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Legendary Kings Cross club Hugo’s is reopening in 2017

Legendary Sydney nightspot Hugo’s is set to reopen, some 18 months after lockout laws originally forced it to close.

The Kings Cross institution shut its doors in August 2015, with owners reporting the venue had suffered a 60% drop in revenue since the introduction of Sydney’s lockout laws. But now a group of promoters have announced that Hugo’s will be back in business from February 2017 – albeit operating as temporary ‘pop-up’ venue.

New operator Eric Jury told The Daily Telegraph he hopes the re-opening will breathe life back into Kings Cross. “Hopefully this could be the beginning of a new era for this venue and that street in particular,” he said. “I’m hoping that we can bring the people back and make the area as popular as it once was.”

Jury told the Daily Telegraph he has already begun installing new sound proofing in the venue in order to comply with post-midnight noise restrictions, and that he is in talks with residents of nearby buildings about sound control. Sidney Pierucci, who is also working on the relaunch, told inthemix Hugo’s 2.0 is “a real opportunity to relaunch the area and trial different service formats that will cater for a range of different crowds”.

Former Hugo’s owner Dave Evans is not involved in the reopening, inthemix has learnt.

Hugo’s was one in a string of iconic venues to close after the introduction of lockout and last drinks laws in February 2014. Fellow Kings Cross clubs Soho, The Backroom, Trademark and The Bourbon have also closed, along with Darlinghurst’s Flinders and the enormous Q Bar complex on Oxford Street.

“Hugo’s in Kings Cross set the standard on how to have a great time safely – but we had no chance once former Premier O’Farrell introduced his one-size-fits-all laws,” former owner Dave Evans said when the venue shut in 2015. “After the tragedies [one-punch deaths in Kings Cross] that occurred, the NSW Government’s knee-jerk laws were well-intentioned but they were ill-informed.”

There’s no word yet on how long the Hugo’s pop-up plans to stay open for – we’ll bring further updates as they come.