Embassy Club @ Zeta Bar Sydney

On April 19, 2014, in Hip Hop, House, RnB, Zeta Bar, by James Tran

The promoters for the old popular Saturday nights at Zeta Bar called it a day, and the gap has been filled by Urban Agent et al, for tonight’s event. Let’s check it out!

11:50AM

11:50AM

Embassy @ Zeta Bar

This review encompasses multiple visits: Grand Opening night (May 2013), various visits in between, and a 19th May 2014 full visit.

Essentials:
Opening Hours:
09:00PM – 04:00AM

Address:
Hilton Hotel, accessed via 488 George St. Zeta Bar is on Level 4, but you need to wait outside in line as the elevator is guarded by security.

Venue Website:
http://www.hiltonsydney.com.au

Event Website:
https://www.facebook.com/embassysydney/

Promoters:
Urban Agent, et al.

Occurrence:
Every Saturday since May 2013

Dress Code / Door Policy:
Encouraged that collared shirt and dress shoes for guys, and at least decent dresses for girls. Not too casual. Quite a number of guys were very suited up / dressed well. No homo.
I got in most recently (20/4/14) with a t-shirt, jeans and my running shoes. I was not planning to go clubbing this particular revisit.

Entry Fee / Cover Charge:
$25 Standard entry if you are coming off the street
$15 before 11:30PM if you submitted a guestlist. Grand opening, I got the $15, then the week after I sent my own guestlist a day before and they didn’t find my list on the night, so I had to pay $25 second time round..

Drinks
I didn’t purchase drinks here.

Bottle Service
$330AUD for a bottle of 750mL Grey Goose with unlimited soft drinks – Only available for reserved tables.

Passouts:
No passouts before midnight.
Lockout laws in place.

Guestlist:
embassy@ua.com.au

Cloak Room:
$5 for any item in the cloak room. The cloak room is just as you walk in on the left wall, at the realms of the dancefloor.

Tonight:
Assessment Times
:
19th April 2014: 11PM-03:00AM
10th May 2013: 11:30PM – 1:30AM
3rd May 2013 (Grand Opening): 11:20PM – 2:30AM

Outside Line:
(19/4/14 ; 11:30PM) Took about 10 minutes of lining up.
At 11:20PM: (3/4/13) It took 5 minutes to get to the front of the line, but at that point in time, the venue reached “capacity” at 400 people. I had to wait a further 20 minutes (11:45PM) before I could be let in. No idea how long the people behind me had to wait but it would have to be had been quite some time.

Inside:
The layout has remained exactly the same. Elevator to take you up to level 4. Come out and turn left to enter the near front of the narrow, marble stone, hallway-like venue. On the right is the DJ set with dancefloor (for about 50 people) and “fireplace” which isn’t really on. There is also the largest of the reserved areas, which is the same size as the dancefloor.

Turn left and walk down the hallway to the rear. On your left is the long main bar which serves cocktails and standard drinks. It can serve probably 15-20 people.

At the far end is the second bar, to hold 10 people at the frontline. In this rear there is a second, “minor”  DJ playing beats separate to the main area at the front.

On the right are small curtained off reserved areas for people who like sitting down in a nightclub.There are about 2 large reserved areas and 3 smaller, non-enclosed areas which are just like sofas. On the far left is the outdoor smoking area / terrace overlooking george st.

It’s quite the long and narrow place and almost resembles Martin Place Bar (where the same promoters used to promote) but more relaxed and classier.

Bathroom Facilities:
Pretty well maintained. The kind where there is a permanent person in the washroom giving you paper towels.

Music Style:
Mostly Rnb, Top 40 and some daring trance / house / EDM tracks. Lots of hands in the air kind of tunes.

Crowd:
(19/4/14) Mostly Aussie Asians. Mix of ages, but mostly people in their mid-20’s late 20’s.
(2013)Opening night it was a mix of Asian and non-Asians who thought it was a regular night. The following week there was pretty much all Asians.

