Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Charlotte has a lot of party promoters. I've seen the number of individuals and groups who throw parties skyrocket during the nearly five years I've lived in Charlotte. During that time, the city's nightlife scene has come a long way (though some feel it still has a long way to go), and as the people who have helped shape the scene have made their impact, they've also spawned many copycats.

Largely, I blame the Internet. It doesn't take much for someone to launch a website, create a Facebook page, jack an email list, and suddenly they're promoting the "hottest party around." It had actually gotten to a point where I had grown tired of promoters taking the easy way out--renting out upscale restaurants like Blue, Ruth's Chris, LaVecchia’s, and even P.F. Chang's and throwing parties. I'm not knocking those, because some of the best parties I've gone to in Charlotte have been at those fine establishments. But if everyone is doing it, it becomes monotonous (as Eddie Murphy's character said in Vampire In Brooklyn, "If every day is a sunny day, well, then, what's a sunny day?"). Charlotte's party promoters needed to step up their game. Some of them have begun to.

First off, in case you didn't know, whenever there's a holiday on Monday (Memorial Day, Labor Day, MLK Day, etc.) there are usually several parties happening at nightclubs and venues in Charlotte on Sunday, which don't typically happen on that night of the week. (It goes back to Charlotte's culture as a banktown, where many people get those holidays off work so young professionals, in particular, want to party it up.)

Sunday night, my homeboys and I attended a party thrown by Inner Circle Events. As one of Charlotte's most popular events groups (they've been putting on events since 2004), Inner Circle rented a penthouse above Emerson Joseph on South Tryon Street in the heart of Uptown. The penthouse is actually for sale ($4 mil and it's yours), but on this night it was livelier than any nightclub.

Photos of 221 South Tryon Penthouse, courtesy of The McDevitt Agency.

The elevator opens to the penthouse, and the main level is occupied by a large open room that flows seamlessly from the kitchen to the dining room to the family room to wherever. The furniture had been rearranged to serve as VIP areas, which were roped off. The kitchen, with its large center island, served as the main bar (there was a second bar in a corner on the opposite side of the room). I think my favorite spot was on the rooftop terrace. There was a third bar there, and it felt good to be partying under the stars. DJ Bobby Drake was playing the music here, while DJ Shogun was spinning on the main level (if there was a battle of the DJs that night, I give it to Shogun, but both guys were good).

Just as impressive as the layout of this place were the people. I'm guessing there were at least 300 people here, and many of them were beautiful and well dressed (great women-to-men ratio). This was definitely a place to see and be seen.

Another group that is challenging the status quo in Charlotte's nightlife scene is MAZ Entertainment. MAZ solidified their standing with me when they threw two over-the-top parties on back-to-back nights during CIAA Week in February. MAZ rented out Founder's Hall, filled it with thousands of people, and made it the place to be among a sea of parties going on that week. While they've had a few events since then, including a day party at Fiji and Kashmir on Saturday, the group is planning something big for June 26.

And they're calling it what it is: MAZ Mansion Party. They're renting out a 13,000-square-foot, three-level mansion complete with a pool, indoor waterfall, cabanas, game room, and more. The group has even launched a website just for the event: www.mazmansion.com. You can expect a great time at this event because MAZ has shown that they're capable of pulling off something of this magnitude.

Also of note, Nxlevel Charlotte, held a party at Raintree Country Club on Saturday, once again thinking outside the box. Nxlevel is known for putting together cool videos to promote their events (it's like watching a music video), and they've developed a strong following.

With these promoters raising the bar, I'm expecting others to follow. And all that means is that we, the consumers of Charlotte nightlife, will benefit from it.

I also want to shout out the other Charlotte promoters that put on great events and parties throughout the year: Six Figure Entertainment (they're having their annual Cream and Butter Affair August 21 at Ballantyne Village Theatre), Digital Divas, The Sol Kitchen, The A List, and Talk of the Town. These are the same groups whose events you often see me posting on this blog. Because when it comes to events, I've said that I'm only going to recommend the ones that I would attend, that are worth your time and money, and/or are what Grown People would do.


  1. Jarvis....Six Figure Entertainment appreciates the love and the mentions. Keep doing your thing my brother. Kirk Brown CEO/Six Figure Entertainment.com

  2. Great article. Reads very well. Looking forward to seeing what Nxlevel Charlotte, Inner Circle, and MAZ do NEXT.

  3. One of the most luxurious night life accented mansions that I have seen. It's ambiance and furniture are all Hollywood material.

    new homes


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