Playoffs Sports Lounge Bar Rescue Update – Still Open Today?

Is Playoffs Sports Lounge still open today?

Status: >> OPEN <<
(keep reading to learn what happened)

Season: 9 | View All Season 9 Episodes
Original Episode Air Date: April 21, 2024
The Bar's Original Name Was: Playoffs Sports Lounge
Playoffs Sports Lounge Address: 12105 Palm Dr Desert Hot Springs, CA 92240

Playoffs Sports Lounge bar

Episode Recap

Playoffs Sports Lounge was a Desert Hot Springs, California bar that was featured on Season 9 of Bar Rescue.

Though the Playoffs Sports Lounge Bar Rescue episode aired in April 2024, the actual filming and visit from Bar Rescue took place earlier in 2023 – around September.

It was Season 9 Episode 9 and the episode name was “Losing the Playoffs”.

In this episode, Jon Taffer seems to be actually back to rescuing bars himself as he and his experts head to Playoffs Sports Lounge.

Bar Rescue experts for Playoffs Sports Lounge

The bar is located in Desert Hot Springs, California, which marked Bar Rescue’s 52nd visit to California (at the time that the episode originally aired).

If you’re not familiar with Desert Hot Springs (I certainly wasn’t), it’s located due east of Los Angeles in Riverside County, within the Coachella Valley geographic region.

It’s right by Palm Springs, which is probably the more well-known location, along with Palm Desert.

Just a bunch of very creative names, right? I digress haha.

The bar is owned by a former husband and wife duo, Eric and Ann-Sofie Pontius.

Side note – I’m not sure if they’re still together, because Eric’s Facebook page lists him as being in a relationship with another woman and Ann-Sofie’s Facebook page uses her maiden name.

They actually started with a beverage catering service named Bar One Beverage Catering and then added Playoffs Sports Lounge as a natural extension of that.

At the time of Jon’s visit, Playoffs has been around for 20+ years, so it definitely has a long history in the area.

However, the bar is struggling, which is obviously why it ended up on Bar Rescue.

For example, the bar seems to not have any POS (point of sale) system, which I find to just be incredible for a bar in 2024.

This obviously means that the bar isn’t efficient as it makes it hard for the staff to keep on top of everything.

Instead of using a POS system, the bar just puts post-it notes for each order which is just…lol.

Playoffs post-it notes POS system

To recon the bar, Jon Taffer and his experts send in Shad Powers, a local sports writer, and another guy.

After the spies order, the experts stare in unbelief at the post-it note POS system.

The POS system isn’t the only problem, either.

The bartenders are making unbalanced drinks with a ton of liquor.

While some regulars might not complain, it makes the drinks taste way too alcoholic.

Shad Powers at Playoffs

And, as a Bar Scientist, Jon also knows that it’s wasting a ton of liquor, which drives costs up and profits down.

As part of the rescue, Jon seems to have generally kept the same name for the bar, probably due to its long history.

He might’ve tweaked it from Playoffs Sports Lounge to Playoffs Sports Bar and Lounge, but I’m not sure if that’s an actual change.

I will confirm this once the episode airs on TV – I’m originally writing this one day before its premier.

So was the Playoffs Bar Rescue visit a long-term success?

Keep reading my update to learn what happened next and how this Desert Hot Springs bar is doing in 2024.

Playoffs Sports Lounge Update - What Happened Next?

Now that we’ve recapped Jon’s visit to Playoffs, let’s talk about how the bar is doing after the Bar Rescue crew left Desert Hot Springs.

I’ll start by discussing whether the bar is still open and how the Playoffs owners reacted to the Bar Rescue experience.

Then, I’ll look into how it’s doing after Bar Rescue, including what the bar is like and how customer reviews are doing after the Bar Rescue visit.

Let’s get into it…

Playoffs reaction to the Bar Rescue episode

Whenever a bar appears on the show, I always like to see whether or not they hosted a watch party, as this is usually a good indicator of how the bar owners felt about their experience on the show.

Good news – Playoffs did indeed host a watch party, which they posted about on Facebook.

The post also had this to say about the episode:

It was a stressful week of filming but our staff did an amazing job!

The Bar Rescue professionals and Jon said as much.

We couldn’t have been prouder!

Playoffs Bar Rescue watch party

Is Playoffs still open after Bar Rescue?

As of my most recent check in 2024, Playoffs Sports Lounge is still open and serving customers in Desert Hot Springs, CA.

Given the bar’s long history in the area, I’m really not surprised that it’s still open.

The bar is also very active on social media, regularly posting about events and specials at the bar.

Here’s a quick rundown of some of the most common events at the bar…

First off, they seem to have partnered with a local Mexican business named Desert Fire Tacos to offer a variety of tacos and Mexican food at Playoffs:

Playoffs Desert Fire Tacos

They also seem to have a “Rainbow Night” drag show every Wednesday, which includes bingo as part of the offering.

Playoffs Rainbow Night

As you’d expect from a “sports lounge” they also promote lots of sporting events, including the local Coachella Valley Firebirds.

Finally, they also have a “Sunday Funday” event with funnel cakes which is awesome because…well, funnel cakes rule.

Playoffs funnel cakes on Sunday Funday

There’s also an official website for the bar that has some more background on the bar, as well as relevant information.

Playoffs Sports Lounge website

I also found a screenshot of part of the current menu at the bar, to give you an idea of the prices.

