Barca – Barca, 8 & 9 Catalan Square, Castlefield, Manchester, M3 4LZ map
- In its heyday, Barca was ‘THE’ Manchester bar, owned by Simply Red’s Mick Hucknell in the days when the in-crowd flocked to Castlefield. More recently it’s been the victim of changing times. With the crowds flocking to Deansgate Locks, only 5 mins walk along the cobbles, or The Printworks and Northern Quarter on the other side of town, many of the other bars around this beautiful canalside setting paid the price and have remained derelict ever since. Barca however still remains and hopefully it can replicate the success of it’s next door neighbour, Dukes 92, which rode the storm and has come out busier than ever. The bar area itself is very cool and stylish, low ceilings adding a touch of intimacy (and danger if you’re tall). There’s loads of outdoor canalside seating and it’s hard to find a better setting in town. Inside, there’s rooms available to hire offering conference and banqueting areas whilst the upstairs room with its dancefloor and terrace, which was once the most important VIP room in town, is popular with private birthday and office parties. Unfortunately, unless it’s the height of the summer, when it can get very crowded, Barca only seems to get busy when there’s a high profile club night or large party here. It’s hard to say why as it has most of the ingredients to still be one of the best bars in town.
- food (British bar food)
- canalside patio seating
- conference and banqueting rooms
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