Popular Balham venue The Exhibit has unveiled a brand new look just in time for the World Cup.
The garden was redesigned in just a week by venue director Tim Weatherhead and his art duo Gordon & Mary and now features hand-painted cherry blossoms and a pop-up outdoor bar, as well as a weather-proof canopy suitable for all conditions.
Throughout the World Cup, the area will feature five large screens, while customers can also view the matches inside the venue as well.
On the venue’s fresh look, head of sales and events Jenny Holmes said: “Before the summer kicks in we like to have a theme for the garden. Last year was very graffiti and tropical, and this time one of the directors decided to take it over.
“We let them loose on it and it took them a week to put it together. We’re all ready to go.
We’ve got screens everywhere, we haven’t just got it on the garden terrace.
“We’re just looking forward to seeing the garden in full action and everybody enjoying themselves.”
While England will undoubtedly receive vociferous support, the Exhibit, which has a second venue in Streatham, will be welcoming fans of many nations to cheer their side on.
Jenny said: “Obviously the evening games are popular, but we are in south west London, so we are a really multicultural community and there’s a lot of interest in all the games
“Particularly, there’s a Spanish, greek and Italian audience who’ll be watching the games.
“The garden is an absolute bonus and we are really utilising well for the World Cup.”
Customers will also be in line for a welcome bonus should England or Spain do well in the tournament thanks to drinks partner Marques de La Concordia Cava.
“They’ve kindly agreed that if England or Spain score everybody gets a free glass of bubbly,” said Jenny.
“Spain better do well and we’ll see how England do! It’s a brilliant offer and we hope we get through a lot of it!”
There is more celebration to come later this year, as the venue turns 18.
Jenny added: “We’ll be doing something later this year. We’ve got a lot planned and it’ll be really exciting. Once the World Cup is out the way we’ll reveal our plans, there’s some really exciting stuff happening. Think about the year 2000!”
For those wanting a sanctuary from the football, The Exhibit will still be running its full schedule of events, with football-free areas allocated in the venue.
Everyone who doesn’t want to watch the football can still enjoy brunch, lunch and dinner here.
“We are a neighbourhood bar, we have a lot of families and some people who are just not interested in sport.
“Because we are not a predominantly sports bar, we have a lot of custom from those people who aren’t interested in sport.
“We’ve made it quite clear that our doors are open for everybody.
“In the week we have our cinemas showings anyway, we also have other little activities, our naked brunch and our live drawing.
“There’s still always lots to do instead of watching football.”
What: The World Cup at The Exhibit, Balham
Where: 12 Balham Station Road, SW12 9SG
When: June 14 — July 15
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