Wednesday, 28 April 2010
The name - Avalon - suggests this Shoreditch bar/ club/ live music venue will be a Pre-Raphaelite vision of the court of King Arthur. Arthur Daley more like, based on furniture that might have been snapped-up by the dodgy dealer in a clearance sale at a convicted Balkan warlord’s villa. Naff baroque tables, crushed velvet upholstery and silvered thrones are bizarrely juxtaposed with decor that implies a Chinese restaurant in Chernobyl. Lit red, punters assume a weird radioactive sweet and sour sauce glow. But like the similarly tacky Punk in Soho, such disparate duff-ness gels, creating a bonkers backdrop for the debauchery expected of its target ‘Ditch bitch style junkie clientele that, at tonight’s press party, includes an androgynous colossus wearing a lobster as a fascinator. His look is more doolally than Dali and with promised dim sum slow to appear, I’m tempted to seize the Mad Hatter’s crustacean and boil the bleeder in a hot tub downstairs. Hot tub? Oh, yes. Currently unfinished, a heroically seedy basement - think Dirk Diggler’s Boogie Nights filmed in a Burmese brothel - will incorporate mosaic plunge pools and similar spa malarkey. 'Drinks? Oh, go on, then! Two Blue Lagoons and one of your signature ‘Karma Sip-tra’ martinis, please.' As we leave, a queue forms outside; Avalon is already the stuff of local legend.
141 -143 Shoreditch High St E1 tel 3222 0530
Friday, 16 April 2010
I like my night-clubs hot and horny like the original Ghetto, or louche and leftfield like Black Gardenia, both annihilated by the voracious Jabberwocky that is Crossrail. Where to go? Not Luxx! Not that this new, rammed-to-the-rafters hedonistic pit sucks, it’s more that happy house -even with a bongo player drumming over it - and Cristal rosé at £800 won’t impress the peculiars I hang out with. So who will ‘get’ Luxx? According to affable head honcho, Luca Maggiore, not the ‘glamour’ models, Big Brother bozos or Wags that infect its rivals. Sounds good to me. When, as happened to me in one W8 more cash-than-dash boîte, you’re brusquely moved on because ‘a VIP will need your table’ only to be told said big shot is Teddy Sherringham, any cred you aspire to is shot for being in such an wholly unsuitable place. Dark intimate and open to non-members, Luxx draws a mix of Guccified continentals, bonused-up bankers and bright-eyed things of unfathomable means. If splashy Ibiza gaffs appeal, go! But go carefully; a hard-to-spot step in the under-lit dance-floor/ catwalk is out to recreate Naomi Campbell’s notorious tumble at Westwood. Laying into a magnum of Grey Goose (at someone else’s expense), I yearn for the days when its £400 cost bought a red-eye weekend to Manhattan’s Paradise Garage. Now, there was a hot club!
3 New Burlington St W1 7297 2893