First Look: SPiN, Susan Sarandon’s ping pong social club, opens in San Francisco


Ping pong. Road artwork. Music. Dance.

Welcome to SPiN, the high-profile ping pong social club from Academy Award-winning actress Susan Sarandon, which softly opens as we speak, Might 9.

Since first opening its doorways in New York seven years in the past, SPiN has been embraced by celebrities like Justin Bieber and Snoop Dogg — even late music icon Prince — in addition to of us of all ages and social statuses who get pleasure from a sport of table tennis.

“SPiN is for everyone,” says CEO Pieter Vanermen, who moved to New York from Belgium two years in the past to assist develop the model.

Along with New York and San Francisco, SPiN has lately opened an outpost in Chicago and two franchise places in Los Angeles and Toronto. Over the following two to 3 years, Vanermen says, the corporate will proceed to develop, in search of new places in main U.S. cities, in addition to exploring the Asian market.

Photo: Gabrielle Lurie/Special to The Chronicle

SPiN CEO Pieter Vanermen (proper) performs a ping pong match with COO Mike Mckinley (not pictured) . Photograph: Gabrielle Lurie/Particular to The Chronicle

Coming to San Francisco was a “no-brainer” for Vanermen, who cites the Bay Space’s enormous variety of tech corporations — the place having a ping pong table just isn’t a perk a lot as an industry status symbol.

The SoMa location, which is designed by Eaton Hall Architecture, price “north of $5 million” to finish, based on Vanermen. It’s positioned on the nook of Folsom and Third streets, subsequent to Moscone Heart and Yerba Buena Gardens — a primo space for catering to the metropolis’s tech crowds, to not point out different company enterprise.

Nonetheless, Vanerman says that for him, Sarandon, and the corporate’s different founders (Jonathan Bricklin, Franck Raharinosy and Andrew Gordon), SPiN is about greater than the sport.

“It’s not solely concerning the ping pong,” Vanerman says, “It’s about connecting individuals and their creativity.”

Photo: Gabrielle Lurie/Special to The Chronicle

Photograph: Gabrielle Lurie/Particular to The Chronicle

The house options 19 state-of-the-art STIGA ping pong tables; a big assortment of road artwork from artists like Shepard Fairey, Stikki Peaches, David Flores and native graffiti artwork group 1:AM; a home DJ; two full bars; and personal lounge space and patio.

Entrance to SPiN is free; costs for table time vary from $19-$29 for 30 minutes and $29-$49 for an hour. The membership will supply a variety of programming, from informal video games for dabblers to event leagues for hardcore followers.

SPiN additionally presents personal ping pong classes from table tennis professionals, together with 14-time Swedish nationwide champion Malin Petterssonwho, previous to becoming a member of SPiN, was a ping pong coach in Silicon Valley. One of many membership’s signature occasions, referred to as the Dirty Dozen, pits table tennis professionals like Pettersson in opposition to novice gamers. The membership additionally hosts weekly dance events on heart court docket, in addition to “grudge matches” the place excessive profile gamers face off in opposition to one another.

“We name SPiN the offline social community, since you are actually pressured to work together with individuals to make associates — with out your telephone, with out your pc,” says Vanermen.

Photo: Gabrielle Lurie/Special to The Chronicle

Photograph: Gabrielle Lurie/Particular to The Chronicle

Those that don’t really feel like taking part in can seize a seat on one of many plush couches, order a drink or a chunk, and watch a match.

Chef Mike Betancourt is accountable for the kitchen, which can prove dishes with a San Francisco bent (see menu beneath), like a char siu bao sandwich ($13). In a nod to the Buena Vista Cafe, for dessert, the kitchen will serve an Irish espresso ice cream sandwich ($10). On the booze aspect, cocktails embrace made-to-order drinks just like the Business Commonplace ($13) with Fernet and inexperienced Chartreuse, in addition to bottled cocktails just like the Lob No. 2 ($14), made with Aperol and elderflower liqueur.

The ping pong palace joins the ranks of different local activity-centric bars, like Brewcade, Urban Putt and the forthcoming Coin-Op Game Room, additional solidifying San Francisco’s status of being an over-the-top playland for adults.

Group SPiN says that their enterprise is greater than that: It’s additionally about being part of the neighborhood. SPiN is partnering with San Francisco’s Glide and plans to donate ping pong tables to underserved native faculties, in addition to internet hosting charitable occasions all year long.

SPiN softly opens as we speak, with the grand opening party slated for Might 19.

Hours shall be 11 a.m.-midnight Sunday-Monday; till 1 a.m. Tuesday-Wednesday; and till 2 a.m. Thursday-Saturday.

SPiN, 690 Folsom St. (at Third Road), S.F. (214) 862-4646. http://wearespin.com





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