Personal reflections on urbanism, urban life and sustainable urban design in Wellington, New Zealand.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Mystery bar number 58

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It's been a while since my last mystery bar, which as I confirmed shortly afterwards in my wheat beer roundup, was of course the new Malthouse. It's getting harder to find bars that are obscure enough to offer a challenge, so I hope today's will be a little more mysterious.

Mystery bar #58 - the barIt's definitely in a place that's hard to find, and where a bar would be very unexpected. It's a bit of a stretch to call it a "bar", since it's clearly more of a café or restaurant, but then it does call itself a "café and bar" and it even has cocktail specials on a Friday night. It's hard to imagine this place really getting raucous, and the clientèle seem like they should be far too sensible for that sort of thing anyway.

Mystery bar #58 - cellphone and windowIt's in a space that has a lot of inherent character, with its high-raftered ceiling, brick walls and interesting views, but it seems like the designers have gone out of their way to neutralise that character with blandly corporate décor. Judging by the proportion of customers wearing suits and talking on cellphones, though, that's no doubt deliberate and highly appropriate. But if they're serious about being a bar, they really ought to come up with a more interesting selection of drinks and get some snappier service. A bar in a place like this could conceivably work quite nicely, but it's quite an ambitious move, and I don't see it taking off without a better point of difference.


At 3:49 pm, May 20, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Shed 5?

At 9:38 am, May 21, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not much of a view from those sheds is there?

Not that I can come up with any better suggestion.

At 9:44 am, May 21, 2007, Blogger Tom said...

"Not much of a view from those sheds is there?"

Well, from Shed 5 there's a good view of the water, and there may eventually be a view of a nice new hotel rather than a rusting shed ;-)

But no, it's not on the waterfront.

At 2:05 pm, May 21, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmm, maybe im getting confused about which shed is which. I thought 5 was one of the brick ones on the side of the road, both of which have buildings in front them now.

Im still struggling to think of anywhere close enough for suits that is brick with views.

At 3:20 pm, May 21, 2007, Blogger Tom said...

Those are Sheds 11 and 13. Shed 11 may (if central govt steps in with funding) become home to the Centre for Photography & National Portrait Galery, complete with cafe; and Shed 13 is being refurbished and will probably be an events/exhibition space; but neither have bars.

The place in question doesn't have expansive water views, but it does have quite interesting urban views.

At 3:57 pm, May 21, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I haven't been in there, so I've no idea if it matches the photos... but from the description I'd guess The Loft?? (That place must have the worst promotional budget ever, it's right outside my back door, and no-one in our building has even heard of it, let alone been in there!)


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