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Nightclub Confidential

New Clubs, Newer Markets

June 25, 2009 By: Bryan Bass


A slew of new nightclub openings around the country indicates that eager nightclub owners believe the worst of the recession is behind us. Or perhaps they just are uninformed — especially because most of these opening are in markets that have hardly been nightlife hotbeds in the past. It also points to the spread and influence of nightlife around the country, even in places you might not expect it.

Tacoma, Wash.

A new jazz-focused nightclub called Sax is creating a strong buzz within its first month of operations. “Our image is that we’re a relaxed spot for people in their mid-30s,” says general manager Micha Cornelius. A diverse crowd is enjoying the dark and cozy space, although there is some confusion as to why weekend late nights are ditching the jazz format for top 40 DJ’s, hip-hop beats and the younger crowd it draws.

Bowling Green, Ky.

Two Bowling Green residents opened Fluid Nightclub last week, targeting a young professional and older adult audience. "It's pretty exciting. We put a lot of work into it over the last couple of months, and we're very excited to bring this to Bowling Green,” says owner Amy Vincent. She reports the response has been “overwhelming” so far and that patrons are using the strict dress code as an opportunity to dress to the nines and “strut their stuff for a night on the town.”

 

Lake Norman, N.C.

Outside of Charlotte, Synergy Nightclub opened as the only nightclub offering bottle service and exclusive VIP rooms in the area. It opened last weekend with a set by renowned DJ George Acosta on Friday Night and Ed Hardy spinster DJ Rush on Saturday. According to the club’s web site, the venue is defined and built around five philosophies and keywords: classy, fresh, fun, energetic and diversified.

Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

Last weekend saw the grand opening of Bentley’s Nightclub, a large entertainment complex that boasts a nightclub, restaurant, Martini bar, indoor/outdoor patio bar and private VIP areas. The dance club carries the moniker Club Ice and will offer upscale entertainment featuring bottle service and resident DJs King B and DJ LA. The Martini bar, Olive’s, will offer 30 specialty Martinis, while the patio takes on a sports bar atmosphere and the restaurant Josef’s leans toward an Italian menu.

West Melbourne, Fla.

The small community southeast of Orlando has turned out to support LevelZ, the new 17,000-square-foot nightclub that opened last week. Nevermind that the club boasts more square footage than the population of West Melbourne itself — partners of the new venue wanted the facility to be big enough to support national music acts and comedians. Club partner Gary Tolman is confident that the club will continue to succeed, noting the lack of similar venues in the area, “I knew that if I could open any business that it would be a nice nightclub," Tolman says. “Why open another sports bar or restaurant or ice cream shop when there's already a gazillion of those here?” The club petitioned and won an extension from the city council to allow the venue to serve alcohol from midnight - 2 a.m.


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Bryan Bass


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