Swans is a fixture in Inglewood.
Owner Nadina Stainsby said when she and her business partner opened the rustic Calgary pub at 1336 – 9 Avenue SE roughly 25 years ago, they ran it like an English living room. Nothing fancy, just a comfortable place to grab a drink.
“When we opened 25 years ago, my business partner and I came up with the design and logo and nothing was digital back then,” she said.
“We thought we were pretty uptown when we actually had it transferred onto a floppy disk.”
That was their version of branding back in 1994.
After a quarter century – and a nagging legal snafu forcing them to change their name – Swans is embarking on the journey for a new identity. The charm stays, but the name’s got to go.
Yes, the stump and nails will stay. As will the south-facing window seats that allow you to enjoy a beverage while watching the eclectic mix of people walking along 9 Avenue SE. Only the windows may be redone to offer clientele an open-air experience out to the street.
There will be a few cosmetic touch ups to the place, but nothing that changes its trademark ambience, Stainsby said.
“This isn’t a fad. Swans is like, a fixture,” she said.
“It was a conscious decision in 1994 that we would open and not be a fad. We would be something that would endure.”
Swans seeking community input on name
While Stainsby’s got a couple of new names in mind for the popular inner-city watering hole, she’s looking to others for help to make the final decision. It’s got to be something special; something that stays true to pub’s 25-year-old roots.
“I’d just like to see what else is out there. Make something good come out of this ridiculous (legal) situation,” she said.
“I’d like to engage the community.”
Stainsby is inviting qualified Calgary marketers and agencies to answer a few questions if they are interested in participating in the re-brand. The questions are: 1) Why do you want to work on our business? 2) What do you know about our business? 3) What is your agency most proud of? 4) What makes a great client? 5) What do you need from us to make this partnership work?
Those interested can email answers to the questions to: inglewoodRFP@gmail.com.