NOVA @ Mr Tipplys

On October 4, 2014, in Commercial, EDM, House, Mr TIpplys, by James Tran

The event ‘LKF’ has been closed at the Civic Hotel, and thank god for that. The promoters have moved their Saturday event to another venue, Mr. Tipply’s under the new moniker “Nova”. Time to check it out!

12:50AM peak time on the dance floor.

12:50AM peak time on the dance floor.

NOVA Nightclub Saturdays @ Mr. Tipplys (Formerly City Hotel)

Nova has been running since September 2014 on a Saturday weekly basis. The promoters aim to keep out the riff raff by promoting the event as for VIP only (i.e. Men with money to spend on alcohol) and promote attractive waitresses for “one on one” service. Kind of borderline sexual. The promoters directly target the Overseas Chinese crowd in Sydney by bringing in popular Chinese celebrities or DJs.

Essentials:
Opening Hours:

10:30PM – 4:00AM

Address:

349 Kent St (The old City Hotel)

Parking:

There is nearby street parking on Kent St or at the Kent St carpark with weekend flat rate.

Venue Website:

www.mrtipplys.com.au

Event Website:

http://www.novasydney.com

Promoters:

Mizuya Entertainment, Dynamic Entertainment

Occurrence:

Every Saturday since September 2014

Dress Code / Door Policy:

Smart casual at minimum, but I got away with running shoes, a hat and t-shirt. (I had just returned from the Hardwell concert) To be sure, we asked the promoters and security if it was okay to get in looking like poor uni students. They said it was fine.

They let me in like dressed  this.

They let me in like dressed this.

Entry Fee / Cover Charge:

Tonight it was a full blown $30. It’s finally happened outside of Marquee and Ivy. Massive hole in my wallet.

Passouts: No passouts before midnight.

Guestlist: See website for details

Cloak Room: $5 initial reservation and $2 for bag re-checks. Standard for an Asian club.

Bottle Service / Table Service:

There are ten bottle service areas inside the club. Any object that resembles a table is converted to a bottle service table. The pricing per table is unknown, but typically you are looking at for a few hundred dollars per bottle. Each table has a bottle or two and some champers glasses Tonight:

Assessment Time:

Midnight – 1:40AM

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Mink Saturdays @ Martin Place Bar

On August 9, 2014, in Martin Place Bar, by James Tran

I’ve been living in a country town. I’ve made a special weekend trip to Sydney to visit friends, family, and a new club event. Let’s check it out!

Back looking to the front

Mink @ Martin Place Bar

Mink has been running since July 2014

Essentials:
Opening Hours:

10:30?? – 2:15AM

Address:

51 Martin Place, Martin Place, Sydney

Parking:

Come later in the night and you can find street parking within 2-3 blocks around.

Website:

Event: https://www.facebook.com/minksaturdays

Venue: http://www.martinplacebar.com.au

Promoters: Clique: https://www.facebook.com/cliquesydney

Occurrence:
Every Saturday since July 2014. Prior there was another short-lived event, #Fabric run by competitors Syndicate Events

Dress Code / Door Policy:
Theres no dress code enforced tonight. People wore whatever they wanted.

Entry Fee / Cover Charge:
Paid $25 at the door.
There are weekly free entry specials so long as you enter the venue before 11:30 or before midnight.

Guestlist:

mink@clique-ent.com

Cloak Room:
Didn’t use cloak room facilities tonight, but based on earlier events, you are probably looking at $5 / item.

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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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OPM (Friday) @ Marquee Nightclub Sydney

On April 12, 2014, in House, Marquee (The Star), RnB, by James Tran

A bunch of Asians walked into the Casino. Haha. But this time its Marquee Nightclub that these younger Asians are heading to. So rather than losing money at the Sic Bo or Roulette tables, these guys invest their money into entry fees and expensive drinks. I don’t want to miss out, so let’s check it out!

OPM Fridays @ Marquee Nightclub Sydney (The Star)

Main Bar // 1:30AM

This event is now Every Friday night. It used to be on a Thursday.

