‘Under New Management’ screamed the big banner over the bouncer guarding the entrance to the gloomy, street-level interior courtyard bar in 2010. And yes, sure enough, the arrival of Cutting Edge Bars to run this once-underused venue has resulted in new lick of paint.
When it comes to the staff, the changes are less obvious: in certain circles, Yard is considered the Wong Kei of the gay bar world, fabled for its rude service. Even so, the Loft is a nice place in which to lose track of an evening: a relaxing, loungey upstairs space, it’s ideal for intimacy. Downstairs, the courtyard takes on new life when summer rolls around.
Drinks are generally pretty standard, with a fair choice of wine: Yard tends to attract an older, calmer type of customer than those who favour Rupert Street diagonally opposite.