Ian Wilkie, an enthusiastic, entrepreneurial Scotsman, is about to bring a completely new venture to Marlborough and Marlborough News Online will report on progress as the project develops on The Parade.
Opening soon will be the bar in the refurbished premises. Music themes will surround you - from old trombones and saxophones on the walls to hundreds of LPs and 78s on the ceiling. But this is only downstairs, in the original but unrecognisable pub area.
By February 2016 there will be a restaurant and more music - set against a backdrop of fittings saved from the Grosvenor House Hotel in London before it was renovated and restored.
It has been a major project to bring the services and facilities up to the quality that a modern venture like this needs. Plumbing, electrics, even asbestos disposal are all challenges to overcome in delivering this new venue for Marlborough.
Ian Wilkie sees The Piano Lounge as both a place for Marlborough people to relax and enjoy themselves and as a destination venue attracting visitors to the town.
The Swan at Great Shefford (just north of the motorway on the Hungerford to Wantage road) is Ian Wilkie’s reference point. Now a thriving restaurant and pub it will form part of the blueprint for Ian’s Marlborough venture.
His experience in London and Paris is another significant inspiration in his vision for The Piano Lounge.
The combination of music, wine bar, restaurant and pub will be hard to balance, but this is the clear marketing strategy. And creating an atmosphere is the overall objective.
Not everything is in place just yet. There is a missing ingredient that an ambitious piano player needs to fill. Similarly there’s also the invitation list of guests for the opening night in February.
In either case just pop into the Piano Lounge and you can be part of the venture either as player or guest.