Meet the man behind Brisbane’s new queer bar Come to Daddy

Bar owner Billerwell Daye in a black polo stands in front of new queer bar Come to Daddy

Billerwell Daye the owner of the new queer bar Come to Daddy, spoke to QNews about the new venture on Brisbane’s southside.

When walking into Brisbane’s new LGBTQIA+ venue, you’re greeted with a large neon “Daddy” sign above the door. There’s no mistaking which bar you’re at. 

Welcoming me at the front counter for our chat was Billerwell, the owner. He was wearing a black polo shirt and large black glasses while sporting a long beard with his arms covered in tatts. 

He isn’t the stereotypical “scene queen”, so I wanted to know why he decided to get into the business of opening up a queer bar. 

“Oh, it started a long time ago, started when I had my old bar John Mills Himself in the city,” he tells me. 

“So in the process of kind of winding that one down and doing another one, I basically wanted to feel comfortable behind the bar. It just meant that I could be at home and ease here, being an older man in a young hospitality kind of world.”

Finding the right place on Montague Road in West End took him around 18 months, with his main focus being the south side of Brisbane.

“We were predominantly looking around West End as there’s a bit of a hole on this side of the river. This just had the right vibe and there wasn’t really much over this side catering for the community,” he says. 

How queer is the venue?

Despite having a name like Come to Daddy it’s always good for the LGBTQIA+ community to know it’s a safe space for them, so I ask how he would describe the venue. 

“It’s an inclusive space, so I would say it is a queer venue but it’s not exclusively queer. We want the local community to be here. Whether they are a part of the rainbow family or not but it is for the queer community,” he explains.

“Being a gay man as well I wanted to feel comfortable and have somewhere for my friends to go because I have a lot of friends that were kind of discussing ‘Oh, I wish we had something else in Brisbane.’” 

The venue has got off to a great start with weekends particularly busy with drag nights and DJ sets. Throughout the week there is also live music, karaoke and a kitchen open at all times. 

Fabulous branding

The set-up works well for entertainment with a great view from every spot inside the bar. The stage itself has a backdrop of a fabulous stained glass window of the Come to Daddy branding. 

I ask where the branding came from and he tells me a French illustrator friend created it a few years ago and he took inspiration from it.

Although not his design, Billerwell himself created the stained glass window after completing a course and making it over four months under his house. An impressive feat!

Punters can also purchase merchandise from the bar with the illustration. 

Future hopes

I finished our chat by asking what he hopes in both the long and short term for the venue. 

“Long term want to be here for as long as I possibly can. Short term, just to be embraced by the community as we have been so far and able to host great nights and be a social club and safe space for the community.”

Follow Come to Daddy on Instagram @cometodaddy_brisbane 

Read next:

Sporties’ Neil McLucas honoured for hosting decades of drag

Meet Steven Fahd: The man behind Gold Coast’s new queer venue

Bernie’s Bar is Newcastle’s first LGBTQIA+ space in five years

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Dale Roberts

QNews, Brisbane Gay, App, Gay App, LGBTI, LGBTI News, Gay Australia

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