A new venue that’s a cross between an arcade parlour and circus is landing in Alexandria next month.
Funlab, the entertainment company which owns Strike Bowling, Sky Zone and Holey Moley Golf Club, has leased an existing dodgem-car arena and converted it. It’ll be called Archie Brothers Electric Circus.
The company has revamped the original dodgem cars and added 80 new games including a shooting gallery, laser tag arena and bowling lanes. There’s also an over-the-top diner and fully equipped bar.
The fit-out nods to the vintage circus. Murals reference bearded and tattooed ladies; there’s a kissing booth and a canon; and velvet curtains and gold trimmings.
“There’s a lot of detail in the artwork that’s been created. When you walk in, you’re transported,” says Michael Schreiber, CEO of Funlab.
The funhouse functions like a typical arcade – you play games and compete for tickets that can be redeemed for prizes. Except these machines don’t accept cash, just a game card loaded with funds, pay-as-you-go style. The personalised card will also store the tokens you win, unless you still have a soft spot for them being spat out of the machine, which is also an option.
Prizes are aimed at the 18–35-year-old demographic, from the weird (novelty unicorn heads) to the wonderful (VIP festival tickets and whisky experiences).
The games range from old favourites such as basketball, Skee-Ball and Mario Brothers to modern takes on the classics. Play Angry Birds or Space Invaders XL on a giant LED TV or shoot at targets in the Western-style shooting gallery. There’s also a 3D motion-based theatre that fits 10 people at once.
The diner serves a quartet of burgers and there are also pizzas and hot dogs, including The Fire Breather – a cheesy kransky dog with Coney Island chilli beef, chilli mayo and jalapenos on a milk bun.
At the bar (which is designed to look like a vintage carousel), there are five virgin milkshakes alongside novelty cocktails that are spiked with harder stuff. The Funhouse (chocolate, granulated nuts, butterscotch schnapps, vanilla vodka and milk topped with a Golden Gaytime) and The City Slicker (crushed Oreos and whipped cream spiked with vodka, Chambord and Baileys) are almost meals in themselves.
“There’s a lot of detail and things to see. The games plus the environment create a very unique experience. It’s really escapist,” Schreiber says.
Archie Brothers Electric Circus is all-ages during the day, but at night, it’s adults only. Bookings are essential for functions, otherwise just roll up.
Opening on December 7.
Archie Brothers Electric Circus
55 Doody Street, Alexandria
1300 888 386
Mon to Fri 10am–12am
Sat to Sun 9am–1am