Ah, the beautiful city of New York–the city that never sleeps and is teeming with millions of distractions. In particular, Manhattan is lauded for its thriving nightlife. Everyone fantasizes about rising to prominence in this city’s social scene because of its exclusivity and high profile celebrity presence. And of course the “social scene”
The uniformed masses buy into notion that New York’s nightlife is the pinnacle of greatness and reflective of an Elite nightlife experience. We beg to differ. Those who indulge in this fantasy have been deluded into believing in the fabricated air of exclusivity maintained by club owners—a meticulously constructed chimera. The strategy is simple, yet ingenious: take a relatively ordinary experience and use clever marketing tactics to make the public to perceive it as extraordinary. These clever strategists further amplify this false perception by placing unnecessary limits on the amount of entrants—simply aiming to market the club as inaccessible to pedestrians.
Clubs in New York tend to only be able to sustain this illusion for a period that typically doesn’t extend beyond a meager 6 months. Why, might one ask? Despite the initial frigidity in providing access to the venue, clubs must eventually succumb to demand to balance out their overhead. Once the venue becomes accessible to the public—the pedestrians—the carefully marketed hype dissipates with every new bridge-and-tunnel entrant.
Let’s analyze the process these club owners undertake to market their middling venue as a world class, Elite social setting. It is crucial to host an enormous opening night party to jump start the hype machine. This will generally be an invitation only event featuring a guest list comprised of tuft-hunters willing to spend 3 grand on a table and celebrities to generate hype. On opening night you’ll encounter a queue extending the length of the block, sparking intrigue as hoi polloi attempt to herd into the venue amidst a plethora of expensive vehicles.
After this unnecessarily grandiose premiere, page six of the New York Post will likely feature a story covering the event–highlighting how amazing the experience was and complimenting the décor. Of course, the events rarely match the glamour presented in the story, as the writer is so elated from a free night out he’ll undoubtedly have a myriad of compliments to dole out. It is the New York Post after all.
Following the successful first event, the hype machine is officially churning and the public is clamoring to gain access to this trendy location. The next logical step for the club owners is to hire a pompous doorman—or, if you prefer to be curt, asshole. This doorman’s sole purpose in life is to deny access to any woman who doesn’t fit the criteria of a supermodel or any man unwilling to pay for a table at this meretricious watering hole. It certainly isn’t difficult to attract the targeted clientele after the coverage resulting from their opening event.
The doorman essentially exists to inform would-be attendees that the club is at capacity, regardless of truth. They will be informed that the ratio of guys and girls they’ve arrived with is incorrect or that their attire is unsuitable for this “upscale” venue. We personally recall one occasion while entering a club that we witnessed a woman being rejected and told to return after losing 20 pounds. Yes, this vulgarly does take place. It’s almost as if the bouncer has forgotten he is an underpaid, poorly dressed peon who likely isn’t allowed to disgrace the interior of the venue with his presence beyond his bathroom break.
The doorman is a simple cog in the hype machine of the club—his purpose is to help maintain the air of exclusivity. There is certainly logic to this method. Each person they refuse entry will undoubtedly be irate and share his or her negative experience with others, saying they weren’t allowed in because it was “too crazy”. Those same friends will also share the experience, resulting in a network of disgruntled individuals relaying the information and keeping the club relevant. Soon you have people talking about a club that is “so crazy” and exclusive that not just anyone is allowed in. Yeah, okay.
Simple analogy: If a girl is copulating with every guy who offers, many will be dissuaded by the ease of access. However, if she is highly selective with her choices more men will desire her—as time with her becomes synonymous with status and exclusivity. The doorman’s role is to essentially place a chastity belt on that girl until the owner has to start paying debt. Which will come sometime soon due to the 500-750k that was spend on renovating the place.
To keep a steady flow of traffic while maintaining the appeal of the club, the owner must now take steps to not only ensure that the place is bustling, but also that the correct crowd is populating the venue. This means the fashion models, the 19-year-old girls, the celebrities, the wealthy businessmen, and the trust funds babies with black Amex cards as well as the made up “social circles”. The owner needs this crowd to frequent the location because they are a high profit market. How else might this club keep this perception at such a high level, might you ask? Its very simple—they’re called promoters.
This is how the business of promoting works. On off nights clubs might hire more than one promoter and on prime nights they’re most likely sticking to just 1 or 2 promoters. The clubs need promoters because they help guarantee that vacant tables become occupied. If a club has 12 tables, the likelihood of 12 different groups spending 3-5k on a night based on the club’s own merits are highly unlikely. However, if tables are empty the people that are buying the tables won’t feel compelled to return, as they don’t have others validating their purchase as worthwhile.
Thus, the nightclubs hire these so called promoters. These promoters get paid somewhere around 350-400 a night. Their job consists of hosting a table and bringing 6-8 good-looking modelesque women to join them at the table–after which the club will grace them with 2-3 bottles of the most cost efficient vodka they have to offer.
Wondering how to spot one of these tables? It’s very easy. Simply check your surroundings for the only table in the room that has no waitress and some no-name vodka bottle you have never seen before. He’ll be the only guy in the club on his phone walking in and out trying to get his underage girls in. The promoter will be designated to stay at this table up until 230-3am, when they are free to enjoy the night as they please. The promoter is the true winner in this scenario because he receives a decent check for a night out with friends and calls it “work”.
How they get these girls, you might ask? They certainly aren’t netting the pulchritudinous, genteel women we feature on this site. These girls are commonly university students from around the city. These girls are captivated by the illusion of thecouth New York nightlife and possess a hunger to experience it that almost borders on desperation. Did we mention that these girls are way underage? They certainly lack as well, and trust that those who frequent these venues are aware that they’re unbelievably credulous and easy to bed.
