The sports bar scene has given way to the newest and trendiest entertainment fad. Arcades have become a favorite for adults who want to unwind and enjoy a night out with friends. St. Louis is full of great alternatives to the sports bar. Check out these arcade establishments and enjoy a drink, and a meal, while beating your high score.
The Pink Galleon
1243 Castillons Arcade Plaza
Creve Coeur, MO 63141
The Pink Galleon isn’t just another neighborhood bar. It’s a trip to the tropics, with pool tables, games and beach murals of pirates, mermaids and other nautical settings. In fact, hot pink accentuates the decor and the pool tables. If pool isn’t your thing, try ping pong, shuffleboard, electric darts, foosball and video games. You will find one of the largest arcades also adorned with several flat-screen TVs and a 1000-watt juke box. Enjoy a variety of mixed drinks, wine or ice-cold bottled and draft beers while you take in the atmosphere. Patrons are encouraged to have food delivered or to bring their own platters from local retailers as they would love to help you economize your entertainment spending. The Pink Galleon is a 21-and-older establishment. Enjoy either of its two neighborhood locations in Creve Coeur and South County.
Orbit Pinball Lounge
7401 Hazel Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63143
The adults-only Orbit Pinball Lounge is the best destination for the over-21 crowd to gather for great food, drinks and old fashioned pinball and skeeball, all at an affordable price that won’t break your bank. This retro arcade and lounge is designed with an up-to-date and high-end feel. Ten pinball games, including Star Ship Trooper, Judge Dredd and Tales From The Crypt, and at least three skeeball games provide the entertainment as you enjoy a variety of mixed drinks and wines, and an equally wide variety of local and not so local beers. It’s more than just a bar. It’s a great place to enjoy adult conversation and beverages in a casual but upscale setting in Maplewood.
3407 California Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63118
If you are looking for the traditional sports bar, don’t go to 8-Bit Bar. However, if you want to spend an evening in an arcade like none other you will find in St. Louis or anywhere else, then please stop in and feel free to stay for the evening. The bar’s owners, Tim Scherer and Claire Franke, were tired of the sports bar routine. They designed a unique and modern establishment with a techy flair. While 8-Bit does house 15 to 20 classic pinball games, it also has wifi with ample power outlets for your own electronics, board games, free library books and weekly presentations from researchers, scientists and other professionals. Its goal is to connect the community with local business, all in a casual and entertaining setting. Earn barchievments and cash them in for drinks and other prizes. The bar has more than 20 beers on draft and Pabst Blue Ribbon is only $3.
The Silver Ballroom
4701 Morgan Ford Road
St. Louis, MO 63116
The Silver Ballroom is St. Louis’s home of pinball and punk rock. If you are 21 or older, this is the place to spend your pinball energy. With more than 18 pinball machines, which are rotated on a regular basis, you will certainly find plenty of reasons to visit and enjoy libations with friends. The bar, otherwise known as the Retox Center, is fully stocked and boasts 24-ounce canned beer. And if the drink selection doesn’t impress you, the punk rock jukebox will. Enjoy daily, from scratch, handmade Australian meet pies. You just can’t beat that beefy, cheddary goodness, or turkey, chicken fajita, mac & cheese and more for $5 each. Check out its various pinball tournaments and contribute to its online forum.
6504 Delmar Blvd.
St. Louis, MO 63130
Who knew that one of St. Louis’s best hangouts for great burgers and music would also be a great hangout for pinball? In between dinner/lunch and music, take a trip to the Pac Man Room. Try your luck at the vintage Pac-Man game and reserve the room for a private party for 20 of your closest friends, at only $20 an hour. And, of course, check out the entertainment calendar. Blueberry Hill is famous for hosting national touring bands, right here in the Loop of University City. Blueberry Hill is the best place to enjoy an evening out with friends. With over 10 trademark rooms featuring pop-culture memorabilia, and great food and entertainment, you just can’t beat it.
Lisa Payne-Naeger, a native of the St. Louis area, is a freelance writer, blogger, political activist and a homeschooling mother of two children. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.