The Get Down to replace Fletcher's
A new lounge called The Get Down will replace Fletcher's in the coming weeks, according to owner Bryan Burkert.
Burkert, who also owns the music store Soundgarden, is overseeing a sweeping renovation of the two-story Fells Point club, which includes removing the upstairs stage, knocking out a portion of the ceiling and installing metal railing and refinishing the floors, walls and bar.
A drastic departure and significant investment on Burkert's part, the Get Down could be open in early July, he said.
"There's no guarantee that what we're doing is going to work," Burkert said. "We're going to create the best space with the best vibe we can."
Burkert recruited Scott Chmielewski to design the lighting and interior design of the Get Down. A Baltimore native, Chmielewski worked on the Beijing Olympics and other high-profile lounges ...
Chmielewski and Burkert are drawing inspiration from the old GoodLove Bar in Canton and Red Maple in Mount Vernon. They don't want to open something as over-the-top as Pur, and don't have lofty expectations of bringing New York or Miami to Baltimore, they said.
"I play devil's advocate on this every day," Burkert said. "Is this going to work? We could have just gone for a pop/dance club."
Some of The Get Down's furniture will come from the late, storied New York club The Roxy. Burkert and Chmielewski got the pieces from former Roxy owner Gene DiNino. They're currently being reupholstered.
The Get Down will have DJs and some live music on a regular basis, Burkert said. Though Fletcher's hosted live music for years, with the rise of Rams Head Live and Sonar, it became harder to book notable nationally touring bands, Burkert said. And with nearby Harbor East and the planned Marketplace at Fells renovations coming soon, he thinks the neighborhood will be able to support a place like The Get Down.
"I'm sure not everybody who used to come to Fletcher's will like it," Burkert said. "Some of them are going to hate me for what I did. But I had to make a decision."
(Pictured, the view from the second floor, where the stage used to be, looking down)