Two new hangouts on Church St

Flash and Boutique to add new bustle to neighbourhood

“It’s going to be called Flash on Church St, and it’s going to be a little raunchy.”

That’s how owner George Pratt describes his new village hotspot. Pratt, also owner and namesake of George’s Play, plans for his new men-only club to take over the site of long-time Church St fixture Bigliardi’s, which closed last year.

Flash on Church will be two and a half floors with a “beautiful stage, which performers will love to perform on,” says Pratt.

“Bigliardi’s was quite beautiful,” says Pratt of the club’s predecessor. ”We maintained as much of it as we could and modernized it to fit the times.”

Guests will still find a delectable cut of meat at Flash on Church, albeit for display only.

“There will be a little nudity, a little pornography and a lot of dancing,” says Pratt. “The sort of thing guys don’t like to do when the girls are around.”

Pratt, who will ”co-promote” the club with partner Gilles Berthelot, says Pizzaiolo, which currently occupies the south wing of 463 Church, will function as the restaurant portion of the club.

Activity is also buzzing across the street at Boutique Bar, where owner Julien Salomone is giving the gaybourhood a dose of Côte D’Azur allure.

Born in the south of France, Salomone and business partner Sebastien Moya chose the former Veda space at 506 Church as the location of their “chic” Boutique Bar. The front patio and table service make for an airy and relaxed atmosphere with an unmistakable Riviera flair.

Salomone says opening the bar is his way of giving back to a community that has always welcomed him, regardless of his sexuality (he’s straight).

“I live here, I shop here, and I wanted to open something here,” says Salomone, who has lived in the Village with his wife for five years. “We have lots of gay friends, and we thought Church St would be great for this,” he says.

Among Salomone’s secret weapons are specially made delicacies like the white truffle and fresh thyme popcorn, which, in true Euro style, comes free of charge with the purchase of a drink.

With a small staff of “skilled mixologists,” Salomone says the fresh-fruit martinis, cheese boards and “great cocktail menu” will be major attractions, but the price will be the biggest draw.

“Our prices are very, very reasonable,” says Salomone.”I wanted something chic, affordable and different.”


The grand opening of Boutique Bar is planned for later this summer. Flash on Church will see its grand reveal near the end of August.

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Culture, News, Toronto

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