Archive for April, 2015

The District goes after older crowd

By
April 17th, 2015



PHOTOS BY JOAH BULEY / SPECIAL TO THE STAR-ADVERTISER The District is now open on Kapiolani Boulevard, with special events planned this weekend and a soft opening scheduled for next week.

PHOTOS BY JOAH BULEY / SPECIAL TO THE STAR-ADVERTISER

The District is now open on Kapiolani Boulevard, with special events planned this weekend and a soft opening scheduled for next week.

A familiar nightspot is back on the scene this weekend as The District makes its debut in the Kapiolani Boulevard space previously known as Bar Seven and Venus Nightclub.

Fans of current Honolulu hotspots M Nightclub at Waterfront Plaza and Addiction Nightclub at the Modern Honolulu will be happy to discover another late night weekend destination, starting tonight with a special appearance by Los Angeles/Las Vegas-based production duo Club Killers and followed by the official Common Kings album release afterparty on Saturday (once the band is done headlining upstairs at The Republik).

Following successful stints at Ward Centre with Vice Nightclub and Tsunami’s on South King Street, the ownership group also behind nearby Ginza Nightclub hopes the undisclosed amount of money they spent upgrading the interior, lighting and sound system will breathe new life into the space and introduce it to a new generation of clubgoers.

“We just kind of cleaned it up,” said The District co-owner Bryan Yoshida. “We took everything back to white and brighter colors (to make it) a cool, chill place. This could be a lounge or a club.

“We want to have everyone enjoy and have fun, you know?”

Yoshida, along with partners Dave Ung, Sean Saiki and Alex Kamm, didn’t provide much more information about their plans for the club during a sneak preview event Thursday, referring most questions to a publicist. According to a release issued earlier this week, The District will “up the ante” and showcase “the freshest sounds from a rotating roster of premium residents and visiting DJs” while also taking bottle service “to new heights” with four different “levels” available to customers.

The biggest change, however, is a new age-based admission policy. Gone are the 18-and-over nights, and those 21 and 22 years old will have to wait a bit longer before they can get a glimpse of the new club. The District will be open only to those 23-and-over when the doors officially open on April 24.

If this weekend’s parties are considered preview events, next weekend can be considered the club’s soft opening. According to Kamm, The District will celebrate its official grand opening over the long Memorial Day weekend in May.

Here are a few more pictures from Thursday:

The front entrance is essentially unchanged, except for the new signage above the hostess stand.

The front entrance is essentially unchanged, except for new signage above the hostess stand.

Those old enough to remember a nightclub called Blue Tropix will be familiar with the drama that club caused by housing pet monkeys in a glass-walled cage behind the bar. The District doesn't have that problem, since it was local go-go dancer Lauren Lala behind the glass just beyond the club's front entrance.

Those old enough to remember a nightclub called Blue Tropix will be familiar with the drama that club caused by housing pet monkeys in a glass-walled cage behind the bar. The District doesn't have that problem, since it was local go-go dancer Lauren Lala behind the glass just beyond the club's front entrance.

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Once inside, be sure to check out the bar treatments designed for The District by local creative Chris Kono.

Once inside, be sure to check out the bar treatments designed for The District by local creative Chris Kono.

One wall is lined with audio speakers.

One wall is lined with audio speakers.

Another pays tribute to the Beastie Boys.

Another pays tribute to the Beastie Boys.

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Sean Saiki, Chris Kono, Bryan Yoshida, Dave Ung and Alex Kamm pose for a photo during Thursday's preview.

Sean Saiki, Chris Kono, Bryan Yoshida, Dave Ung and Alex Kamm pose for a photo during Thursday's preview.

You can't offer bottle service in a nightclub without beautiful servers to pour guests drinks — and The District is no exception.

You can't offer bottle service in a nightclub without beautiful servers to pour guests drinks — and The District is no exception.

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District 129

District 131

The District is located at 1349 Kapiolani Boulevard and will be open from 10 p.m. to 3 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Call (808) 949-1349 or visit www.thedistrictnightclub.com and follow The District on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for the latest updates.

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Jason Genegabus is Entertainment Editor/Online at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser and has covered the local nightlife, music, bar and entertainment scenes since 2001. Contact him via email at jason@staradvertiser.com and follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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Gray takes on cancer again

By
April 1st, 2015



STAR-ADVERTISER / 2015Nextdoor owner Daniel Gray, right, with local hip-hop promoter and radio DJ Justin "DJ Bone" Kaneshiro.

STAR-ADVERTISER / 2015

Nextdoor owner Daniel Gray, right, with local hip-hop promoter and radio DJ Justin "DJ Bone" Kaneshiro.

It's no April Fool's Day joke — veteran Honolulu nightclub promoter Daniel Gray is fighting for his life once again.

A little more than a year ago, the Kauai native was diagnosed with a cancerous growth in his sinus cavity. Following months of treatment and recovery, doctors were hopeful they had removed the tumor. As 2014 came to an end, many of his friends and family thought Gray had won his war against cancer.

Turns out, it was just the first battle. Following a diagnosis on March 18, he posted a Facebook update on March 23 disclosing that a new mass had appeared near his brain, robbing him of the ability to "smell the ocean in the air I breathe" and taste “the myriad wonderful things the sea provides for my sustenance.”

What hurt the most, he wrote, was his inability to get in the ocean and surf.

As words of encouragement and support flooded his Facebook page, Gray followed up with another heart-wrenching post on Friday.

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These past few days have been an absolute whirlwind. It continues to blow my mind that less that just over a week ago,...

Posted by Daniel Gray on Saturday, March 28, 2015

To help Gray accumulate the funds to pay for his upcoming medical treatment, friends have stepped up once again to host Rage for Daniel Part 2 at Nextdoor on Wednesday. An art show will take place from 6 to 8 p.m., followed by live band performances and music by DJs Jimmy Taco, Shift, Billy G and SuperCW. All donations collected at the door will go to Gray's doctor bills.

Can't make it to Chinatown on Wednesday? Gray also set up an online fundraising campaign to make it more convenient for friends to support.

If there's anything positive about Gray's current condition, it's that his medical team hasn't given up hope just yet.

“The team of specialists is going to try a new technique of low-dose radiation combined with constant chemotherapy in an attempt to shrink the cancer down to a size where it isn't causing symptoms and more importantly, save my life,” Gray said. “Thank you for your support, love, and prayers.”

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Jason Genegabus is Entertainment Editor/Online at the Honolulu Star-Advertiser and has covered the local nightlife, music, bar and entertainment scenes since 2001. Contact him via email at jason@staradvertiser.com and follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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