champagne bar supernova?
It’s no surprise that the central décor of a
venue called Narcisse is an elegant, 30-foot-long gilded mirror.
For patrons able to look past their own reflections, Chicago’s
400-cap champagne salon and caviar bar also boasts marble
bars, vintage chandeliers, private booths and velvet slip-covered
bar stools. The three spaces – the main “Anteroom”;
VIP offshoot “Krug Salon”; and basement lounge
“Boudoir” – maintain the extravagant theme
with deep reds and golds, and mirrors and art. The club offers
cigar smoking, champagne tasting and even perhaps napping
on the Boudoir’s king-sized bed. The self-appointed
beautiful people may frequent Narcisse, but what do the real,
fun-loving nightlife people say? We sent the Stalkers to see
if it’s all smoke and mirrors.
Narcisse is located in the heart of it all in the Near North
district of Chicago, blocks from the city’s other hot
clubs. My fiancée and I decided to check out the Unite
party, which is every second Saturday of the month hosted
by Johnny Chaos and Adrian Martenez. We arrived early though,
to take advantage of Narcisse’s food – we heard
it’s something you can’t miss.
Around 10 p.m. there are minimal people in the long and narrow
“Lincoln Park-style” lounge, but the place is
putting up a good vibe already.
Once I stuffed my valet ticket in my pocket and checked our
coats, we headed to the lounge-y area behind the DJ booth
and took some seats, as the guys were tweaking the system
to their likings. We ordered our drinks: Me, an Effen Black
and Red Bull; my fiancé, a Bud Light. Price: $20. Not
cheap, but worth it. And the deep fried seafood collection
of calamari and shrimp, so darn good. Seared Ahi Tuna, heaven.
All I wanted to do after that was curl up on the velvety sofa,
fall asleep and dream about what I just ate.
But by the time we were done eating Ado and Johnny were into
their set, and the club was near crowded.
The majority of our friends were in the house by 11:30-ish.
Now our crew is rolling about 30 deep! Everyone was liquored
up and having a great time, yet laid back because of the kick-back/anti-superclub
atmosphere Narcisse has.
The night wrapped up at about 2:30 when the lights came on,
the packed club funneled out the doors and everyone started
checking their calendars to see what day the next Unite event
Being the perfect guy I took my girlfriend out to Narcisse
for a nine p.m. romantic dining experience, to be followed
up by a crazy nightclub night. Of course she eats up the scene,
a posh atmosphere filled with what passes for socialites,
gliteratti and celebs in Chicago. I’m from New York,
but I enjoy the people-watching anyway. Narcisse is pretty
classy for the Midwest, with lavish décor like a huge
gold framed mirror, erotic artwork and marble statues, but
though the chandeliers were charming, the lighting was way
Being in the music business I appreciate the sounds the place
offers: They’ve booked some pretty big-name global house
DJs upstairs in the main room, and in the downstairs lounge
they were spinning good hip-hop sets, which was fun for dancing
and just, well, lounging. Then again the velvet rope master
for the lounge was overly rude; I guess he was trying to keep
the riffraff from ruffling the sheets on the ornate bed down
Overall Narcisse had something of an NYC feel, with a bit
more unwarranted pompousness. It’s pretty fitting, too,
that this place is named after Narcissus: Plenty of people
there were a bit too self-loving, but I don’t think
it was the club’s long mirror that started it.
We pull up to Narcisse around 9:45 pm for the Unite party.
Inside, the smaller-than-I-anticipated place is starting to
clear out the dinner crowd and pack in the party people.Good
thing, because the dinner crowd seems too old and rich for
The music starts off in a deep-sexy-futuristic-tech-prog-funk
sort of way. By 11 the place is packed, everyone is getting
there drink on. Johnny hops on the decks, he brings the set
to the next level. 12:30 the place is jumping, and no one
gives a sh*t about the snooty staff, velvet drapes or wannabe
chic design, the party is real. The DJs tag-team for the rest
of the night, dropping sick beat after sick beat. And the
fine girls kept on dancing and eating it up like it was better
than the beluga caviar!