once they're done.

The lack of space was the main reason for De Helling to ban smoking, spokesperson Frank Brouwer said to music site 3voo12. "We are not taking the lead to ensure that all pop venues go smoke-free, but we always hope to inspire."