Lonely Planet Writer

Inside the incredible magic-themed 'House of Cards' opening in Nashville

A new entertainment experience dubbed the “House of Cards” is to open underneath the Johnny Cash Museum in Nashville, Tennessee. Centered around the theme of magic, the new restaurant and bar will open on 9 April. So-called because of the rare and unique cards that are on display in the restaurant as well as the fact that cards are one of the main tools used by magicians, the venue will be located underneath the museum in its basement.

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Magic fans will be over the moon! Image by House of Cards
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Special posters of past musicians don the walls. Image by House of Cards

“House of Cards” is being conceived by Bill Miller who is the owner of the Johnny Cash Museum and the Patsy Cline Museum on 3rd Avenue just off Broadway in Nashville. An experience with magic at its core, when guests arrive they go through a secret tunnel to the basement where they’ll be greeted in a room that’s reminiscent of the 1930s with a speakeasy feel.

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Each area incorporates a theme of illusion. Image by House of Cards
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The décor has a 1930s theme. Image by House of Cards

“We are very excited to bring fellow Nashvillians into this beautiful environment and back into downtown,” said Miller. “Many people have a misconception of magic. When you visit and see the expertise of these magicians, you will be blown away.  Plus, I really enjoyed the discovery of curating this rare playing card collection including a card [from Germany] that dates back to 1490.”

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The bar will offer a selection of special cocktails. Image by House of Cards

The venue is filled with European antiques and artifacts related to the mystic including posters celebrating the world’s greatest musicians as well as a handcuff device, The King Breaker which was created, owned and used by Harry Houdini.

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No photography will be allowed inside. Image by House of Cards

Each reservation includes a ticket to the nightly magic shows in the 50-seater showroom and magicians will be performing on the restaurant floor at all times. The restaurant is set to showcase the best of American cuisine and cocktails.

“House of Cards” will have a dress code and a no-photography policy to ensure the privacy of guests.