These 'Star Wars' Pop-Up Bars Will Take You to the Dark Side
Grab a Galaxy cocktail with Kylo Ren at one of the Dark Side Bar's three locations.
Calling all U.S. Star Wars fans—break out your lightsabers and get ready to party. While Star Wars: The Last Jedi won't be premiering stateside until mid-December, franchise devotees will still be able to get their fix via the Dark Side Bar; an immersive, intergalactic Star Wars pop-up straight out of Hollywood. The bar will open in three cities across the U.S.—Los Angeles, New York, and Washington D.C.—on November 15, exactly a month before the movie hits theaters. With thematic menus and sinister decor Darth Vader would approve of, switching to the Dark Side is starting to look pretty appealing.
The bar's creator, Zach Neil, is a pop-up veteran. In addition to the Dark Side bars, Neil also pioneered the 2016 Anchorman pop-up, Stay Classy, and a Tim Burton-inspired bar and restaurant called Beetle House. His latest stint with the Dark Side was imagined with the help of Hollywood set designers. “When you walk in, it’s going to feel like you’ve walked into the set of a Star Wars movie,” Neil told Lonely Planet. "I’m a macabre kind of person, I love things on the darker side. I’ve always rooted for the bad guys, Darth Vader and the dark side of the force.”
Guests entering the pop-up will be greeted by a blacked-out, eerie atmosphere, accented with red LED lighting. The cocktail menu is true to theme: Drinks include the Galaxy, Red Force, Mindtrick, and of course, the Dark Side. (Some of the recipes feature LED ice cubes and dry ice, combined with silver and black sugar rims, glowing colors, and flavor profiles like goji berry.) And once you order, there's still plenty of Star Wars activities to geek out over. Single bar-goers can join in on "alien speed dating," as Neil calls it; the bars will also run intergalactic burlesque shows, complete with dancers dressed in alien prosthetics. Hey, it's not the Mos Eisley Cantina, but the Dark side is probably the closest you'll get to Tatooine's famous bar.
To enter the Dark Side, you'll have to shell out $33 in advance, or buy $40 tickets at the door. Costumes are heavily encouraged (ladies, this is the perfect time to try out Leia buns), but not mandatory. “If people don’t dress up we’re going to let them in but we’re going to frown at them the whole time,” said Neil.
The Dark Side bars will all be open through January 14, 2018, so there's plenty of time to plan a visit. But if you're looking for a more adventurous Star Wars experience, book a trip next summer to Skellig Michael—the Irish island where Rey and Luke's iconic meeting was filmed.