Good news for anyone fervently awaiting the official opening of downtown Phoenix’s Cobra Arcade Bar: It’s only 48 hours away.
According to co-owner Ariel Bracamonte, the much-anticipated bar and arcade will be unveiled to the general public during its grand opening on Friday night. And from the looks of the place, everything’s pretty much ready to go.
All 40 of its games — including arcade classics like Punch-Out, Tempest, Star Wars, Strider, and 720° — are all in place and are ready to be played. The walls are filled with game-inspired mural work by such artists as Lalo Cota and Noel Martinez. Cobra's island bar is fully stocked, featuring 14 brews on draft and 10 game-themed specialty cocktails on the drink menu. Oh, and the change machine is loaded with quarters.
Cobra’s location, next door to FilmBar at Second Street and McKinley, has been a hive of activity the past several days as Bracamonte, an avid collector of classic arcade games, has been doing last-minute repairs and maintenance on the bar’s many machines.
Meanwhile, the bar staff and employees of Genuine Concepts – the company owned by Tucker Woodbury that’s behind The Vig, Little Woody, and other chic local spots and is partnered with Bracamonte to run Cobra – have been busy readying care the libations side of things.
“There are a lot of different people involved with running this place,” Bracamonte says. “I'm handling the games and all the art while they’re taking care of the bar.”
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Both the bar and the arcade at Cobra got a trial run on during a soft opening Tuesday night attended by “friends and family” as well as anyone in the know. And despite being on the down-low, the turnout for the event was substantial and — by all accounts — a smashing success.
One such attendee was The Blunt Club’s Pickster One, who shared his feelings about the spot on his Facebook on Tuesday.
“This place is tight,” Pickster wrote. “Gonna have some fun here.”
We’re pretty sure that he won’t be the only one after the place is officially open on Friday night.
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Here's a complete rundown of every game currently available at Cobra Arcade Bar. As we've previously reported, Bracamonte (who owns more than 100 different old-school arcade titles, including S.T.U.N. Runner, The Empire Strikes Back, APB, Dragon's Lair, and Robocop) will rotate the selection a certain amount of the games on a regular basis.
Ivan "Ironman" Stewart's Super Off Road
Mortal Kombat II
Street Fighter II: Champion Edition
Street Fighter III: Third Strike
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Turtles in Time
Track 'n' Field
Editor's note: This blog has been updated since it was first published.