The newest addition to the booming Lower South End area is set to open its doors very soon.
Queen Park Social is aiming to open to the public later this week in the 18,000 square-foot warehouse across the street from The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery on Yancey Road.
The social club will offer drinks, food, bowling, games and more, and will bring even more life to a bustling area that already has a cidery (GoodRoad), two breweries (OMB and Sugar Creek), two distilleries (Great Wagon Road and Doc Porter’s) and a controversial nickname (LoSo).
On Monday, owner Joe Lariscy showed me around the converted warehouse, which was built in the 1960s, as workers put finishing touches on Queen Park Social. It’s huge, looks awesome and I think people are going to love it.
Here’s what you can expect when it opens:
– A huge bar at the center of it all. The massive, U-shaped bar will have more than 30 seats and 24 taps. The retro, sea foam green bar stools are a nice touch.
– A dining area off to one side, with tables made of reclaimed wood from a farm in Shelby. The dining area will also have a “plug-in community table,” where you can sit down with a laptop and get some work done — though I don’t know how you’d get any work done with all of the fun distractions around. There’s also a private room off the back of the dining room.
– For food, Queen Park Social will offer what Lariscy is calling “Gastro Tex-Mex” — a simple, one-page menu featuring burgers, quesadillas, tacos and more. For late-night, Queen Park will have pizza and wings, and it will be open for brunch Saturday and Sunday. (The menu is posted on Queen Park’s website, but Lariscy said they might tweak it a bit before opening.)
– The whole other half of the building is dedicated to games. You can choose from shuffleboard courts and tables, Skee-Ball, darts and more. There’s also a pull-down projection screen to show, say, certain huge basketball games that are happening this weekend.
– The eight-lane bowling alley takes up the back corner of the space. And instead of sitting in those terrible plastic chairs you find at old-school lanes, you’ll get to relax in big comfy couches here when it’s not your turn.
Prolific artists Matt Moore and Matt Hooker are putting their mark on the huge back wall beside the lanes with a mural that reads “Be Social.”
– The patio faces Yancey Street and features a couple little outdoor lounge areas and some picnic tables.
– The iconic Queen Park Cinema sign that towered above South Boulevard for 50 years stands tall behind the building.
– Hours: 4 p.m.-midnight Monday-Thursday; 3 p.m.-2 a.m. Friday; 11 a.m.-2 a.m. Saturday; 11 a.m.-midnight Sunday. Lariscy said he hopes Queen Park will become a place where people come after the breweries close.
“We’re a different offering in this neighborhood that’s got a lot going on,” he said.
Photos: Sallie Funderburk