However, it does amplify the club atmosphere when you spot scores of other men leaving with one-night stands without exerting any real effort. These women also go on decadent drug binges—you’ll commonly encounter heavy cocaine use at these venues. They will arrive dressed like harlots and become enamored with the attention they get from older predatory men in the nightclub—going out every night hoping to solidify their role in this artificial scene. These social circles are fabricated and are made for people to feel accepted. With every girl aspiring to be Nicole Richie and Lindsay Lohan the future does not seem bright.
The clubs need these promoters and the girls that they bring to facilitate the process of selling tables. Why do they need to sell tables? Because that is where their bread and butter lies. The minimum for a table at most clubs is anywhere between 2500-3000. If you hear a lower price quote rest assured that the club is far from elite. Trust us. Now, they’re asking people to spend a large sum of money on a night out to be in the VIP area. This area consists of a portioned off area with a couch that absolutely reeks of liquor from the previous intoxicated patrons.
When you consider the value of your purchase, take into account that the table housing your bottles is probably no larger than 3 by 3–which is tiny. Then, each bottle of liquor you buy is marked up by at least 400%. I’m no mathematician, but those margins sound pretty out of this world. After spending all this money and being in this crowded “VIP area”, there’s a fair chance that the waitress you have is going to be a total bitch and walk around with a stick in her ass. Then, once the bill arrives she tells you 20 percent gratuity is already added in which is an extra 600 dollars. Great, you now have to tip this imbecile well for her atrocious service. You would think gratuity would be included in the 400% markup but its only apart of the elaborate scheme.
Here is a picture of a actual receipt for 30,000 from a nightclub in New York. The best part of all is after their client paid 30,000 to be there on that fine evening, they were charged an additional $147 dollars for water.
While you’re doling out cash at this over hyped club the adjacent table likely hosts a promoter getting paid to have a table. That probably makes you feel like a dullard. Here is the best part: the doorman will even have the audacity to anticipate a tip for allowing you and your guests access to the venue for the table you paid for. Unsurprisingly, given the extremely low qualifications for their position, they actually are moronic enough to believe they are doing you a favor when in fact you are doing them a favor. These doormen are class A douche bags, but don’t hold it against them. It is their craft and profession. What they fail to understand is that if they treat people with respect they will be granted respect back.
Oddly enough, some of these clubs in New York actually have the audacity to be terrible with paying their employees. A waitress from club ______ (insert almost 90 percent of clubs in that blank) once told us she hasn’t been paid in about a month and a half. That’s pretty ridiculous to hold out on paying probably the hardest working person in the club despite their absolutely ludicrous profit margins. The @nynightlife twitter handle has put together a list of clubs that owe people money. Only a small sample of people were surveyed, but nonetheless we have provided the chart below:
Here is the best part of all. During the recession many didn’t want to spend these outrageous figures on partying and shied away from these clubs. Many clubs that thrived without the support of promoters succumbed to the lacking economy and were forced to hire promoters to keep traffic flowing. Most clubs barely survived these dire straits, but just like the large banks and financial companies these clubs received a bailout as well. This bailout came from an unfamiliar source that appeared on the scene, known as the Saudi Royals.
These royals are the children of the high monarchy of Saudi Arabia and are sent to New York to study in the city’s prestigious universities. These guys are lavish spenders and would spend anywhere from $10-30,000 a night religiously during this period. Many have theorized that without their support the industry would have collapsed. The most fascinating part of it all is half of them don’t drink so spending all this money is literally just a waste. Here is an actual shot of Saudi’s purchasing bottles.
When these clubs decide to think they are Madison Square Garden and hire Tiesto or Swedish House Mafia their overhead has just increased significantly. What do they do? They decide to charge $20,000 per table to see this dj play in their “prestigious” club. Despite the pure idiocy of such a purchase, some actually pay this amount—failing to realize they could see these DJs play in a real venue for $100 and have a vastly superior experience. That’s one masterful heist they managed to craft up.
If you have ever considered allowing yourself to be victimized by this nonsense we highly recommend you avoid clubs when big djs are playing. The venue will be unbearably crowded and the DJ will most likely sorely disappoint, as he is not used to playing his set in such a small setting. Not to mention that you will completely miss the amazing visual performances these DJs have at their large concerts.
You should also be aware that these “social circles” and “social scenes” that are fabricated by these clubs are a facade. These people will smile at you and make you feel like their your best friend, but in the real world and when the sun is up they won’t have the slightest concern about you. The game of nightlife is a vicious one and you are only as good as your last party was.
The people that actually spend money in clubs are scant, thus these clubs hound them to keep assuring their return. The most unbearable part of all is the “private invitations” they send to your email to make you feel important. Try harder. Also be aware that these club owners are usually class A douche bags as well.
One of the newer innovations these clubs have succumb to is by actually having a madam inside the club as well as professional working escorts working the club for the duration of the evening. These escorts jobs are to nonetheless score a big client and take him for everything he’s got. Drunken, high, and looking to score we have seen colleagues take home these beautiful women, only to be faced with an invoice after their duration for outrageous sums.
Now that you’ve been thoroughly educated on the inner workings of the nightlife industry in New York, we have one last closing thought. Nightlife has become a scavenger business and, as of late, there has been an exponential increase of over hyped clubs saturating the market. The true problem lies in the futures of the club owners, as this bubble will eventually burst when the people realize they don’t need to succumb to a fabricated scene.
The question we’re left wondering is when did NYC nightlife go from this:
The game of nightlife is a vicious one as there is really a small pool of clients that go to all of these venues. These people hound these clients to get them to keep coming back to their venues. This culture and scene supports some of the most delusional and fabricated lives we have encountered in a city full of crazy. Trust us when we tell you put their word next to nothing as nothing they say is most likely true.