The Imperial Hotel Erskineville Under New Management From Next MonthThe iconic Imperial Hotel Erskineville in the heart of the village will be under new management by Spice Group International (SGI), the team behind Spice Cellar in Sydney’s CBD, from late April 2015.

To chaperone in the new era for the much-loved inner west pub, SGI are proud to unveil the next steps in reinvigorating the illustrious history of the Imperial Hotel.

Joining incumbent staff at the Imperial Hotel will be a team with international expertise in entertainment, beverages and design. The fresh outlook for the venue embraces all facets of culture and diversity through strong connections with the arts, music and LGBTI communities. By acknowledging the rich history of the Imperial Hotel (including its starring role in the film Priscilla – Queen of the Desert), SGI will consolidate the “now” and envision the “next”.

The Imperial Hotel Erskineville will focus on promoting innovation in hospitality and entertainment, featuring established and emerging artists, DJs, musicians, live bands and gender illusionists from Sydney, Australia and beyond.  The new management will also honour the fine arts of drag and burlesque, giving a fresh voice to a uniquely Sydney tradition.

Founder of Spice and co-owner Murat Kilic says, “We’ll adopt a patient staged approach. When we first go into the project, there won’t be any monumental changes, but more so refinements of product offerings, better sound systems and striking entertainment throughout the venue. We are keen to broaden the entertainment and F&B offerings immediately and very excited about working with the LGBTI and local communities to optimise the wonderful melting pot of diversity that is the Imperial Hotel Erskineville.”

Once revamped, the venue will operate as a series of distinct spaces within the landmark building, each with its own special vibe. Each space will be given a makeover, without compromising the existing Art Deco character and heritage bones of the building. The restyling will be completed in stages, drawing upon the arts community and utilising an accomplished design and construction team. On the design, Josh Clapp and Michelle Leslie will collaborate when the re-style commences.

The Imperial Bar derives its inspiration from local artists, as an accessible and casual social hub delivering a fresh range of beverages with Erskineville local Mike McGrath (from Black Penny) at the helm.

The Lounge, also at street level, will highlight live entertainment and an impressive list of Gin, with Jason Soto (from Assembly Bar) and Nando Imamura (from Spice Cellar, Uncle Ming’s) designing the drinks menu and signature cocktails.

The Basement Club will see the relocation of the renowned Spice Cellar, spotlighting the established Sydney DJ Murat Kilic with his SPICE music ethos and a cutting-edge entertainment programme. Likewise Rebecca Alder (from the Spice Cellar) will join the management team, bringing with her many years of experience in the hospitality industry. The cultural ambassador for the venue is Sydney “love-maker” Jonny Seymour, from the famed Kooky events.

“We are excited about the opportunity the Imperial Hotel Erskineville gives us to expand the relevance of the space in the area for the neighborhood, in particular for the LGBTI community for whom the building holds great importance. Our existing location became too small for us at the Spice Cellar Martin Place. Since its inception in 2004 music brand SPICE has changed venues 9 times, with evolution and change being a core part of our growth. We are definitely at a point where a bigger location is needed due to demand in our music scene and the Imperial Hotel Erskineville provides the perfect location for our next chapter.”