Tag Archives: KLUBB ROUGE

Hard launches ahead: China Doll, Klubb Rouge

Two clubs in the Gongti-Sanlitun zone plan mid-month launches. The new China Doll, taking the top floor of the 3.3 Building on Sanlitun North, is set to open on June 19, while Klubb Rouge, atop the China View Building on Gongti East, is slated to do the same (open) on the same (June 19).

Others in the pipeline include Club P (in Tango) and Bling by ALL-STAR (in Solana), the latter getting my vote for worst ad of the year (I’ll have more on this soon).

Upcoming openings: Legation Quarter, Project H20, China Doll, Klubb Rouge

Look for Gongti-Sanlitun area clubs China Doll (in the 3.3 Building) and Klubb Rouge to open in the first half of next month, while late June is the target at Maison Boulod in The Legation Quarter, which saw its art center open last Saturday night. Meanwhile, the management at Project H20 says it hopes to its new Nali Studio space open in the first week of July. Time is getting tight given there are just over ten weeks until the Olympics…

Klubb Rouge: Will it paint the town red?

Klubb Rouge is slated to open in China View – beside the City Hotel and The Den on Gongti East – in the first half of June. I reported on the press conference held outside Beijing two weeks ago (see Surreal Saturday). Last Friday afternoon, the club’s GM, David Blais, gave me a tour of the venue.

(Note: China View has quickly filled up with more than a dozen restaurants, coffee shops and bakeries, including Red Ocean Butterflies, Pullman Steak, and Purple Haze, although I hope Bella is not serving from that half bottle of white wine it leaves outside in the sun as an inducement to enter the place.)

Klubb Rouge’s main area takes the entire fourteenth floor. Patrons leave the elevators to face a two-sided 18-meter long chrome bar and a view west toward Workers’ Stadium. This space includes high ceilings – I would peg them at seven meters – and an elevated DJ booth.

Adjoining it to the north is a sizable lounge, about the size of Q Bar, which will include a second, shorter chrome bar, fixed sofas, and free-standing furniture. A sliding door can isolate this space for functions.

The lounge has a lower ceiling, as does the VIP area above, which is essentially a second lounge with views of the bar floor below.

Overall, expect décor with deep plums, candy apple reds and gold trim along with glass and stainless steel. Blais says the six massive columns lining the club will carry images of sexy women and there will be five tons of crystal hanging above the bar.

On the south sound of Klubb Rouge, a staircase will take patrons to two private rooms – one can seat about 20 people and faces east, the other is smaller and looks down on the main club area. Above that is a large deck with yet another chrome bar and an excellent view of the city. There are two private areas on this floor.

All bathrooms are on the main floor.

The current drink plan includes 10 to 15 wines, bottled beer, and a cocktail list that includes signature drinks. There will be a strong focus on bottles of spirits.

Blais says the place aims to draw a diverse crowd of both locals and expatriates, including tourists, businesspeople, and others.

Note: To clarify from the last post. There is no business relationship between Klubb Rouge and Shanghai’s Bar Rouge, but several people who formerly worked at the latter are now involved with the former.

Surreal Saturday: Deer petting, Dom P, taters and berries, and more

The resort – an hour’s drive beyond Beijing – sat nestled among a dozen mountains, upon one of which The Great Wall snaked like gray piping on a green felt jacket. Its balconies, pillars, arches, stonework, gilded trim—all seemed as though they had been teleported from Europe with the wave of a magic wand. Upon its vast deck sat scores of attendees sipping cocktails and wine, and nibbling barbecued lamb, stewed beef, and potato salad studded with strawberries, grapes and bananas. As the afternoon dwindled, a small herd of tame deer materialized to mingle among those on the sprawling lawn.

Why, one might reasonably ask, were we there? A press conference for Klubb Rouge*, an establishment to soon open in downtown Beijing, a dozen floors above Hooters on Workers’ Stadium East Road.

Saturday’s event and the club might seem an odd juxtaposition, somewhat along the lines of strawberries in potato salad, but who am I to complain about getting out of the city. And that is what more than one hundred of us – PR people, F&B managers, magazine types, and the like – did as we gathered on three buses that first inched through downtown traffic and then wound past fields, farm villages, vegetable vendors, and reservoirs to the resort.

The press conference proved anticlimactic. A poorly planned Powerpoint presentation resulted in print too tiny to read, while the verbal delivery consisted largely of rah-rah sentiments such as, “it’s really going to change the club scene,” “it’s going to amaze your eyes and amaze your ears,” and “you will be really, really, really delighted.”

Fortunately, I was able to ask general manager David Blais a few questions on the deck (I’ve paraphrased his answers).

Is Klubb Rouge related to Bar Rouge in Shanghai?

No, although a consultant and DJ from Bar Rouge are working on the project.

How big is the club?

The club has 1400 square meters of space on the fourteenth floor of China View as well as a terrace with a 360-degree view, two private rooms, and a mezzanine that can hold 300 to 400 people. The total capacity is 1500 to 2000 people.

How much will cocktails cost?

About 70 to 80 kuai.

Will there be food?

No, at least not in the beginning.

It was then time to enjoy a sunny afternoon in sedate surroundings, and enjoy a buffet of salad, meat and fruit as well as an open bar. Things were made all the more delightful when one at our table – Ross “Papa JJ” Goulding of Time Out magazine – won a draw for a bottle of 1999 Dom Perignon that he decided was best consumed there and then.

We realized that all good things must come to an end (translation: the last bus was leaving). After grabbing a few beverages and petting the deer, we boarded the bus for Beijing and a traffic flow that became increasingly  and excruciatingly slower as we approached city center.

The long ride put both physical and spiritual distance between us and the afternoon that had been. Just before we tranquilized Ross “Papa JJ” Goulding, whose elocution, while endearing, was scaring fellow passengers due to its volume and endurance, he hoarsely said: “Twas a great day, but how the memory fades. In the words of the great Rutger Hauer, ‘All those moments will be lost in time, like my upcoming three-day hangover tears in rain.’”

(And yes, the Champagne was worth including that quote in this post.)

As usual, apologies for the quality of the camera on my otherwise excellent K-TOUCH B922 phone, though in this case the somewhat surreal results fit the event.


Abracadabra!

klugg rouge press conference venue
Oh deer.

Note: I will have more details on the club later this week.

* KLUBB is spelled with the “K” reversed and a double “B”, while ROUGE is spelled with the “R” reversed. I lack the technology, let alone the willpower, to duplicate it here.