Facebook can clue you in to a lot of things. You can see who’s in a new relationship. You can get visual evidence of someone making a fool of themselves the previous night. And let’s not forget the all too familiar “I just need to be by myself” status update. And sometimes, you can get actual useful advice. This was the case when facebook friend and sorority sister, Pamela Estwick, hipped me to Shrine nightclub. Now I was no stranger to Shrine. I’d been there multiple times sandwiched into the poorly ventilated “hip-hop” section of the club, but that was mostly Fridays and Saturdays. Those days of course dubbed as “young people” days because majority 21-25 year-olds visit during those days. But the grown and sexy crowd need not break a sweat. They know the score, that Sundays…belong to the “house.
2109 South Wabash Ave
Chicago, IL 60616
Shrine is an appropriate name for the club seeing that its walls stand practically a mecca to all things urban. From the decor to the beats to the crowd this nightclub gives off a “soulful” glow of ambiance welcoming you in. The club is actually two spaces converging into one. Either side often holding two differing styles of music for club goers to enjoy. A bar on either side as well as two lounging areas each, Shrine muses its guests to stay awhile. And this blogger is not too bashful to admit that the restrooms were first-rate, practically upscale. And ladies, we all have been on the bad end of a dreadful club bathroom experience. Signage saying “Ladies Room” when it’s really anything but. But once again, I digress.
When I entered the club I was a little nerved being that I had never ventured into such an establishment on my own before. I was excited once I walked in and saw Pam sitting in the lounging area seemingly unfazed as she vibed to the music while glancing at her phone. We chatted and she gave me some further dish on the customs of the harmonious conservatory. Pam has paid patronage to Shrine House Sundays for a couple of years now. She insights that the best time to come is around 11pm and this was rightfully so as I noticed we seemed to come right before the crowd came to a onrush onto the moderate dance floor. From 9pm to about 11:30 there is a Dee-jay who spins some intriguing melodies. We vibe out to the melody and Pam shares with me that she loves hearing him every week. “I love this DJ and I really get to moving when Terry Hunter gets on the turntables,” she divulges. And I am instantly intrigued. While mulling our last few moments over in the lounge before we pay visit to the opposing side of the club to see how the other half parties, I am gobsmacked by what can only be legs…a pinkly wrapped vessel of legs. She is nice enough to let me snap some pictures of her and I apologize for them in advice seeing as they do her no justice. It is entirely my fault seeing as I let the batteries in my camera die leaving me my camera phone which is only useful for grainy night vision pics. Fellas, if this isn’t your enticement to come then I don’t know what else to wager with.
We walk around the club within a club format and see that there is a reggae side for the Rastafarian in all of us. I swayed my hips and dutty-wined for a few hot seconds before we noticed that there was a little outdoor clubhouse for partiers to rest and have a quick smoke break.
As Pam and I were resting and gearing up for some two stepping back on the “House” side I spoke to a group of girls that drew me in. Especially, Breezy. You heard right, Breezy and her personality was as such. To be honest with you I have never seen a lady pull of a clean shaven head such as she. She equally impressed me seemingly winning me over by asking me if I wanted to “chill” with them later. She explained she was a concierge and the invite seemed so tantalizing but I told her I was on the job. (The things I sacrifice for you people!)
Once the “House” side was in full swing it was on! The hypnotic beats mixed with the varying purple, blue, and green strobe lights were almost similar to trance music. I got a couple of dances in with some nice overzealous partners but all and all I enjoyed myself and the thrill of being out late on a Sunday night burned deep within me as I made my way to the car.
So how does The Shrine measure up?
Pros: The Shrine is a seemingly hodgepodge of people, a proverbial tossed salad if you will. (Am the only who thinks that sounded a bit dirty?) Shrine holds my personal meaning of the word “urban” being that they have visitors of different races all coming together under one roof representing a shared ethnic vibe.
Even if you have been to Shrine often there’s something new for you to see. During those peak days regular customers can’t sit in the lounges at least without purchasing some ungodly priced bottle of alcohol. Sundays all areas of the club are open to everyone.
Did I forget to mentioned its Free…. yep, Shrine is free .99 on most Sundays begging bored singles with Monday off and nothing to do to come out and kick it and maybe sample a nice drink. There are special events though that sometimes charge but the price is never over $5.
Cons: The music was way too loud. I had to leave a bit earlier than I intended because my ears couldn’t take it any longer…but then again in their defense, I may just have girly ears.
If you are not a lover of House music then obviously this won’t be for you. Also under 25 crowd…this is not the usual bump and grind, juking, bang-bang-bang music you are accustomed to. This is a classy place so if you feel you need constant stimulation this might not be the night for you.
If you enter a dancing agreement…then you are practically locked in. Now it might have been just my amazing outfit or my dancing moves but
I found once a guy started dancing with me I had to almost beat him off with a club. And being that House music beats go on and on sometimes with no end or transition I found myself moving a lot longer than I usually like to.
Shrine House Sundays gets my approval but definitely for the over 30 crowd but I believe I will find myself back there soon on another lonely Sunday night.
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***My special thanks once again to my friend Pamela Estwick for being my guide into the club. This piece would not have been written without you.