Things to see at The Crown Bar
- 07 July 2022
The Crown Bar is one of the most famous pubs in Belfast. Known as the Crown Liquor Saloon, it was originally a Victorian gin palace and it's now been sympathetically restored by specialist conservators. Step inside to see a masterpiece in bar architecture, discover 10 different snugs and take in the intricate details and atmosphere of this unique place.
Dating back to 1826, The Crown Bar on Great Victoria Street instantly draws the eye. The impressive façade of this listed building gives a taste of what’s to be found inside. Pose for the obligatory photo outside, before stepping across the mosaic and pattern tiled floor to discover the historic interior of this famous pub.
A must-see in Belfast city, the bar is rich in colour and with so much detail to admire there’s something new to appreciate every time you visit.
The Crown Bar's features
There’s much to draw the eye inside, but the long altar-style bar topped with red granite serves as a centrepiece. Divided by columns and with a heated footrest, it stands against a backdrop of huge casks fitted with polished brass taps.
Sliding into one of the 10 differently-sized snugs reveals the social history behind a Victorian gin palace. Frequented by those who wanted to enjoy a drink unseen, the wooden boxes provided the perfect privacy.
The bell system
To accommodate a desire for privacy when drinking, the antique bell system inside each snug was a common feature in Victorian drinking houses. Using the bell system, drinkers could alert staff for their next tipple.
Match plates and gas lighting
Sitting inside a snug, you can spot the gunmetal plates which were positioned for striking matches. The bar also still has its period gas lighting.
Fairies, pineapples, fleurs-de-lis and clowns are all etched in the bar’s stained-glass windows. Decorative and functional, these colourful decorative windows again afforded privacy as they shielded customers from inquisitive passers-by.
Ceiling and floor
The Crown Bar is impressive from floor to ceiling. The highly decorative carved ceiling in burnished primrose yellow, red and gold is as eye-catching as the myriad mosaic covers the floor.