Vladimir Putin-themed café opens in Siberia

Russian president-inspired eatery has put Barack Obama’s face on its toilet paper

From the outside, President Café, which opened last month, is not that different from other eating places in the working-class residential areas of Krasnoyarsk, a city in eastern Siberia.

He might be 4,000 km away in Moscow, but just step into this eatery and you can find the world of Vladimir Putin, with dozens of pictures of his life from childhood to the Kremlin.

Black-and-white or in colour, amateur and professional, his image looks down on you from the walls of the entrance hall and escorts you right to the table.

There’s Putin as a schoolboy, Putin with his wife and holding a newly-born daughter, Putin the steely-eyed KGB agent, Putin in a judo bout, Putin inspecting a submarine, among others.


Want to pose with Russia’s most popular man? No problem - his lifesize standup picture is waiting for your hug or handshake by the bar stand.

“When we got together with partners to open a new café, we thought of a concept that would attract customers and guarantee its success,” said Dmitry Zhdanov, a 26-year-old entrepreneur and co-owner.

"And it then dawned on us: Russia still had no café or restaurant fully dedicated to Putin, Russia's most popular politician!" he said.

“This is how our concept appeared. Then we worked on the design.”

Toilet paper

But step away to the restrooms and there's another designer "surprise" - graffiti-daubed pictures of US president Barack Obama and his German and British allies, complete with Obama's face on toilet paper.

Toilet mats bear the colours of the US flag.

The pictures, which also include one of Ukraine’s pro-Western prime minister Arseny Yatseniuk, are covered with handwritten Russian curses.

Want to add your “I-was-here” autograph? Just use the black marker pen to hand.

“I am neutral towards Western politicians,” Zhdanov said.

“This is just business, nothing personal,” he added, though he refers to “the aggravating political situation in the world and, notably, around Russia”.

“People react the way they consider appropriate, and we give them this opportunity,” he said. “But, in general, we see this as entertainment.”