This morning in Dubai the International Nightlife Association has granted Cavalli Club Dubai with the “Double Excellence in Nightlife”, being the first nightlife venue in the Middle East achieving said distinction. The Double Excellence in Nightlife is an initiative which is already being adopted by many nightlife venues around the world, said venues have to overcome a series of requirements in order to obtain the double certification. The international double certification is made up of the International Nightlife Safety Certified (INSC) seal and the International Nightlife Acoustic Quality (INAQ) seal which is a clear voluntary action taken by nightlife venues in order to provide the maximum quality of protection and service to protect not only clients but also workers and neighbors.
Cavalli Club Dubai has shown it’s clear vow for excellence by complying with all requirements and successfully passing the two field inspections. For this reason, the International Nightlife Association's Secretary General, Joaquim Boadas, personally has visited the venue and has handed the Double Excellence Certificate to the General Manager of Cavalli Club Dubai, Hayan Abou Assali, who has stated "we are very proud to be the first venue in the Middle East to obtain this international double distinction since it demonstrates our commitment to excellence as well as our pledge to provide the best for our clients and workers".
The international safety seal that bears the name "International Nightlife Safety Certified (INSC)", requires the nightlife to pass a rigorous field inspection to certify that the venue disposes of one or several cardiac resuscitators( depending on venue capacity), a portable metal detector at the entrances of the premises, a breathalyzer at the exit of the premises, a map indicating the emergency exits exposed in their accesses, implement a protocol for the prevention of sexual harassment, and having their employees pass a 4-hour practical course on safety issues, as well as checking the proper functioning of emergency exits with anti-panic bars, the existence of revised extinguishers, the possession of a certificate of solidity of the premises and layout of fire-retardant furniture and decorative material. The seal also requires a series of posters on the prohibition of the sale of alcohol to minors, prohibition of possession, consumption, and sale of drugs as well as a recommendation to drink responsibly.
A former nightclub promoter in Amsterdam is part of a worldwide movement to bring nightlife in from the dark.
Mirik Milan is what the Dutch call the nachtburgemeester — the night mayor — of Amsterdam. He’s in Vancouver this week to talk to politicians, planners and business owners about the importance of nightlife to the city’s economy and what can be done to improve the Granville Entertainment District (GED).
Milan describes what he does as “city planning at night” that involves building a coalition that includes civic officials, police, the nightlife industry and residents. The nighttime economy has its own needs and requirements and isn’t just an afterthought to what goes on during the day, he said.
A successful night mayor, Milan said, needs a nightlife scene that speaks with one voice. On the other side, he said it needs politicians, planners and other daytime people who are willing to listen to “our ideas.”
“We always say that you need top-down and bottom-up structures in place,” Milan said.
The Hospitality Vancouver Association (HVA) has brought Milan to the city for three days. The association advocates for clubs, pubs and other businesses along Granville Street and the Davie Village. He’s speaking to Vancouver city council May 2.
According to the HVA, the 14 liquor-primary businesses in the GED are responsible for more than 900 jobs and $43.5 million in annual revenue.
Milan became the world’s first night mayor in 2014 in an election where the voters included people at festivals, club and bar owners, and the online public. He’s in a unique position as the head of what The Guardian called a “small but influential non-profit” group funded by business and the City of Amsterdam.
Milan has worked for VICE, the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam and DIESEL. He was a co-host of a EDM club night called RAUW.
Seven or eight years ago Amsterdam and its nightlife were at a crossroads, Milan said.
“People were saying, ‘We’re losing the young, creative (people), they’re moving to Berlin where there are no closing hours,’ ” he said.
One of the ways Amsterdam responded was by creating 24-hour venues. They’re located outside of the city centre at sites able to accommodate them. What’s radical is that operators can decide their own opening and closing hours.
Granting a licence to a 24-hour centre is contingent on the application’s creative content, which brings together music, art and culture. One successful centre is called De School, which has a daytime café, a higher-end restaurant, art gallery and gym. The nightclub is in the basement.
“We wanted to spread out tourists over the city and make the city attractive for a young, creative workforce and reduce brain drain to other cities because they weren’t finding what they needed,” he said.
In Amsterdam, the 24-hour venues are about 20 minutes — about six kilometres — by bicycle. That was once considered way to far to bike to a club. Now people are regularly cycling 20 to 25 minutes at night to get to the venues, Milan said.
What the 24-hour centres do is give people a destination outside the city centre. They also help address the problem of having thousands of people on the street when all the bars and nightclubs close at the same time as they do on Granville.
