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Radar Is Melbourne CBD's New Nightclub and Bar in the Former Lounge Site

After 29 years, the Swanston Street space has a new tenant.
By Libby Curran
July 16, 2019
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Radar Is Melbourne CBD's New Nightclub and Bar in the Former Lounge Site

After 29 years, the Swanston Street space has a new tenant.
By Libby Curran
July 16, 2019
  shares

Radar Bar and Nightclub has some pretty big shoes to fill, taking over the space that was once home to legendary live music venue Lounge for almost thirty years. But if anyone can do it justice and deliver Melbourne a cracking new home for independent music, it's new owners hospitality group Cast of Falcons.

Adding to a stable of popular haunts that includes Section 8, Ferdydurke, The B.East and Globe Alley, the team has reopened the Swanston Street site over the weekend, setting out to deliver a winning mix of diverse tunes, booze and late-night fun.

Julia Sansone

The team has given the space a quick overhaul, with a fit-out that's a little more grown-up than its predecessor, yet still laidback and comfy. The DJ booth has been relocated and lowered to open up the room, while plush green curtains and banquettes have created a series of cosy nooks for camping out between sets. A Funktion One sound system and lighting from acclaimed studio John Fish help bring things to life. And, of course, that stellar balcony remains, primed for the warmer afternoons to come.

The music offering is set to be an eclectic one, spread across a considered program of regular club nights and ticketed gigs. From hip hop and techno to funk and jazz, it'll all be getting a workout at Radar.

A slew of well-known labels and music collectives are joining in the fun, with the likes of 1800 Tequila's Thursday hip hop night and a weekly Friday party digging into deep French house and techno. You'll catch a loaded calendar of gigs with plenty of international names pencilled in for later this year, too.

Julia Sansone

In a similar spirit, independent labels reign supreme across the drinks list, headlined by a solid rotation of craft brews that currently includes the likes of Hop Nation's The Chop IPA, the Juicy NEIPA from 3 Ravens and Bad Shepherd's pilsner. You'll spy an organic-heavy wine selection peppered with plenty of French drops, like Goisot's 2017 aligoté from Burgundy.

A crafty range of signature cocktails includes drinks like the caffeine-charged Black Mamba – a blend of 1800 coconut tequila, cold drip, coffee liqueur and orange bitters — and a couple of house tap cocktails will be joining the lineup soon. A food offering is slated to launch later this year, too once the kitchen has had a revamp of its own.

Radar celebrated its soft opening over the weekend, but you catch the launch of the new weekly Wednesday party Connecting Service from 9pm on July 17.

Find Radar Bar & Nightclub at 1/243 Swanston Street, Melbourne. It's from Wednesday–Thursday, 4pm–3am and Friday–Saturday 4pm–6am.

Images: Julia Sansone

Published on July 16, 2019 by Libby Curran

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