Arcade Speakeasy Unveils As Sister Concept To San Diego's Historic Aero Club

November 25, 2019

Like a blast from the past straight out of a mall in the 1980s, Dyno Bar is an arcade entertainment room recently unveiled as the sister concept to San Diego's historic The Aero Club.

Last year, the third generation owners of downtown San Diego's oldest liquor license, The Waterfront, bought another historic local dive bar, The Aero Club. Aero Club was first opened in 1947 by a well-respected female pilot, Mariam Profit, who wanted to launch an aviator-themed bar for other airline staff as well as the workers of a nearby aircraft factory. Mariam only ran the establishment for a few years but continued to own the building until she passed away in her mid 90s. Operated as a flailing wine and beer bar at the time, the business was purchased in 2004 by Bill Lutzius and has since become known as one of San Diego's top dive bars, boasting a selection of more than 1,200 whiskey option. Lutzius, who opened Chinatown Bar in City Heights in May 2018, announced that he would not be renewing his lease when it terminated in May 2019. In came cousins Chad Cline and Jason "Rocky" Nichols, whose great-grandfather acquired The Waterfront Bar (whose liquor license is the first issued in San Diego after the end of Prohibition) around the late 1960s. Being Cline and Nichols own the building, when Dyno Brand T-Shirt Shop moved out of the space neighboring Aero Club, the cousins decided to turn it into a retro arcade sister concept.

Even the urinals at Dyno Bar are cool. 
"We’ve been working on what we’re going to do with the Dyno space since we bought the building a little over a year ago," explained Chad Cline. "We didn’t want Aero to change so we kinda used the 'speakeasy' concept we’ve seen and named the space Dyno Bar, but Dyno is no secret room. It’s a game room accessible through Aero. We brought in a bunch of old school arcade games like Offroad, Double Dragon, Street Fighter, and others, and teamed up with a company called Pincraft that operates the most well maintained pinball machines in San Diego. Aero had a pool table back in the day so we also brought in 3 additional pool tables that you can play hourly or game to game. I wouldn’t put a bunch of TVs in Aero, but Dyno has a 100” projector screen and 6 other flatscreens to watch games. We also hired local artist Brian Hebets to paint a very large Godzilla mural inspired by the connection of Dyno and Aero. The Dyno space is made to compliment Aero club without taking away its charm."

Like The Aero Club, Dyno Bar is located at 3365 India Street in San Diego's Middletown area and is open from 2pm-2am daily. For more information, visit