“You can extend your night a couple of hours if it is a good night, close early if it isn’t,” Milan said about the 24-hour centres. “It gives entrepreneurs more room to try things out.”
The new venues are having a big impact in and outside of Amsterdam.
“Now people are saying that Amsterdam is one of the club capitals of the world,” he said.
While Milan is focused on nightlife entertainment, he sees himself as an advocate for anyone working at night outside of non-traditional nine-to-five hours. He said it’s part of having a 24-hour vision of the city.
“Let us prepare for the future,” he said. “How do we make sure that late-night workers have the same rights as during the day?”
The idea of a night mayor is one that has quickly spread throughout the world. Night mayors, or their equivalents, are now in cities that include New York, London and Paris.
One of Milan’s successes in Amsterdam is the transformation in Rembrandtplein, a 17th-century square in the city centre. The city’s daytime mayor said something had to be done about the 250 incidents a year related to alcohol and violence. The three-year plan that was developed included:
• Removing obstacles in public spaces. One of the most difficult initiatives was convincing Amsterdam residents they could neither park their bikes nor ride them in the plaza and surrounding narrow streets.
• Creating Rembrandtplein Hosts who are on the streets Friday and Saturday nights. They’re social workers with medical training who are skilled at de-escalating situations.
• Creating a mobile website to handle complaints. If there’s an incident, it can be dealt with right away — rather than having an official respond hours or days later when the problem has disappeared.
After two years there has been a 30-per-cent decrease in nuisances, which include littering and shouting, and a 25-per cent drop in alcohol-related incidents from 250 to under 200.
“People in a city really have to work together and find their own strategy,” he said.
Earlier this year, legendary Manchester nightclub Sankeys closed after the building was sold off to developers wanting to turn it into flats. It was just one of a number of late night venues, pubs and clubs to have closed in the last few years as rising rents and property prices drive places out of business.
The facts are stark – according to the Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR), which represents venues, there has been a near 3% drop in licensed hospitality premises in Great Britain since 2015. In London alone, nearly half of all nightclubs have closed in the past 10 years, while the capital has lost a quarter of its pubs since 2001 and 58 percent of its LGBT venues since 2006. In 2016, there were 19 London boroughs with no recorded LGBTQ venues. And with the night time economy worth £26 billion just in London, it’s a situation that can’t be ignored.
Paul Fletcher, previous owner of Sankey’s, highlights the cultural attraction of venues, citing fabled nightclub The Hacienda as a reason why people used to visit Manchester. He said: ‘Speaking from a Mancunian point of view its really important to keep music venues open. We’re basically famous for two things – music and football.
‘We have always had great music venues that have some great stories behind them which really has shaped the city and attracted people to Manchester. ‘It’s a cool place we have, a great identity and the music venues play a huge part of that. I don’t think its any coincidence we have the highest student population in Europe. ‘The amount of times I’ve heard people my age talk about how they came to Manchester for university or other reasons because of the Hacienda is unbelievable and I’ve heard the same thing about the current Manchester music scene.
‘It’s part of what attracts people to Manchester which in turn keeps creatives keep coming to the city, so the scene keeps evolving. ‘Our city’s rich heritage in music is unusual and such an asset and I genuinely feel that our council should be supporting certain venues in Manchester in a similar way to something that’s recently happened in Berlin.’
The city government in the German capital, which is known for its own famous clubbing scene, has promised €1 million to fund noise protection in clubs, meaning neighbours will not be bothered by noise from the venue or revelers. It’s a similar move that Amy Lame, appointed as London’s very first Night Czar last year, hopes to see implemented in London with the agent of change principle in the new draft London Plan. The policy means that any developers building near existing venues will be responsible for soundproofing them and designing sound reduction. ‘It’s a balance,’ she says. ‘London wasn’t built to be a sound proof city but everyone wants to come and enjoy the culture.’
She added: ‘This is the manifestation of something that’s been brewing for quite a long time and it’s going to take time to stem those flow of closures and reverses. ‘It’s not a quick fix solution. We’re changing things so it creates better opportunities for venues to thrive. These are the kinds of places that make London London. We have to resist this blandification.’
Amy, who celebrated her year anniversary as Night Czar at the beginning of November, is determined to stop these closures because the capital ‘is a global leader in this field’. ‘I would challenge any other city to match it, especially in terms of diversity,’ she said. ‘That’s one of our strongest points, there’s something for everyone. We ignore this at our peril. ‘I don’t want to see it happening. I want us to get to a place where we can see green shoots of growth, we need to stabilise, we need to create conditions where entrepreneurs can take risks and open up new venues.
