Sydney's iconinc Lansdowne Hotel is preparing to host live music again.
Builders have gutted the first floor and are creating a purpose-built 250-capacity live room. New bar, new stage, new everything.
The building has been bought by Jake Smyth and Kenny Graham (The Unicorn Hotel in Paddington). "There's a hole in the market for an intermediate-size room," Smyth told Fairfax, with timing that must refer, in part, to the scheduled closure of Newtown Social Club later this month.
Booking agent Matt Rule told Seventh Street Media the upstairs bar and smoking area will allow patrons to maintain the vibe and remain upstairs whereas previously punters were forced downstairs for a smoke and a drink.
And the pokies... gone. "We f%&*ing hate them," exclaimed said Smyth. "we're not expecting to make money out of live music. Sydney is a very food-motivated city. It's not about the food, it's not even about music, it's about culture," he said.
The Lansdowne is not geographically affected by the lockout laws and can open until 3am.