• Mimosa Mermaid

Travel Blog - The best pub in Valletta, Malta.

Updated: Aug 3, 2020

After 40+ years of travelling to the stunning #Mediterranean island of #Malta I’m #proud to call it my second home.


#Valletta, the islands capital, and a very well deserved former European Capital City of #Culture never ceases to take my breath away.


I've been extremely #blessed to travel the world throughout my #career and I can honestly say that no other capital oozes as much #history or is half as #pretty as Valletta.


Seeing, my lovelies is truly believing!


For me, no trip to this #spellbinding city is ever complete without a visit to what I personally think is the best pub in Valletta.


Its location is central, the welcome is always warm, the range of drinks on offer is #marvellous, oh and an event which took place in 1999 has made it just that little bit #famous!


Intrigued? Then please read on!


We’ve popped into this little #English watering hole for decades.


As you all know I’m a fizz girl but for me, it just isn’t fitting to have anything other than a #pint in here. 🍺😊





Once you visit, you’ll understand why!


Welcome to The Pub!



You can find The Pub nestled on Archbishop Street which is a narrow street linking the larger shopping streets of Republic Street and Merchant Street.


The pub is around 40 years old and is historically a favourite with the #navy who dock mere steps away in the #magnificent Grand Harbour.


Its a gutsy, down to earth, no frills proper pub!


I've visited dressed casually during the day and dressed up for a night on the town. The clientele is #eclectic and the music is #awesome!


I also once spent a very moving and #humbling Remembrance Day Sunday in here, sat at the bar, reminiscing with retired English sailors and military personnel, and those still in service.


It is and will remain one of the most memorable afternoons of my life! Mainly because they got me really sloshed 😂 and we had an early morning flight the next day which was ever so slightly painful, but so well worth enduring the pain for.


We made so many new #friends that afternoon and listened to the most amazingly #brave tales, it was so much fun whilst being ever so deeply moving.



Inside The Pub there is an abundance of service #memorabilia and a huge signed Union Jack adorns the ceiling.




You're wondering how The Pub gained it’s fame though right?


Well...........it was the very last watering hole of legendary British #actor Oliver Reed who at the age of 61 sadly died of a heart attack in the bar following a massive alcohol binge on the 2nd of May 1999 😥


Robert Oliver Reed was born in #Wimbledon in 1938.


Prior to acting, Oliver worked as a #boxer, a #bouncer and a cab driver. His big break came care of Hammer Horror Films with a leading role in the 1961 movie "#Curse of the #Werewolf" and from there his career #bloomed.





As well as his #dazzling stage presence, Reed was also well known for being a #Hellraiser! Does anyone remember his appearance on Aspel? 🤣


His most memorable roles were those of #Athos in The Three #Muskateers, and of course #Proximo in Ridley Scotts #epic blockbuster #Gladiator which was filmed in #Malta.





On his last afternoon on this mortal coil, Ollie was accompanied to The Pub by his #wife and friends.


During this last session Ollie downed twelve double shots of #rum eight pints of German #beer, 14 shots of #whiskey and beat five much younger Royal Navy sailors from the nearby docked HMS Cumberland at arm-wrestling.


A #generous customer, Ollie's bar bill came to the grand sum of 270 Maltese Lira which at the time would have converted to around £450!


For Ridley Scott, Ollie's death was extremely #sad but alas, also untimely, as the production company was right in the midst of filming Proximo's scenes for #Gladiator.


He chose not to recast the part of #Proximo and with key scenes yet to film, body doubles were used along with a ground-breaking computer generated mask of Reeds face which was created (at the cost of a cool $3 million) to enable Reed to still "appear" in his scenes.





I certainly wouldn't know the difference, would you?


Reed was posthumously nominated in 2001 for the #BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Supporting Role for his stupendous take on the character Proximo.


Following his death The Pub actually changed its name for a few years to "Ollies Last Pub" but its since reverted back.


Reed`s loss has very much touched the hearts of many a British drinker and his fans flock to The Pub where the actor consumed his last drink, to pay tribute and to raise a glass in salute.


The T-shirts on sale are so #cool, the name of The Pub on the front, and Mr Reeds last round in detail on the back.


They are #legendary, just like the man himself.





#Trivia Moment!


Did you know..................


Oliver Reed shared the same #dentist as horror star Christopher Lee!


He was severely injured and almost died whilst filming The Three Musketeers in 1973, when he was stabbed in the throat during the #duel scene.


During the Falklands War in 1982, Reed, who was highly patriotic covered his house in a huge Union Jack flag whilst decorating every room with military memorabilia.



Reading the latter I can truly understand why Ollie made The Pub his local.


There is a famous #quote by Mr Reed,


“I don’t have a drink problem, but if that was the case and doctors told me I had to stop, I’d like to think that I would be brave enough to drink myself into the grave”


😱 Spookily #prophetic eh?



The walls of this simple bar are now covered in pictures, newspaper clippings, and impromptu #tributes to the late great Mr Reed.






Neat fact!


The Pub is listed at number 5 on MSNBC’s list (an American cable news channel) of the top ten legendary bars around the world. How awesome is that!


Other bars included in the top 5 are the legendary Harry’s Bar in #Venice which is home to the #Bellini, and the infamous Blind Beggar in #Whitechapel #London, where London gangster Ronnie #Kray shot dead rival George Cornell as he sat at the bar. (Another pub where I’ve spent another memorable afternoon with my Mam but that’s a whole other story 😆)


Coming in at number 5 amongst such #prestigious company is an awesome achievement.


You will often find people vying for the opportunity to sit in Ollies last seat and witness them having a photograph taken with an arm around an imaginary Mr Reed.




There are so many drinks on offer, with lots on draught, #Guinness is a firm #favourite amongst patrons, along with various local and foreign beers and ciders. Beer jugs and beer buckets are also on offer.



Photo courtesy of The Pub

But never fear, if a pint isn't your thing, then you can partake in a nice glass or two of local #wine, or one of the many spirits available.


#Mondays are #Metal nights with a heavy playlist from 6pm and selected drink offers available.


I have to mention upstairs, as this is where you will find the toilet, along with additional seating.


All I can say is prepare yourself 😂


Do remember this is a bar heavily frequented by servicemen 😁


I actually think it's one of the coolest parts of this pub, the "artwork" just adds another layer of #character.



The Pub is #cosy, however there are a number of high tables and stools outside too.


Even without the #fame this was always a super little watering hole, and for me an #iconic highlight of any visit to the capital.


Lastly, please do remember “Dogs are always welcome, people are tolerated” 😆



The Pub


Address

136 Archbishop St, Valletta, Malta (a 1 minute walk from Grandmasters Palace)


Hours


Monday - Thursday and Sunday open Midday to Midnight

Friday and Saturday open Midday to 0100


☎️ +356 7905 2522


Cash only - no cards


Until next week my lovelies, take care and stay safe.



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