Makr Shakr teams up with Sandbox VR in upcoming openings in UK and Ireland

April 3rd, 2023

Makr Shakr will strengthen its presence across the British Isles with two new openings in late 2023. The installation of drink-mixing robot Toni in the upcoming Sandbox VR outposts will serve as testbeds for social spaces in the future, which assemble various digitally-driven entertainment experiences in one spot.

Having garnered enthusiastic feedback for their first collaboration in London, robotic bartender producer Makr Shakr and immersive gaming space label Sandbox VR announce the expansion of their partnership across the British Isles. As the latter will be unveiling two new branches in Dublin and Birmingham in the second half of 2023, drink-mixing robot Toni will be installed in both venues, delighting visitors with its mixology chops and trademarked choreographed movements. 

Sandbox VR opened its first UK venue in Covent Garden, London in August 2022. Toni is one of the most prominent features inside, and has introduced another dimension to the overall futuristic experience. The robotic bartender now serves an average of 2,500 drinks there every month. Not only impressing virtual gaming enthusiasts with its eloquent movements to shake, stir and muddle, it has also been a protagonist in the many corporate events held in the same space, helping employees from international companies such as Apple, Amazon, Deloitte and McKinsey bond over a glass of Aperol spritz or margarita.


Both Dublin and Birmingham are known for their vibrant tech scenes. The former has established itself as a global technology powerhouse for more than a decade, regularly playing host to headline-making industry events. Across the Irish Sea, Birmingham held the record of being UK’s number one regional startup capital for seven consecutive years. Through the new Sandbox VR branches, Makr Shakr aims to promote robotics’ potential in fostering social connection among individuals.

“Digital technologies have become the driving force behind numerous disruptive lifestyle concepts. We have thoroughly enjoyed working with Sandbox VR in creating cutting-edge experiences in both mixology and gaming,” Emanuele Rossetti, Makr Shakr’s CEO, says. “We are looking forward to the completion of upcoming venues and interacting with the entertainment-loving communities in Dublin and Birmingham, both on-site and on social media.”

The collaboration between Makr Shakr and Sandbox VR is a continuation of the former’s diverse undertakings in the UK. In 2019, it participated in the exhibition AI: More Than Human at the Barbican Centre, London, to engage in a wider conversation about automation in the society. In the professional context, it was the centerpiece of a corporate party at Microsoft’s new London headquarters last June to bring light to the workplace.

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