‘There’s an economic, cultural and human argument. We want the stars of the future which not only bring joy but are also a huge economic driver to our city. ‘There’s a talent pipeline. If they’re closed people don’t have places to play and we could end up economically poor and culturally poor and it will be a less interesting place to live.
‘It’s also a huge draw for visitors. We’re known around the world for our cultural offering. It’s incredible that people outside the UK see pubs as part of our culture, and I think we need to shift our value of that as well.’ But is it as bad as it all seems? Paul says Manchester initially struggled with larger capacity venues monopolising the city, which made it difficult for medium sized venues to survive. But, he says, this has helped it to diversify. ‘I think there will always be a “scene”, especially in cities like Manchester where it seems to be ingrained into our culture,’ he said. ‘The city is certainly more vibrant and diverse then it ever has been, there are more venues and nights than ever before.
‘The smaller venues seem to be becoming more popular again with the development of new bars around the city, with some great small basement spaces as well, so I think on that tip the nightlife in Manchester is still healthy, it’s just ever changing.’ Amy points towards the reopening of Fabric, along with the scrapping of the controversial form 696 and the fight to keep the Joiners Arms an LGBT venue, as successes in her first year.
But she warns it’s only the start, and says the new draft London Plan is a step towards stemming the flow of closures. ‘I feel very proud and pleased with the way things have gone but there’s also a lot more work to be done,’ she added. Printworks, a 6,000 capacity venue in Surrey Quays, London, is undoubtedly a success story. Vibration Group strategy and creative director Simeon Aldred tells Metro.co.uk: ‘I think there is a lot of pressure out there for sure.
‘It might be dire if you don’t change with the market. Music, fashion, the arts change so rapidly. I guess if your frame stays static you are going to struggle to present the latest trend and offer new thought and cultural leadership.’ Simeon says people don’t want a one dimensional venue anymore, they are looking for spaces that cater to a number of different acts, one reason why Printworks is thriving.
He said: ‘We’re all about partnerships. We have worked with some of the best promoters, creatives and designers to bring London a bold, new space that everyone was asking for. ‘People don’t want a one dimensional venue, they want to go to a space that acts differently each time they engage. Whether it’s an electronic music show, food event, theatre or the royal ballet, our space is designed to be a canvas for all. ‘We have a bold new venue strategy and are looking to bring to market a number of large new spaces for London. We are convinced London wants more space that Londoners feel is theirs.
‘We have found spaces that evolve into something new, something usable.’ He says the venue has received ‘100% community support’, and is humbled by the support the project has been given. ‘It’s given us confidence in the UK arts and culture market and that our audience want new, exciting experiences,’ he adds.
The island and Barcelona, with 11 and nine venues respectively, are the most selected territories, followed by Madrid, Girona, Valencia, Murcia and Marbella
A total of 26 Spanish clubs, of which 11 are from Ibiza, are nominated to enter the list of 'The World’s 100 Best Clubs’ and, once on the list, they opt to be the ' World’s Best Club 2017 '. These are awards given by the International Nightlife Association on October 10th in Ibiza within the framework of its annual congress, which will be held this year on October 9th and 10th.
Among the territories that have been the most nominated clubs is Ibiza with 11 venues nominated (Ocean Beach, DC10, Amnesia, Blue Marlin, Destino, Heart, HÏ, Km5, Ushuaïa, Pachá Ibiza and Sankeys). Barcelona city and province have nine on that list: Shoko Barcelona, CDLC, Razzmatazz, Opium Mar, Pachá Barcelona, Bling Bling, Café del Mar Barcelona (Sant Adrià del Besós), Carpes Sunset (Òdena) and El Row (Viladecans).
They are followed by Madrid, with two (Fabrik and Ochoymedio), Girona (Les Teules), Valencia (La3), Murcia (Trips Summer Club in Cabo de Palos) and Marbella (Olivia Valère).
The Golden Moon Awards are the most ambitious international awards in the nightlife sector. The list is made up of a total of 195 establishments coming from countries like Arab Emirates, Singapore, Sweden, Belgium, Russia, Malta, Japan or Argentina, among others.
In the previous edition of these awards, held in Las Vegas, the award for the “World’s Best Club” went to Omnia Las Vegas, and the second was for Ushuaïa Ibiza Beach Hotel, which had already made the top spot in 2015. Third place was taken by Green Valley club in Brazil, and in fourth given to Pachá in Ibiza.