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A sculpture of Jack Nicholson’s head sits among bottles of vodka at Hallway in Portland, Oregon.
The backbar at Hallway.
PDX Hype

Meet Old Town’s Shining-Themed Karaoke Bar

The Hallway, from father-son team Zac and Tristan Webster, lets visitors sing alongside the Grady twins, or order a drink from the surreal, glowing bar at the Overlook Hotel

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Brooke Jackson-Glidden is the editor of Eater Portland.

In Stanley Kubrick’s 1980 Stephen King adaption, The Shining, Jack Torrance, played by Jack Nicholson, strolls through a crowded cocktail lounge until he arrives at a glowing bar, staffed by servers in red suits. “Hi, Lloyd,” he says. “Been away, but now I’m back.”

The scene has been referenced in pop culture countless times — in an episode of Bob’s Burgers, the 2016 movie Passengers — thanks to its surreal, foreboding atmosphere and its glossy veneer of luxury. The Shining, often considered one of the greatest horror movies ever made, is packed with iconic imagery, particularly when Torrance smashes through a bathroom door with an axe to scream, “Here’s Johnny!” But one of the movie’s most famous scenes occurs in the hallway of the ominous Overlook Hotel: Danny rides his tricycle until he encounters the ghosts of the Grady sisters, holding hands, asking him to come play.

The bar at 20 NW 3rd Avenue, once home to Maxwell and Rebel Rebel, is, in its essence, a hallway, about 13 feet wide and 87 feet long. So when son-father team Tristan and Zac Webster stumbled across the space as the site of their future karaoke club, they decided to honor one of cinema’s most famous halls. Hallway PDX, which opened this spring, is a Shining-themed karaoke bar packed with references to the original film, from the hotel’s luminescent bar to the can of Calumet baking powder on display.

The bar at Hallway PDX, full of visitors, in Portland, Oregon.
PDX Hype
A bartender wears a red vest and a bow tie at Hallway.
Bartenders at Hallway in red vests, an allusion to the bar scene in The Shining.
PDX Hype
A plastic tricycle sits above the exit at Hallway in Portland.
Danny’s tricycle at Hallway.
PDX Hype

The Websters moved in this March, and over the course of several months, began redesigning the space. Now, when visitors pop in, allusions to the film are absolutely everywhere: A tricycle perched above the main room, underneath a ceiling printed with the distinctive design of the fictitious hotel’s carpeting; a sculpture of Nicholson’s head hidden among the bottles within the backbar shelving; portraits of scenes from the film on the walls, including shots approaching Oregon’s Timberline Lodge, where Kubrick filmed exterior shots of the Overlook Hotel. The Grady twins are often spotted projected on the wall, while the film plays silently on loop from a skylight.

Bartenders in red vests and bow ties mix drinks named for the movie: The Redrum is the bar’s take on a Bay Breeze, a blend of rum, pineapple, and cranberry juice; the Hedgemaze is a Milagro margarita, and the Grady Girls is a boozy root beer float with Sailor Jerry and whipped cream. The food menu sticks primarily to hot dogs and hamburgers, with free popcorn for those watching the movie on the ceiling.

But make no mistake: Hallway is not a quiet spot for a deeply unsettling conversation with a ghostly bartender. The karaoke bar offers more than 58,000 songs in its catalog, and the entire bar is available for rental for $60 per hour. “We’re a full-time karaoke bar,” Zac Webster says. “When you come into our place, we’re ready to sing, any time, any hour.”

Hallway is now open at 20 NW 3rd Avenue.

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