Cocktail Bar of the Week: Alexander Bar

“One good thing about this recession” said architect Robert Silke last night, enjoying his annual month long builders’ holiday, “is that it opens up great buildings, like this one, at realistic rentals. In the boom, this would have been a Pam Golding office” indicating the Wildean fin de siècle interior of the Alexander Bar on the corner of Strand and Loop Street, Cape Town.

Owned by partners Edward and Nicholas, whose second names are both Alexander, “they have picked up people all around the world” so the bar has been optimized for successful dating. It’s faintly Germanic, in a Berlin Alexanderplatz sort of way, and you could almost imagine Herr Issyvoo making an understated entrance, flicking a blonde quiff. “We tried to get the Bean There premises on Wale Street, but the roastery beat us to it” said Edward. Bean There used to be a mortuary, so perhaps psychically speaking at least, the Alexanders are better off in their current location, close to the Cape Sun where Robert used to do his homework as a schoolboy.