Ride-through cafe is home-from-home for Cairo bikers

CAIRO (Reuters) - Motorcyclists in Cairo have taken to hanging out at a cafe where they can drive their bikes through the front door and get a bit of the love they feel is lacking on the streets of their city.

The Biker’s Joint in Zamalek, a fashionable district of the Egyptian capital, allows riders to grab some refreshment while mechanics check over their bikes.

“You can take your motorcycle and park it next to your table. We take the bike and put it through maintenance or clean-up,” cafe owner Mohanad Alshayeb told Reuters Television.

“When you’re waiting for your motorcycle, you can drink or eat something or play some Xbox.”

The bikers themselves say other road users often don’t understand them and see their powerful machines as a noisy nuisance. They hope the cafe can help overcome such attitudes.

Biker Hatem Khalifa said: “The biker community in Egypt needs more awareness so this place provides this, even for those who are not bikers. Those who come here get a better idea about who bikers are.”

There is also an effort to encourage women to ride, something unusual in Egypt.

“The idea is very convenient for females and males alike,” said biker Yara Mahmoud. “One is not subject to harassment.”

Writing by Giles Elgood; Editing by Mark Trevelyan