‘A bar for everyone:’ All new Cruisers in South Cape to open by Monday
First time bar owner Chris Schimmel is proud and eager to re-open the well-known Cruisers lounge by Monday, crowning it “a bar for everyone.”
The now-LGBTQ South Cape establishment at 1517 S.E. 47th Terrace will offer full-bar service early morning to late night seven days a week, giving the entire premises a much-needed makeover.
“It’s been scary but exciting,” said Schimmel Wednesday. “We’ve been cleaning up the facility, putting some much-needed cosmetic upgrades into the place. Completely painting the outside, putting in a new back bar, completely renovating the restrooms, as well as other repairs and upgrades.”
It’s been a quick turnaround since Shimmel first obtained the bar July 5.
“Everything just fell into place,” said Mike Haynes, general manager of the establishment. “From the time this place became available, to purchasing the liquor license and getting in here and cleaning it up. We want this to be a bar for everyone. With the closing of Tubby’s and TBL, we want to have a nice neighborhood bar, a comfortable place for the dis-placed crowd, where everyone can come here, be safe, and have fun.”
As a regular patron of Tubby’s, Schimmel was proud to have Haynes join the Cruisers/ team as his Cruisers general manager.
“I’ve been in the bar business since the mid-’90s, and worked at Tubby’s on the weekends. Chris was our best customer,” Haynes laughed, as Mike continued, “We wouldn’t have done all of this without Mike.”
Schimmel said previous patrons of the bar (some as long as 30 years) are excited about the changeover, and looking forward to the many special events and gatherings they plan to host.
“Everyone is welcome here. We have 30-year customers who know it’s a concept change, excited to come back when we reopen. Cape Coral is very cool like that. It’s a very wonderful, welcoming community,” he said.
“We’re very happy to be a part of the upcoming Bacon Fest trolley run, taking place Aug. 5. We also plan to host karaoke nights, BINGO, live entertainment, live shows, drag shows, pool tournaments and other special events,” Haynes said.
The South Cape establishment boasts two full bars, a DJ booth, raised stage, three pool tables, an arcade area with the coveted bowling game, free WiFi, nine TVs playing anything from the NFL Red Zone package to whatever patrons want to watch at the time, and a happy hour that takes place every day for most of the day.
“Our happy hour will run seven days a week, featuring reduced-price drinks and beer, from opening to 8 p.m.,” Haynes said. “Denise is our head bartender, who’s been here for years. She knows everyone, literally everyone, who’d visit here, and we’re so glad to have her on board.”
Behind the bars, enjoy an array of top-notch (and lower-notch, if that’s what you’re looking for) liquor, wine, and beer that ranges from Budweiser and Goose Island IPA to some bottled delicacies and local brews from around town.
As for parking, even that received an overhaul.
“We cleared up the alley along the side of the building to allow extra parking, moved the Dumpster for even more room, and also purchased a lot out back, which will act as an overflow lot with an attendant, so we will have plenty of parking now,” Haynes said.
Hours to Cruisers are Tuesday to Saturday, 8 a.m. to 2 a.m.; and Sunday and Monday, noon to 2 a.m., and there’s never a cover charge.
The staff plans to host a big grand reopening celebration later in August.
For further information on the all-new Cruisers, or to keep in touch and watch the bar’s recent transition, find the new Facebook page on Facebook, @cruiserscape, by searching for “Cruisers Cape Coral,” or call 239-673-8002.