The Bar of Bin Laden

Just listening to Ozzy, relaxing with Osama...

How would you like to chill out with Osama bin Laden, sipping a glass of scotch, and listening to a little Black Sabbath? While hanging with Osama might not seem like everyone’s cup of tea, one man in Brazil is making a living from that very set-up.

As Bin Laden was gaining infamy in the aftermath of 9/11, a resident of São Paulo, Ceará Francisco Helder Braga Fernandes, was also gaining fame in Brazil, thanks to his remarkable resemblance to the late Saudi terrorist.

After bin Laden became Public Enemy No. 1, concerned citizens contacted the police to report that he was laying low in the Anhangabau neighbourhood of São Paulo, running a heavy metal bar. When police officers followed up on these unlikely leads, they found Francisco sporting a long grey Osamaesque beard. Some officers were so taken back by his resemblance to the Al Qaeda leader that they posed for photos with him, and things snowballed from there.

Osama bin Laden with a punter at his heavy metal bar

Amused by the many mix-ups, the look-alike took it all in his stride and came to accept his resemblance, but is always quick to point out that it only extends to his appearance. "The difference is that I'm always laughing" says Francisco, a fun loving barkeep, now known as Uncle Bin to his regular customers.

Where many would have shied away from this similarity, Francisco is a man of shrewdness and good humour. He started dressing more like the militant Saudi and people loved it. After a short while, he went on to rename his establishment the Bar do Bin Laden (Bar of Bin Laden).

Now a popular haunt for Anhangabau’s heavy metal fans, with the World Cup taking place in Brazil this summer, the terrorist themed metal bar is looking likely to gain global recognition with those looking for somewhere a bit different to relax in the evenings.

Ceare Francisco Helder Braga Fernandes (aka Uncle Bin) hugging a female metal fan

If you’re travelling to the World Cup this summer, aren’t easily offended, and enjoy the sounds of Ozzy Osbourne and Iron Maiden, perhaps you can tick off “pint with a terrorist leader” from your bucket list, at Anhangabau’s unique and bizarre, Bar do Bin Laden.