Ratio:
Not too favourable. There were plenty of guys to go around the place. Best guesstimate 1 girl to 3 guys.

Entertainment:
No extra MC’s or dancers

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Zen (Grand Opening) @ Ivy Bar Sydney

On March 28, 2013, in Commercial, Ivy Bar, Old School, RnB, by James Tran

Thursday and the beginning of a long weekend, and a new event is on! Looked promising, so rounded up some friends, we got our presold tickets and were ready to go! Check it!

12:40AM. View from the front podium

12:40AM. View from the front podium

ZEN (Grand Opening) @ Ivy Bar, Sydney – Thursday 28th March 2013
In a response to the successful OPM @ Marquee nights by Urban Agent, competing promoters Syndicate (Kinki/Perfect) and Mizuya (Me2/LKF) with a whole subset of smaller promoting companies decided to launch their own equally big event at a big venue named ‘Zen’, down at the large Ivy bar. Ivy bar would be one of the few venues that would be able to hold so many people.

Essentials:
Opening Hours: 8:00PM – 3:00AM

Address: 320-330 George St, Sydney

Venue Website:
http://www.merivale.com.au/ivybar

Event Website: None as of yet. Refer to promoter websites for info.

Promoters: Syndicate Events, Mizuya Ent., Colab Ent.

Occurrence: Tonight was the grand opening. It is unknown whether repeats will happen, but considering the sell out, there will most likely be future repeats of this event. It won’t be every Thursday, but just on special days such as long weekends or when uni students are on holiday.

Dress Code / Door Policy: “Strict Dress Code” applies were the words tonight, but everyone was being let in. I wore dress shoes, black pants, white shirt, vest and skinny tie.

Entry Fee / Cover Charge:
– $25 first release (super limited)
– $30 second release (which “sold out” two days prior).
– On the night 8PM-9PM the entry fee was $35(?) then after 9PM it goes up  to $40.

This high pricing could only be successfully pulled off at big venues like Ivy and officially sets a new record high for an Asian clubbing event, since Vanity (now closed) charged people $35 to see some dude sing on one particular night. Also considering only one of the Ivy buildings was hired tonight, these guys have made an absolute killing.

Passouts: No passouts before 11:30PM.

Guestlist / Reserved Areas: See promoter websites for details. Reserved VIP areas require min spend of $1500 at the bar.

Cloak Room: Since everyone has paid such a steep price for entry, the cloakroom was free tonight. A saving grace. Though at the end of the night, the line to get your stuff was ridiculously long. Probably 20-30 minutes.

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View from the front of the DJ booth

View of Brooklyn's main room from the front.

Never in the history of my RnB clubbing career for 4 short years have I been bombarded with promotional material for the Grand Opening of this night. Facebook, email, posters, more facebook, more email, more posters. You would expect them to do door knocking as well. The previous event at V-Bar had finally closed and the promoters, Urban Agent, have had success on their 40/40 Saturday Nights at Brooklyn – “why not do a Friday one as well?” They think. It’s an ambitious launch, to replicate the experience of a Shanghai nightclub with waitresses and limo service to the venue from a pick up spot at world square. A friend wants to check it out, so a guestlist was organised, and I was keen to see how Brooklyn has changed since the new promoters took over. So here we go!

