Frank's Place: Beijing's oldest sports bar enters a new phase

09:14, September 29, 2009      

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Frank's Place: Beijing's oldest sports bar enters a new phase

(CRI online Photo)

Frank's Place, Beijing's first sports bar, will celebrate its 20th birthday this October.

It was first established by Frank Siegal, an American who was working in China, and went through a transition of ownership in the 1990s. Now the place has become a top choice for foreigners in Beijing to enjoy sports games over a glass of beer, according to Graham Forbes, current managing partner of Frank's Place.

The sports theme permeates every details of the bar, from the snooker table in the open area beside the counter to the framed sports uniforms signed by players to the 11 LCD screens broadcasting live games from around the world. Two bulletin boards on the wall also inform customers of the latest sporting events.

Every Wednesday customers compete in the bar's quiz contest that covers sports, geography, history and other categories. Winners get small prizes, like a free drink or sports collectible, Forbes said.

Besides the heavy sporting flavor, the food at Frank's Place is well-known among foreigners in Beijing, and Forbes recommended the traditional burger and the English fish and chips. They do serve Asian dishes, "but really we are not really good at that," Forbes admitted.

While the pub has always been a place where westerners come to experience a taste of home, it is now gradually receiving more Chinese customers.

"The younger generation now wants that contact (with foreigners), you want to develop your language skills, get a little bit of different ideas, and this is coming with the emerging middle class of China," Forbes said.

On October 17, its 20th anniversary, Frank's Place will throw a party with free drinks and live music. But a party at Frank's may not be complete without a quiz night, and Forbes said a theme such as "Beijing in 20 years" might test customers' ability to identify snapshots taken around central Beijing.

Address: Jiang Tai Xi Lu,
West of Rosedale Hotel, Lido Area, Chaoyang, Beijing, China.

Source: CRI online
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