This weekend I’m in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia for a wedding. So while I’m here, it’s time to visit the club well regarded by the locals, Zouk Club.

Line up to the club (11PM)

Line up to the club (11PM)

Saturdays @ Zouk Nightclub, KL, Malaysia

Zouk Club is the sister / child club of the original Zouk Club in Singapore (apparently it has lost a bit of its glam with the Singaporean locals compared to newer establishments, but here in KL it still is as popular as ever.)

Essentials:

Opening Hours:
Club: 10:00PM? – 3AM. The 3AM shutdown was only enforced for Zouk this year. It was enforced by the government for public safety reasons (also other clubs close here at 3AM so you’re not missing out).

The Cafe area of Zouk (outdoor bar) is open from 10AM in the morning

Address:
113, Jalan Ampang 50450 Kuala Lumpur Malaysia

Parking: There is nearby parking on the opposite side of the road.

Venue and Event Websitehttp://www.zoukclub.com.my

Occurrence: Zouk is open every day of the week except Monday.

Dress Code / Door Policy: The Legal age is 21 here, however only the Zouk (main room) of the club is open for 21 year olds. All other areas require patrons to be 23 years or older. This is probably to target more of the working class crowd. Thank god I am no longer a teenager. I suppose its also better to stop the children from drinking from an early age.

Dress code – casual is okay but to use the upstairs Aristo room and Terrace Garden, you must be dressed sharp (collared shirt, dress shoes at a minimum is advised)

Entry Fee / Cover Charge: Something like 45 Ringgit (approx $15AUD at the time of writing) for the guys. Girls get cheaper entry or free entry.

Guestlist: Contact the Facebook page for details

Cloak Room: I don’t remember seeing any cloak rooms

Tonight:
Assessment Time
: 10:30PM – 3:00AM

Outside Line: At 10:30PM there were not excited punters lining up. It was empty – we strolled in, and the cigarette/other company promo girls at the front were all over us like they have never seen a customer before. The line started getting longer at 11:30PM and by midnight the line was pretty long, perhaps a 15 minute wait to get in.

Inside/Atmosphere:
Zouk is split in primarily three large dance rooms and three smaller dance rooms with associated drinking areas. Most of these rooms focus on seating and drinking with relatively small dancefloor areas:

1. Zouk / Pleasure Dome Area. This is the primary room for Zouk Club. All ages above 21 are welcome here. Large room with main dancefloor and second balcony level. Lounges around the walls. LED lights / screens above along the balcony looking down on the floor. Quite a darker, club atmosphere

2. Phuture Room: Also a two level balcony setup. Big projection wall on the left for video clips to be played. Lounges/VIP areas around the walls and above on the balcony. Little stick out dance areas for attention whores as well. Bar in the back. Dancefloor to hold about 40-50 people. A more “friendly” lighting scenario where its lighter.

3. Velvet: A louder two tiered room. Lower tier upon walking in is just a bar with carpeted floor and tables, chairs for people to mingle. Dark lighting. Upper tier is also relatively medium-dark lit dancefloor, with many VIP/reserved bottle service tables around. Also podiums around the immediate vicinity of the dancefloor, closely guarded by security. I jumped up on the podium and started shuffling, but security didn’t like it and pulled me off. It’s loud, and I think much more people were in this room than that of the Phuture Room. By peak of the night (midnight-2:30AM), this room had literally no moving space. If you got caught up in the dancefloor it was almost impossible to get out.

Velvet Room - random podium clubbing

Velvet Room – random podium clubbing

 

4. Aristo and Roof Garden: Appeared to be a more relaxed room, and I would guess one of the last rooms to get full of people. This was the last room to have music setup and was one of the first rooms to close when the place started to close up. Don’t bother going to this room unless you’re the quiet or seductive type.

5. Barsonic Room: A smaller, intimate room but still blurting out some tunes. Didn’t get to spend time in here sadly.

6. Terrace Bar: It’s just an outdoor bar to take a break from it all or have a ciggie.

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Heaven @ Helm Bar: Saturday 11th Feb 2012

On February 11, 2012, in Helm Bar, RnB, Top 40, by James Tran

A non-Asian night out for Martin and I, so here we go!

