News

Zouk has to fit into its location

How much of a club's brand is tied to its location?

And will moving a club affect its branding, and ultimately, its business?

Dr Chua Ai Lin, president of Singapore Heritage Society, told The New Paper: "There is no connection between Zouk as a club and its physical location. The location or type of building is not directly connected to how it does its business.

"If there are plans to maintain the area for commercial elements, then Zouk will fit in, but if the plans are for residential purposes, then Zouk will stand out."

Mr Baey Yam Keng, chairman of GPC for Culture, Community and Youth and MP for Tampines GRC, added: "We need to understand whether the focus is on Zouk as a brand or is it just the building. After all, it is also a commercial enterprise - there could be other locations it could move to.

"I think the Government does have certain guidelines on keeping certain buildings for certain reasons. The land Zouk is on may be used for different reasons now.

"What's more important to me would be keeping Zouk and what it stands for.

"It is more important that as a brand, it can morph and adapt with a new location. That would be the greater test and show how it is resilient and evergreen."

BE CONSIDERATE

For Mr Dennis Foo, 61, chief executive of nightlife group St James Holdings, considerations must be given to the residents living around Zouk, which is situated in the middle of a residential area - especially with the increased complaints about litter and noise.

He said: "Many iconic landmarks had to make way for progress and redevelopment in the past, and Zouk should not be an exception.

"Also, most great concepts can be transported.

"It's a great opportunity to start in an even more suitable location without the authorities having to deal with residents' complaints."

Ms Jazmin Kelly Six, 32, editor of lifestyle and nightlife magazine Juice Singapore, also doesn't think a new location will affect Zouk commercially or its standards as people will still patronise it for its reputation, resident DJs and curation of music acts.

"Emotionally, it will be different, especially for those who grew up with the club. It'll be like burying a huge part of your youth and never seeing it again," she said. 

Nightlife writer Zul Andra, 33, added: "It's going to be sad, but given the factors involved, it's tough for the authorities to change their mind. If every empire must fall, may she fall gracefully. Zouk will always live on in spirit."