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88 Lounge @ 55 Union St

Address: 
55 Union St
02903 Providence , RI
United States
(401) 437-8830
Toilet Paper: 
Somewhat well-stocked.
Neighborhood: 
DownCity
Venue Category: 
Piano Bars

The Scrawl on the Wall

A week ago -- no issues

The relatively new (four months in business) 88 Lounge is an anomaly in downtown Providence – an adult night spot amid about a dozen clubs and bars that all seem to cater to twerking 20-somethings.

Wedged in between parking lots and an alleyway not too far from city hall, the 88 is a piano-bar creation of a San Francisco-area transplant named Phil who thought it would be a profitable idea to bring some West Coast bar scene cool to the Northeast.
So far, so good.

Despite the problem of trying to get known when people tend to stay home during what has been a brutally harsh winter in the Northeast, the 88 has been able to get its financial feet under it – unlike the previous two owners, who tried (and failed) to make a go of it with loud music and even louder kids.

It’s technically a piano bar, but Phil encourages other musicians to get up and jam when the mood hits them. But you have to know what you’re doing – if you’re thinking instrumental karaoke, it’s not.
Because of limited space (capacity appears to be about 60), the bathrooms are not huge. The one-at-a-time rule applies, and it is VERY IMPORTANT to remember to lock the door, because if you don’t, 8 to 10 people might be able to see you sitting on the toilet if another person enters by mistake.

Cleanliness is next to Godliness, as they say, and the 88’s head is spotless. At least at the beginning of the night, when I checked it. One toilet, one sink, no graffiti. No kids drunk out of their minds puking their guts out. And good music. What more could anyone ask for?

Circlingthedrain Male, 69 years old.
Providence, Rhode Island
On February 9, 2014, 2:42 pm
What I Did in Here: Everything you can imagine -- and more