Essentials:

Opening Hours:
10:30PM – 4AM

Address:

80 Pyrmont St, Pyrmont. It’s within the Star (Casino) Entertainment Complex. Walk in through the main entrance on the Eastern side, and the entrance to Marquee is immediately to your right.

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

Event Website:
http://www.fb.com/OPMSydney
http://www.urbanagent.com.au

Promoters: Urban Agent

Occurrence: Every Friday since early 2014, and previously ran on irregular Thursdays from mid-2012

Dress Code / Door Policy: Casual clothing is allowed tonight, but don’t risk it despite the dress code being relaxed significantly since the grand opening of Marquee Nightclub. Most guys are wearing collared shirts at minimum, while girls are pretty glammed up.

Entry Fee / Cover Charge:  $25 at the door, but a friend was asked to pay $30. The highest cover charge price you’ll pay for a Friday night.

Table / Bottle Service: Starting at $1,600+ for a 10 person table including entry and the equivalent price for drinks. Higher packages can reach $3,000+ . Welcome to Australia

Guestlist: See event website or contact your local promoter

Cloak Room: $5 per item. The cloak room would be right at the entrance to the club after you go up the escalators

Tonight:

Assessment Time: 11:00PM – 4:00AM

Outside Line: Arriving at 11:00AM and expecting long lines, we were surprised to see a line of about 10 people. It went by quite fast. It could have been because all the other Asians were at the Jay Chou concert tonight On previous nights I’ve spent from 1 hour and another time, 3 (three) hours lining up in the pre-paid line from 11:00PM to finally get in at 2:00AM due to capacity issues. So be aware when buying pre-paid, as general lines (who pay more) get faster access.

There was also a guestlist line, a general line (for people who just rocked up), and also a VIP Bottle Servce entry line. Four lines in total! The line roping is almost as big as the club.

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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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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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Pacha Nightclub Sydney @ Ivy Bar – Review

On December 8, 2012, in Commercial, House, Ivy Bar, Trance, by James Tran

The overseas event Pacha has come to Sydney to open up their event in Ivy! Along with raving reviews the word is that dress code has also been dropped. So it was logical to suit up – so I grabbed some friends and got some tickets. Here we go!

Just before midnight in the main room

Just before midnight in the main room

Pacha Sydney @ Ivy Bar (Sneaky sound system, Denzal park)

Essentials:
Opening Hours:
Aaround 8:30PM – 4:00AM+

Address:
Ivy Bar, 320-330 George St, Sydney

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

Event Website:
http://www.pachasydney.com
http://www.fb.com/pachasydney

Occurrence:
Every Saturday night since November 2012. Tonight was the third week of opening.

Dress Code / Door Policy:
Ivy isn’t as uptight as it was before on Saturdays – Dress code now is less strict. People with t-shirts and jeans can come in tonight. The Pacha promoters even encourage costumes and dress ups! Just no thongs or shorts thouogh. The actual dress of the crowd was a mix of very casually dressed folk with people who were smart casual. I went for the suit which was in hindsight a bad choice.

Entry Fee / Cover Charge:
Tickets can be pre-paid online for $35 first release. $40 for second release, and $40 at the door (usually) It’s more expensive than that of Marquee Sydney ($30 standard) and makes Pacha the most expensive regular nightclub ticket in Sydney. I told a friend about it and he was instantaneously put off and refused to spend so much. Despite this, first release tickets usually sell out.

Guestlist:
Contact your preferred Pacha promoter for a discount. Otherwise there is no email address to send names to and you will need to pay for tickets directly from the website.

Cloak Room:
$3 per item. The cloak room is on the ground level in building 2, opposite to where the elevators are. Easiest way to get there is rather than turn left to go upstairs after getting past security, go straight ahead and you will hit the cloak room

Tonight:
Assessment Time
: 11:25PM – 3:45AM

Outside Lines:
The line is not from George St but you need to go around to the back alley lane to enter Ivy. There are three lines:
1. Pre-paid ticket holders: The fastest moving line. Took us less than five minutes to get 6 of us all in. Used my phone showing the ticket email attachment as my “ticket” and I was let in fine.
2. Guestlisters: A shorter line but not as fast.
3. General line: For everyone else who wants to pay at the door: Slowest line of them all and quite a number of people lining up.

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