Ain’t no party like a bank party
Apologies millennials, but not everything needs to come with an added perk. Whatever happened to banking being boring?
On a recent trip to Yangon to visit an old friend, he suggested we grab drinks at a bar near his house.
When I showed up, I realised that the address that he had given me was for a local bank. I thought I must have got it wrong, until the old geezer showed up, and ushered me into the lobby.
I withheld my judgement, hoping not to offend my friend, and truly hoping that there was some sort of rooftop bar at the end of our lift ride. But no, when we got out of the lift, we stepped right into a bank branch lobby. Empty bank teller counters, tables with deposit slips and the odd plastic plant filled the room.
Imagine my surprise when a man who appeared to be a banker ushered us to a corner of the lobby. He opened a door and revealed a small room with a fully stocked bar, jazz music and table seating. My friend explained that he was a “prestige client” at the bank, and one of the perks that came with his high net worth status was access to an after hours bar in the bank itself.
When the bank’s general manager dropped by later to check on us, he explained the bar’s presence. In its usual purpose, the bank would have been empty all night. But by adding a bar, the manager could turn an extra profit.
It's not a bad idea, but I don’t think any bank will live up to the Captain’s Bar.