If you want to know where to find a good time north of the continental United States, just ask GENERAL HOSPITAL’s Jason Thompson (Patrick).
“I own two bars in Canada,” says the Edmonton, Alberta, native and Port Charles newcomer. Overseeing the thriving nightspots Halo and Red Star gives him ample reason to return to Edmonton. “Between my family and the business, it’s nice. I’m able to go back and forth.”
Thompson, a former model and avid hockey player, reveals he donned the entrepreneurial hat early on. “It was something my two partners (Blair and Sal) and I always wanted to do, something we talked about throughout high school. We took this empty building and opened up a bar. Four years later we opened another one next door to it. I think I was 22 when we first started developing [Halo], and we have our six-year anniversary coming up. We’ve had Red Star for two years now.”
Owning a bar (or two) does come with a few perks. “It’s nice to go in and not have to pull out your credit card,” the actor laughs. But for Thompson, the greatest thrill is seeing a business come to life. “I really enjoy the design aspect,” he confides. “The interior, the architecture. To have ideas and be able to implement them is so much fun.”
Since he’s now based in Los Angeles, Thompson says, “My friends, Blair and Sal, run the place. Obviously, I’m not there for day-to-day paperwork and hiring, but I talk to them every day. As far as the design aspect, the three of us get together and talk about that a couple of times a week.”
Despite his international commitments, Thompson assures that his bars are a team effort. “We collaborate on everything.” Including swinging a hammer or two? “We’re not necessarily builders, although we helped out a lot with the building of these two places. It’s like somebody’s house — never quite done,” he sighs. “There’s always something else you want to do.”
And if you are wary of hitting Canadian clubs, relax. “There’s not much of a difference,” the actor assures. “It just depends on your vibe and what you want to get out of the place.” But there is one definite advantage: “If you take American money up there, you can get two-for-one drinks.”
Think of it as a cocktail courtesy of Dr. Drake!