Shanghai Nights @ Brooklyn Hotel Sydney

Assessment Time: 10:30 – 3:00am
Website: http://www.urbanagent.com.au
Address: Cnr George and Grovenor Street, Sydney
Dress Code / Door Policy: Dress code applies. Collared shirt for guys. However casual would have gotten away with it tonight.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: $25 Guestlist: Well well well.. this is a special point. One can usually send in a guestlist and get a $5 discount or more. Tonight, as we enter the club, the flat fee was $25, and ALL GUESTLISTS WERE CANCELLED. What the fuck! It was only 10:30. Well, apparently they were allowed to do it, because there were so many fucking people outside. They could have charged $30 or $40 and people would still have probably paid up. Total fucking rort.
Inside: A main bar dance area to hold 100 or so people with DJ elevated a metre or so above the floor. Central circular bar. Second bar at the back to primarily serve the back outdoor courtyard. The courtyard holds 2 or 300 people. A second DJ resides here as well.
Cloak Room: I can’t remember, but it was a reasonable price – $4 or something for an item.
Bar: I did not drink tonight, but they had $3.50 for shot based drinks until midnight. Much more reasonable than $17 vodka red bulls the last time I was here.
DJ: Unknown Music: RnB inside the main room. Mixed as a professional does – choruses only to keep the crowd going with the occasional commercial house song thrown in.
Crowd: Mostly if not all asian. The occasional white person and indian clubber were also represented tonight.
Entertainment: MC for the main room at night. Promoters giving out lanyards the entire night like hotcakes, I suspect it was because the lanyards had the old V-Bar “Amber” event printed on them, rendering these lanyards throwaway material. By the end of the night everybody including myself had two of these things. Head promoter is throwing out free T-shirts out to the crowd. Nice. There is also a free shuttle service from world square to Brooklyn, if you book ahead, but why World Square? My suspicion is partly to show all the people lining up ouside of Flow: “Hey, you guys going to Flow, do you get a stretch hummer? nope. we rule and you drool”. That is my conspiracy theory. (Promoters have since dropped the Stretch Hummer promotion). Later around midnight, a dancing chinese dragon came in, which had blinking lights and everything. That was pretty impressive, even though Chinese New Year was last month. Also being the grand opening night, confetti is sprayed everywhere amongst the crowd. It’s hard to not like and hate this place at the same time. To top it off, there’s also a BBQ out in the back. They’ve gone all out here.
Atmosphere: Packed like sardines inside, smokey in the back outside area. Inside the vibe was good, but still too packed for my liking. Keep reading for more details on my thoughts on this whole setup

Nom Nom Nom

Nom Nom BBQ

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Tao Nightclub Sydney - Grand opening night : 2:30am

Tao Nightclub Sydney - Grand opening night : 2:30am / Bar Area

Just left a house party and I still want my dancing fix. Melly is at the Grand Opening of a new nightclub where the old Mandarin Club once stood. So here we go!

 

Satisfaction Saturdays @ Tao Nightclub

Assessment Time: 2:30am – 4:00am
Website: http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=288588253950
Address: 396 Pitt St, CNR Goulburn St (Old Mandarin Club)
Dress Code / Door Policy: Advertised as “dress to impress”, but seemingly more relaxed about it at the door. Every guy inside though had a collared shirt, and the girls were all in dresses.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: Free for ladies before 11, $10 on birthday guestlist before midnight. $20 for all others.
Guestlist:  See facebook page for details
Inside: Beneath the now Mr B’s Hotel, Tao Bar/Nightclub is a small area split into even smaller areas – A carpeted area where most dancing occurs. It holds 50-80 people. There are two lounge areas on either side of the dancefloor. A DJ is along the wall. The wooden floor area is the general ‘lets stand around and chat each other up’ area with bar and some tables and stools. This particular area has a green and red spotted light thing dotting the area. It’s trippy.
Cloak Room: $5 per item.
Bar: $19 for 2 carlton draughts and a pure blonde. $16 jugs of beer before midnight
DJs: Xcentrik, R*One, Normz, Edo, Day-Day
Music: RnB most of the night, with the occasional commercial house song thrown in. If you have never been to an RnB asian club.. usually the RNB songs each get about 30 to 60 seconds of airplay before being mixed to another song, so its an anthology of choruses.. its sad if you want to hear the whole song, but with this format, it keeps the crowd going.. and going.
Crowd: Asian, the clean classy types. Not many teeny boppers. If there were any, they were cleverly disguised.
Entertainment: No extra entertainment besdies the MC. There was air conditioning though
Atmosphere: Small atmosphere, but a classy crowd with a “clean” venue keeps it viable to stay inside. By clean, I mean they have air conditioning in the standing area. However on the dancefloor there isn’t much air con and it may get a little stuffy.. but only a little as its not too packed when we got inside.

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