A fun, clever initiative to breath life and sociability into the Parisian bar scene.
“Strangers don’t talk to each other in Parisian bars, unless they’re super extroverted. We want to bring about conversation.” And so, Renaud Seligmann and Social Bar’s 174 other co-founders have taken over a slightly cramped 12th arrondissement establishment and put together a huge program of social activities to get those tongues wagging. And it works.
We open the door and are greeted by loads of super friendly people – they approach us, sensing we’re not Social Bar regulars. A few introductions later and a stranger sticks a glass-shaped label on our back, complete with our first name, dream reincarnation, and favourite insult. Not super original and yet – hooray – the conversation starts to flow. And when it comes to paying (€7 for a pint of lager or Brasseurs du Grand Paris), we can get €1 off the bill if a stranger rolls a 1 or a 2 for us on the dice. Which she did! Other activities include a microphone and some crappy Marvin Gaye impressions, but we don’t even care: our sociability level has skyrocketed.
Plus the bar and its 175 co-owners (the people who took part in the crowd-funding campaign) donate 50% of their profits to organisations working towards revitalising the area. Before leaving, we get the number of one of the Social Bar regulars, as is tradition. But it’s straight to ‘Hanae’s’ answering machine – she has yet to call us back…
TRANSLATION: LEONIE CATER
|Venue name:||Le Social Bar||Contact:|
25 rue Villiot
|Opening hours:||Mon-Fri 9am - 12mid.|
|Transport:||Metro: Gare de Lyon ou Bercy|
|Do you own this business?|