Club King takes over The Docks, brings Buonanotte to Toronto
Charles Khabouth is surely a Toronto property and entertainment maverick who warrants frequent updates on his plans-about-town. Along with his company, INK, Khabouth has just announced his majority stake in now-almost-forgotten entertainment complex The Docks (including The Sound Academy), ensuring that his plans for domination of the city's nightlife scene continue unabated. Add this to the imminent re-branding of the Devil's Martini nightclub, two condo developments, and plans to keep expanding his VELD Music Festival, and you have a portrait of a man who must not sleep.
Of his plans for the Docks, which is being considered among his most ambitious projects, Khabouth says, "Part of my strategic vision for building up the social-lifestyle scene in Toronto, includes invigorating the city's nightlife by restoring pride in the rich culture of these under-used historic venues...not only do we preserve a piece of our city's rich culture, but we offer a new generation the opportunity to experience something entirely different." An impressive and exciting vision to be sure, but if he brings luxe VIP booths and bottle service to my dingy teenage hang-out, it might sour me, and I'd prefer not to dodge stretch limos on my way into the drive-in.
But wait; there's more. He'll be following up recently-opened Weslodge Saloon with Patria, a Spanish tapas spot on King West, and transforming the Storys building (currently an event space that we hung out in last weekend at the Booty Bash) into a four-level monolith that will consist of a seafood restaurant (opening in 2013), a bar/lounge (October), and two floors dedicated to private corporate events (including TIFF).
Perhaps most interesting (at least to former frequenters of The Main) is the announcement that INK will be bringing Montreal dining-darling Buonanotte to replace Ame in November. Khabouth envisions a very similar set-up to the St. Laurent original, with "impeccable service, VIP clientele, a party atmosphere," and Italian cuisine from Buonanotte Montreal's own chef, Sandro Carpene.
Phew. Just writing that made me sleepy.