After being leased by Jeff Donnelly, the owner of the Donnelly Group chain of pubs and clubs, Vancouver’s legendary Railway Club will reopen as The Railway Stage & Beer Café.
Located at 579 Dunsmuir Street, the new space will serve 32 craft beers with a dynamic program of rotating taps being developed and overseen by Liam Peyton and Trevor Kallies.
The target opening date is spring 2017 and further details of the beer, food, and entertainment plans will be announced closer to the launch.
In the meantime, business partners Jeff Donnelly and Chad Cole are reaching out to experts in the entertainment industry for guidance and input, as the plans come together.
This includes collaborating with local music legend and impresario Thomas Anselmi who will help develop the programming vision for The Railway Stage, including curatorial direction, décor, stage design, lighting, and to keep the all-important feel which makes the room special.
“The Railway is one of the most historic live music stages in the city,”Anselmi said in a statement. “This an opportunity to bring new life to a key venue in Vancouver.”
The event schedule is still being developed, but early additions include Dino Archie’s popular comedy night and the return of Joe Rotundo’s “Saturday Sessions” which was forced to move when The Railway Club closed.
“We’re open to new ideas and we’re eager for people to contact us,” said Cole. “We’re planning to offer at least four nights of live entertainment a week, with a real emphasis on showcasing local bands as they debut and evolve. We’re confident that we’ll be able to attract the kind of talent the room deserves.”
Starting life in 1932 as a members-only club for railway workers, The Railway Club went through many changes during its 84-year run.
During its peak in the 80s and 90s, the club became an iconic music venue in Western Canada, hosting acts like Radiohead, k.d. lang, Los Lobos, Blue Rodeo and thousands more. Later, the club fell on harder times, closing its doors approximately a year ago.