Vanity @ Verandah Bar: Saturday 9th April 2011

On April 9, 2011, in RnB, Verandah Bar, by James Tran

Here for a friend’s birthday – I thought I would rock up fashionably late after studying all day. Here we go!

Vanity @ Verandah Bar
Assessment Time: 12:15AM -02:30AM
Opening Hours: 10:15 (?) PM – 04:00AM
Lockout: Usually 2:30AM is the lockout time.
Address: 60 Castlereagh St, Sydney
Venue Website: http://www.verandah.com.au
Promoter Website: http://1nitestand.com.auwww.viplist.net.au and www.eso.net.au
Occurrence: Every Saturday since late 2010
Outside Line: Entered the line at 12:15AM. and got in at 1:00AM. A total of 45 minutes. So usually after midnight, most of the people in line would be cleared to go in. The problem with tonight was that the club was almost at capacity, so they were slowing down the entry rate. This meant that the line started from the inner entrance, through the cloak room out around the outside entrance around down the street by about 40 people. In total I would say there were about 100 people in line. A couple who was behind me left the line after 10 minutes. “Its ok to dog his birthday.. I’ll see him some other time” he said. It is the most frustrating thing in the world waiting in line. Then as you go into the cloak room, the line becomes a free for all area with no order. This is where at least 5 people decided not to line up at the back, but cut into the middle. It’s frustrating. So do try to get in earlier if you hate lining up. When the event first opened, there were distinct separate guestlist lines and general entry lines, but tonight was just one big line for everyone, with no special treatment for guestlisters, which is not as expected. I think the line finally became much shorter at 2:00AM
Dress Code / Door Policy: Smart Casual is recommended but casual is also accepted tonight as long as you dont look too daggy. Hats are allowed.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: $20 on guestlist before midnight. Otherwise $25 is the standard price.
Guestlist: see websites or their corresponding facebook pages for details
Inside: (lifted from a previous visit) The gambling room is open as the cloak room and as thoroughfare for lining up, to i guess keep more people warm inside. After paying entry enter the main room – Dancing and DJ area to your right with podiums spotted along the area. The dancing portion of the venue looks to hold 100-150 people. Continue walking down the path to the bar area, where lounges are around and standing area for patrons to line up at the bar. This is a slightly bigger/open area than that of the dancefloor. At the very back is a very narrow outdoor ‘Verandah’ smoking area.
Cloak Room: $5 per item
Bar Prices / Line: Didn’t drink tonight. Bar lines are 2 people deep.
Music Style: Primarily Commercial modern RnB with house and hip hop mash up later in the night. No complaints here, as I was only here for a short time and didn’t experience repeated songs.
Crowd & Ratio:: Tonight the crowd is mainly Asian Australian. Well, pretty much everyone actually.
Entertainment: Podiums throughout the main dance area. Podium dancers also featured tonight. MC as well. Tonight the main act was Akon’s DJ’s from Supafest. While lining up earlier before midnight, patrons were treated with a Red Bull truck with blasting loudspeakers, giving out cans of Red Bull. This resulted in a litter of empty Red Bull cans spotted on the path of lining up. Fun times!
Atmosphere: Extremely busy tonight as evidenced by the long queue. The dancefloor, people are getting busy with their feet, while in the back, there are actually some people dancing here as well. As the night goes on, the back area dulls down and doesn’t become so dance friendly, where people just mill around chatting or staring at other people. Throughout the venue it is well lit.

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Vanity @ Verandah Bar: Saturday 27th November 2010

On November 27, 2010, in RnB, Verandah Bar, by James Tran

I just finished Stereosonic, still upset I wasn’t able to wear my bubble wrap suit, as it got rejected at the gates. So where is a place that could let this outfit in? All I knew and all my friends knew that was there was a beach theme for Verandah Bar tonight. Oh well, I suppose let’s make the most of this thing shall we – here we go!

