Edinburgh sports bar, Belushi’s on Market Street is being transplanted into a bigger and smarter new home less than 50ft away on the opposite side of Market Street.
The move has been made possible thanks to a £2.3m investment by parent company Beds and Bars, which operates both Belushi’s and the neighbouring St Christopher’s Inn, a 180-bed hostel for young backpackers.
The company, which operates backpacker bars and hostels in 9 cities across seven European countries, is making a major investment in the Scottish capital, having operated in the city since 2001.
As part of an ambitious expansion, it has secured a former fruit market building on the opposite side of Market Street and is transforming it into a further 139 hostel beds, spread across 18 different rooms.
Bar manager Olivia Callaghan, said: “In the sporting parlance, we’d have to say this is a dream move for us. It’s a transfer that takes us into a different league.
“We’ll have more space, more screens and more choice both at the bar and on our food menu – and we’ll be able to offer live music and become even more of a party venue.
“It’s an incredibly exciting move for us and we’re really looking forward to welcoming many new customers.”
The unusual, iron, hexagonal columns were patented by Samuel Reeves of the Phoenix Iron Company in Pennsylvania in 1862 and are renowned for their immense load bearing weight – hinting that the building was designed for heavy industry related to the neighbouring train station.
The historic stone and steelwork has also been restored and will be left exposed. The external façade will see original doors and windows restored, while ironmongery will be sourced to carefully match what would have been there originally.
While the bulk of the Edinburgh investment will be in the new venue, the original hostel will also benefit from a series of improvements and upgrades – including a revamped reception, chillout and breakfasting area in the narrow strip of the building occupied by the current Belushi’s.