Sinkers Lounge is reinventing mini golf in the same way Top Golf reinvented the driving range, said Matt Baysinger.
“With all the ideas we have in our heads about what mini golf is, I think Sinkers Lounge will far surpass that. Tabletop golf is this combination of shuffleboard, mini golf and pool that doesn’t quite make sense until you play it. But once you’re part of it, it becomes this really enjoyable experience,” said Baysinger, CEO and co-founder of Swell Spark — the parent company of interactive entertainment brands, including Breakout KC, Blade & Timber and Sinkers Lounge.
The upscale, indoor tabletop golf bar and restaurant is set to open later this month in the Power and Light District, next door to Swell Spark’s Blade & Timber — nearly two years after its original launch date.
“We signed our lease in February of 2020,” Baysinger said. “So the first obstacle was the obvious one, COVID. We as a team collectively said, ‘Let’s push our summer launch and wait to do this right.’”
Click here to read about what the Swell Spark team did instead to stay afloat through the early months of the pandemic.
“When we first planned to open, other concepts like this in the U.S. didn’t exist,” he continued. “So the pandemic and delays also gave us time to send staff members out to other concepts on the coasts to reimagine [Sinkers Lounge]. 2021 was the first year in Swell Spark’s history that we didn’t open a new store, so everyone has been really eager to get back into that new concept, new store, new launch-mode.”
Click here to read more about Swell Spark.
The approximately 7,000-square-foot location will feature nine regular mini golf holes and nine tabletop golf structures. Each structure is Kansas City-inspired — pulling in iconic references such as the shuttlecocks at the Nelson-Atkins Art Museum, “The City of Fountains” and the KC skyline, Baysinger said.
“We are celebrating Kansas City and looking forward to attracting more people to the city,” Baysinger shared. “I remember when I was in high school, and Power and Light didn’t exist yet. Twenty years later and downtown Kansas City has so much to offer. It’s crazy that we get to be a part of that with Sinkers Lounge being our third downtown store.”
When individuals are not playing mini golf, they can hang out in the open seating and grab a drink from the cocktail bar or a bite from the kitchen.
“It’s a pretty big space, but we’ve made it feel really cozy to where people are just going to want to come and spend time,” Baysinger said. “There will be people who come to play games, and people who come to eat, drink and socialize. It’s a place for everyone to enjoy.”
As Kansas City’s premier tabletop golf spot, Sinkers Lounge will introduce the community to a brand new game that Baysinger hopes will become the next hot topic of conversation, he shared.
“People are obsessed with Wordle right now — I’m playing it, and it’s this exciting, new thing to play amongst friends,” he said. “Tabletop golf is this brand new experience that will create these foundations for conversation and relationships, which is exactly what we aim to do.”
Sinkers Lounge is Swell Spark’s first “high-quality launch,” Baysinger said — noting that Breakout KC and Blade & Timber opened six months after the team came up with those ideas; whereas Sinkers Lounge has been two and a half years in the making.
“Our other concepts started out as ideas that we didn’t put a lot of money into; but once people embraced them, we were able to put those resources in to make them shiny and amazing,” he explained. “With Sinkers Lounge being in Power and Light, we have to do it right the first time. We’ve had so much time to make it exactly what we want it to be, and it’s going to be noticeable.
“We’ve also learned so much from doing business with Kansas City for the past eight years,” Baysinger continued. “The community has given us constructive feedback, as well as their support. We’re more excited for Sinkers Lounge than we’ve ever been for anything before because it is the culmination of all those years — so, come hang out with us!”
Click here to watch a video about the master craftsman behind Swell Spark’s custom-built interactive experiences.