It’s ultimate beverages at St Kilda’s Prince Public Bar this weekend, as the enduring pub on the ground ground of the Prince of Wales Hotel takes damage to go through renovations.
After starting in 1936, the pub has become known as a fairly dicey watering hollow, but that changed after an overhaul via new owners Frank and John Van Haandel in 1999. In 2011, the Van Haandels offered it to businessman Gerry Ryan, who’s now at the back of the formidable reinvigoration of the whole in together with his son Andy.
The nine-month transformation of the artwork-deco pub is the final step inside the motel’s revival, with Iva Foschia of IF Architecture (who labored on the design of Attica, Marion and upstairs eatery Prince Dining Room, the impressive new generation of Melbourne eating group Circa) in the back of the new layout. Cantina restaurant and the floor-ground bar region can be combined into one expansive open-plan space with a large island bar within the center. A small keep selling wine and takeaway food will open onto Acland Street.
“[It’ll] feel like a traditional public bar needs to sense,” wellknown manager Reg Lodewyke tells Broadsheet. “There’ll be a nod to the records of the space at the same time as embracing the historical past of the constructing.”
During the renovations, it’ll be commercial enterprise as usual at stay-track space Prince Bandroom, the 39-room boutique resort upstairs, and the Prince Dining Room, where cooks Dan Hawkins (Stokehouse, Longrain) and Dan Cooper (Garden State Hotel) inside the kitchen, plating up seafood and vegetable-centered Mediterranean dishes.