She loves the bubbles

Some people have serious bubble wrap fetishes

Vanity @ Verandah Bar
Assessment Time: Entered late at 01:00AM – 03:15AM
Opening Hours: 10:00PM – 04:00AM
Lockout: Around 2:30AM
Address: 55-65 Elizabeth St, Sydney.
Venue Website: http://www.verandah.com.au
Promoter Website: http://www.eso.net.au, http://www.viplist.com.au, http://1nitestand.com.au (I believe they are backed by http://www.urbanagent.com.au )
Occurrence: Every Saturday
Outside Line: There was no line at this time when we arrived, but we had to wait about 5-10 minutes before we could get in, either due to being it busy inside or to keep up appearances outside to anyone walking by – it was the latter.
Dress Code / Door Policy: Today was a beach theme, we saw people walk outside with their thongs on, even though it was advised not to. Also people were allowed to wear singlets inside as well as hats.. anything beachy. Half the guys here wore casual and the other something dressy. Girls mostly wore dresses here, unless they were here for the podium dance off .
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: $25 Full Entry. $20 guestlist before midnight. Free before 10:30PM if you are on the guestlist.
Guestlist: See websites above, and on facebook. Last time i sent mine to wendy@1nitestand.com. (still valid at time of writing)
Inside: After paying entry, you can visit the gambling room, which served no other purpose, or head straight into the main area where you are frisked before entering. Walk into the main dancefloor area separated into two distinct areas by columns and central podium – A dancefloor half that is kind of narrow .. about 10 people wide while spanning the length of the entrance to the bar, which would be about 40 people, and a second half of primarily people dancing, standing around, and others walking through. Walk to the back half of the club where a bar on the right serves the entire venue, and on the left are lounges to hold approximately 3-5 birthdays for 10 people. At the far back is the “Verandah” itself, a 2 person by 40-50 person smoking area where you only have standing room.
Cloak Room: $5 per item. Cloak area is located on your right as you walk inside the the main venue.
Bar Prices / Line: I didn’t drink tonight. Last month though, 5 Malibu + Lemonades and a Smirnoff double black would cost $52.
DJs: Unknown tonight.
Music Style: Primarily RnB with house and hip hop mash up later in the night. No complaints here, as I was only here for a short time and didn’t experience repeated songs.
Crowd & Ratio: Tonight the crowd is majorly Asian Aussie. There are a handful of people from stereosonic.
Entertainment: Theres a bouncing inflatable dice ball being thrown around the venue. Fun times, but eventually is taken down by security at around 2:00AM. There are also podium dancers, both guys and girls, which is good.
Atmosphere: On the dancefloor itself it was pretty busy and vibing. Out in the back half of the venue where the bar is, it is quite busy, but people here are more or less standing around and talking, and not dancing. The back area here is not suited for dancing as there isn’t much dancefloor space. Some of the lounges, chairs, etc are free for people to sit on. The outside narrow area for smoking is very busy/packed.
Video: 360 view just after 1:00AM
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Saturday night. Dinner – completed. Dancing is on the cards. I am surrounded by Asians who love rnb. The latest hot spot is, surprisingly, Verandah Bar. Rave reviews all around. I tried to come in here last week at 1:00AM but the line wait was about 30 minutes. anyway, tonight the night was still young, so here we go!

