There's clubbing, and then there's mega-clubbing. Chalk up the difference to how disoriented you feel upon entering the room. Nightclubs blow big bucks to stay up-to-date on the latest advances in intelligent lighting and sound equipment, but the mark of a true visionary is thinking outside the box. Built in the gutted-out frame of an old church, Vision's gothic-industrial interior owes a debt of gratitude to the weighty architecture of its building. Split into three rooms and nine levels, the design achieves a stealthy rat-in-a-maze effect. Spiral staircases, narrow passageways and warehouse balconies abound, assuring that all thoughts of the outside world dissipate upon entry into what URB magazine has ranked the #1 mega club in Chicago.
The usual suspects in ambient technology are well-represented--lighting fixtures fill the space with swirl and flash, lasers cut through with a disco-vibe and special effects make cameos throughout the night. Any club-goer expects this type of visual stimulation, but Vision takes it a step further by frosting its architecture with torches and waterfalls. From techno to trance, house to hip-hop, the rotating schedule of world-class DJs has a little something to help everyone get their freak on.
When the dance floor gets too packed--as it often does--scout out a booth on the second or third floor. You can curtain off your perch for privacy, an option that many a scenester takes advantage of, getting up only to visit one of the satellite bars that freckle these floors. The basement-level VIP room, aptly named "The Lair," is a swanky outpost for the cooler-than-thou crowd. Mink swings, leopard print furniture and a curtained-off bed make for a much-coveted but difficult-to-breach sanctuary for the 24-hour party-people sect.
Centerstage Reviewer: K. Tighe