The team behind Royal Croquet Club and Little Miss Group, The Social Creative, will take over operations at the Crown and Anchor from today.
News emerged last month that the heritage-listed building was sold to local developer Karidis Corporation, which also has permission to build a 13-storey apartment building on the land next door (formerly the site of the Little Miss bars).
The Social Creative director Stuart Duckworth says the pub’s long standing as a live-music venue will continue under his reign. “We’re stoked to take on the lease and breathe new life into it … it’s such an iconic pub, we think live music is an integral part of it and developing on from that is really important.
“We’re not going to rip out the heart and soul of it, that’s so far from our thinking. We want to encapsulate the best aspects and then add to it. But we’ll take our time doing that.”
The venue will undergo a series of renovations, which will happen in stages, and there will be a renewed focus on food. The existing staff and booking agency, Five Four Entertainment, will stay on board.
In a twist of fate, Duckworth and his Social Creative collective will once again run the space next door thanks to a redefined license that includes both the Crown and Anchor and its adjoining site.
The former Little Miss digs will now house temporary restaurant and bar Superfish, a collaborative project with The Happy Motel. The team is working with designer and former Happy Motel member Carlo Jensen (Peculiar Familia) to reconfigure and re-fit the space.
The pop-up venture will serve food with a South American twist; raw seafood such as ceviche, sashimi and oysters; and smoky, slow-cooked meats and barbecued vegetables. As for the drinks, expect a small but smart local wine list plus beers and tiki cocktails.
There are also plans in the works for the corner site where East End Studios currently stands. In the new year the property at 74 Frome Street will make way for a “multifaceted, multipurpose, creative hub” involving various collaborators.
Superfish opens Friday November 11.