Two doors down from Locus Publicus, Locus International is known as the younger sister of the incredibly popular pub. And you could call it the slightly hipper of the two as well.
It’s as if the owner has cut and copied ‘de Locus’ and added a trendy filter. It’s dark in there, but the wall is decorated with an infographic outlining the ‘brewing process’. There are bottles on a shelf, but they’re framed by colourful background lighting. A traditional ‘brown café’, 2.0.
The bar, which opened in 2014, is clearly geared towards international students. There’s hardly anything that sets it apart from the crowd – according to the bar man, it’s mainly the name that does it. And they’ve chalked all sorts of foreign words on the blackboard. The biggest international vibe comes off the Chinese characters. And there’s enough room to sit down – foreigners like that, according to the barman.
Whatever the case, the marketing ploy seems to be working. On this particular Thursday evening, we’re hard pressed to find customers – all students, incidentally – who speak Dutch. What’s more, a suspicious number of them seem to be coming from the direction of The Student Hotel. It’s a bar-owner’s dream: to be an exclusive supplier.
Occasionally, the bar feels like an Irish pub, albeit an upgraded version. They’ve got big TV screens with football on, but without the matching pub crowd with long greasy hair and a Star Wars T-shirt. Which contributes to the friendly atmosphere.
They have a remarkable taste in music though: after arriving at the bar, we have to endure worn-out dross like The Final Countdown. All the more reason to raise your voice a bit when you’re talking. And basically, that’s why anyone would visit Locus International in the first place. Which is fine, of course.