A NEW ERA FOR A SYDNEY NIGHTLIFE ICON
Media Release: 23 November 2022
The long-awaited reopening of Sydney nightlife icon, The Abercrombie, is set for Friday 23 December.
Returning bigger and better, the multi-level heritage-listed space has undergone an incredible transformation with three venues now under the one roof to create one big party palace. On ground floor is the Abercrombie’s incredible performance and club space, public bar, and beer garden. The best party crews in Sydney, including House of Mince, Sweat it Out, Future Classic, Purple Sneakers, and Motorik, are set to host incredible, curated events - and with a 24-hour license, expect some epic, non-stop parties. Venture upstairs to Casa Rosa, a playful, late-night Italo-disco cocktail lounge and rooftop terrazza with DJs. Head into the adjoining terraces, which expand the footprint of the new Abercrombie, for an aperitivo wine bar and shop, Lil Sis, also open until the early hours.
A creative chameleon, the Abercrombie’s curated program of entertainment and events are progressive and champion inclusivity, diversity, and expression. To mark the opening, get ready for a 36-hour party kicking off at 5pm on 23 December and running non-stop until 5am on Christmas Day. Look forward to a packed line-up of some of Australia’s best tastemakers including Mike Who, Andy Garvey, Ayebatonye, and Dameeela. Closing out the year, expect a 7-day run of events from Boxing Day through to New Year's Day. International heavyweights Webbha and Jaytech (Anjunabeats) join a stacked NYD party; record label 'Sweat It Out' returns with its annual Sweaty Xmas featuring a surprise list of the label's top talent; House Of Mince opens Boxing Day with an unmissable open-air queer extravaganza, whilst Motorik! close the year with a secret international headliner on NYE.
Elliot Solomon, CEO of Solotel which bought the venue in 2016, says that this new era for the Abercrombie keenly recognises the rich party history while also establishing a new club culture experience for Sydney revellers.
“There’s a strong sense of responsibility reopening the Abercrombie given that formative memories of generations of Sydney partiers, including myself, were forged here,” explains Solomon. “We’re ecstatic to welcome back some of the OG club crews like Purple Sneakers. We’re also very aware that there’s a generation of kids who haven’t been able to experience those heady clubbing days in Sydney, for various reasons. This new era for the Abercrombie is focused on helping to redefine the fabric of Sydney’s nightlife as well as provide a platform for the next generation of party crews and clubbers to create their own culture-defining experiences.”
A true day through to late-night offering in Sydney, The Abercrombie opens through to 5am on weekends and 24 hours for special events. It caters to a wide range of musical tastes and provides a diverse set of experiences every night of the week. From balmy summer evening parties on the rooftop to after dark raves in the ground floor club space, lively day gatherings in the beer garden to relaxed aperitivo afternoons in the wine bar.
The NSW Government’s 24-Hour Economy Commissioner, Michael Rodrigues, adds: “The Abercrombie holds a special place in the story of Sydney's nightlife. For those of us who remember it, this announcement brings both nostalgia borne from its history, and excitement now as to its future. Its reinvention under the stewardship of Elliot Solomon and Solotel will be an inspiration for the creative community of Sydney - our next generation of designers, DJs, musicians, artists and fashion designers. And the multi-layered format will welcome different audiences through day and night for food, for drink, and for culture."
"Sydney continues to embrace a new era of nightlife with its notorious build-it-and-they-will-come attitude. The city is bejewelled with a swathe of new venues, and a welcoming tree-lined boulevard from Central to Circular Quay. The reopening of the Abercrombie is another sign that Sydney is back better than ever. Get off the couch. Come join the fun!”
During the day, when not hosting incredible DJ and performance talent, the Abercrombie’s public bar and beer garden become a casual neighbourhood local. On the menu, pizza-by-the-slice is the hero from daytime through to the early morning hours with at least seven delicious toppings to choose from - and they’re under $8 each. Pepperoni with Sicilian olives; cacio e pepe with pecorino, parmigiano and red pepper; pork and fennel sausage with chilli; and prawn with spinach and pickled chilli are just a few of the faves. Really hungry? Pick and mix a few slices or opt for one of the Italian-inspired mains that range from lamb tagliatelle with green sauce and pangrattato to blue-eye trevalla with cannellini or a grain-fed sirloin with kipfler potatoes. The drinks are a solid public bar offering of beers, seltzers and spirits plus four refreshing cocktails on tap - a spritz, margarita, paloma, and dark ‘n stormy – an ideal transition from sunny beer garden to club party vibes.
Charged with re-designing the mostly heritage-listed interiors are H&E Architects (Barangaroo House, Chiswick Woollahra) and eclectic creative force, Michael Delany (Honkytonks, Piccolo Bar). The centrepiece of the ground floor performance and club space is the sculptural and recessed-lit DJ ‘pyramid’ stage that transitions seamlessly between casual bleacher-style seating in pub mode, dancing podiums in club mode, and can be built out to support larger live performances. A world-class Funktion-One speaker system guarantees one of the best club sound experiences in Sydney. Inside, there’s a juxtaposition of old meets new. The restored 100-year-old pub floor tiles are surrounded by floor to ceiling gold velvet curtains, Babekhul-programmed LED lighting features, exposed original walls, honey-stained timbers, sculptural lighting, a high communal table and horseshoe booths with olive-brushed leather banquettes. Outdoors the style is garden alfresco with pops of colour from red handmade furniture and booth seating, lush greenery throughout which is centred by a living rock-style sculpture created by Delany himself, and the original pub beer garden brick pavers.
Head to the website for more information on the events set to take over the Abercrombie’s summer season. A cultural movement. A party destination. A historical icon. A local treasure.
More to come on Casa Rosa and Lil Sis next week.