Don't Miss the Door.
Not too excited by the $10 cover on a Saturday, I was won over by a great DJ who moved the crowd really well, and a fun live jazz band featuring a flute. Who doesn’t love a rocking out flautist backlit by a Connecticut Avenue? This converted townhouse-mansion’s intensely-incensed stairwells lead to upper levels and a patio, each playing music with a different vibe. The crowd level was just right, with space to dance and move around, given the roominess and lack of overpopulation that happens in places like these late at night. When you get tired, try out the crushed velvet banquettes along the walls that match maroon ceilings, while interspersed Exit signs provided equally red mood lighting. Period furniture pieces and an overabundance of chandeliers might not clash as much with the house music playing upstairs after a couple drinks. Before you move on, be sure to check yourself out on a gilded mirror in the bathroom.
As for happy hour, the vibe is much more relaxed, but they still refused to let my friend in wearing shorts. Rules are rules. Impressively, by the time I left at 10:30pm, the place was packed, even though the pita and hummus bar was long gone.
Citysearch Editorial Review. This candlelit Dupont Circle lounge--on the top three floors of an old mansion--has been serving cocktails to the well-dressed 18th Street crowd since 1995. Decorated in velvet Victorian couches in plum, brown and red, the lounge features the Bossa beats and international rhythms central to the label that made its DJ owners Eric Hilton and Farid Ali famous. They were producing music events around town before opening the lounge, and shortly thereafter Hilton met Rob Garza--another DJ--and formed the Thievery Corporation and Eighteenth Street Lounge Music label. The lounge survives to this day without advertising or even a sign on the door.
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