AFTER seven years of serving drinks, popular student bar Lyberry has closed to undergo major refurbishment and a rebrand.
More than £250,000 will be spent turning the site in Guildhall Walk, Portsmouth into a pan-Asian themed bar, named Mr Miyagi's.
The new bar will feature an authentic Asian tuc-tuc, a cherry blossom tree, and a Japanese umbrella wall display, as well as a new dance floor.
Performers will be hired to appear as characters in keeping with the theme, including as Mr Miyagi, the character from the 1984 film The Karate Kid.
Owner Alistair Richie said: ‘The bar needed a tidy-up, it had become a bit dated. People want more than a cheap drink - they want an Instagram moment. We’re really proud of the new brand.’
Alistair said the theme was inspired by the team’s travels across Asia.
He said: ‘We really wanted the bar to have pan-Asian influences. We wanted the theme to be prominent, like when you go to Walkabout they call the barmaids “Sheilas” and the toilets “Dunnies.”’
The bar will retain Lyberry’s drink menu, but changes will be made to the cocktails - which will now come in noodle boxes.
‘Promotions will stay the same, beer pong will remain, the music quality will remain the same,’ Alistair, who also runs the Eskimo 11 night, said. ‘We’re also keeping the Friday link with Astoria.’
The announcement saw more than 500 comments flood the bar’s Facebook page.
Before becoming Lyberry, the bar was known as Terrace Bar and Bar Me, under different management.
Mr Miyagi’s will open on the August bank holiday and a larger event will mark the rebrand in September.
The venue will remain under the ownership and management of the Lyberry team.
The refurbishment has been designed by Design Venue architects.