New Irish bar already feels like home - owner
Christchurch's Bailies Irish Bar is back and it "feels like home", the co-owner says.
Stan and Lynne O'Keefe are "delighted" to be operating their business again and say the new Edgeware bar feels "pretty much like the old one".
The former Cathedral Square watering hole suffered major damage in the February 2011 earthquake and has since been demolished.
Stan O'Keefe said he and his wife salvaged all the items from the heritage category two Warner's Hotel building.
"That's who we are and that's what we wanted to recreate so we've still got that heritage feel and connection to the Antarctic," he said. "Apart from the high ceilings we had at Warner's, it feels like home."
The new bar, on the corner of Colombo St and Edgeware Rd, opened at the weekend and was already attracting positive feedback, O'Keefe said.
"We had locals coming in over and over again during the build and they kept asking when we would open and now the feedback is, ‘it's about time we had something like this in Edgeware'."
O'Keefe said the new bar was close enough to the central city to "not lose contact with the tourists".
The couple had poured "quite a bit" of money into their new venture.
The O'Keefes found the Edgeware premises last May and also secured the TAB site next door, doubling the size of the bar and restaurant. Some staff from the old business had "come along for the ride with us".
"We've got staff that have been with us for a long, long time and over the years they've learned what the punters want."
O'Keefe said he expected to draw some of Christchurch's new Irish contingent to the bar.
"We were the first to bring Guinness and the Guinness glasses into Christchurch so it's just great to be back doing what we do."