Top of the World: The World Bar's marketing man Chris Barnhart


A Queenstown institution’s survived a devastating fire and a global pandemic.

Perhaps it’s only appropriate for World Bar to officially reopen on Black Friday.

It’ll be a brave new World Bar that throws opens its doors on November 13 after a seven-week renovation project.

The Church Street bar and restaurant will return to a seven-day-a-week operation in a couple of weeks after opening only on weekends since mid-winter.

Marketing dude Chris Barnhart says they’re now ‘‘feeling a lot more confident about the market’’.

‘‘We’re really excited by the support we’ve received from the public — people have been pushing us to get back open.’’

After the Covid lockdown, World Bar and its sister business and neighbour, Yonder, operated out of the latter’s premises, but things got so busy The World opened on weekends, Barnhart says.

It was closed again on October 2 for a major renovation, which includes an overhauled kitchen, the installation of a flash lighting system he reckons is unique in the South Island, a new stage, and an overhaul of its menu and drinks.

It’s now on a big hiring push, with openings for wait staff, chefs and experienced managers.

The post-lockdown collaboration with Yonder meant layoffs were kept to a minimum, and they’re pleased to be hiring again, Barnhart says.

The World Bar — and its infamous teapots — has become a Queenstown fixture since opening in Shotover Street in 1996.

After its building burned down in 2013, it popped up as The Find, also on Shotover St, for a couple of years before it reopened at its current site in 2015.