The Westy Sports and Spirits, currently in the planning stages hopes to open in six months or so say the owners Shane Whittall and Paul Ritums. The new bar will have a modern industrial look and feel, with nearly two dozen hi def monitors to show sports. INSET: The owners are true sports fans with Whittall carrying a Mariner's key and Ritums a Husky key.
UPDATE: The Westy Sports and Spirits hopes to satisfy local sports fans
UPDATE July 8
The Westy Sports and Spirits has posted their land use permit and liquor application outside their location at 7098 35th Ave. SW and the permit is up for public comment. It's project #3015354 for land use.
You can check it on the DPD website or contact them via phone at 684-8467 or email to PRC@seattle.gov.
The owners must go through the process of acquiring building permits and once approved they can do the construction necessary.
Original Post April 15
If all goes according to plan, by the time football season rolls around next fall West Seattle sports fans will have a new destination to enjoy the game. The Westy Sports and Spirits is now in the planning stages at 7908 35th SW just adjacent to Kenyon Hall and Locöl Vine and Barley.
The new bar at 2500 square feet will be built in a former L-Shaped electronic repair shop, which means there is plenty of room to accommodate up to 100 to 130 people.
The bar is being helmed by one of the partners of the nearby Locöl, Shane Whittall and his new partner in the venture Paul Ritums. "We're hoping for a six month process of build out and permitting," said Whittall.
"We're trying to make this a destination area in West Seattle. Two and a half years ago there was nothing but a florist a tanning place and the dry cleaners. Now we will have a nice classy jazz place serving beer and wine, Kenyon Hall with special events, and The Westy for sports and craft cocktails," said Whittall. We don't and won't compete with Locöl. It doesn't offer sports and doesn't offer cocktails. There's not a single TV there."
Both men have extensive backgrounds in the hospitality industry. Whittall works at Locöl four nights a week and Ritums is currently the Bar Manager at Local 360 downtown.
Having a sports bar in that location next to two existing facilities that attract numbers of people does pose questions about parking, especially with that capacity but Whittall is not very worried about the issue, explaining that there is a great deal of parking extending down 35th SW and at least some distance into the area neighborhood. He also said, "If it was just a quick stop for a beer or a meal people would not likely walk a block but here they will be coming for the game and staying a while, so it shouldn't be a problem." They did a parking survey with Locöl and learned that it wasn't much of an issue since many of the customers just walk from the surrounding neighborhoods. They are looking at other options as well if they need to.
The building is largely ready with the plumbing, electrical and gas lines all set to be used. It's the construction and working with the city that they must go through next.
Their plan is for the decor to be, "Modern, industrial themed to the same quality as Locöl but different. More concrete, more cast iron, exposed brick to give that feel. It will be an upscale sports bar that still has the neighborhood value to it. Just like Locöl, it looks like you would expect to see it in a nice downtown location but it's here in the neighborhood."
Unlike Locöl however The Westy will be a true sports bar with large, high quality high def screens nearly everywhere showing every sport that is on any channel. "We're going to have the capacity to show everything," said Whittall. There will be 20 plus monitors with eight in the front area of the bar alone."
The front area plan will have high top seating which means should the place fill up for a big event everyone will still be able to see a screen, even with people standing.
They believe the time is right for a sports bar in West Seattle. "It's supply and demand," said Whittall, "We've got thousands of people that packed into Rocksport (now closed) and there's not a single designated sports bar right now. Redline (going in at the corner of 35th and Avalon Way) is going to be a family pizza and sports place. We're going to be 21 and over. I don't think a sports bar is anywhere for a child."
Ritums explained more about the internal design. "In some sports bars the whole place can get cluttered, so we want the focus to be on sports on the tv people are trying to watch. We want to de-clutter it."
They plan to have the front of the bar open up, with a roll top, garage style door and outdoor seating, weather permitting.
The bar will also offer a shuffleboard, skee ball and a pool table.
The Westy is intended to be an all sports bar, including golf, tennis, Nascar and much more. "The biggest draw will be the Sounders, Seahawks, Sonics (hopefully), a potential NHL team but during the day we'd have Wimbledon, the Tour De France, the Masters and other sports," explained Whitall. That means they plan to be open for lunch too and, "We will even be open at 6am for the Euro league live kickoff soccer games," said Ritums, "We will embrace that and we will claim a team, or they will claim us." They are not loyal to one or another right now but it might be part of the marketing they do explained Whittall.
The rear of the building has a raised concrete slab so the plan, according to Whittall and Ritums is to create a kind of "grand staircase" (and an ADA lift) to the back area where the games, a private room for parties, meetings, fantasy sports league events, and restrooms will be located.
While sports bars are commonly not very sensitive to women, the plan they say is to include thoughtful touches like multiple stalls in the restrooms, hand lotion, a basket with towels and other feminine elements.
The food they will offer will include, "the stadium favorites," said Whittall such as large pretzels, a well done burger, soups, salads, and a lot of it will likely be seasonal with rotating options. They plan to have vegetarian and even gluten free options on the menu too. "We'll have options for everybody."
"We want to make sure whether you are 21 or 81, man or woman, gay or straight, vegan or carnivore, you have options," said Whittall.
The beer, wine, food and even distilled spirits will include many local sources "as much as we can," they said. A minimum of ten draft beers will be available plus, wine drafts, and a draft cocktail program in which they will pre-batch cocktails. "it's carbonated and served on tap," explained Ritums, mentioning a "Moscow Mule" as an example of the kind of drink to be served this way. "It's an efficient way to maintain quality and serve craft cocktails quickly. The styles we can do are nearly endless."
They also plan to have a Hall of Fame wall, where, with your continued patronage, you can go from a rookie to Hall of Fame status, in a points based system.
To top it all off, The Westy will show its true colors, or rather your team's true colors by serving color themed drinks. "We will have vodka mixed drinks on tap too such as a Seahawks blue drink or a Sounders green drink."
Whitall said it has been his dream for a long time not just as a business man but because, "I am a giant sports fanatic. I go to twenty plus baseball games a year. I go to four or five football games a year. When we had the Sonics I went to twenty games a year, I golf regularly, i play in softball leagues, I run two fantasy baseball leagues, two fantasy football leagues. I'm very locked into the sports world. Ritums said he's a huge soccer fan and played it in high school and college and loves sports, "but the cocktails are my passion," though he's a "Husky through and through."
When The Westy is up and operating, you can count on somebody being there who will lean across the bar and be more than happy to talk about any sport you like.
You can visit the Westy's Facebook page here.
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