Ponyfish Island – the elusive venue under the bridge in Melbourne CBD has recently gotten a revamp. What started as a pop up bar nearly a decade ago has long become a Melbourne Institution, known to locals and tourists alike as “the bar under the bridge”. They probably won’t ever shake that cute little nickname (and why should they?).
After a chaotic 2020, Melbourne bars and restaurants are eagerly welcoming us back with open arms to greet us like old friends. And with a view like this, you just know that punters will flock to the new and improved haven under the bridge like the barnacles they are.
The two things Melbournian’s love most is a hidden bar, and the ability to be able to brag about such hidden bar with friends and travelers alike. If you haven’t boasted about Melbourne’s cool bar scene overseas in a hostel bar in Prague, then don’t worry, Ponyfish Island has got some new ammunition for you.
The old nautical themed deck of yonder year was getting a bit too real for the owners, as seasonal flooding caused power faults and finicky fresh water issues, so they’ve given the whole venue a breath of fresh air and upgraded to a sunny Palm Springs-inspired look with the help of award-winning design firm Studio Gram.
Think lighter and brighter, with a refined colour palette, comfy new seating and custom, movable sunshades. The team has been “wanting to change the venue into a world-class destination that’s representative of the unique space it lives on” and this renovation has certainly done just that. The venues capacity has increased to 150, but the redesign coupled with the fresh, open ambiance doesn’t make it feel squishy.
The bar and kitchen have gotten a makeover as well, and the menu is now serving up fresh, Asian-inspired cuisine off its all-day menu to tie in with the overall perpetual summer vibe the venue is now radiating. The drinks menu is thoughtfully curated with new and exciting cocktails, local wine and beers and for the first time ever – draught beer.
Launching boldly and perfectly after the uncertainty that was 2020, Ponyfish Island has taken an institution and made it something fresh and exciting – “be prepared to fall in love with Ponyfish all over again.”
Yarra Pedestrian Bridge, Southgate Avenue Melbourne, VIC, Australia 3006
When: Open Monday – Sunday