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Downtown hot spots known for wild nights quietly shutter: Houston's bro bar scene is in real danger

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Live at Bayou Place crowd
A crowd in front of Live! at Bayou Place during more prosperous times. Live! at Bayou Place/Facebook

Strike another blow against Houston's bro bars. The number of places to pound Jägerbombs and get slammered took another hit with the quartet of bars known as Live! at Bayou Place quietly closing. 

The bars — which were only open on the weekends — never opened this weekend and word slowly spread of their demise. (Swamplot first noted the bars' shutdown.)  This shuttering follows the recent closings of two bars that attract a similar clientele: Saint Genevieve in West Ave and the nearby funeral bars on Kirby. 

Together, the four bars in Bayou Place — named PBR, Lucie’s Liquors, Shark Bar and Chapel Spirits — replaced Roc Bar in 2011. They each offered a slightly different atmosphere with one convenient entry point. For example, Lucie's was vaguely Caribbean-themed and PBR played both kinds of music — Country and Western.

According to a recent Yelp review, the Live! complex had been suffering from declining attendance and poor service.  

Perhaps the bar's most famous media moment occurred in the summer of 2012 when Minnesota Vikings all-pro running back Adrian Peterson was arrested and charged with resisting arrest when he refused to leave the club at closing time. Those charges were ultimately dismissed when a grand jury found that there was no probable cause to sustain them.  

In the meantime, bro bar fans will have to head either south to Midtown or west to Washington Ave for their nightlife. Plenty of people will definitely miss these Bayou bars. 

Update:

A club representative contacted CultureMap with additional information related to the closure. First, she notes that Yelp has hidden several, recent five stars reviews from people who enjoyed their time at Live!.  Recent Facebook pictures do show some robust crowds.

According to the rep, Live! closed due to a decision made by the company's corporate parent. "We had it a lot harder," she says, than sister clubs in Kentucky, St. Louis, Boston and Baltimore, which she attributes to Houston's more competitive night life scene and correspondingly higher promotion costs. She states that Live! also suffered from not having Bayou Place's concert venue built into the club, which would have helped keep attendees there for post-show revelry. 

As for the future, she says that "not even the managers know" what the company has planned for the space. They could try another club, attempt to open a restaurant or withdraw from the complex entirely.   

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