Posing during the podium tryouts - Verandah Bar

Posing during the podium tryouts - Verandah Bar

Vanity @ Verandah Bar
Assessment Time: 11:15PM – 02:00AM
Opening Hours: Unknown (Assumed 10:00PM) – Unknown (Probably 4:00AM as last time I was at Bamboo, around the corner, they closed at the same time)
Lockout: I can’t remember if the security guard said 01:00AM or 01:30AM. It was definitely one of those times, but my gut is telling me 1:30AM. I’m not very helpful so far with the timing thing, am I.
Address: 60 Castlereagh St, Sydney. http://www.verandah.com.au
Occurence: Every Saturday Night
Dress Code / Door Policy: Smart is encouraged. It is more smart casual as well as casual. I think most people were let in regardless of what they were wearing. Boys and wore a mix of casual/smart casual (mostly collared shirts), girls probably were also casual as well. It must be winter.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: $25 standard cover charge. $20 on the guestlist before midnight.  You need to line up on the gustlist line in order to qualify for guestlist entry. There is a separate full-price guestlist line on the other side of the entrance, which we used. There was nobody in the full price line when we arrived. More on this later.
Guestlist: Free before 10:30PM, $20 until Midnight. Send in via the promoter websites above or to info@eso.net.au.
Inside: I was told it was refurbished (again), but it hasn’t changed since their last refurbishment. After paying your cover charge, you walk down a red carpet to the indoor entrance to the club where you are scanned by security. Walk inside to the first area, which is split by two columns forming an invisible line between the main dancefloor to hold 150-200 people (right) and the walkway (left). You can dance here as well. Walk through to the second area where the bar is and lounges and a small smoking balcony out back.
Bar Prices: I didn’t buy any drinks tonight
Cloak Room: To the right as you walk in. Pricing unknown.
Music Style: Primarily RnB tonight. We were only here for 3 hours, but there were some popular rnb songs which were played THREE TIMES over, and most others TWICE! you notice, and it annoys you, but you arent sick of these songs yet so you dance regardless. anyway it was a minor teething point to this place.
Crowd: Mostly Asian. Crowd aged probably in their low 20s. Though here I found 4 people with braces. Perhaps teenagers come here as well but are a bit more mature than ones found at Funky @ Sanctuary Hotel.
Entertainment: So there are 6 or 7 podiums in the dancefloor itself, which is insane. It looks like the norm now, its just missing a dancing pole to be exactly like bamboo, haha. Tonight was the podium dancer tryouts for a dance crew.
Atmosphere: In the dancefloor area itself, it was consistently busy and pretty lively throughout the night. people are jumping up to dance and they’re singing and what not. Pretty good. In the back area though, it was very subdued – most of the population were at the front area. I avoided this area most of the night. Later on in the night the back area became a mecca for drunk guys and fights. Pretty dangerous. More on this later :>
Eviction Count: I counted 7 separate instances of people being kicked out including 4 Fights.
Video: A Rushed Walkthrough
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Video: 360 view of the dancefloor area
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Verandah Bar Crowd around 11:30PM

Verandah Bar Crowd around 11:30PM

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Random photo with Pikachu

Random photo of me and Pikachu - Beauty and the Geek theme

I already did Sanctuary Hotel last week – I do try to avoid going to the same venue twice in a row – you risk getting bored easily. The problem was that I made a promise to a friend I would come here tonight. Well, apparently it would be even more busier than last week – lets find out shall we!

The views expressed below are those of the author and NOT of Phat Entertainment

Funky @ Sanctuary Hotel (EDIT 16TH SEPTEMBER 2010: THIS EVENT IS NO LONGER RUNNING)
Assessment Time: 9:00PM – 02:00AM
Opening Hours: 10:00PM – 03:00AM (?)
Lockout: None
Website: http://www.funkybuddha.com.auhttp://www.phatentertainment.com.au
Address: 545 Kent St – Corner of Liverpool and Kent St, Sydney. Behind 3 wise monkeys.
Dress Code / Door Policy: Tonight, the theme is Beauty and the Geek! Casual OK. Hats allowed. Guys are wearing a mix of casual and smart casual. Girls are mostly in dresses. I saw someone walk in with a Pikachu outfit.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: $25 Standard Entry, $20 on guestlist. Free before 10:30PM. The only slight hope you could get in before 10:30 was to be on a birthday guestlist, and line up in the birthday guestlist line at 9PM. If you got there 9:30PM, you wouldn’t make it. We were on a standard non-birthday guestlist. We got there 9PM AT THE VERY FRONT, and we only managed to get in after 10:30PM! We just stood there as we saw birthday guest after birthday guest walk in. We even stood there watching hopelessly as people off the street just cut the line! Amazing that bouncers could not be more strict on this or have a more foolproof way of being fair on people who actually lined up. Usually lining up 9PM gets you in before 10:30 but the organisers have actually done the right thing, and let the birthday lists have priority. This is how it is meant to be, unlike other venues where it is first come first serve, with birthday people not given priority at all. Well at least cut us normal people some slack. 90 minutes in the cold – give me my $5 discount!!!

