“Super” Abari game bar in the works in Belmont neighborhood

“Super” Abari game bar in the works in Belmont neighborhood

Abari's original location on North Davidson. Photos: Emma Way/Axios

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After a tumultuous year with the pandemic and rising rents, game bar owner Zach Pulliam is narrowing in on a new Abari location.

The big picture: Pulliam announced the permanent closure of his arcade in August, saying that it was “unclear” whether he could ever reopen in a city like Charlotte where, he said then, “developers are stifling creativity and killing small business.”

  • Since then, he’s scoured the city for a new location before landing on 1015 Seigle Avenue, a family-owned building in the Belmont neighborhood. It’s about one mile from the original Abari.

Pulliam first teased the possibility of a new location in a viral Reddit post. He tells me he’s signed a letter of interest and plans to sign the lease today.

new abari location

The new Abari location is about 5,000 square feet, nearly double the square footage of the original Abari.

What to expect: The new location, which Pulliam has coined “Super Abari,” is almost double in square footage with a designated bar and lounge area and more space for larger games like Skee-Ball.

  • Abari will still have a full bar, and it’ll add a small food menu, including homemade Hot Pockets from local bakery Dukes Bread. The nostalgia!

Beyond the space itself, Pulliam says to expect the same low-key Abari vibe with community driven game tournaments in pinball and Killer Queen.

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“This is just a guy — me — doing this. I do this for the love of what I’m doing, and I hope that shows,” he tells me.

Timeline: Pulliam hopes to have Super Abari open by the end of summer.

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"It's good. I promise." - Emma   Emma Way