The Australian company behind Auckland's mini golf bar Holey Moley is gearing up to launch its latest take on the traditional nightlife scene: an arcade bar.
Hospitality-driven entertainment company Funlab which operates Strike bowling alleys, amusement arcades, indoor trampoline parks Sky Zone and most recently Holey Moley is gearing up to open Archie Brothers Cirque Electriq in the new Westfield Newmarket mega-mall on September 19.
The company describes the bar with arcade machines and mini theme park rides as "Glastonbury meets Cirque du Soleil". The bar is circus-themed and houses a bowling alley, bumper cars, carousels, small scale theme park rides and serves up over the top milkshakes.
There will also be an American-style diner onsite serving up "colourful burgers", hot dogs and "instagrammable cocktails".
Funlab operates Archie Brothers Cirque Electriq locations in Melbourne and Sydney.
Funlab spent $3 million kitting out its themed mini-golf bar Holey Moley on Auckland's waterfront, which opened in October last year. The company operates more than 10 Holey Moley bars in Australia, most housed in former nightclubs.
Holey Moley sold $130,000 worth of corporate functions ahead of its opening last year.
Michael Schreiber, chief executive of the $100m company, told the Herald last year that the expectation of nightlife entertainment was changing and consumers no longer wanted to go to a bar to only drink.
"People used to go to nightclubs and bars to hook up, meet other people and find dates, but people don't do that anymore because of the internet," Schreiber said.
"Just being a traditional bar, or certainly a nightclub, [isn't enough]. Bars have to have some real reason for people to visit ... what we do is give people a reason to come - it's a lot of fun. It does also happen to be a great Tinder date spot."
Bars and nightclub closures have plagued New Zealand's hospitality industry in recent years. The Restaurant Association's latest hospitality report which canvassed the 2017 year shows the number of pubs, taverns and bars decreased - recorded at 1578 venues in 2017, down from 1599 in 2016 and 1623 in 2015.
Funlab was founded in 2002 and for its first 10 years in business ran only its bowling alleys. In its last financial year, it had a turnover of A$100 million ($108m). This year it forecasts turnover of A$150m.