Selfridges launched the smallest cocktail bar in London.
To celebrate the first anniversary of Men’s Shoe Galleries on 1, Selfridges high-end department store has commissioned critically acclaimed product and interior designer Lee Broom to design an innovative new pop up bar in its Men’s Shoe Department and operated by restaurateur, Mark Hix.
The new bar is the first of its kind in a retail environment. The project, called Mark’s Bar, comprises of a collection of beautifully designed furniture that transforms into an operating bar that not only looks striking and in keeping with the high end fashion surroundings of Selfridges, but is also completely moveable, so it can be relocated to different areas of the department store.
I have a great deal of experience in furniture, bar and high end retail design, so combining all three disciplines into one brief was an exciting prospect. There were many unique requirements which ultimately have really enhanced the design of the pieces and I’m very proud of the result,’ said Lee Broom.
“It is great to have the smallest cocktail bar in the largest men’s shoe wear department in the world. As with the original Mark’s Bar in Soho, we aim to create some fantastic cocktails, but this time taking inspiration in our approach from famous shoemakers,“ commented Mark Hix.
There are three main pieces to the collection: a sideboard, a hostess trolley and a tall boy drawer set – each with a distinct and important function to the operation of the bar. Every piece is entirely bespoke and hand crafted in the UK using walnut wood with polished and brushed brass accents. It was critical to employ durable materials to enhance the practicality of the bar. When the bar is not in use, the components sit together as a beautiful installation of lounge furniture that complements the retail environment. When in operation, the pieces seamlessly transform to display and house everything one would need in a working bar. The spirits cabinet, for example, elevates from the interior of the sideboard and the work surface raises up to reveal the inner workings of the bar.
When designing the bar concept, Broom was inspired by 1960’s America, when entertaining at home was growing in popularity, and the silhouettes and materials of Mid-century design. The bar recreates the sense of theatre from that era, producing a heightened version of home entertaining. To tie the bar design together and help create a domestic atmosphere, Broom has added an oversized circular mirror using the same wood and brass finishes. A matching long wooden table and stools accompany the bar so shoppers can sit and enjoy one of the delicious cocktails on offer amid the bustling shop floor.