Ian Ranne will be back behind the bar in downtown Jacksonville when he and his partners open The Justice Pub, a law-themed lounge along East Bay Street.
The logo calls it the “Justice For All Public House.”
Ranne, who runs three bars in Springfield, Five Points and Murray Hill, is leasing the former Mark’s Downtown club and lounge at 315 E. Bay St. in the historic Hutchinson-Suddath Building, according to our Daily Record news partner.
Mark’s closed in June after 12 years in business.
With a justice-themed wall mural, the removal of the Mark’s VIP area, redecorating, rearranging space for a game area and a few other tweaks, Ranne is preparing to make his case.
“I’m ready to get it up and running,” he said.
The 38-year-old pub veteran said his method of design is seeing a space “and then hipping it up.”
Ranne has opened seven bars over the years, with three - Shantytown Pub in Springfield, Nighthawks along Roosevelt Boulevard on the edge of Murray Hill and Rain dogs on Park Street – operating.
The Justice Pub will be the fourth.
Ranne’s experience also includes co-owning Burro Bar at Adams and Ocean streets and managing its predecessor tenant, the London Bridge Pub. He started at the London Bridge at the age of 23.
Ranne is known as a DJ, entrepreneur, club owner and a supporter of music and art.
He hopes to open The Justice Bar about April 15, pending permitting and licensing to sell beer and wine, not liquor.
While he calls it a “hipster dive bar,” Ranne prefers to consider it an art pub. The mural of Lady Justice and related art is by artists Shaun Thurston and Mark “Cent” Ferreira.
“I try to appeal to the neighborhood and put my hipster spin on it,” Ranne said.
The Justice Pub theme is inspired by the neighborhood, including the former Duval County Courthouse across Bay Street.
While judicial functions moved to the new county courthouse several blocks west, many legal firms remain in the Bay Street area.
“The law offices are still down here,” Ranne said, and those lawyers might want to stop in for a spell.
Ranne also realizes the potential from a possible convention center on the old courthouse site. He already sees roaming visitors in town for work or conferences.
“I see groups of people in business suits walking around,” he said.
Several bars and restaurants line the East Bay and Ocean streets area, called The Elbow. Ranne expects spillover from those into The Justice Pub.
Ranne welcomes everyone and considers his niche market those people age 21-40 who are “highly into music and art.”
At the start, the bar, with 40-50 seats, will operate 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Wednesday-Saturday and during Jacksonville Jaguars games. It also will have four TVs and two projector screens for televised events such as soccer games.
The game area will include pool tables, pinball, dart boards and ‘80s video games. The game area can be rearranged when there’s a DJ and dancing. There also could be live music.
Ranne intends to work behind the bar and his design focus is comfort for the customers.
High-tops, couches and tables are for seating, along with the bar stools. Blue, gold, gray and wine mural designs soften the tone.
Comfort also is the theme of the menu, categorized for simplicity.
You can read a longer version of this story that includes a look at the drink menu and on the Daily Record's website.