New Happy Hour Traditions?

Has your bar area taken on an entire new presence in your home over the past year of living in our new pandemic lifestyle? For some, the idea of happy hour has been completely re-invented. Yes, we go out for meetings and socialization and we are looking forward to getting back to that. Back to some… of that.

Home entertainment doesn’t have to be just Hulu, Netflix, Amazon Prime and Apple TV+. The world of wine, craft cocktails and beer took an even larger increase in sales over this past year, and understandably so. With the idea of “a night out” fading into the distance, having the right set up to entertain at your home has become increasingly important. Over the past decade or so we’ve seen a trend of yoga studios and home offices become necessities in the home. With the passing of the year 2020, home office became standard in homes of all sizes, so the having the correct setup to have a civilized drink after work (or during) is now taken in to deep consideration.

Home bars are easy to set up and fun to design. But they also be decadent and fabulous if you have the means…

An “Old French Bistro” feel home bar. Interior Design by Linda Eyles.

Loosen up a bit

Listen, you’re used to moving from the home office to the home bar now. Maybe you and your partner meet there at 5pm or maybe you take your last calls of the day while crafting new cocktails recipes. Even with the onset of restaurants opening back up, you’re likely to keep this new integration into your life. Why leave your space when you can have your business contact and friends come to you for a hosted wine tasting or cocktail hour?

Home bars can be a bit cheekier than the rest of your home decor because the space that they take up will be smaller in comparison to other rooms in the house. You can really get creative and let your imagination fill the space up so that every happy hour is just the environment that makes you smile. Consider vintage wallpaper or old magazine covers to decorate the walls. Perhaps vintage Playboy bunnies all around? Since you won’t be covering the whole house and just a corner or area, you can do whatever you like and make it pop!

But what if your space is too small for a home bar? Consider then, a bar cart or cabinet to bring the happy hour to wherever you are. This approach can make tremendous design sense for a smaller space, specifically if its only a two-person party. When you open your home to more guests and family, rolling a bar cart in or opening a cabinet door to unveil a cocktail hour waiting to happen is such a fun surprise.

Carts & Cabinets

Hugo bar cart

The Pottery Barn “Hugo” bar cart is a really great place to start for a lot of people. Its simple and showcases that “Mad Men” time era that is just yearning to appear in your home. Its well-built and sits on good quality casters so you can roll it around the room. This one is available at just about every Pottery Barn in the nation and can be ordered online.

Hugo Bar Cart area courtesy of Sam & Jessica Mae Koza in Minneapolis.

The Caldwell bar cabinet

Pottery barn actually has a lot of options in different styles from carts up to full-size cabinets. For the price-conscious shopper or someone in between high-end goods and entry-level options, Pottery Barn may be your destination. And their offerings will look good in just about any home. This next example is called the Caldwell Bar Cabinet. It opens up into a full happy hour experience!

Cabinets of curiosity

Now on to the fun stuff. Let’s say you have a larger home and a bit more lavish lifestyle… You’ve got some fancy crystal that never sees the light of day and you’ve added all of Minnesota’s finest distillery’s spirits selections from your favorite Minneapolis liquor store. What to do?

It’s time to get hectic. Introducing the big boys.

Apparatus Interlude Cabinet

A cabinet of Carpathian burl clad in bronze wand hand-folded leather sits atop formidable brass legs. The softly arched silhouette recalls modernist architecture, a reference echoed in simple brass handles and accordion doors. The cabinet facade is punctuated with sharp material contrast, as the bronze gives way to stacks of hand-stitched leather folds.

Not for the faint of heart, at $116,000, the Apparatus Interlude bar cabinet is hoity toity indeed.


Roche Bobois Monceau bar unit

Top in Emperador marble, 2 doors, interior of storage with 1 top drawer (imitation 2 drawers), glass rack, mirror back, metal support, 1 glass drawer (imitation 2 drawers), 1 drawer. Structure and front of drawers in solid cherry wood. Side panels and doors in solid cherry wood and sycamore veneer on engineered composite wood and frame in solid cherry wood. Back panel and drawer bottoms in sycamore veneer on engineered composite wood. Drawers unit in solid sycamore. Rails in solid cherry wood. Over-stitched leather rods and decoration. Led lighting.

Manufactured in Europe. This guy is a little bit more in the realm of reality, even for the affluent. At $9,855.00 the Roche Bobois Monceau bar unit brilliantly outfit your 1960’s attitude at 4 pm on Fridays.

Anteriors Edison Cabinet

A study in architecture and design the Edison delivers style and function. This deco-inspired cabinet features an antique brass steel base that showcases an ivory vellum-paneled façade framed by solid oak in an ebony finish. Linear handles finish this piece while rounded edges soften its quadrangle form. Its versatile aesthetic easily blends into any style decor. Use as a bar cabinet to stylishly store spirits or as a contemporary solution for concealing collectibles.

More palatable yet at $6,240.00, the Anteriors Edison Cabinet can also be purposed for holiday dishes, linens and other curio-storage or even clothing if needed.

Anteriors Edison Cabinet

Kenneth Cobonpue Lola bar cabinet

Created using traditional boat-building techniques, Lolah is constructed of thin rattan strips cut with planer knives and fastened over a light rattan frame. Presented with the Design for Asia Award – Asia’s highest award for design – Lolah entices the sitter with its sensuous form, the economy of the material, and structural beauty.

Modern and chic, the Lolah bar cabinet by Kennth Cobonpue comes in at our most affordable and stylish home bar option at $3,820.00.

Contact Tiffany Hanken Interior Design

If you’re thinking a new home bar setup is just what you’re looking for, you’ve found the right design partner. The team at Tiffany Hanken Design loves to implement cozy home bar spaces based on your personal style and lifestyle preferences.

Welcome home. Happy hour has never been better.