For anyone who's looking for new, artistic places to grab a drink, check out the Windup Space in the Station North Arts District, just north of the Charles Theatre.
Last Thursday we were grabbing cocktails at the super hip Zodiac (although soon to be no more, sadly), and when we asked for other cool, burgeoning bars in the area, some locals directed us to the Windup Space.
It was only about 7:30 on a Thursday night, so we had the bar and owner, Russell, completely to ourselves. Poor soul. But Russell had just the vision we were searching for. Polished, exclusive nightlife is fun every now and then, but what we often find ourselves searching for more regularly are edgy locals with passions that go beyond shopping and working out. Boring.
Russell designed the Windup Space to be an outlet where art and nightlife can merge in an approachable atmosphere. He took over an old department store building, refinished the cement floors, painted the walls a deep grey, and has turned the walls into an art gallery. The best feature, however, is the giant film screen at the front of the space. When we walked in, Russell was playing video games on it, but for our sake he switched it to an early 1900s silent film. He regularly features films for free, usually public domain films, which were made before 1960. Local bands are invited to play on a regular basis, too. (Don't think we didn't pitch the Aeroport Rocking Chairs. And Joe's art. Shameless, we are).
Russell designed a space that almost tricks bar-hoppers into thinking they're at an average watering hole where the focus is on booze; in fact, he's used the concept of a bar to people in the door, and then they're surprised to find a hidden art collection or vintage film or music scene that sucks them in and makes them feel very rocker-chic. Ok, I'm speaking for myself on that, but I'll bet you I'm not alone.
The Windup Space just opened May 17th, and it's right next to Tapas Teatro, Hexagon, Joe Squared, Club Charles, and Sophie's.