Update 3 January 2009: I walked past today and noticed that the club has changed its name to The Johnston. Also, plastering and painting was going on inside the street front section on one side of the club. I spoke with Omar, one of the workers, and he is the owner of the new kebab shop opening there soon.
I was walking past the Graffitti Club (I’m not sure what the deliberate misspelling means, but it makes it easy for Google to find it) on Johnston St recently and decided to go inside to find out more about it. It’s in the space of the former CES / Centrelink offices. Inside, the main bar area has a small stage with a DJ setup and pool tables, flat screens and video games.
The murals on the walls are by Canadian artist AaronLi-Hill and they are fantastic. One of the owners kindly gave me a tour of the premises and spoke about ensuring the club met all the council requirements, such as for sound insulation. He also told me that he had tried and failed to get any interest from the Leader local paper, even though he also wanted to advertise with them.
In the ajoining space next door is a nearly finished band room and club space with its own bar, which is much larger. The owners are keen to hear from local bands and plan to feature live music regularly, so if you’re looking for somewhere to play drop in and talk to them. There’s also a separate function room at the rear and an outdoor smoking area.
On the street front of the club space will be a kebab shop, which will open soon. It will be the only kebab shop on Johnston St, but with five kebab shops just around the corner on Brunswick St providing competition, they will have to be good!
The Graffitti Club seems to combine the elements of an inner city bar or club and a suburban pub. It’s an interesting addition to Johnston St and I am curious to see what kind of crowd they attract.