New boutique bar set to spread its wings in Durham

Innspired Leisure is spreading its wings and will arrive in Durham city centre this summer with the highly-anticipated opening of boutique cocktail bar, The Butterfly Room, following a £2m investment in the property, as well as the adjacent former Love Shack unit.

Based in the Walkergate Complex, Durham’s premier city centre leisure destination, The Butterfly Room will span 2,000 sq ft and bring job opportunities for local people.

The Butterfly Room is the second venue from a concept brand launched in 2017 by North East based experts in the nightlife industry, the Codona brothers, with the opening of Olivia’s Townhouse in Birmingham city centre.

The well-known names behind Olivia’s Group are also the owners of the nationally-operated Players Bar brand, which will see its fifth venue open later this year in Durham, following The Butterfly Room on the same site.

The project will see the space fully refurbished from the inside out with an impressive, contemporary look that will mirror the décor of the successful Birmingham venue. Stand out features will include an outdoor terrace area and rustic pizza oven coming soon, as well as VIP tables, all available for private hire.

Creating 20 full and part time positions, the new Durham hotspot will boast an extensive drinks selection, serving up over 50 signature and classic cocktails, a bespoke perfect serve gin menu, mixology masterclasses and exclusive tasting events from gin to champagne.

Gordon Codona, director of Innspired Leisure, said: “The Butterfly Room will be a unique destination venue in Durham, building on the Olivia’s Group concept that we have already established in Birmingham, centred on a relaxed vibe and high quality service.

“We are looking forward to bringing this new venture to life here as Durham is evolving as a city and we hope to be a key contributor in providing further variety for its diverse audience with a niche, premium-led offering.

“In the near future, we have plans to continue rolling out the Olivia’s brand we see as being a gap in the market in cities around the UK with different interpretations, drawing on the influences from each location. A Sheffield venue is opening before the end of the year – it’s an exciting time for the company.”

The Butterfly Room will open its doors at the end of August. The announcement is followed by news of Players Bar launching in Durham in autumn – which will be the fifth to launch in the UK. The 6,000 sq ft site will create a further 50 jobs for the city.

The Walkergate Complex is set across two levels and home to a number of stylish bars and restaurants overlooking the banks of the River Wear and nearby two big retail and leisure developments – Milburngate and The Riverwalk.