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Reign Nightclub Plans to Open Friday

Manager says liquor license is valid.

If you walk along Peachtree Street, you'll notice the brown paper has been stripped from the windows of the white building at the corner of 11th Street in Midtown.

If you peek through the window, you'll see white studded chairs with gold crowns, animal print rugs, tall lamps and tan booths.

That's because a nightclub called Reign will have a soft opening Friday night, according to manager Gebriel Gidewon of the Gidewon Group. Guests will arrive between 9 and 10 p.m., he said. 

The building -- which has two addresses, 1021 Peachtree Street and 1029 Peachtree Street -- actually houses two spaces: Reign nightclub (formerly SPI Club) and Vanquish lounge. Vanquish had a soft opening last Saturday, Gidewon said. Between 50 and 75 people showed up, he said. 

Gidewon said there is no official opening date for either space. "We haven't decided what we will do next week," he said. Soft openings are opportunities for business owners to test their systems, Gidewon said.

Reign opens amid allegations that club's liquor license has expired. In April, the Daniel Corporation (which operates the adjacent 12th & Midtown development) had to Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed's office that argued the club can't open because its liquor license has expired.

But Gidewon said Reign will serve alcohol Friday night. "It's a nightclub," he said. 

He said the club has approval from the state and city to serve alcohol. 

"We received [alcohol] deliveries last Friday through the state," Gidewon said. "The state has to approve everything."

In response to the allegation that the club's alcohol license , Gidewon said the club had opened before that date so the license is valid. 

"We had done a couple of events before then," he said. When asked the date the club first opened, Gidewon said he couldn't remember. 

The Mayor's Office said in April that it would investigate whether the liquor license is valid. The office has not responded to Patch's requests for an update on the issue since then.

The Gidewon Group operates other large nightclubs including Compound in West Midtown. The group also ran the former Vision Nightclub on Crescent Avenue. Some residents complained that Vision generated traffic and noise, according to reports on the Midtown Ponce Security Alliance website

Midtown resident Michael Floyd remembers what it was like when Vision was in business. He said there were lines of cars and people yelling and screaming. 

"It was really confrontational," Floyd said Wednesday night. 

"I have no problem with a club. But they [the Gidewons] have a bad track history ... It looks like they aren't good neighbors and business owners in Midtown."

But Gidewon said he thinks the club will be a great addition to the neighborhood. Reign is a smaller, more intimate space than Vision was, he said. 

"It's a different day," Gidewon said. "That venue [Vision] was good for what it was six years ago."

At a Wednesday night meeting with the Midtown Ponce Security Alliance, new Zone 5 Commander Maj. Chris Leighty assured people that police would keep a close eye on the club.

"We'll monitor it closely," Leighty said. "We are not going to let it get out of control."

MidtownJerry May 26, 2011 at 03:54 PM
Would it be possible for the residents of midtown to get a class action lawsuit against the mayor and the city of Atlanta for allowing this club to go through with all of the laws that have been broken along the way?
Midtown Resident May 26, 2011 at 04:56 PM
I would certainly support exploring such a suit or other legal means to prevent this club from operating. A mega nightclub such as this is simply incompatible with high density residential housing several yards away.
T.A. May 26, 2011 at 05:42 PM
When people argue about this club opening they tend to forget there are a ton of bars and clubs a block away on Crescent Ave that don't cause too much trouble. Oh no, we can't handle a large club in this area! Oh yeah, what about Opera?
KamdenATL May 28, 2011 at 05:21 PM
So how was the opening? It looked like plastic was still on the furniture & paper was still over the windows when we drove by this morning on our way to the Peachtree Road Farmer's Market...
native May 31, 2011 at 03:32 PM
This GROWTH shouldn't make you feel uncomfortable. These first class venues will be sought after by convention business and tourist.
Chris H May 31, 2011 at 04:28 PM
This club will cater to the ghetto rapper crowd. This is not first class nor will it at all cater to the vast majority of people that are in town for conventions.
Johnny Simmons June 01, 2011 at 10:53 PM
Johnny Simmons This is not the type of club Midtown needs. I am trying to envision the crowds that will frequent...Opera-ish or Velvet Room-ish is what I am predicting. There are plenty of young people IN Midtown who like to go out, and I being one will speak for those who I know and say we prefer a little bit more laid back. Either open an upscale lounge with chill Bollywood music and a STRICT door policy, or open a gay bar, or open a cheap themed bar like Front Page News. Those are the places Midtown residents want, not some club that claims to be upscale and claims to be premiere. Not a fan.
Afeezy June 13, 2011 at 04:04 PM
Atlanta is 65% black. How dare they cater to the majority! Get real people, these conventions are here because they want exactly what the Gidewon Group offers.

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