The owners of one Aberdeen city centre’s most popular pubs have unveiled plans for an al-fresco pop-up bar.
Part of the site of the former Bruce Millers music store on Union Street will be given a new lease of life as an “extension” to the nearby Soul Bar.
The shop itself closed in 2011, but PB Devco have seized upon an “amazing opportunity” to take over its location and turn it, albeit temporarily, into an exciting new outdoor venue.
Behind the Union Street frontage much of the old building has been cleared, leaving a huge courtyard space accessed from Langstane Place.
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It is there that the venue – to be named The Draft Project by Soul – is to open for the first time on Saturday, August 1.
The pop-up bar is expected to welcome customers for about two months, offering them an unusual spot to hang out in, an array of cocktails and draft beers – some specially created – and plenty of good music.
Paul Clarkson, operations director of PB Devco, said: “An amazing opportunity presented itself to us through an existing relation we had with the company and gentleman who looks after the Bruce Millers property.
“Obviously the venue is no longer there and as a result we have been given the chance to use the derelict and unfinished area.”
He added: “It is a brilliant space, right bang in the centre of town, and we’ve already experienced incredible demand for the outdoor areas we have at some of our venues.
“Soul Bar in particular has out-performed our expectations and the feedback we have been getting is that everyone is loving these outdoor areas.
“With this space becoming available we have been able to put up another marquee, similar to that at Soul and The Bieldside Inn.
“It will run similarly to these venues and will be an excellent addition to the city.
“We are very, very excited about it.”
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Posted by Soul Bar Aberdeen on Friday, 24 July 2020
A video posted online to tease the opening offers an indication of what the location has to offer.
Soul Bar, a few doors down, has proved to be one of the busiest destinations for Aberdonians since pubs and bars were allowed to reopen.
The owners erected another beer garden at the side of the venue to increase capacity for outdoor dining and drinking and implemented a number of Covid-19 safety measures.
Torry and Ferryhill SNP councillor Audrey Nicoll said: “I look forward to seeing the plans associated with this project as they are brought forward.
“Opportunities to bring one of the many vacant properties on Union Street back to life are very welcome, particularly where they make a positive contribution to people visiting, living and working in the area.”
Rosemount and Midstocket councillor, Tom Mason, greeted the plans by suggesting they may be like “marmite” to some people but believes the development could be good for the struggling economy.
He added: “Personally, I am a bit apprehensive, as it all depends on how it is managed, but if it is developed well, then it should be welcomed.”