One of the many couples tonight

Heaven @ Helm Bar, Darling Harbour Sydney
Assessment Time: 12:40AM – 3:00AM
Opening Hours: 8:00PMPM – 3:00AM
Lockout: Unknown
Address: 1 wheat road, darling harbour. It is located between Pontoon Bar and Sydney Aquarium along the water. You can hear the music blasting out as you approach. There is no real easy way to get there by car, you simply have to walk it.
Venue Website: http://helmbar.com.au
Event Website: http://www.facebook.com/HeavenSaturdays
Promoter Website: http://www.goldlabelevents.com.au
Occurrence: Every Saturday since it opened 2011. Tonight is their 1st year of survival. Hurrah! Always a good sign.

Outside Line: No line when we got in at 12:40AM
Dress Code / Door Policy: Hats allowed. No dress code was encouraged at the door, but most people dressed sensibly. There were some hen’s nights and birthdays here so there were some girls and guys dressed really well mixed with people dressed casually who were more laid back. The website stated that no sport shoes or t-shirts/hoodies were allowed. All I can say is that there were no hoodies.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: $25 for us as a full charge. This was a big step up from the $15 they had when they first opened. Anyway, you can still get $15 entry if you submit a guestlist and arrive at Helm Bar before 11PM.
Guestlist: submit to info@goldlabelevents.com.au . Birthday packages available for guestlists of 25+ people.

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Here for a friend’s birthday. To keep status quo happy (Asians), Pontoon is the chosen venue tonight, so let’s go!

Upstairs

Perfect @ Pontoon Bar, Darling harbour, Sydney
Assessment Time: 10:10PM – 1:15AM, 3:15AM-3:30AM
Opening Hours: Downstairs: (Open earlier in the night for dinner – 4:00AM) Upstairs: 11:30PM – 2/3AM?
Lockout: No known lockout, but entry is closed to the general public at 3AM, while stampholders are still permitted re-entry rights at all times, though you have to line up in line AGAIN if you want to get back in. Totally sucks.
Address: Listed as 201 Sussex St, but access to the place is more or less via The Promenade at Darling Harbour’s Cockle Bay Wharf. The main entry is now via the ground floor where you will usually see a line of people. After 11PM you can also pay for your entry upstairs and get stamped as well – so there are two effective entry points.
Venue Website: http://www.pontoonbar.com
Event Website: http://www.theperfectnight.com.au http://www.facebook.com/perfectnights
Promoters: Joint promoter companies: Colab, Syndicate Events, GTB, and an extra promoter “Forever Fridays” tonight who are hail from Melbourne – they brought over their MC and a Melbourne based DJ.
Occurrence: Every Friday since Mid-April 2011
Outside Line: We arrived a little earlier than I would usually like, but there were no people in line. As we debated whether we should go in, about TWENTY people jumped in line. Oh my god. We joined the line eventually and got in after about 10 minutes. Upstairs opens at 11PM, and despite having stamps already, we have to line up AGAIN amongst the other people who haven’t paid entry to get access! Bloody ridiculous. It’s the same as well downstairs, once you go outside for whatever reason, you have to line up to get back in. Luckily for the smokers, there are “open” areas on each level where you can puff and stuff your lungs with tar. Later in the night around midnight it took a friend 30 minutes to get in. Tough love.
Dress Code / Door Policy: Smart Casual is promoted here tonight, and pretty much most people here are compliant. Not sure about the hat situation but the last few times I was here, they were okay to wear. Most guys are in pants/jeans and a collared t-shirt, and girls have managed to not wear casual tonight.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: Standard full fare Asian clubbing price of $25 tonight. If you were on the guestlist and arrived before 11:30PM, you got a card that entitled you to $15 entry. Brilliant, except during a moment of absent mindedness, I forgot to use my card and inadvertedly paid $25 without even realising it. I simply gave the discount card to another friend so they could enjoy the benefits of me lining up early, while they didn’t have to.
Guestlist: Guestlists are no longer valid after 11:30PM. Guestlists to be sent to info@syndicateevents.com.au
Inside: Ground Level: Walk past the easy-to-miss cloak room and cashier to enter the middle part of the floor. To the left is the main bar with about 2-3 staff as well as the entire outdoor area. The are large wooden tables and stools, chairs, lounges about, where people were once dining hours ago. This outdoor area could hold easily 100 people or so. The dancefloor area on the right is a slow covered transition from the outdoor area where also 100-200 people can dance here. The DJ booth sits in the far corner near the toilets. There is little furniture bar a lounge at the rear of the dancefloor. Upstairs: Walk through the chillout/smoking area where there are many lounges, with a view of Darling harbour – continue on into the depths of the dancefloor situated on the far end of the room, as where the DJ is. The setup has slightly changed from last time, where the DJ was in the middle. I think this is a good thing as it is as far away from the smoke as possible, though at risk of the area overheating quickly. The walls are lined with squarely setup lounges. Bar is on the right
Cloak Room: Cloak room downstairs – $5 for placing an item, while it is $2 for rechecks. Pretty reasonable.
Bar Prices / Line: $15.70 altogether for a Gin and Tonic, Orange Juice and coke. $12.90 for a Vodka+Red Bull in a tall glass. At 10:15PM there was no waiting time. At 11PM the wait increased to about 5 minutes. At around 1AM, the wait was timed at about twenty five (25) minutes on both levels up and down.
Bathroom Facilities: Fair, could be a little bigger.
Eviction Count: None spotted, but I wasn’t paying attention.
DJs: Resident DJ’s plus guest DJ Mich from Melbourne
Music Style: Mostly Contemporary RnB downstairs, while upstairs did play some more of the older ‘throwback’ rnb songs. Oh yes, throwback is a word im going to use now.
Crowd: Dominantly Asian, and mostly local Aussie Asians. I don’t think I ran into one international Asian here tonight. Most of the ages were young. Company was of course lots of 21 year olds. That said, the crowd was mostly young 20’s to mid 20’s, as far as I could tell.
Ratio: You know its always going to be more guys then girls, but it was good. A lot of the girls looked their best surprisingly tonight, and I ain’t complaining.
Entertainment: There was no real special occasion except for having the MC and DJ from melbourne to do a set.

