Cyprus Mail
Entertainment Restaurant & Bar Reviews

Bar review: Shisha Lounge Bar, Nicosia

By Alexia Evripidou

Classy, atmospheric and kind to consumers’ wallets are the best ways to describe the new Shisha Lounge Bar. The recently opened enterprise boasts an unusual three way concept where deliberate attention is given to everything, from the impressive fire blazing outdoor heaters to the charming floor manager who greets you with a beaming smile, to the mixologists eager to shake and stir behind the bar and the shisha specialist happy to prepare your pipe with his own blend of tobacco.

The venue, which seats over 120, is big and fits in perfectly on the popular stretch on Georgiou Griva Digeni where oversized restaurants, coffee shops and bars cater to a huge number of customers. What makes this place different however is that it is neither singularly a restaurant, a Shisha Lounge nor even a bar, it is an amalgamation of all of the above; a venue eclectically divided into three main sections, catering to a variety of needs at the same time.

There are two separate entrances, one off the main road leading into the Shisha Lounge Bar and a separate one for the Shisha Sports Bar. An internal door allows clients to go between the two spaces readily changing the atmosphere from informal to classy in a single step. The sports bar has a large bar in the centre of the room with several TV screens strategically hanging above it. The other (Shish Lounge Bar) offers a more elegant affair, with tall cushioned chairs, high ceilings, a baby grand piano and a romantic setting for small and larger groups.

Finally, there’s the Chef’s Table by Marios Malekkas. This is a large, Arabian-decorated, private room that can be reached independently for a private group of customers. Here, clients liaise with the chef, who will create a customised menu of their choice.

The main Shisha Lounge Bar is extensive and open plan with a bar stretching across its back wall. Chandeliers hang from high ceilings and walls of windows separate the outdoor Shisha Lounge smoking area. The smoking area is closed off from the street with a beautiful open beehive like wall.

Over all, its a fashionable place.

The highlight of the venue for me, is the quality of drink and food on offer; with taste and style prevailing at very pleasing prices. Cocktails average between €6.50 to €7.50 and all the syrups are made by the chef himself – they are delightful; tasty and light without being overpoweringly sickly.

Chef Marios, who worked in London’s Michelin Star restaurants Le Gavroche and Nahm, collaborated with professional mixologists to create sublimely tasting signature cocktails appealing to both male and female palettes. The Vanilla Caramel Sour is insanely delicious.

This vodka-based drink is a sweet with slightly tart match made in heaven. Although it’s a little light on alcohol for my taste, what it lacks in spirit it more than compensates with taste. For a stronger more ‘manly’ cocktail, Moscow Mule should do the trick.

They serve over 60 varieties of wines both local and international, and needless to say, Champagne is on the menu! As are spirits; served in cocktails, shots, with mixers or entire bottles on their own. And finally, the good old Shisha itself, with special mixes such as ‘blueberry and mint’ and ‘strawberry, vanilla and coconut’, are a great way to enjoy the evening chatting with friends.

In the morning they serve hand made organic imported teas and Coppion coffees from a well respected coffee making family in Italy. The food is international and created by Marios himself, choosing well loved dishes and giving them a new twist. At 11.30pm the venue turns into a full bar and the only food on site are cheese platters. The weekends host DJs.

Shisha Lounge Bar
Where: Griva Digeni, Nicosia
When: 8am – 2am seven days a week
Contact: 22 670707, 22 675500
Price: sparkling wines €19 to €21, beers €3.50 – €5.50, shisha €10-€15

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