Cleveland's newest nightspot wasn't even open on a recent weeknight, and pedestrians on Prospect Avenue were already stopping to stare. And they still haven't seen anything yet. View Ultralounge and Nightclub (618 Prospect Avenue) has raised the bar for upscale night life in the city, combining the most visually striking elements of clubs found in Las Vegas, New York City, and Miami.
"When you travel to other cities, people really enjoy having a fresh scene," says majority owner Tom Eggett, an entrepreneur with a background in aerospace and business. "And you come back to Cleveland, and you don't have that. So we're trying to bring a higher-end club to town."
Inside the club, a small troupe of scantily clad female dancers performs on a raised stage every hour, in front of a white screen that casts provocative silhouettes into View's front windows. General manager Joe Kahn, who formerly supervised downtown's V Lounge, says that View is the only club in the country with an integrated lighting-and-sound system that's more commonly used in theatrical productions. Drifting through a palette of more than 38,000 colors and patterns, mood lighting slowly shifts from one relaxing sheet of color to another as it casts dizzying shapes on the dance floor.
Thursday through Saturday, View opens for happy hour, and its lighting and music gradually gain momentum, shifting the feel from lounge to nightclub. The swanky space, which is a stone's throw from Quicken Loans Arena, has two VIP areas: one with table service in full view of the room, the other in a secluded loge with a $1,000 minimum. The club plans to add an outdoor deck and rooftop cabanas. It's a natural draw for high rollers.
"I know there's a need for something that caters to an older, more professional crowd in Cleveland," says Scott Parker, one of the club's three partners, who's also an owner of Akron's Fuel Lounge. "You can come here and relax."
· A handful of Akron's new-wave all-stars will band together as the Paper Crowns on Tuesday, November 22, and Tuesday, November 29, at the Lime Spider (207 South Main Street, Akron). Members of Hammer Damage, the Hi-Fis, Walking Clampetts, and Chi-Pig will perform an impromptu eclectic set.
· Cleveland rockers Easy Street will play a reunion show on Saturday, November 19, at Akron's Tangier Cabaret (532 West Market Street). From 1976 to 1984, the band was a top draw on the regional circuit and toured nationally.
· Downtown blues club Fat Fish Blue (21 Prospect Avenue) will hold the grand finale of its annual $1000 Talent Search on Tuesday, November 22.
· Cleveland hard-rock combo Fast Chester has been selected to appear on a compilation disc for metal mag Brave Words & Bloody Knuckles, along with some major bands and other unsigned groups. Fast Chester is asking fans to vote on which track to include; visit www.myspace.com/fastchester1.
· Roadrunner Records will release an expanded version of Chimaira's latest, self-titled album in January. No details are available yet. According to Nielsen SoundScan, Chimaira has sold 41,000 copies since its August release, while 2003's The Impossibility of Reason has edged up to 96,000 copies.
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