hyatt lobby bar sdcc 2019

It’s day -1 here at Comic-Con, but the big gun news is beginning to come out – Ellis/Hitch Batman! Taika Thor 4! –  and here on the ground in San Diego the shape of this year’s show is beginning to be seen…and some of it is a shocker.

It seems that the Manchester Hyatt Grand’s lobby bar is undergoing renovations, meaning it is closed. Registration has been moved outside, and most of the lobby is walled off.

The Hyatt’s lobby bar has been the epicenter of con schmoozing and carousing for decades. “I’ll see you at the Hyatt later” is a traditional sign off and in particular Saturday night has become the Walpurgisnacht of con: most duties fulfilled, everyone lets loose for a thunderous hangout that sounds, in the high ceilinged marble lobby, like a thunderous, headache-heralding whooooooosh.

Surprisingly little drinking actually takes place at the bar because there are usually only two or three bartenders, and it takes a long time to get a drink. Some people just bring their own.

Brew 30, the beer bar at the “new” end of the lobby is still open, and word on the street is that pop-up bars will be opened to help with the crowds. The Top of the Hyatt on the 40th floor is also open, but the idea of being stuck in an enclosed area is unpleasant for some.

As pros began to arrive this morning, word began to spread on Twitter and dismay grew.

This is not the first time the Hyatt has shut down its main bar. Back in the early aughts or thereabouts, what was then the main bar on the second floor was shut down for TWO YEARS while they constructed the second tower of the Hyatt.  At that point DC Comics took it as its solemn duty to set up a temporary bar back behind the Hyatt, a misty, outdoorsy setting that some still remember fondly.

But there’s no denying that a mood of dread and uncertainty has settled over the comics industry. Comics have weathered many storms – Wertham, shrinking newsstand distribution, lenticular covers, Todd McFarlane. Could this be the setback that breaks it? At Comic-Con, the horrible, loud, hard to get a drink Hyatt lobby bar is as traditional as swordfights on the back balcony and camping  out for Hall H.

The Beat will update this breaking story as events unfold.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Have no fear! Our other restaurants on property are ready and waiting for all the Comic-Con fun! Brew30 and Sally’s Fish House & Bar are still open and featuring Comic-Con specials. Top of the Hyatt will also be open if you enjoy views from 40 stories high. We are making our lobby and lobby bar even better so your experience at next years event will be more Grand and still be the go to spot to catch up with everyone!

  2. No need to fear! We are still your go to spot for all things Comic-Con! We have special offerings in Brew30 and Sally’s Fish House, just waiting for you to enjoy. Don’t miss our Hulk Burger, Jedi Salad with light saber chopsticks and galactic cocktails at each restaurant. Seaview will be also be featuring themed buffets Thursday – Sunday. We are making enhancements to the lobby and lobby bar in order to make your future Comic-Con experiences even more grand and out of this world!

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