Melbourne’s beloved tennis themed roof top bar, Madame Brussels, is going to shut its doors for good and I am absolutely devastated.
After 15 years, Madame Brussels will officially say goodbye on July 25. Why? Well, like many small businesses, COVID-19 has thrown a spanner in the works.
“It is due to COVID and the lack of people that are in the city,” co-owner and founding hostess Miss Pearls (Paula Scholes) told Good Food.
“We are doing about 20 per cent of our usual business. Saturday is huge but that doesn’t pay the rent. There’s no JobKeeper and we have to pay back deferred rent and tax. It just doesn’t add up.”
Scholes also told The Herald Sun that Bourke St is dead during the week, and relying on Saturday isn’t enough.
“Saturday trade is still solid, which is mind-blowing and I’m so grateful for that … the rest of the week it’s like a ghost town,” she said.
Named after one of Melbourne’s most famous brothel keepers, Madame Brussels, the bar has a 1950s garden party vibe. Walking past it you wouldn’t even know it’s there, as it’s hidden on Bourke St – accessible via a small lift.
The vibes are immaculate and it’s literally the perfect spot in summer, so I’m disappointed they’ll be shutting up shop while it’s still three degrees outside.
After the iconic bar closes its doors, Scholes will start a new job at Kelvin Club – a private club that is also “inclusive”.
“We want to expand the base and have some good fun times and parties and create a new destination for people,” Scholes told Good Food.
She continued: “I love this city so much…It’s breaking my heart. I’ll do everything possible to help bring it back to life.”