Thursday, May 10th, 2007:
Top Toilet Tips: Pubs in Helsingborg -
Part Two: Hamnkrogen
Since it was a nice day last Saturday, I decided to continue my tour of this fine city's pubs' public convenience facilities with a very outdoorsy place, Hamnkrogen.
Hamnkrogen, meaning "Harbour Bar", previously known as Hamnpaviljonen (or "Harbour Pavillion"), is known by a few of us expats as "Circle Bar". Here's why:
It's pretty small during the wintertime, as you can only sit inside, but for the 17 days of summer we get here, they have a fair-sized terrace outside, where you can while away your afternoon drinking beer, enjoying the nice views, and watching the world go by.I'm just kidding, by the way; the summer usually lasts for more than 17 days, their terrace is slightly-better-than-fair-sized, you don't want to while away a whole afternoon drinking beer there - at 47 Kronor each (US$6.88 / £3.47 / €5.10), you sip.
And while the views are indeed quite nice, you're not quite watching the world go by, just those people in the world who happen to be passing by that particular spot in Helsingborg at the time that you're sipping your over-priced crappy beer. But hey, semantics, eh?
This establishment only has one indoor toilet, and it's unisex, meaning that you must have only one gender in order to use it. This is pretty much OK for nearly everyone I know. Inside, there's nothing really special about it; in fact, it's quite a small standard toilet. The coolest thing about it is what the Yank calls "The Magic Handle".
When the toilet's vacant, it's green, but when someone's in there enjoying its underwhelming splendour, it's red. It's every gadget-loving pisser's dream. You can't see it very well in this photo, but you can just about make out that the toilet is free in this shot (it was a sunny day in a small round glass-surrounded pavillion thing).
Is that cool, or what?
The outside toilet area's quite interesting. There's like a mini-pavillion thing behind the main bar-building where you'll find the other toilets. Many first-time visitors are either reluctant to use these, or don't even realise they're there. There's nothing really wrong with them, except that there can be enormous queues on the weekends during the 23 days of summer we get here.
In the photo below, the door near the centre is one of the two unisex toilets. The other one is just to the right of this, and there's a "pissoar" (urinal) at the far-right, near the rear terrace bit (the Yank says that the door on the left is a toilet as well, but this door was locked when I was there, so I can't confirm this right now. Unlike the others, it's unmarked, so perhaps it's usually a staff toilet that's left unlocked during peak times):
Below is a photo of the door to the pissoar. If you're sitting in this area when it's not too busy, and you're a bloke (US/CAN: guy), you can simply hop over the little fence thing for instant satisfaction (no, go away, this is NOT a Swedish porn site): The urinal can comfortably accommodate three guys (UK: blokes).
But I have to say that beer costs too much here, and it's time that the Swedish government did something about it. That's what I think.