Just looking to get some views on Club 54. Popular, safe, etc... Any information or experiences would be greatly appreciated!
Is Club 54 on STT and is it a basic strip club? I seem to remember a recent ad for Club 54. They're not listed in the local 'phone book and many of these places come and go. If it is indeed the sort of place that I'm thinking of, be very, very careful. I'm only saying this because you've had the good sense to post on this forum so you obviously have some reservations about maybe a job offer you've received which seems to be too good to be true? Just be careful, please. This is not Las Vegas.
You can certainly ask more on this forum and be more open but, again, since you've posted, my gut reaction is to warn you bigtime. Good luck!
I believe it is very popular with the younger set, of which I am, obviously, NOT one. The places I frequent don't open at 9 pm, they usually are closing around then!! It is a night club in a not-so-great part of town. I would be careful in any event -- don't get falling down drunk, pick up women/men you don't know etc. Take a cab there and have him wait for you for a few minutes. If you're not comfortable -- go home.
Hi all - thanks for the information. This club is for sale and I was trying to get some information to help in the decision making process. Do all of you STX local think it would be easy to turn around? In other words - if it cleaned up and offered other services besides just a nightclub - would people come?
Please take the time to come down here and look at the property. Restaurants and clubs open and close here with lightening speed. You will need to think about your target audience also. IMO there wil not be enough young tourists to make this work, so you'll need local kids as well as people who come here for a specific period to work, I'm think about Hovensa workers.
Think about this carefully and research, research, research!!!
club 54 is not in the seedy part of town.........it is safe and I have never had a problem there.......as with any club on stx or the other islands treat people the way you want to be treated and NEVER go alone....go with a group of friends ...........I like this venue and the staff..........
Wow - lots of info! I would never purchase anything sight unseen. We are doing our first of several PMV's in late June....and if we found the right business to purchase - would definately come for a few days to check it out. I have been reading these boards for a few months now in anticipation of starting the relo process and will heed all of the warnings.
As Mell said - I just wanted to get some feedback from the people who live/work near the club and who don't have an interest in telling me what I want to hear as opposed to the truth.
Any and all comments are appreciated! I love this board - and am learning a great deal.
Best of luck to you Emalee.
I live on STT, but I will ask around a bit myself for you. If I hear of anything, I will post.
Alexandra, who posts on this board might be able to give you some feedback as well. She is smart, kind and highly professional. She has given me some good tips and pointers regarding real estate on STT.
Club 54 does quite well since it is a very popular spot. It's not in a sketchy part of town--that area especially on the weekends is often very crowded. Even though management has changed hands several times, it's name is very recognizable--unlike many of the restaurants/bars that come and go, it's very much a fixture of the C'sted party scene. If you kept up the service and parties and stuff you wouldn't have trouble attracting people.
They have live music a few times a week, stay open late, different themed reggae, funk etc and a loyal regular crowd.It's not a "nightclub" in a typical stateside view--more like a bar that is open late with all different kinds of live music. That diversity of music would be an important thing to keep. The "house" and "club" type music might be popular far for one night a week, but don't expect to paint the walls black and make it into "real club" and still keep the customer base.
They also make a huge amount of $$ on St Patty's Day when the entire place is completely packed to the brim. One of the best facets of the bar is the massive, multilevel courtyard out back. That gives it lots of possibility other than just being another bar.
Good Luck with everything.
I worked across the street from Club 54 for years. It is on Company Street in C'sted. Company Street is a busy commercial street during the day - art galleries, real estate, law offices, furniture galleries etc. It is only one block from the main tourist drag. After about 7pm, it becomes a deserted 'not safe area'.
Club 54 was always seedy - what we call in the UK a "claggy mat" club. ie. the carpet is sticky with spilt beer etc.
It was very popular with the Private school kids as somewhere to go and listen to bands, drink, and fall over.
Definitely a poor reputation. Not entirely deserved. Hovensa workers are big spenders, but the local"kids" are not.
young couples would be desirable trade - food might bring bigger spenders.
