Capri Sundays is hosted by the team at Soleil Pool Bar, on the corner of Glenelg Street and Grey Street, South Bank. Already a hotspot for Brisbane cocktail connoisseurs after only opening its doors seven months ago, Soleil is impressive as a high-end pool bar. But it comes into its own on Sunday afternoons.
Live music plays as people begin to wander in, starting the afternoon off on the right foot. Mega-sized jenga and quoits are dotted around the venue on Astroturf rugs, offering the chance for some old-school fun. The pool, usually reserved for hotel guests is now open to every man, woman and dog, filled with blow-up rafts and swans. The clientele has shifted as well, into the 18-23 age group, a far cry from the young professionals and business travellers that call this bar home for six days a week.
The bar food is still the same – created in the same kitchen and by the same chefs that work for Bacchus, bringing a casual and modest twist to the overused term 'gastropub'. Food servings range in size from the quaint Lamb chips, to hearty, stainless steel bowls filled with fresh King prawns and wedges too big for one person to finish. Basics are $6, good value in anyones books, but the savvy patron knows that the punchbowl service is the way to go for a group ($20-$40). Champagne and wine are on offer for any fair maidens wanting a drop, and recently bottle service has become available, but you will need to book a few weeks in advance.
As the evening progresses, the live music makes way for the usual suspects. DJs play from around 4pm until close (10pm), and in that time they leave the chilled vibe behind and transform the venue into a quasi-nightclub. Flashing lights and a pop-up dancefloor near the bar both come to life after the sun sets.
For anyone that has been to Soleil before, don't be put off by the younger age bracket. The drinks and food are the same, the service is impeccable and the venue takes on a whole new identity in the fading light of a Sunday afternoon. Because of the change in atmosphere after the sun goes down, anybody planning a chilled Sunday session may want to grab a table early and head home before 7pm. Either way, Capri Sundays is hands down Queensland's best Sunday session for a reason.