Monday, September 04, 2006

Month of Sundays #2: Chalk Hotel

Chalk Hotel
735 Stanley St

Two words spring to mind. Huge, and posey.

We could leave it there, really, but that wouldn't be so much of a review then, would it? So let's press on.

Wandering up to the hotel, we thought it was just a little bar, found a table outside and wondered where all the people were. Then we ventured inside to discover that the place is huge, with staircases and random levels and bars every which way. It all felt a bit space-aged – there’s a lot of glass panels and stainless steel – but also very cool in both senses of the word. I was impressed with the use of space and light inside; less impressed with the layout and slightly excessive number of staircases.

On this Father’s Day afternoon there were a few families in the lower level, along with a whole bunch of flat screens showing a whole bunch of sport. The lowest bar had comfy looking brown leather couch-type things, and put me in mind of a furniture showroom. The unofficial uniform for the dads seemed to be a striped green shirt with beige shorts. You have been warned.

Venturing higher up, we discovered more bars, a DJ playing downtempo and a very pleasant looking veranda with tables and chairs. Unfortunately for us, the tables that weren’t occupied with fashionable young things were reserved, presumably for more fashionable young things. So we retreated back towards the cool inside of the hotel and consoled ourselves with some $3 Coronas. Yes, you read right. Coronas were $3. Less watery beers were a bit more, although not in the realm of expensive. We weren’t able to work out if it was a Sunday special or a promo of some sort, but we were pretty happy either way.

There was food, chips and things done with a bit of a posh twist, although I wouldn’t recommend trying to share the pizza – it looked tasty though. I would have tasted it, but there really wasn’t enough to share. We didn’t look at the restaurant menu, although the restaurant itself looked alright. The staff were pleasant enough, but a little too cool for school at times.

The most entertaining part, to be honest, was watching the young folks parade around and eye each other off. I’ve never been together enough on a Sunday afternoon to doll myself up like it was Saturday night and head off to see and be seen; perhaps some part of my upbringing was lacking. But it’s ok, I don’t think I’m really the Chalk Hotel’s target market. Like the posey kids, a lot of the features seemed to be there just for the sake of being cool. Take the toilets – unisex hand basins might seem funky and edgy, but where are the girls supposed to go to gossip, fix their makeup, and generally talk crap in private? And I hate to think about how many high heels go tripping down those random staircases when the lights go down and the music gets louder.

The verdict:

Relaxing beer on a Sunday? Yes, passably.
On a Saturday night? Not if you paid me.
Recommend to my 18 year old cousin and her giggly gal pals? For sure.


Blogger Russell Allen said...

Chalk is little a gayified RSL. Fact!

5:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Gayified? Possibly true, just not enough gays to make it live up to that name. It seems all that area around Woollongabba is a bit dead at the moment, which is a shame, since a lot of people have invested a fair bit of money into doing Stanley Street up. Hopefully when that finally filled hole in the ground on the corner of Stanley and Ipswich brings in some much needed business, because its such a shame to let the area get run down once again. As this is one of the first places people see when they exit the highway before the city.

As for the pizzas, yes they are smallish (about the size of a medium at dominoes or pizzahut), but they are yummy, and have now dropped in price by a fair bit (dearest is now $9.50).

And if you thought it was huge, its now even bigger, they have added a whole new club to the back of it which will be the lions members club, this place is massive.

2:11 AM  
Anonymous Brisbane Shopfitters said...

Shop fitting cycle begins with a survey and measurement of available space and preparing design drawings for submission to the client. Alternatively, the client may have their own drawings prepared by an independent interior designer. The shop fitter arranges for purchase of standard equipment and merchandize or production of bespoke, delivers and physically installs them — until the shop is ready for daily operation.

6:32 PM  

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