Provocateur

As the first American nightlife brand to enter the UAE market, Provocateur at the Four Seasons Resort Dubai, is modelled as a unique version of its New York counterpart. The club pitches itself as the first luxury electronic music venue in the city. Playing host to a roster of international artists in recent weeks such as Grammy award-winning artist Felix da Housecat and with Russian EDM producer Arty on the bill for February, it’s clear that the club is focusing on featuring authentic electronic artists. The venue has an ethereal design that blends the timeless features of the New York Provocateur. Seats and booths are decorated with floral emblems in a patchwork style, with large columns and a stage in the centre of the club. The design exudes glamour and sophistication but it feels a little mismatched for the style of music playing. Perhaps a more minimalist look would have married better. Most of the space is dedicated to VIP tables and bottle service, with booths and tables dotted along both sides of the rooms and revellers able to jump on stage to dance in the centre at any point. When the club starts to fill up, the walkways in between tables and the DJ booth and bar can become quite crowded. While it does create an intimate vibe suited to EDM music — picture crowds throwing their hands into the air in unison when the beat drops — it can become quite claustrophobic. Due to the low ceilings, the venue can also get quite warm and smoky, though this is nothing out of the ordinary for clubs and bars in Dubai. But without a terrace or balcony area, there’s no real open space for fresh air. For those who aren’t sitting at one of the VIP tables there is ample room to stand at the back of the club next to the bar, however, they will miss out on most of the action and commentary coming from the DJ box for true music fans. The club also injects an element of silly fun, with a large bathtub and gigantic teddy bear sitting proudly on the stage. Guests are able to pose with these throughout the night, which no doubt makes for interesting Tweets and Instagram pictures — a clever marketing ploy on the club’s part. Overall, the club is tastefully designed, even if the theme is somewhat confused. With luxury and electronic music at the forefront, time will tell if the American brand can live up to its New York reputation.

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