Playoffs Sports Lounge menu after Bar Rescue

Here’s what the Playoffs location looks like in the most recent picture from Google Maps street view:

Playoffs Sports Lounge reviews after Bar Rescue

Next, let’s take a look at some real customer reviews for the bar to give you an idea of how it’s doing after the visit from Jon Taffer.

Overall, Playoffs has a 4.4 star rating on Yelp and a 4.3 star rating on Google.

That’s a bit weird tbh because normally Google ratings are higher than Yelp.

Both of those numbers also include ratings from both before and after the Bar Rescue episode.

If you exclusively look at reviews from after Taffer’s visit, those reviews are generally positive.

However, because the reviews from before were also positive, it’s hard to notice any real trends.

Still, it’s good to see that most customers seem to be having good experiences at Playoffs.

In general, people seem to be especially complimentary to the staff and ownership, with many reviewers talking about how friendly people are at the bar.

To give you a better idea of what customers think about the bar, let’s take a look at a few examples of real customer reviews that were written after the bar was rescued…

5 star Yelp review from February 2024:

An example of a positive review at Playoffs #1

5 star Yelp review from November 2023:

An example of a positive review at Playoffs #2

4 star Google review from April 2024:

An example of a positive review at Playoffs #3

4 star Google review from January 2024:

An example of a positive review at Playoffs #5

5 star Google review from December 2023:

An example of a positive review at Playoffs #4

1 star Yelp review from January 2024:

An example of a negative review at Playoffs

There really aren’t a lot of negative reviews to choose from, which is why I only shared one above.

Ann-Sofie also owns a group fitness gym

In addition to Playoffs and the beverage catering business that I mentioned above, it seems like Ann-Sofie also owns a gym in Desert Hot Springs.

The gym is named Decoded Training Center and seems to offer Crossfit-style workouts.

I say “Crossfit-style” because the gym’s website doesn’t actually ever mention Crossfit.

However, the equipment, workouts, and community aspect of it seem to be very similar to Crossfit.

You can go to the gym’s website here and you’ll see Ann-Sofie listed as the owner on this page.

She also does coaching there in addition to owning it.

Pontius own Crossfit gym

Ann-Sofie also lists herself as a realtor on her Facebook page, though I’m not sure if that’s still active.

She seems to be quite succesful small business owners, so congrats to her.

Final thoughts on the Playoffs episode

Overall, Playoffs seems to be doing well so far.

However, given that the bar has been open for more than 20 years already, it really doesn’t surprise me that it’s still going.

Reviews from after the Bar Rescue episode seem to generally be positive, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see it stay open for a long time.

That wraps up my Bar Rescue update for Playoffs Sports Lounge.

If you want to see updates for other nearby bars in California, you also might be interested in my updates for Finesse Lounge / 47 Social in Banning, The Victory Bar / Celebrities in Yucaipa, The Wheel House / Derby’s in Hemet, and JJ’s Sports Cafe / Bar in Highland.

I also have a page that lists all 52+ episodes in California.

And if you want to share your thoughts on the bar, you can do so using the comments section below.

I especially love hearing from people who are able to visit Playoffs in person.

As always – thanks for reading!

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Last updated: 2024-04-22 08:01

4 thoughts on “Playoffs Sports Lounge Bar Rescue Update – Still Open Today?”

All comments are the sole opinion of the commenter and are not endorsed by RealityTVUpdates.

  1. Over pouring seems to be a common theme.. I know from being a DJ in gay bars for years that over-pouring in that scene nets huge tips.. I think regulars that show up all the time start to count on strong drinks and they tip high.. which of course in the bartender world is a big part of their income.. in a failing bar regulars are all you have so you do whatever you can to keep them.. when in reality you need to gainb more than jus ta few regulars.. I didnt see any jiggers here s oi have to wonder if the over-pouring will stop.. increasing sales is great but you gotta reduce costs.. one thing I wish the show would do is tell you the % increase in sales and the % cost reduction in a real world forecast that it takes for a bar to become profitable.. this place being active on social mdeia and hosting events and partnering with a mexican food vendor seems to me to be setting up for good success.. engaging the community they are in.. even trying to grab some of the gay crowd from palm springs or that live in the outskirts.. I wish them well..

  2. I will occasionally watch Bar Rescue. On 4/21/2024 I noticed that Bar Rescue was rescuing a bar in Palm Desert, CA. I have lived in the Coachella Valley for over 20 yrs and know practically every bar in the Valley. When I noticed that the bar was “Playoffs” in Desert Hot Springs (DHS), CA I knew Bar Rescue was behind the 8 ball before they even started. I use to patrol DHS and am very familiar the City and the bar. I tried to watch S9:E8 with an open mind. “Playoffs” is the only bar on Palm Dr. which runs through the heart of DHS. Playoffs relies on local clientele. It is located to far north of the Interstate. People from Palm Springs, Cathedral City, and Palm Desert will not visit DHS or Playoffs due to location, amount of bars located in those cities and crime. John Taffer did his best to try and improve “Playoffs” but his was beating a dead horse. Because of the forementioned reasons “Playoffs” will not a prime spot to have drinks unless you are from DHS.

  3. Jon wasn’t as crazy during recon, possibly because the owner was a marine. They let the spies eat the food which has become less common lately.

    I don’t think this place really needed a rescue. He’s had it for 20 years and through the pandemic. He must be doing something right.

    Wikipedia shows Phil Wills is taking the helm next week. This is a major downer. Jon is the show, and I have no clue why he is using guest hosts because he is killing his own show.

    Owner’s new wife looks younger than the old one, lol.


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