Guestlist: info@phatentertainment.com.au
Occurence: Every Saturday
Inside: The entrance is not at the normal Sanctuary Hotel entrance. It is via the TAB area further along on Kent St. The room upon entry is where people can have a chat and chill out without actually going outside. Walk in further to the main area, and the large carpeted room has been converted to a dancefloor. DJ on the wall, and a 3 tier podium smack in the middle, dividing the room into two halves. Bar along the far back wall.
Cloak Room: Cloak services are located in the entry room. Standard rip off prices for the event. I think it was $4 for small bags, and $8 for large bags, possibly $5/$10. Who knows. I avoided the cloak room and placed my stuff behind the ATM on the dancefloor. It held up the whole night.
Bar: I didn’t buy any drinks tonight. Waiting time 3-4 minutes or less.
DJs: Sefu, etc etc.
Music: Mostly Contemporary RnB / Pop, with the occasional house mashup.
Crowd: Mostly Asian, and mostly teenagers
Entertainment: Last week the podium was a three tiered podium. This week it is 3 separate podiums. One podium was rectangular to hold upto 5 or 6 people, while the other two were solo podiums which could hold upto 3 people. This freed up some dance room to walk around. Also an MC to keep things up.
Atmosphere: It got pretty busy quite quickly, then it got immensely packed on the dancefloor. Lounge areas – most seats are taken.
Video: Walking around the dancefloor 
[Video removed on request by Phat Entertainment]

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Me with one of the fans in the attempt to keep the place cool

Me with one of the fans in the attempt to keep the temperature cool

It’s my birthday weekend, but I really didn’t plan anything for Saturday. A friend has invited me to Sanctuary Hotel – The last time I walked in, the air con wasn’t working correctly for large crowds and it became stuffy and overheated. Since then I have been assured things were ‘fixed’. So let’s check it out – here we go!

The views expressed below are those of the author and NOT of Phat Entertainment

Funky (Buddha) @ Sanctuary Hotel (edit 16TH sept: THIS EVENT IS NO LONGER RUNNING)
Assessment Time: 12:15AM to 02:45AM
Opening Hours: 10:30 – Unknown
Lockout: None
Website: http://www.funkybuddha.com.au, http://www.phatentertainment.com.au
Address: 545 Kent St – Corner of Liverpool and Kent St, Sydney. Behind 3 wise monkeys.
Dress Code / Door Policy: Casual ok. Hats allowed.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: $25 standard. $20 on guestlist before midnight. 
Guestlist: info@phatentertainment.com.au
Occurence: Every Saturday Night.
Inside: The entrance is not at the normal Sanctuary Hotel entrance. It is via the TAB area further along on Kent St. The room upon entry is where people can have a chat and chill out without actually going outside. Walk in further to the main area, and the large carpeted room has been converted to a dancefloor. DJ on the wall, and a 3 tier podium smack in the middle, dividing the room into two halves. Bar along the far back wall.
Cloak Room: Cloak room is located upon entry. Not utilized tonight but I would imagine it to be the same rip off pricing as of previous nights at the previous Verandah Bar venue.
Bar: Did not utilize tonight, but the wait was a bit longer than usual. Line was 2 or 3 deep. Bar closed altogether at 2:30AM, in a safe assumption that too many fights spoil the bar.
Music: RnB, Pop and some House mashup
Crowd: Mostly Asian. Mostly teenagers or early 20’s. You can tell via the baby faces and hair styles. I fit right in.
Entertainment: Podium dancers throughout the night. It’s good enough.
Atmosphere: It’s setup to encourage lots of dancing, which is good. The humidity of the last time I was here is gone – Fans are installed and air con is setup just right for a danceable experience. People are not as friendly but what else do you expect from 18 year olds. Carpeted area gives the place a more friendly vibe as well as the second room to allow people a breather is also good. It’s also pretty busy on the dancefloor itself, enough to have your own dance, but not sardine packed.

