Cafe by day and bar by night

Manawatu Standard - - News - JANINE RANKIN

Palmer­ston North theatre go­ers are get­ting an ex­tra serv­ing of hos­pi­tal­ity.

In the past few weeks, the Globe Theatre’s bar has been oper­at­ing as a cafe by day.

And the Re­gent on Broad­way has ful­filled a long-held dream to move the bar out of the foyer and into the for­mer Munchkins shop next door.

The kitchen, cafe and bar area at the Globe was the fi­nal part of its 2014 makeover to be com­pleted.

It has been oper­at­ing as a bar with the Manawatu¯ Theatre So­ci­ety pro­vid­ing ser­vice in the evenings, and that sys­tem would con­tinue, but by day it is En­core Cafe, man­aged by Toni Kane, with Jac­qui Down as barista.

Globe Theatre man­ager Denise Ser­vante said the idea of leas­ing the space to a com­mer­cial op­er­a­tor had been aban­doned in favour of a profit-shar­ing agree­ment.

It pro­vided a risk-shar­ing op­por­tu­nity up un­til the end of June 2018 to see whether the busi­ness was com­mer­cially vi­able.

Ser­vante said get­ting the cafe open was a real pri­or­ity for her, to pro­vide a lively, fam­ily-friendly en­trance to the theatre build­ing.

The cafe is al­ready draw­ing cus­tomers from among Te Manawa’s vis­i­tors, who walk past its ter­race doors.

Over at the Re­gent, theatre man­ager Charles Forbes said its new bar area pro­vided dou­ble ben­e­fits. It cre­ated a ‘‘lovely space’’ for pa­trons who wanted to sit down be­fore the show or at in­ter­val.

For ev­ery­one else, it freed up space in the foyer, mak­ing it eas­ier for peo­ple to get to the theatre doors and the toi­lets with­out hav­ing to push through the lines at the bar. ‘‘It’s a more hos­pitable at­mos­phere,’’ he said.

Forbes said the idea of us­ing the new bar space as a day­time cafe had been floated, but it could take some lat­eral think­ing to make it a re­al­ity.

The bar is run by vol­un­teers, the Friends of the Re­gent, whose free labour helped pay for the al­ter­ations to open up the new bar area and for a range of other equip­ment for the theatre.

‘‘It would be great to have the space avail­able for the pub­lic dur­ing the day, but we will need to do some con­sul­ta­tion with the Friends about how that could work.’’

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