THE team behind Bendigo's Handle Bar are stepping up their game, with a planning permit issued for the city's first rooftop bar.
The bar, to be called Nimbus, will offer sweeping views of heritage and modern architectural landmarks from its Mitchell Street vantage point.
Chris Kelly envisaged the group's latest venture would differ from Handle Bar in a number of ways.
He said the intention with Handle Bar was to create a space that felt like being in a friend's backyard.
The vision for Nimbus was more upmarket, with cocktails and bar menu.
Mr Kelly said he and fellow directors Steven Abbott, Jesse Gollan and Rory Somerville were aiming to have the bar ready for a mid-December opening.
A planning permit for Level 3, 103 Mitchell Street was issued today. A liquor license application is pending with the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation.
- More news: End of an era for Crate Man | Photos
Mr Kelly said the council permit was for a venue with a capacity of 100 patrons.
The directors have drawn inspiration from rooftop bars around Australia and the world in their designs for Nimbus.
However, Mr Kelly said they did not envisage their bar would be a space for dancing, clubbing or live music.
He said "sitting and socialising" was more of what people could expect to do at Nimbus. The next few months would be spent creating a pleasant atmosphere to do so.
A retractable roof is among the planned features.
A rooftop bar was something Mr Kelly said he, Mr Abbott, Mr Gollan and Mr Somerville had been considering for some time.
"The opportunity came up," he said.
Investment associated with the new bar, which will have up to 11 shareholders, is expected to be in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
It comes as investors seek to capitalise on the potential for bars in Bendigo.
The Piano Bar has expressed interest in the city, with a proposal lodged for the former Music Man site on Hargreaves Street.
Pall Mall restaurant Four Ponies - which was also renowned for its bar - is undergoing renovations.
And Babylon Lounge and Garden Bar is among the recent additions to the city's nightlife.
A draft plan for the Bendigo city centre outlines a vision of a "vibrant, regional mixed-use destination for business, employment, recreation and a home for people."
About 300,000 people draw on the city centre.
Have you signed up to the Bendigo Advertiser's daily newsletter and breaking news emails? You can register below and make sure you are up to date with everything that's happening in central Victoria.