Shockingly green velvet, big brass bar features, gaudy carpet patterns, All The Palms — one of Neutral Bay's most beloved pubs is going back to the '30s. Founded in 1885 and home to one of Sydney's very best beer gardens, The Oaks is entering a new phase, now seeing its upstairs bar transformed by Sydney design queen Sibella Court.
Straightforwardly dubbed The Oaks Upstairs, the pub's upper levels have been Courted into a bright, gaudy 1930s den of art deco meets art nouveau sophistication — with a serious amount of drapery. According to The Oaks' team, the new look pays homage to the pub's historic owners, the Furlongs, along with current owners, the Thomas family. Upstairs boasts three different areas with their own theming: The Terrace and Spare Room, The Licensee's Flat and The Dining Room.
We're always down for drinking cocktails in venues that look like either the set of a Wes Anderson or Baz Luhrmann film, so this is great news for all. Expect dramatic mirrored surfaces jostling with those busy but fabulous prints the '30s were renowned for, large pool room murals reminiscent of Sonia Delaunay and Clarice Cliff, and a covered patio that's a green, gaudy delight. Start brainstorming your most fabulous post-war outfits for a night out here.
Court's design firm The Society Inc. is behind some of the most high-profile renos and interior design shake-ups Sydney has seen in recent years, from luxe AF AirBnb listings to the renovation of Hotel Palisade. She's also designed and styled Merivale establishments such as Palings, Mr Wongs, Palmer & Co., El Loco and Ms.G's.
The Oaks Upstairs is up top at 118 Military Rd, Neutral Bay. Open Monday to Thursday 10am–12pm, Friday and Saturday 10am–1.30am, Sunday 12pm–12am.