Frost Ice Bar won't be open until at least next month, but curious lovers of the cold can get a sneak preview when the Frost team takes over Sterling's next Tuesday, serving cocktails on the patio, which will be decorated with an ice sculpture. When Frost Ice Bar opens at Faneuil Hall this summer, it will provide Bostonians the chance to be cold and get drunk year-round, an opportunity that until now was only available for about six months of the year. As the name suggests, Frost Ice Bar will be made almost entirely of ice, featuring "dramatic ice-sculpted interiors," according to a release from Frost Group, a company born from the Boston Duck Tours team, who have been carrying quacking tourists around town for almost two decades. From the concept to the location and key players, it's clearly a project with tourism in mind, but will the locals bite?
Aside from enjoying a pleasant evening shivering in a 24-degree ice chamber, aided slightly by the provided hooded cape and gloves, Frost Ice Bar visitors can expect specialty cocktails (served in glasses made from ice, of course), music, and "ever-changing" (melting?) decor. It'll be family-friendly up until 5 PM each night, at which point it becomes a 21+ venue.
The process is a bit more involved than just going out to a regular bar. When visitors arrive at the ice bar, they'll pay an admission fee (previously reported to be in the range of $29), receive the cape and gloves, and go into a "transition room" to bring down their body temperature a bit, according to Frost Group and Boston Duck Tours CEO Cindy Brown, talking through the experience on Needham Channel News. Then, they'll enter the "ice castle."
The non-ice pieces of the 1,500-square-foot venue are currently being put into place, based on construction photos Frost Ice Bar recently shared on Facebook, and the hiring process has begun. The job posting on Facebook buries the lede a bit, sneaking "bartending in the cold room" between "kiosk attendance" and "experience in restaurant service." Other responsibilities: "ice glass production" and "providing guests with capes and gloves."
While this is the first appearance of the ice bar concept in Boston, there are several similar venues around the United States and beyond, such as the Minus5 Ice Bar in Las Vegas, which is accordingly kept at -5 degrees (Celsius). That's 23 degrees Fahrenheit – so roughly the same as Boston's Frost Ice Bar. XtraCold Icebar in Amsterdam maintains a 14-degree Fahrenheit atmosphere and even shows a 3D movie of "a journey over icebergs and along steep cliffs in a fantasy ice landscape." Meanwhile, Florida's Icebar Orlando is kept at a balmy 27 degrees.