After two years of hard work, Joysticks Arcade Lounge and Retro Bar (Facebook) will soon be opening at it’s new home on the second floor of 69 E. Pine Street [Gmap]. We first wrote about Joysticks back in May, 2015, HERE.

Joysticks is full of ’80s nerd references from a Star Wars-themed side room, to arcade games, custom decorations and seating cubbies, to the classic soundtrack playing in the background. An old-school Nintendo game is rigged up with a life-size Q*bert sculpture holding court on the couch.

The cocktail menu is a nod to a myriad collection of nerd trivia, allowing guests to sip on drinks like the Dagobah Swamp (Star Wars), Chester Copperpot (Goonies), Red Shirt Dead For Sure (Star Trek), Shark Attack (Jaws) and more. The working food menu currently features savory and dessert tater tot dishes.

The owners also happen to have been prop and scenery designers for the theme parks and, according to them, are responsible for a large percentage of things that were built for the Harry Potter park at Universal, Pirates of the Caribbean, and the Haunted Mansion. They’ve taken a break from working for the parks to focus on hand-building everything in their new downtown venue, including the bar, the tables, and the sofas. They made basically everything in the space.

Joysticks hit a roadblock when their new downstairs neighbors, a new location of Shots Miami (Website), were a bit overzealous in their demo. Co-owner Addie Hassel told us that she expects to pass receive their Certificate of Occupancy paperwork from the City in the next couple of week and they’ll be in soft opening very soon, so keep an eye on their Facebook page for more updates.

Hassel also told us during the tour that they’ve already had a number of offers to help franchise the bar, but she’s waiting to get all the kinks out of this first location first before she goes counting her chickens.

The venue will have live music, theme nights, trivia, and of course game nights. People who come in cosplay outfits will receive a steep discount.























Brendan O'Connor

Editor in Chief of

Join the Conversation


Have something to say? Type it below. Holding back can give you pimples.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  1. This place has been in the works for foreverrr. Was afraid it was going to just be BART downtown, glad to see it went it’s own way with an arcade theme.

  2. Medalys Berrios Jessica Perez Kristina Dudley Lauren Peterson we need to check out this spot. Looks sweet!

  3. I just love watching people throw shade on things that could possibly be their competition. You do realize how this makes you look, right? Ever hear of artist homages to pop culture? Let’s see you do better.

  4. Maybe not. The photos do not bear out what I thought I was going to see. It looks like Mr. Toad’s wild ride with Manhattan barstools from the early 90s (with out of place, unstylish couches made on stilt legs). Random New York style hotdog scarfing bars. A completely unutilized corner. No mention of pizza. Huge menu mistake…One measly air hockey table and zero pool tables, one pinball machine? On Pine Street? No. Let’s not forget there are a ton of licensing issues here that most likely have not been worked out legally. I see violations everywhere in the pictures.

  5. Right behind Frosty’s! I was complimented there because I was singing along with The Killers song Mr Brightside.

  6. Haha. Yeah i’ve been following them since they first announced the concept. Of course I’m in.