Word is Vics Lounge in China View will officially open on December 16 after several private warm-up parties over the next few weeks, although tonight I found — after spotting the new sign from ground level and heading to floor 27 — the doors open. Expect a very different feel from the former Klubb Rouge, which my memory associates with 1930s Shanghai-style posters (though the models wore considerably less), candy apple red, and poor marketing.
The “public” areas of Vics Lounge offer dimmer lighting and a more subdued though still modern decor — from dark paneling, thick-padded sofas and walls covered with small wood tiles of many shapes, colors and depths upstairs to a prominent semi-circle bar, large open space, and funky chandeliers on the main floor. And there are those superb views of Workers Stadium and its surroundings.
At the north end, a sprawling upstairs private room fits with the vibe although it is flashier with its crystal accents and plush seating — it feels like it could morph from upscale afternoon teatime to after-work cocktail party to all-night whiskey and wine session. This area has a room for cigar smokers as well as private toilets with enough space for a threesome (no idea why I wrote that but just saying).
Re drinks, forget the [fill in the big-name Scotch] and green tea. The menu has good whiskey options (I saw Talisker 10 at rmb60), over a dozen beers, including Liefmann’s, Newcastle and Chti (all rmb50), and more. And the staff, including Alton (the project manager?), who spotted me wandering about and offered a tour, and Johnny, the manager, were friendly and professional.
This isn’t my type of hangout but I was impressed — from the decor to the menu — and look forward to seeing how well it works in practice. My guess: very.
Note: I have been calling the place Vics Lounge but I saw a sign for “Vics+“, or was it “V+“, so one of those might be the actual name. I’ll check on this…