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Seattle artist Sean Barton hand-letters the Jupiter window sign. Lots of more hand-created art within.

Image: Jupiter

Belltown, already home to many a bar, cocktail lounge, and watering hole of all sorts, will soon add another. And why the hell not? The boozier the merrier. Jupiter is located on the buzzy stretch of Second Ave, nestled between Blank Space Cafe and the Whiskey Bar.

Jupiter has been orbiting for over a year, but after a 13-month long buildout phase and permitting delays, it should be opening this summer, in June or sometime in July, hope co-owners Joe Nix and Jeff Rogers. Rogers also owns John John’s Game Room on Capitol Hill, and knows a thing or two about melding games and booze. Nix is a local painter and muralist, you may recognize a few of his massive pieces like the beer can on side of the Comet Tavern or his Patrick Swayze at Add-a-Ball, and soon you’ll see his work among 11 other murals in Jupiter. Yes, this space is that big, with plenty of real estate for murals, framed art with gallery style lighting, and an artist’s attention to detail around every corner. That’s not to say this place is stuffy; it’s anything but overly precious.

“I got all my starts in bars,” says Nix, who now gets to put his artist friends to work, from Cheyenne Randall and a vestibule full of his tattooed celebrities to a zany wall’s length ode to Sesame Street’s pinball number count by Japhy Witte. This is what happens when artists open a bar, admits Nix; it’s a place by artists, for artists, and for anyone who would enjoy a boiler maker beside a burlesque dancer or maybe with a skate video rolling on a big screen or with a Seahawks game on. You get the picture. “We want people to know that when they come here, something weird might be happening,” says Nix. 

Floating girl by joe nix kbsqgv

Floating Woman by Joe Nix.

Image: Jupiter

Like a mullet for bars, this one is party in the front and, actually, just more party in the back. Upon walking in, you’ll face the large wrap-around bar at which you could put in an order for one mighty fine sandwich, like a lamb gyro grinder or a sloppy Joe sando. The menu, while condensed to just a handful of sandwiches for now, plans to be as playful as the space, but is still in the works. Drinks will be low-frills, with eight taps of beer and shelves of your standard liquors. It’s no cocktail bar—head in either direction on 2nd Ave and you’ll stumble into one eventually—but bartenders here will still have room to have fun, concocting something boozy and different for your imbibing needs.

A red hall way, past more murals of course, leads to the back bar, which will be an arcade haven with two pool tables and anywhere from 24 to 30 pinball games. Kiss your laundry money goodbye. Inside a side room past the billiards will be Killer Queen, a 10-player arcade game, and you know the art therein will be on-theme. Beyond some benches and a booth, reservable for small parties or available for dibs, seating in this area is light. Still, you can belly up to the bar top for a drink and perhaps to watch 36 marbles glowing beneath the surface.

Jupiter (proper address at 2126 Second Ave) will open this summer pending some last-minute construction work. While it has the look of an events venue, which it was originally going to be, this space was formerly a private diamond-cutting facility for years. Stay tuned here and at Jupiter’s Instagram as an opening draws near.

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