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Inside Chicago’s Bright and Airy New Shuffleboard Club and Bar

Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club opens in Bucktown next week

Royal Palm Shuffleboard Club
Barry Brecheisen
Ashok Selvam is the editor of Eater Chicago and a native Chicagoan armed with more than two decades of award-winning journalism. Now covering the world of restaurants and food, his nut graphs are super nutty.

Chicago and New York may disagree on hot dogs and pizza, but residents of both cities share at least one thing in the common: the need to escape brutal winters. Florida is a popular destination that provides warmer temperatures and sports like shuffleboard to rejuvenate those who brave those frigid temperatures. Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club brought those sunny vibes to Brooklyn four years ago and now they’re giving Chicagoans a dose of the same formula when they open a Bucktown location next week at 1750 N. Milwaukee Avenue.

“I can feel the party brewing inside of me while I pass by,” co-founder Ashley Albert said. “We’re going to have a great summer.”

The Chicago club carries the same mission of giving customers a chance to blow off the steam by playing shuffleboard on one of 10, 39-foot courts. An 11th is planned for the rooftop, but that area will open later this year. That’s the “challenge court” — the winning team stays on until defeat. The aesthetics are the same as N.Y.’s club. It carries that Florida sunshine feel up north. There’s a high bow truss ceilings and food truck docks — there’s no kitchen. The ceilings are higher than the Brooklyn location. There’s a photo booth but no TVs. Albert said they’ll have a projector screen for bigger events. No, not for sports — she’s talking about the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.

It’s $40 per hour to rent the court. Groups of 10 can reserve online for cabana parties which include drink packages. Gathering a crew is the only way to jump the line. The N.Y. space has two bars indoors, while the Chicago has one in the center of the space. They’ll also open a rooftop bar. CTA Blue Line riders will be able wave to customers as the elevated trains whizz past the roof.

Royal Palms opens on Thursday, March 29. Take an early tour below.

Customers who want to play can rent a court and grab their gear at the front desk.
A closeup of the pucks.
The carriers have a kitschy feel.
These shuffleboard tables aren’t for shuffleboard.
These high tops provide a nice view of the 10 courts.
The space is massive and airy.
Barry Brecheisen/Eater Chicago
The price of rentals depend on the time of the day.

There’s spaces away from the action if customers need a break.
The benches are for players.
Find a number and compete to win.
Respect the game and don’t scuff up the court.
“Don’t sent a dead biscuit to the kitchen” is a life motto.
Pennants from Florida.
Nostalgia sells.
The cabanas on the back walls.
Yes, there’s a bar.
The cocktails bring back a little Sunshine State fun.
The bar is mix of vintage and modern.
“Keep your pigeons off the fence.”
“Dr. Nut” has the right prescription.
Freshen up between matches in the women’s bathroom.

Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club Chicago

1750 N. Milwaukee Ave., Chicago, IL 60647 Visit Website