San Diego’s GuestHouse Seduces Patrons With High-Tech Visuals
After six years of solid business, the three-story, $7 million club Stingaree is bringing a new brand of nightlife to San Diegoites — a highly visual one, in fact. GuestHouse is an independently run ultra lounge operating inside the first floor of Stingaree. Designed by Davis Krummins of Davis Ink Ltd., the 375-person, 4,000-square-foot room is aesthetically pleasing for a number of reasons. There’s the retro-library vibe, complete with scattered bookshelves, as well as the seductive lighting. But most interesting of all of the elements is the 90-foot textured mapped wall, which effectively has turned 75% of the establishment’s walls into a digital canvas capable of displaying 3D images.
“We used a special paint on the walls which allows them to be texture mapped,” explains owner James Brennan. “The whole thing is 90 feet by 14 feet, and onto that we have multiple HD projectors shooting the images.”
The concept, Scenic HD software, content and required server were designed by San Diego’s AV Concepts; the whole system cost close to $300,000, the bulk of which was spent on projectors.
“These projectors map together images using their various lenses. With that, we can create any HD 3D image. For example, we can show an equalizer, or a forest of trees that change from fall to winter,” Brennan says. “It ties into visual consistency with the [beats per minute] of the music, so it’s about being high energy, which translates into the room.”
The stunning 3D images don’t require glasses to be seen, either. Just your eye will suffice.
“[The texture-mapped walls] project a simple photograph like a bookcase that, over time, will slowly start dropping one book, and then another, and another until they all crash,” says Brennan. “We’re playing with different ideas along with AV Concepts. We’ve got one fish-tank program in which fish and sharks swim above patron’s heads. You can even play Wii on it.”
The gianormous surface spans the mezzanine level of the space and lies perfectly above seven tables located on the ground floor, which has large implications for bottle service.
“It’s already changing our presentation,” Brennan shares. “With champagne sales, for example, it brings attention to a table and takes it to another level. We’re working with one champagne company to create a visual of a collage of champagne glasses being dumped over the heads of the people at just that table that orders. The effect will be stunning.”
And there are private-event and marketing implications as well. “We already had a launch party for a Facebook application in which we had not only the logo, but also an instructional how-to video showing the product, up on the wall. That party had about 2,000 people who walked in to see a 90-foot advertisement, so if that wasn’t a deal-seller, it was must’ve been pretty close,” Brennan says.
The rest of the time, the wall will be plugged into the musical direction of the room, which will feature a heavy focus on electro and house music. GuestHouse is in talks with top -lass DJs, such as Avicii, to bring more intimate electronica performances, which would be heightened and supplemented by the wall, considering DJs can bring their own content to project.
“We have DJ Sharron in here, and he brought his own flash drive and uploaded his own visuals,” Brennan recounts. “He loved it. So did the crowd.”
— With reporting by Josh Cohen