In a scenario that feels oddly reminiscent of that scene from Season Three of Game Of Thrones following the whole ‘Red Wedding’ thing ***obligatory spoiler alert warning*** when, having massacred half the Stark family, the Freys proceed to stitch the decapitated head of Rob Stark’s direwolf onto his dead body and parade it around while drinking and laughing, the corpse of the Newtown Social Club is similarly set to be reanimated as a mini-golf bar.
The Brag reports that the new proprietors of the cherished live music venue formerly known as The Sando are planning to give the building a facelift ahead of its grand reopening as Holey Moley Sydney; half cocktail bar, half mini-golf course, “no ifs, just putts”.
“We just checked and no, it’s not April 1 yet,” anti-lockouts movement Keep Sydney Open posted on Facebook in response to the news.
Funlab, a Victoria-based company which operates Holey Moley, as well as the Sky Zone trampoline centres and the Strike Bowling chain, has reportedly inked a new lease for the iconic King Street watering hole, in a bid to expand their lucrative mini-golf empire into the Sydney market.
“We’ve set the par high with this one,” the official website for the fully operational Brisbane branch of Holey Moley spruiks. “With 18 uniquely themed holes that turns traditional putt putt into a multi-sensory labyrinth of amusing holes that’ll keep you on your toes across the craziest round of golf you’ve ever played… Your crew hang will never be the same.”
It comes after Newtown Social’s owners announced its imminent closure back in January, citing Sydney’s “current regulatory climate” and “the inherent challenges therein” for making the business “unsustainable”.
Luckily, it seems the current regulatory climate could be just the ticket for a new venue filled with brightly coloured golf balls, zanily themed holes and fun for the whole family to thrive because THIS IS OUR LIVES NOW, SYDNEY.
If you’re feeling a bit tee’d off by this news, then don’t worry, you’re not alone:
However, there may be a tiny glimmer of hope for the Newtown Social’s live music legacy, with Funlab CEO Michael Schreiber telling The Brag that they plan to continue hosting live acts.
“We’re very conscious that Newtown Social Club has been an absolute cornerstone to the Sydney live music industry, helping launch and support local artists, and we intend only to strengthen its reputation with the launch of our new Holey Moley venue,” he says.
“We’re committed to maintaining a music element and have some absolutely phenomenal plans in place to assure the venue reflects the tastes of the community.”
We’ll definitely be interested to hear what these phenomenal plans entail, and if they’re more than just a DJ spinning Top 40 tunes or an acoustic two-piece playing covers in the corner by the caddyshack we’ll be very impressed.
In the meantime, the Newtown Social Club — which has seen performances from the likes of The Vines, SAFIA, Stonefield, KLP, City Calm Down, Kingswood, Primal Fear, Gang Of Youths, former Prime Ministerial contender turned DJ extraordinaire Anthony Albanese plus too many more incredible acts to name since its 2014 facelift — has called last drinks on April 23rd of this year, so get on down and pay homage to its incredible legacy of live music before it goes the way of Happy Gilmore’s chill.