Drink of the week: Sip it by the ultra-cool Queens’ poolside bar

The Chronicle

Simba Jemwa, Saturday Chronicle Reporter

AS you bask in the dog days of summer, it’s a lifetime of crazy because of the heat but one cannot entirely stay indoors and be cooled by a roaring AC. After all, electricity bills are a bummer!

Pulling up to the Queens Sports Club car park and seeing the beautiful people step out for an afternoon away from the sun can be intimidating. But if you walk past the club’s lobby and stylish old renaissance bar, then through the airy garden, there’s a welcoming space for all — the pool bar.

Many locals don’t realise that the swanky patio at the Queens is open to non-members as well as the actual pool while the club is off-limits to non-members. The main attraction is a well decorated cocktail bar that cranks out a menu of tropical and cocktail drinks and equally delicious braai snacks.

The drinks pack a punch and the views — both of the pool and garden area as well as the ample people watching the swimmers — can’t be beaten. There are a number of sitting options — grab a stool at the bar, poolside two-tops, or cushy couches to make you believe you’re on vacation.

Queens Poolside Bar manager, Thabiso Ngwenya assembled a fun menu for the season, adding the playfully named Tropic Like It’s Hot, a mix of Casamigos Reposado Tequila, crème de banana liqueur, lime, and coconut that’s an earthy take on a piña colada. When at the poolside bar, one must try something from their collection of cocktails and summer drinks, and indulge in what is both a coolant and an upper.

Made with signature crushed ice, we loved the use of blood orange juice as opposed to the more acidic orange or bitter grapefruit. And the picturesque flower garnish was a nice touch.

Thanks to newly appointed “braai master” popularly known as “Trinity”, a Bulawayo native who is eager to show off to the world what a well-prepared braai should taste like, the menu at this pool is much more elevated than snack-shack fare.

And the fun doesn’t end there. This summer, the outdoor pool will feature Champagne spritzers on Mondays, live music every Saturday, and end the week with workday-shucking on Fridays. But, if the sun’s out, anyone can enjoy the perks of hanging at the poolside bar without the hefty price tag.

“On Saturdays, our ultra-cool bar will allow you to dip your toes in the pool water while chilling with family and friends, enjoying the relaxed ambience of soothing tunes from a live band.

“Queens Poolside Bar is one of most exciting new attractions in Bulawayo,” said Ngwenya.

The poolside bar is a polarising amenity: it’s either the pinnacle of leisure — think of lounging in a clean, blue pool watching the sunset with a piña colada in hand — or a ridiculous gimmick to siphon more dollars from patrons’ soggy wallets. 

Leisure seekers in Bulawayo will sooner than later feel the need to take more opportunities to lounge in luxury by the pool. Thanks to the city’s newest upscale poolside bar, which is enticing locals with the promise of “a laid-back hideaway among downtown Bulawayo’s urban jungle,” keeping this New Year’s resolution may be a breeze.

“One of the things that excites me most about the poolside bar is the depth of rich flavours that we have been able to explore in the locally sourced ingredients and products for the braai,” Ngwenya says.

“And this has been instrumental in developing the menu and shaping the way we want patrons to experience it.” @RealSimbaJemwa

Article Source: The Chronicle

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