Guinness, music, literature, its people and original pubs have been some of Ireland’s greatest commodities. An Irish pub is not just a bar or restaurant. In Ireland, the pub is at the heart of social life. It is a community gathering place for friends and musicians. A true Irish pub is distinguished by its “craic,” an Irish term referring to positive interaction among people through conversation, stories and music. To create an atmosphere of “craic” our pub is uniquely designed to offer a meeting place for good conversation, live Irish entertainment, good food and, of course, the perfect pint of Guinness.
Choosing the right name for our pub was extremely important. We wanted our name to tell a lot about the pub experience and, after studying many names, cities in Ireland and pub culture, we decided on Rúla Búla. Taken from the Irish Gaelic language expression "rí rá agus ruaille buaille" it translates to "uproar and commotion" in the context of a celebratory and fun time. We phoneticized the expression into Rúla Búla to simplify pronunciation in English. We felt Rúla Búla was an appropriate selection for the upbeat, fun image the City of Tempe portrays. Particularly on Mill Avenue, which is often, open only to foot traffic during the many festivities that take place throughout the year.
Rúla Búla is located in the historic Andre Building in downtown Tempe. R.G. Andre, a skilled saddlemaker, was a prominent businessman in Tempe. Long ago, before statehood, when Arizona was a pioneer town. While living in Phoenix, he built a Victorian-styled commercial building on Mill Avenue in 1888 and opened a saddlery and harness shop. In 1893 he moved to Tempe, Andre later joined with M. Mertz, who became his partner in Andre and Mertz, a store specializing in harnesses, saddlery and vehicles. Rúla Búla pays tribute to Captain Andre with an Irish saddlery-styled pub, which contains many of the bric-a-brac, flooring, lighting and interior design elements reflective of those more than100 years ago in Ireland.
In Ireland, a merchant’s shop would often double as a pub. A corner of the shop would be set aside for this very purpose. Customers would sit, sip Guinness and converse surrounded by shelves of merchandise. Irish pubs are a retreat from the real world and at the heart of Rúla Búla is the ready smile, the invitation to relax and enjoy good conversation, great food and drink, hospitality and humour. In a word—craic.