Home Edinburgh Have you ever wondered what it’s like to run a bar?

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to run a bar?

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to run a bar?

Life running a bar can be stressful at times. This is particularly the case in a capital city with lots of students and tourists. Even your favourite venues can have a lot happening behind the scenes in terms of organisation, arranging shift patterns and running the entire venue.

I chatted to Simon, general manager at The Safari Lounge in Edinburgh to find out more.

The Safari Lounge is a popular venue for many students and locals alike.  “It opened in July 2013 and before that it was a traditional pub,” Simon told me.

At The Safari Lounge they play host to a wide variety of events including, live bands, DJ nights, poetry evenings, art classes, yoga and improv drama groups.

“Students can use the space as well as anyone wanting to improve or develop a skill, for example playing the decks for the first time.” Simon explained.

This aspect of the venue is great, there is a room downstairs that can be hired out for so many different pursuits.

“We also do adults and kids parties, and the venue is free to hire.” Simon said.

The venue has an animal theme and the serves fusion food. It is a very eclectic looking venue and has great decor, which takes work to maintain. There are many flags adorning the ceilings from all over the world, and posters advertising events around the city.


“There is an area called the snake pit, and another called the tiger’s den.” Simon showed me the different area in the bar.

I asked Simon what it was like to work there. “It has a very relaxed atmosphere, very friendly. It has a family feel to it.” He said.

There is a lot that goes on behind the scenes, but it is all about maintaining the feel of the place and I think it is well maintained as having a nice atmosphere.

The Safari Lounge employ a lot of students as well, so if you are at Edinburgh University it is well worth asking. Most bars will have flexible shift patterns to suit a busy schedule.

For those at university in a different city it is a great tip to go round to all the local bars and clubs to find out if they have work. This will greatly help any student on a budget, as well as getting you out there and meeting new people.

Especially to work for such a relaxed venue would be a great place to start and find your feet in a new city. With so much to offer, as well as learning skills you will keep with you for life, bar work can be a fantastic compliment to the amount of essay writing you might have to deal with.

Keep on the look-out for events happening at The Safari Lounge on their Facebook page here. They also have a student discount and cheap cocktails. So next time you are stuck with what to do on an evening, come and check out this intriguing venue!

Holly Smith Editor