One Hovensa dude killed another in a fight on the sidewalk outside the club, and everyone just rolled their eyes and said what do you expect from Club 54. Unjustified, but still a perception.
you would have to overcome a great deal of negative historical heresay to make it a "respectable" club, but could make money as a "hot and classy dive"
There is a lovely courtyard outback.
Company street merchants were talking about hiring a "rent a cop" privately to combat the crime and to try and persuade people to come out at night in the area.
The club is within the Jump UP area, so would make money then. nice wide sidewalk.
Hope this information is useful - but go through the books and check out the other establishments in the immediate vicinity.
It's currently a lot better than a "claggy mat" since the guys from the old Cane Bay bar took over. They have really turned it around. I think you are over-exaggerating the "bad reputation" since it has improved and has been and is still quite popular. It's a bar first and foremost and popular among locals because it is a bar. Turning it into a "The Mix" type place (which just closed down) with martini specials might not go down to well and I don't know if that would translate into more money. The niche for the classy bars seems to already be filled by genuinely classy places like Bacchus, Bombay (mostly) and Savant
It would be a good idea to come down and check out the reality of night-life here and talk to people who are in the nightlife scene. You need to get a feel for the type of niche that 54 fills already and the types of niches that may be available and determine whether you should/could change that niche and still be successful.
There are so few nightclub type businesses on STX that there is definitely room in the market to increase the business Club 54 brings in. It is extremely important that new owners have experience in the industry and don't just think it would be fun and games to run a business like this in the islands. It's a lot of hard work and you have to constantly be working on developing new ideas for ways to attract business.
There would definitely be the possibility of operating the business with a restaurant in part of the building during the day and the club & bar atmosphere at night. Everyone working downtown needs to eat lunch, after all. When live music is scheduled and advertised, the crowds are larger. More could be done to appeal to different clientele groups if you have slow nights on specific days of the week. Many locals love karaoke nights, while transplants are hot to show up when Kurt Schindler is playing, etc. One or two big party nights per month can bring in enough $$ to make the business successful. Full Moon Parties and Holiday events are always huge and a good business owner would develop additional ways to market to get that kind of crowd to come in. "Don't Stop the Carnival" is a way of life in the islands, after all.
Hi all - thanks so much for the responses. They have all helped us in our decision making. I'm not sure that Club54 is right for us. We really want to be hands on and am really interested in having something that is a "family" friendly kind of place - as I have a 3 year old.
I appreciate all of your responses....would there be any interest in a internet cafe, coffee bar, deli type of place?
Not much call for that here. There are are ready several of deli,coffee type places downtown, one of the best ones on the island (turtles) couldn't make enough to survive downtown. And at least one Internet cafe. Not alot of room for extra restaurant types if you're looking for a business downtown. If you are opening a restaurant downtown without a bar your business is going to be for breakfast and lunch, you might as well close for dinner, there are several that do it that way.
Club 54 seems like it could be a great bar/club but has always been run by people that are fairly inept the last 5 years or so. Everyone says it used to be a great place to have fun. But since I have been here it is always fairly empty and they never utilize the full bar (it is actually quite large for downtown standards). The only time its full is if they have a band, otherwise Bongos two buildings down is the bar that is always busy. I saw them (club 54 owners) trying to sell the business for 250k on ebay and had to laugh, its not worth that.
Sunny Isles is going to be opening a food court if you could get in on that that probably would be a good money maker.
Yes turtles does do well in F'sted never said they didn't but it didnt work for them in c'sted. Its hard to get any business going there with tourism so bad. So you have to rely on business there for you income (banks, realtors, etc). There are already so many choices of where you can eat lunch downtown that it would be hard for a new eatery to break in. Small places like Shennigans and Avacodo Pit and even paradise cafe seem to do well and stay busy, but they are all very small. Location is going to be your a HUGE factor in how well you do in downtown c'sted.