This new eatery has a winning combination
The new three-storey drinks and dining destination in Cape Town, The Athletic Club Social has major design clout as well as a wide leisure offering
The charmingly kitted out Athletic Club and Social is spread over three levels – with the Trophy Room (moody bar space) downstairs, an elegant brasserie type dining room and bar on the ground floor and an additional bar and lounge area upstairs, complete with covered wraparound verandah to watch the world go by from above.
Located on the busy Buitengracht Street strip, it’s a little out of the way of the major bar and club nexus, which makes it a destination in its own right. Perfect for one on one dinners, big celebrations, after-work drinks, or brand functions, the plethora of different areas offers a host of types of spaces to meet.
A charming scheme packed with old-fashioned furniture – given an updated feel via a tongue in cheek twist and the clever mix of periods and styles – is a nod to the heritage of the building, but it feels fresh and inviting, playful even, rather than stiff and formal.
The story behind the nostalgic décor and sports memorabilia goes back to the origins of the venue. Originally owned by a sports fanatic in the early 1900s, it became a meeting place for the sports community across race lines. The basement was also turned into a speakeasy of sorts for people from all walks of life to meet during apartheid. As a result, vintage trophies, sports equipment and archival photographs dot the spaces as a reminder of what the space once represented.
The food is predominantly Mediterranean and tapas inspired.
Image Credit: Karl Rogers