Welcome to the neighborhood, Marigny



Wikipedia says that Marigny is a neighborhood in New Orleans, and Charlotteans can now get a taste of that New Orleans flavor here in Charlotte.

Marigny is a new dance club in South End (owned by the same folks who own Dharma Lounge). Opened this past Saturday, it was a celebration complete with Mardi Gras beads (which you could get without lifting your shirt up) and masks.

By the way, I've yet to actually HEAR how the name of this new nightspot is pronounced. Anyone?

Before checking out the place with the boyfriend, I had heard someone call this new spot a "mini Butter," and I can kind of see where he got that from. On approaching the front door, there is a scary doorman who looks like he wields the power to veto your entry — although I haven't heard anything about a dress code here. Inside, the place is beautifully done. The walls are splashed with velvety colors like red and purple and, to evoke the spirit of New Orleans, adorned with intricate patterns.

As for the layout of the club, as soon as you enter, you're lost in a sea of dancing souls, having almost immediately stumbled onto the dance floor. The VIP tables are lined to the left, giving full view of the dancing shenanigans. The DJ booth (who was thumping house music that I find difficult to dance to) stands to the back, and the bar to the far back right. A patio for smokers and those who just enjoy the night air exits right past the DJ booth and bar.

One patron commented that the layout was a bit disorienting, with the dance floor spilling so close to the bar. As he waited to get a drink, he wasn't sure if the people around him were also waiting to be served or just dancing. He also mentioned that he'd heard the owners planning to open up an upstairs lounge area — I don't even know if that's possible, judging from the outside of the building. But that's what I heard, anyway.

If you've seen the photos from the grand opening gala, you'll likely assume that Marigny is another gay club on Charlotte's map of nightlife. And yet, you'd be wrong. While this new nightspot does host a few gay-friendly nights (Bar Curious Thursdays and Krewe Saturdays), it is not an exclusive spot for the "alternative lifestyle." In fact, tonight is the grand opening of Divino Wednesdays, Marigny's Latino Night ($3 Coronas, Margaritas and Sangria).

And although my boyfriend admitted being a tad nervous (we don't frequent places with gay men very often), and holding onto me tighter than usual to fend off any potentially interested men, he also said the place looked great and he had a good time. And that's all that matters.

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