a NEW pool bar is opening in Leeds city centre - and City Buzz got the first look round.
Dedicated pool bar Slate opens its doors tonight (June 18) at the former Lounge site.
The outside of the building on Merrion Street has stayed pretty much the same, but the inside has undergone quite a transformation.
The bar has been moved and a new seating area with booths has been installed.
There are now two floors of bar space and three outside areas – just in time for the summer.
The walls have been stripped back to reveal the brickwork and, of course, there are plenty of pool tables to entertain punters.
Drinks at Slate include quirky and classic cocktails, real ales, beer and wine, while the food offering is similar to LAB bar, with pizzas and sharing boards.
It’s safe to say this is a completely new look for the bar, which, up until now, had kept the same look for the past 15 years.
The new, modern decor does, however, manage to stay in keeping with the old-school feel of the Victorian building.
To be fair to bar company the Jones Bar Group, they have turned it round incredibly quickly.
In barely a month they have managed to transform the venue from an empty shell into a cool new bar.
But we are in safe hands, as Leeds brothers Matt, 34, and Ben, 29, own eight bars across the city.
Some of the bars in their portfolio include Roxy Lanes, Roxy Ballroom, Brooklyn Bar, 51% Bourbon and LAB, to name a few.
The pair have been in business together for 10 years and clearly know a thing or two about what’s going on in the city’s nightlife scene.
According to them, Merrion Street is the place to be right now.
Speaking previously to City Buzz, Matt said: “This area is the best place to go out in Leeds at the moment.
“Call Lane is still hugely busy with tourists and out-of-towners but the Northern Quarter is very much Leeds people.”
“You can feel a sense of independence up there and a lot of the operators are independent businesses.”
It seems the appeal of Merrion Street is still continuing.
With Brew Dog setting up shop at Crispin Lofts around the corner, and the Rum Shack set to open in the coming months, the area is set to get even busier.
There are still a couple of vacant units available in and around Merrion Street, so we’re keeping our fingers crossed there may soon be another newbie joining the ranks this year.