Fights: I saw two fights break out tonight. One you may see typically at a club, but two in one night is bad. Ha. Teenage angst and alcohol.
Videos:

Walkthrough of the dancefloor area. 
[Video removed on request by Phat Entertainment]

360 View
[Video removed on request by Phat Entertainment]

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Prologue

I was at Haymarket. It was dead for an odd reason. anyway we left for our intended venue – Blue Butterflly @ Arthouse at around midnight. The line was heaps massive (like ridiculous as usual) but we join the queue anyway.
ONE HOUR LATER we are in the front.
30 MINUTES LATER WE ARE STILL IN THE FRONT, while guestlisters and people who know organisers/bouncers head straight in. Frustration!!
It was probably another 10 minutes to go, but friends want to go home. We split and I go to Verandah, for a backup birthday (Oh I know, I’m such a dog). Here we go!
Funky Buddah @ Verandah Bar
Assessment Time: 1.30am – 3am
Address: 55 Elizabeth St | www.verandah.com.au
Dress Code / Door Policy: Casual ok. Recently they have allowed patrons with rat tails to enter.  So most people from most walks of asia are here.
Entry Fee / Cover Charge: $25
Guestlist: We were too late for guestlist. It is $20 before midnight, $25 after
Inside: There are two separate rooms. Keep this in mind. There is a small curtained off room which is the trance room. The main room is RnB, which is separated somewhat into two regions – the dance region, and the bar/hanging out region, where you stand and mingle with your drinks in your hand.
Cloak Room: $10 for a big bag, its the most expensive cloak rooming service at any venue I have been to, proudly brought to you by Funky Buddha.
Bar: I didn’t drink tonight.
DJ: Normal asian DJs on rotation tonight
Music: RnB and Trance. RnB music was all the modern stuff, not much old school at all besides the West Coast rap stuff. Trance was very dancable here – there is definitely a lack of asian places out there.
Crowd: Asian
Entertainment: Some podiums for people to dance on
Atmosphere: Pretty busy in the RnB room at peak, but when it dies down, it is very noticable because of the open  setup of Verandah. Trance room sadly didn’t enjoy as many people – there were only 10 or 15 people most at a time in the trance room, and out of those people, there would be no more than 5 people raving about at the same time. But its pretty pretty dark in here – you can barely see anything.
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Funky Buddha @ Verandah Bar

On July 19, 2008, in Hip Hop, House, RnB, Verandah Bar, by James Tran

Mandy’s birthday. The majority wanted to dance somewhere. The vote was “We can go to Funky Buddha or Bamboo” ……. too easy a choice. I was going to Funky Buddha for the first time.

About Verandah Bar
Inside: Since the last report at Verandah Bar, the place has undergone extensive internal renovations and reconfiguration. On entry, the right hand side now has a sealed off section, and the DJ booth has been located to this area. The left side booths still remain. In the main area, there are now rows of tables (secured to the floor it looks like) and the wall booths removed to allow more standing room and the insertion of internal toilets. Also part of the balcony has been converted to floor space, leaving little room to stand outside.

About Funky Buddha
Music: Mashup of RNB, House (Electro)
Crowd: Asian
Dress Code: Casual. I had jeans and nice shoes.
Cover Charge / Entry Fee: $20 non guestlist. Guestlist $15
Occurence: Weekly Saturday Nights
Website: www.funkybuddha.com.au/
Atmosphere: Vibrant around the DJ area, bit dead in the back.

Timeline
Line
We got there around midnight and paid the $20. There was only a small line of about 5 people. This was a stark contrast to the 2 hour wait on the first night at Arthouse Hotel.

Dancing
There were two podiums on each side of the DJ booth. I danced a bit on one side and only got the attention of a girl and a group of 2 girls on the closest proximity to me, but they weren’t keen on grinding for longer than 5 seconds. The music was too loud to converse, perhaps I should try to extract them next time.

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