Keep your eyes peeled: new owner revives legendary Wan Chai bar Joe Bananas

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 21 May, 2014, 11:14am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 21 May, 2014, 6:43pm

After the last pints were pulled at one of Wan Chai’s oldest bars in February, Joe Bananas is making a comeback.

It’s now clad in bamboo scaffolding, and the new owners of the “original” Joe Bananas – famed for three-decades of wet T-shirt contests, A-list celebrities and top music bands – are advertising for staff to join the new venture.

But regular beer drinkers will be forgiven for wanting the same experience.

The new owner, who also owns the Rio and Escape bars on Jaffe Road, reached a deal to move into the premises on Luard Road.

Joe Bananas, opened in 1986 by expat Scots Laura McAllister and Andy Neilson, shut its doors in February to the disappointment of its loyal fans and new ones just discovering its respite from the rough and tumble Wan Chai overrun by sailors and working girls.

Neilson and McAllister sold up in 2000 and three months ago lost the lease.

But the previous owners told the South China Morning Post this week they had retained the bar name and trademark in a bid to reopen nearby.

It is not clear whether an agreement to buy the full naming rights to the bar has been reached.