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Friends desire a late night wish to visit Scubar tonight – let’s go!

View of the Bar from the Dancefloor - Scubar Sydney

View of the Bar from the Dancefloor - Scubar Sydney

Dropping by: Fridays @ Scubar
Assessment Time: 1:05AM – 2:30AM
Opening Hours: Open through the daytime – 2:30AM
Lockout: None
Address: 4/11-23 Rawson Place, Sydney (near YHA Central)
Venue Website: http://www.scubar.com.au
Promoter Website: Self promoted
Occurrence: This place is pretty much open everyday until late. Most popular nights are Mondays and Tuesdays (apparently)
Outside Line: There isn’t anyone outside lining up upon entry.
Dress Code / Door Policy: Casual is okay to wear in here, and is normal. Some are even wearing hoodies.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: Free entry all night
Guestlist: None.
Inside: Walk underground to face the dancefloor to hold around around 60 people. Bar is on the far left, and around the walls and in between are dotted tables and chairs. There are the occasional sofas in dark hidden crevices of the bar. Some disco balls hang down from the ceiling. Standard lightfare is around the place.
Cloak Room: None
Bar Prices / Line: $7 cowboys. There was only really one or two orders in front at a time, and it wasn’t very packed at the bar. You were going to get timely service at the bar.
Eviction Count: None seen, not many are sloshed tonight
Music Style: A Mix of Commercial RnB, Top 40 and past hits from different genres. Typical stuff you would hear at backpacker places – songs played in most of their entirety with minimal transitioning. Regardless we had a good time dancing to the tunes tonight.
Crowd & Ratio: The crowd is almost entirely made up of backpackers, so you have nationalities from all over the place. Ages vary as well. Mostly Caucasian / European backpacking crowd though. Ratio was more men than women, especially at the front. There was about 50 or so altogether including patrons at the bar side. Not many of the girls chose to dance here tonight.
Entertainment: No extra entertainment
Atmosphere: It’s quite dark on the dancefloor side of the venue, while at the bar it is much more lighted up. But back to the floor – at this point in time people are in the mood for love, with various people around making out with strangers that they met that night. Considering past experiences with backpacker nightclubs such as Scary Canary and side Bar, you would expect the floor to be pretty dirty, but suprisingly it’s clean!! I am truly amazed.

