The resilience of Nightclubs in a “post-apocalyptic” World

2020 was indeed an abomination. The world almost came to a standstill as COVID went on an apocalyptic rampage. The economy shut down and because of social distancing regulations, the nightlife pretty much shut down in all major cities. Melbourne is the second biggest city in Australia and it is considered to be the entertainment hub of the state of Victoria. Every year, Melbournian’s look forward to a spectacular theater of fireworks along the Yarra River and party on until the sun comes up. Not so in 2020. Whilst we were looking forward to this year finally ending, this would have been the first time the year would be ending without fanfare.

The CBD, where most of the nightclubs in Melbourne are located, was closed off and the public warned not to try and get into the city. Even so, venues were taking advantage of the lifting of the shutdown on live entertainment venues on the 7th December 2020 and opened their doors to the public. Judging by the lines that were forming outside some popular nightclubs in Melbourne, it was clear that people really needed desperately seeking a place to let their hair down and unwind with music, food and some dancing. With restrictions of 50 people in entertainment venues, entrance fees were steep and the drinks more expensive than usual but anything beats those ridiculous Zoom parties everyone had committed themselves to.

The entertainment scene suffered a lot this year but the government tried to get some action going in the Melbourne city but it was mostly for foodies. Eateries, bars and restaurants spilled out to the laneways as testament of how badly people wanted some respite from being cocooned in their homes.

A lot of nightclubs that opened under post lockdown regulations created packages and some popular events were booked out solid. Especially those night clubs located along the river. There was a lot of Hype around the H2oh event that has been taking place for years and if there was any club hopping to be had, everyone with their ear to the ground knows that this would be an event not to be missed. This night club Melbourne is located on the Southbank Promenade of the Leftbank of the Yarra. The night started very early. First it was cocktails overlooking the breathtaking views of the river, and the sunset over Melbourne’s skyline was a sight to behold. The party kicked off as early as 7:30pm and the party went all the way past 2:30am.

A couple of bars and night clubs opened earlier but they could only offer sit down dinners and only bar service only. Music still have been played but no dancing was allowed. This was weird and confusing because it goes against everything that makes a night clubbing experience is all about. A night club like New Guernica, in Little Collins Street, could only host 96 people at a time, when regulations were first relaxed but a lot of clubs and bars were just glad that they could operate, even if they only catered to 20 customers at a time. Now New Guernica can host up to 180 people at a time. This is a big club whose focus is dancing. It still feels empty when it’s at social distancing regulation capacity yet people still came to celebrate the end of a horrible year and to declare new years resolutions we probably won’t keep.