Chance and Counters Leeds: New board game cafe and bar takes over former Yard and Coop on Merrion Street
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Chance & Counters will open a new site in Merrion Street in December, its fifth venue in the UK and the first in the north of England. The business was founded in Bristol in 2016 by a group of friends and board game fans.
They set out to create the kind of venue that didn’t exist at that time - somewhere to switch off their phones and try out weird and wonderful board games in a relaxed environment.
The cafés are centred around a library of more than 500 board games, ranging from old-school family favourites to the latest new releases. Alongside the games, Chance & Counters will serve all-day food and drink.
By day, that means speciality coffee and tea, thick milkshakes and fresh smoothies, and light lunch fare. By night it’s craft beer, cocktails and wines paired with classic dirty diner cuisine like smash burgers, tacos, loaded fries and wings.
The premises at 6-8 Merrion Street was previously occupied by Yard & Coop before it closed down last year. Following a minor refurbishment, the venue will be open from December 8, six days a week (Tuesday-Friday).
On the ground floor the bar and light game area will have around 50 quick games that are free to play, and ample space for anyone just after a few drinks and a bite to eat - including an outside terrace on Merrion Street for the warmer months.
On the first floor there is a larger table-service area featuring bespoke gaming tables, the larger board game library, a small secondary bar and space for up to 70 people to play.
Upstairs customers pay a gaming fee of £2 per person, per hour to play the games. Chance & Counters has dedicated ‘board game gurus’ on-hand to suggest games, set them up and teach the rules. That means customers spend less time deciding what to play and how to play it, and more time enjoying the games.
Steve Cownie, managing director of Chance & Counters, said: “We’re beyond excited to be in Leeds. We’ve been looking here for nearly three years and when we found this spot on Merrion Street we knew it was the one.
"The hospitality scene is unbelievable and I hope we can bring something a little different that stands on its own alongside the best in the city. But we’ll let you be the judge of that.”