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Just left Brooklyn Hotel for the Friday clubbing night to join M and Co at Havana, so here we go!
Candy Dreams @ Havana
Assessment Time: 01:15 – 4:00am
Opening Hours: approx 10pm – 4:00am
Website: http://www.havanaclub.com.au
Address: 169 Oxford St, Sydney
Dress Code / Door Policy: At time of arrival at 1:15am, there was no line, heaps of people downstairs on the street smoking. I was let right in. I wear a vest, nice jeans, shoes and collared shirt. People inside are wearing t-shirts so I assume neat casual is ok here. There are also other people inside with hats on.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: $25 after midnight. It seems to be the standard now. Hurts every time. Standard discount rates apply before midnight only if you are on the guestlist.
Guestlist:
Inside: Walk upstairs two flights of stairs to the top level of the building, where Havana is. Main dancefloor for 250 or so people, with 3 bars on 3 sides, and DJ on the 4th wall. Lounges and carpeted areas surround the dancefloor.
Cloak Room: Did not utilize cloak room tonight, but it’s only been a month since I last went, and it was $4 last itme.
Bar: Didn’t drink tonight.
Music: Modern RNB with house mashups. Later in the night (after 2.30am) the hip hop comes out.
Crowd: Dominantly asian, with a handful of pacific islanders, caucasians.
Entertainment: 2 podiums for the crowd at the front. Noticably tonight the dancing poles have been removed. WHY! Whatever happened to letting girls play out their life long dreams in a dark nightclub?
Atmosphere: On entry people are beginning to move out, but there are still enough to keep the party vibe going. It’s also darker in here, as opposed to Brooklyn Hotel where I was earlier tonight. I prefer the darker clubs, its safer to ogle people of the opposite sex and not get caught 😉
Read on about your favourite clubber James Tran being recognized at the club!
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Table reserved for James

Table reserved for James! Shanghai Nights @ Brooklyn Hotel

A friend has a birthday and has decided to hold it at Brooklyn Hotel for the Shanghai Nights event. . I don’t want to go, as last time was mediocre for me, but I must keep up appearances, plus it will give this place another chance for a review, so here we go!

Shanghai Nights @ Brooklyn Hotel
Assessment Time: 09:30pm-1:00am (Including lining up from 09:30pm – 10:15pm)
Opening Hours: Club night opens its doors 10:15 and closes at approx 4:00am. Brooklyn Hotel is open from 10am – 4am.
Address: Corner George and Grovenor Streets
Dress Code / Door Policy: Standard dress code applies. Jeans ok, normal shoes ok. Runners is risky, but you may or may not get in.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: Free before 10:30 if you are on the guestlist. $25 otherwise. $20 if on the guestlist before midnight.
Guestlist: Submit guestlists to http://www.urbanagent.com.au/guestlist.html – Do mention if it is your birthday and they may be able reserve some seating etc.
Inside:  A main bar dance area to hold 100 or so people with DJ elevated a metre or so above the floor. 2 square podiums on the side to hold 2 or 3 people each. Central circular bar. Second bar at the back to primarily serve the back outdoor courtyard. The DJ here is also on an elevated platform about half a metre up. The courtyard holds 2 or 300 people. There is also a smaller room to hold metal tables and chairs for the birthdays.
Cloak Room: $4 per item I think. I didn’t utilize it tonight. I left my bag on the dancefloor and came back half an hour later to find it missing. Where was it!? I handed in a lost property form, and I only just picked it up the Monday after from the Brooklyn Hotel – someone luckily handed it in.
Bar: Advertised as $3.50 per shot based drink before midnight (scotch, bourbon, vodka, gin, rum).
Music: Modern RnB in the main room, with house mashups. Outside was pretty much commercial house all night, but at a lower volume so people could chat. It wasn’t as quiet as last time, thank goodness, but it wasn’t loud enough to warrant the house music fans to dance vigorously.
Crowd: Dominantly Asian
Entertainment: Podium dancers. I can’t remember if there was an MC tonight, but I don’t think so – correct me otherwise. Also the ‘Luxy girls’ (Apparently 4 girls from Taiwan who are great with pole dancing) appeared for a photo shoot as promotion for their club appearances for the upcoming Easter Long weekend. They didn’t perform tonight though.
Food: BBQ out back, with sausages, kebab sticks and Vietnamese ‘nem’ sticks for $5 each. It’s a monopoly here. The kebab sticks are burnt – It was his “first night” cooking, the promoter/chef explains to us. At least have a girl do it.
Atmosphere: Pretty busy inside. Outside was relaxed, and again a smokers paradise. It really wasn’t happening outside. All the action was inside the main room.

