The Historic El Mocambo Bar Is Reopening This April

Colby Smith Colby Smith

The Historic El Mocambo Bar Is Reopening This April

The new El Mo will feature 28 bathrooms.

El Mocambo, the legendary rock n’ roll institution, has seen of some of the most renowned rockers of all time. The Rolling Stones, Billy Idol, Blondie, The Ramones, Elvis Costello, Devo, and The Cars have all graced the stage of the iconic venue. Now, six years after closing its doors, El Mocambo is turning the neon palms back on for a new generation of rockers.

Photo: @theelmocambo

“What was hard to do was keep the integrity of the building the same,” said owner, TV-personality Michael Wekerle, “and make it look like it was before. And, at the same time, take the technology up five notches.”

The new design features a walkway in which each step is inscribed with the name of a band that played at the venue. The venue further memorialized these acts in the form of giant screen paintings that serve a dual purpose of enhancing the acoustics.

Photo: @theelmocambo

There are two stages in El Mocambo. On the first floor is their Starlight Room. While soundproofed, and hooked up with recording and top-of-the-line sound equipment, the Starlight’s design and layout is more or less consistent with the original.

The second floor showroom carries a little more swank. Capable of holding 400-500 people, the mainstage is flanked by a butterflied version of original sign. The twin neon palms of the original were split in half, refurbished, and refit with new technology to provide a modernized stage backdrop.

Photo: @ryanbolton

Along the balcony overlooking the second floor stage is a raw iron railing engraved with palm trees as a nod to the rock n’ roll of the 70s.

The new-and-improved El Mo is hooked up with equipment capable of high-quality recording and live-streaming concerts once the ball gets rolling. Additionally, the venue has built an in-house professional studio — making it possible to mix, master, and produce records.

Photo: @theelmocambo

Furthermore, the remodeled venue fill offer 28 bathrooms. Surrounding decor features homages to the vinyl days of the 70s as well as 80s glam rock culture.

El Mocambo will also feature a restaurant and multiple bars.

In total, the renovations of the El Mocambo ran upwards of $30 million. Perhaps this is why the venue is inclined to charge concert goers prices from $100 – $1,000 for upcoming gigs.

Photo: @theelmocambo

At this moment the venue is still eyeing Pearl Jam to perform at their opening night April 1, but has not confirmed the booking.

All in all, El Mocambo is a rock n’ roll landmark that has seen some of the most legendary musicians of the time. Now, with the palm trees alight, it’s ready for a new wave and a second life.


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