Take a peek at the secret Sydney speakeasy hidden behind a painting in a historical building

Sydneysiders love an ultra-cool speakeasy bar hidden behind an art deco painting in a historic Circular Quay building
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In an unassuming building in the middle of Sydney’s CBD lies a striking art deco painting that hides a very nice secret.

The painting of a flapper-style woman sipping champagne pulls back to reveal the quirky Bar Messenger that locals can’t get enough of.

Guests can press the ornate buzzer near the artwork to gain access to the intimate speakeasy located beneath Transport House in Circular Quay.

Visitors can find the historic building by spotting the easy-to-miss sculpture of Mercury, the Messenger of the Gods, above the door and then following the messenger down to the door, disguised as a portrait.

Once inside, they are greeted by a wall of unusual portraits of animals in distinguished clothing, twinkling chandeliers and shelves filled with wine bottles in the dimly lit underground eatery.

Guests can press the ornate buzzer near the artwork to gain access to the intimate speakeasy located beneath Transport House in Circular Quay

Visitors can find the building by spotting the sculpture of Mercury, the Messenger of the Gods, above the door and then following the messenger down to the door, disguised as a portrait

Guests can press the ornate buzzer near the artwork to gain access to the intimate speakeasy located beneath Transport House in Circular Quay

An ‘Underworld of Wine’, Bar Messenger offers an extensive drinks menu with offerings from some of Australia’s best wineries and wine regions around the world.

If wine isn’t your thing, the bartenders can prepare a range of classic or specialty cocktails, including the Messenger’s Martini or Limoncello Spritz.

Foodies can indulge in the eccentric menu of share plates, cold cuts, cheese and hot toasties.

Favorites include the chicken liver pate, burrata with basil tomato and fig balsamic and mortadella toastie with Gruyère, truffle mustard aioli and house pickle.

Bar Messenger opened in August 2023 and has been hosting themed events ever since.

Coming up soon is Moulin Rogue night on March 8, where patrons will be treated to dazzling Parisian cabaret performances, and a Drag Show Cabaret show on March 23.

If wine isn't for you, the bartenders can prepare a range of classic or specialty cocktails, including the Messenger's Martini or Limoncello Spritz

If wine isn’t for you, the bartenders can prepare a range of classic or specialty cocktails, including the Messenger’s Martini or Limoncello Spritz

Foodies can indulge in the eccentric menu of share plates, charcuterie, cheese and even hot toasties

Foodies can indulge in the eccentric menu of share plates, charcuterie, cheese and even hot toasties

Those who have discovered the 1920s-style bar rave about their experiences.

Blogger Rose Khater said Bar Messenger had perfect “old fashioned vibes” and a menu designed for sharing.

“I love going to hidden bars and this one was super cool because it was behind a painting!” said another woman.

‘I loved the moody atmosphere inside. It’s the perfect place for a date or catching up with friends over a glass of wine.’

“The thrill of cracking the code to gain access is matched only by a rare level of personal service that is very welcome in a world rapidly moving toward robot service culture,” said another five-star review.

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