The Fish Inn aims to batter Basel opposition

WatchPro.com can sensationally reveal that Basel’s traditional British Embassy will once again be opening its doors to the British watch industry this month with a new expat British landlord.

After serving up the mother of all red herrings in the last few weeks, WatchPro.com can officially confirm that John and Ines Picton will be relocating their British pub brand, The Fish Inn, to Clarastrasse within the week.

The Pictons negotiated the move to the centre of Basel, on the site of the Fair & Square, with the building’s new owner, Glandon, which has converted the floors above the pub into 34 luxury serviced studio apartments.

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Glandon already operates four other serviced apartment locations in Basel aimed at the business community, with many more throughout Switzerland.

The Pictons, who have developed their business on several sites in Switzerland by serving fish and chips and imported British beers to the region’s large British expat community, told WatchPro.com this morning that Glandon was surprised by the approach from a family-run pub business in January, but has been very supportive of the concept.

WatchPro.com had previously reported that the previous tenant, Ulrich Gerber, proprietor of the Fair & Square pub and restaurant for the last 18 years had closed the venue and that an alternative venue for the British watch Industry would be necessary, only yesterday announcing nearby Pianobar Basel as the best alternative.

However WatchPro.com began to suspect something fishy was afoot after speaking to a number of industry figures who had made their own enquiries in Basel and tracked down The Fish Inn’s Facebook page, which had been updated with a photograph of the former Fair & Square site at the end of January.

John and his Swiss wife, Ines, have now refurbished the pub and hope to have the licence in place ‘by the end of the week’. The kitchen has also been refitted, with a view to providing full meals, although they believe The Fish Inn will be serving snack food throughout the week of Baselworld. The pub will also be responsible for providing breakfasts to the tenants of the serviced apartments above.

WatchPro.com can confirm that visitors to The Fish Inn will have a choice of imported Green King IPA, London Pride, Guinness and Magners as well as Warteck, Stella Artois and Dunkle Perle beers. Prices will range from CHF 7.00 to CHF 8.80 for the imported beers.

The Fish Inn was previously located in nearby Reinach on premises owned by the local authority. Picton announced to regulars in December that he had been informed the building was to be demolished to make way for a new roundabout leaving him searching for a new home.

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