Fenway Park will open for its 102d season next month, but Red Sox fans can watch baseball games at a new stadium this year — the recently opened Stadium Sports Bar & Grill near Faneuil Hall.
The local chain with locations in Waltham, Quincy, and South Boston celebrated the grand opening of a fourth restaurant Friday at the former State Street site of McFadden’s Restaurant and Saloon, which closed late last year. The most important goal is to offer fans of the Sox and other local teams a polished, downtown alternative to the city’s more casual pubs, said Hol Hustus, Stadium’s chief operating officer.
“We want to be a little more high end,” Hustus said, glancing at a cluster of twentysomething men in button-downs and slacks. “We’re looking to attract those business professionals and young urbanites.”
The men, just off work in the Financial District, said they had been to Stadium a few times since its soft opening in February.
“Everything is cleaner and better,” said Dave Hogan, comparing Stadium to its predecessor, McFadden’s. “The TV situation is right on.”
Stadium boasts an impressive lineup of big-screen televisions, including a 90-inch flatscreen centered over the bar and a 100-inch projection monitor on an adjacent wall. Each can show four games simultaneously in split-screen quadrants that are as big as many home TV sets.
“I bet this place will really light up during the tournament,” said Hogan’s friend, Tony Guariello, referring to the NCAA men’s basketball tournament that begins next week.
“Hey, we’re all taking a half-day next Friday,” said a second friend, Joe Devaney. “We should come here.”
Stadium hopes to inspire many similar conversations with food made from scratch and a selection of 17 draft beers. Higher end doesn’t have to mean expensive, Hustus said; prime ground chuck burgers start at $8.95.
Hustus said his company has spent about $1.5 million on the bar, between the purchase price and renovations, and has hired 45 full- and part-time staff members.
The two-floor building also features a downstairs club called Safe, which will be open for dancing to the music of live bands and disc jockeys on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights — assuming Stadium secures the entertainment license it expects to receive in the next two weeks.
“We want this to be people’s first stop of the night,” Hustus said. “And we want them to stay.”