Mexborough now has a brand new bar, bistro and coffee lounge, thanks to an investment of over £150k from local entrepreneur Jason Mace, managing director of Gala Tent and owner of the iconic Empress Building in the town.
The ‘Empress Rooms’ bar and bistro was officially opened on Thursday 21st June by Councillor Sean Gibbons and Tommy Joyce MBE.
Michelle Carr, who also owns the nearby Park View Bar and Function Suite in Swinton, has already created 10 new jobs at the Empress Rooms, including bar staff, waiting-on staff, chefs and cleaners. Michelle named the bar and bistro The Empress Rooms to capture the nostalgia of this iconic building.
The bistro has two experienced Chefs, who are passionate about quality delicious healthily food. The Chef’s and Michelle have worked together to create a menu of tasty dishes, which will be prepared daily from locally sourced produce.
Michelle Carr said: “We are really excited about our plans for the Empress Rooms. It is quite unlike anywhere else in the area and we hope will help to revitalise this part of Mexborough and bring more visitors into the town. Our Chefs have a real passion for good quality food and locally sourced fresh ingredients and we’ll be serving a variety of mouth-watering dishes to suit all tastes.”
The Empress Rooms will be open from 8am Monday to Saturday. It will serve breakfasts, lunches and afternoon teas and will host a number of themed dining evenings such as steak and Italian nights. The venue can also be hired out for private parties, anniversaries, christenings, birthdays, Christmas parties, corporate meetings and charity fundraising nights for up to 100 guests, on Sundays and after hours on certain week nights. The Empress Rooms will also be offering diet planning and advice, weekly and monthly prepared diet packages.
Over the past 10 months, Jason Mace from Gala Tent has invested in refurbishing the former Empress Building ballroom and dance hall into a hub of business, health and community activity. The building, which dates back to the 1920s, was built to mirror the great dance halls in places like Blackpool and for decades it was the hub of social activity in the area but in recent years had fallen into disrepair.
“The opening of the Empress Rooms is the culmination of many months of planning and significant investment in the building,” explains Jason Mace. “This bar-bistro-lounge is just what Mexborough needs – somewhere that local people can meet up with friends, family or business colleagues and enjoy a meal, or just catch up over a coffee, Prosecco or a few beers! We’ve had some great feedback as the Empress Rooms has the look and feel of a sophisticated city centre bar, without the need to go into the city! We’re looking forward to bringing the buzz back into this part of Mexborough.”
The Empress Building is now restored back to its former glory. Damaged rotten timber windows have been replaced with new PVC-u windows to improve its appearance, let in more light and make it more energy efficient for tenants using the building. Jason has invested in upgrading other empty rooms in the building for new businesses to lease, where customers will be able to undergo beauty or cosmetic treatments.
The Empress Buildings is occupied by a number of organisations, including the charity Dearne Valley Personal Development Centre, the Personal Training Room, Grafters Ironworks Gym and Micky’s Athletic Boxing Club.