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Two New Sky-High Bars Have Opened Inside Sydney's Historic Shell House

One of the newest venues is aptly titled Clocktower, offering guests the opportunity to sip cocktails from inside the building's 400-tonne clock.
By Ben Hansen
November 29, 2021
By Ben Hansen
November 29, 2021

Following the opening of ground floor bistro Menzies Bar last month, historic CBD building Shell House welcomes two new sky-high venues named Sky Bar and Clocktower.

Both bars offer guests the opportunity to sip drinks high above Sydney's skyline in two unique locations.

Sky Bar boasts an open-air rooftop with top-notch city views. Those looking to gaze over Sydney while they enjoy their drink will be treated to floor-to-ceiling glass doors surrounding the bar. The doors fully retract, allowing for optimal appreciation of the venue's views.

On the menu here: tasty bar snacks including pickled mussels, raw tuna and coal-roasted quail. If you're on the hunt for a more decadent experience, the Oscietra caviar service is truly luxe but will set you back $190. When it comes to drinks, the Sicilian Margarita has made its way up from Menzies Bar, however there is a range of cocktails unique to Sky Bar. The Tenth Floor Fizz mixes whey gin, native peach, yuzu, amaro, rosé and soda; while the Cloony Tunes is a Casamigos Reposado, mezcal and pineapple creation.

"The Sky Bar is designed for fun and relaxation, a getaway, an oasis in the city. It just feels like the city's living room to me. It's just super relaxed," says Shell House owner and restaurateur Brett Robinson.

Alongside Sky Bar, Clocktower Bar has opened, housing patrons within the Shell House's 400-tonne clock. The space inside the clock has been refurbished with a fit-out that pays tribute to 1930s art deco. The void of clocktower with restored operational clock mechanisms is situated above the bar, reminding visitors of the space's history with grandeur and flourish.

The Shell House was announced back in May, with The Point Group laying out plans for a multi-level venue inside the Margaret Street building after signing a 15-year lease with Brookfield Place Sydney. The Point Group currently operates The DolphinBondi Beach Public Bar and Harry's, and is set to open a restaurant, bar and wine room on former defence facility Fort Denison.

Sky Bar and Clocktower mark the second and third bars to open in the venue, with the final piece of the puzzle, The Shell House Dining Room and Terrace set to open this November.

"I spent a lot of my recent days thinking about restaurants that are essential — the havens that become indispensable to their communities, that galvanize trends, set standards for hospitality, or illuminate a cuisine in ways that feel fresh and magnetic," Robinson says of the dining room.

"I want Shell House to feel essential to the Sydney CBD. I like the rhythm of the crowd, a clear mix of the crème of the corporate scene, the city's socially active, and those who are looking for a new experience from both near and far. This Dining Room holds a very special place for me as I hope it will for many others — it's the beating heart of Shell House."


Sky Bar and Clocktower are now open at Shell House, 37 Margaret Street, Sydney. Shell House is open 4pm–late, Wednesday–Saturday.

Images: Jonny Valiant and Jason Loucas

Published on November 29, 2021 by Ben Hansen


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