431 Sauchiehall Street, Glasgow. G2 3LG. Tel: 0141 332 5431.
Tennis is the name of the game in the Centre Court decor. 1979.
The Pub that’s set to March them All…
An Upmarket Pub which is oozing with style has just opened in Sauchiehall Street at Charing Cross.
It’s called Centre Court, and you don’t have to be a genius to figure that the theme of the decor is based on Tennis.
Wimbledon, in fact.
Ironically, Gordon McMurray and Fred Sommerville, the two Glasgow business men who own the new premises, don’t play tennis.
“Why that theme?” Says Gordon, “We were looking for decor different from anything else in Glasgow. The subject of tennis came up and we thought, why not.”
The result was that they went to Wimbledon and had a long chat with Mr A. B. Cooper, curator of their magnificent tennis museum. He was enormously helpful and gave them many ideas as well as a selection of tennis photographs and other related memorabilia.
The photographs of all the tennis greats, Bjon Borg, Jimmy Connors, LLie Nastase, John Newcombe, Chris Evert Lloyd, Sue Barker, Billie Jean King, Virginia Wade etc, have been framed and are now hanging on the walls of the plush lounge and cocktail bar at 431 Sauchiehall Street.
There is so much tennis interest and history in this luxurious five-star howff that you could spend a happy hour just browsing round soaking up tennis lore.
One striking feature is a hand-painted mural on the wall by Glasgow designer David Ogilvie. It took about 15 months to complete.
The tennis theme is carried out throughout the premises, from floor to ceiling. The carpet in the lounge was specially woven for the room by furnishers, Hampton and McMurray and cost £7000. Woven through it are cross rackets with the letters “CC” weaved into the “gut” of the rackets. It’s all very striking.
On the ceiling there is a small illuminated tennis court which looks like the real thing.
The best Doubles and Singles in town at The Centre Court. 1979.
In keeping with the decor the drinks list is in the shape of a tennis racket, has concoctions on it like a Sneaky Lob, a Low Lob, and a Drop Shot. A few of those and you are a match for anyone.
Say’s Gordon, “We set out to give the people of Glasgow a lounge of which it can be proud, and I think we have done just that. We want people to come in to relax in comfortable surroundings and enjoy a leisurely drink.”
The Centre Court is certainly a match for anything else in the city. In moulding it the owners have created the type of place where they would like to go, their yardstick being that if they would like to go there, so would others.
Mr Cooper, the curator of the Wimbledon Museum, was more than delighted to help the owners get everything absolutely authentic because he feels, rightly, that such decor can evoke and sustain interest in tennis among people in Glasgow and the West of Scotland.
Needless to say Mr Cooper has been given a standing invitation to sample the delights of Glasgow’s Centre Court any time he cares to call.
A cold buffet and “Wimbledon – type” food will be available for customers at the Centre Court, just what “Wimbledon-type food” is the owners aren’t saying. They like to keep some surprises up their sleeves. But the possibility is that such delights as strawberries and cream might be on sale.
Only on season, of course, otherwise the cost would be prohibitive.
Customers will be served by staff dressed in red tops and white calf-length skirts. The girls that is… the men will wear white trousers.
That net result of all this thought and work is decidedly good!
Other names this venue has had over the years, L’Odean, The Box, The Glasgow Pub Company.
Do you have memories of this popular venue? If so please leave a comment.