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Ly and I are following girls outside The Bedroom nightclub, being the single men that we are.
Somehow with all the walking, we ended up outside Melbas.. we were still full of energy, so here we
go!
Melbas Nightclub
Assessment Time: 02:40am-04:30am
Website:
Address:
Door Policy / Dress Code: Casual OK
Cover Charge / Entry Fee: $10. Free if a guestlist was organised
Guestlist:
Inside: Two levels. Ground has lengthy bar in the middle. Stools / tables everywhere. an outdooe
seating area. Out the back is a dancefloor. Upstairs is more cosy. VIP area at back for private
functions?, 3 large podiums at the front dance area. 2 Poles to dance with. I can’t think of any
place in Sydney that has poles! (The retro might have some but I can’t recall). Long bar on the side
wall
Bar: Short to no lines, thanks to the huge bar. Pricing unknown as we scored free drinks all night.
Music: Downstairs is Retro / Classic music, while upstairs is primarily house but the occasional
rnb/pop mashup as well.
Crowd: Dominantly White Aussie. I think me and Ly were the only asians here. No problem, everone was
friendly here. People of all ages were about. It does remind me of The Retro Bristol Arms back in
Sydney, but in a cooler manner here.
Video Tour:
Right after we got inside
Timeline:
Bypassing the Entry Fee:
Girl: “$10”.
That was enough for me and Ly to not enter Melbas. It was almost 3am already.
We walked out and bumped into a man:
Man: “Hey, do you want free entry into Melbas?”
Us: “sure!”
Man: “Here, put these on”
He gave us a MELBAS wristband each, and an extra two just because he didn’t need them. Surely there
was a catch…
Man: “There’s no catch. Go upstairs and these wristbands will give you access to the bar tab all
night”
SOMETHING IS WRONG, but how could we refuse so many free things?
Walk up to the same girl, but this time we showed her our new wristbands
Girl: “Oh that’s strange…
Me: (gulps)
Girl: “… you haven’t got stamps! Let me stamp you”. Wow.
So we got stamped in for free!
Trying to get free drinks
We had our new wristbands, which gave us the power. So we marched upstairs to the bar and ordered
some drinks.
Girl: “That’ll be $20”
So we showed her our wristbands
Girl: “Ill have to check with the manager”
She walked to the manager. He looked at us, and we madly shook our wristbands. We’re just tourists!!
Girl: “Manager says ok”
Yes! We had access to the bar tab!! So we plied ourselves with free drinks all night, thanks to a
stranger on the street.
The VERY FIRST video of me dancing!
Dear Reader – you are about to witness the very first video of me dancing at a club. After 2 years
of blogging, I suppose it is about time a video was made. Watch as I pick up two girls through the
sheer power of DANCE:
YouTube Preview Image
Ok, ok…  so that was pretty embarassing. Though, dancing with me is an HONOUR, why don’t girls
understand this?

Ly and I are visitng the Gold Coast. We just left The Bedroom nightclub, and we are following girls, being the single men that we are. Somehow, we ended up outside Melbas..  so here we go!

Melbas Nightclub

Assessment Time: 02:40am-04:30am
Website
: http://www.melbas.com.au
Address
: 46 Cavill Avenue, Surfers Paradise QLD
Door Policy / Dress Cod
e: Casual OK
Cover Charge / Entry Fee
: $10. Free if a guestlist was organised
Guestlist
: Email info@melbas.com.au
Inside
: Two levels. Ground has lengthy bar in the middle. Stools / tables everywhere. an outdoor seating area. Out the back is a dancefloor. Upstairs is more cosy. VIP area at back for private functions (?), 3 large podiums at the front dance area. 2 Poles to dance with. I can’t think of any place in Sydney that has poles! (The retro might have some but I can’t recall). Long bar on the side wall
Bar
: Short to no lines, thanks to the huge bar. Pricing unknown as we scored free drinks all night.
Music
: Downstairs is Retro / Classic music, while upstairs is primarily house but the occasional rnb/pop mashup as well.
Crowd
: Dominantly White Aussie. I think me and Ly were the only asians here. No problem, as everyone was friendly here. People of all ages were about. It does remind me of The Retro Bristol Arms back in Sydney, but it seemed cooler here.

Melbas Nightclub - Upper Level

Melbas Nightclub - Upper Level

Video Tour:
Right after we got inside. Ground level and moving upstairs:

YouTube Preview Image

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