Red Hook’s “Paris Burlesque Club” Will Not Be a Strip Club, Ok?

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01/26/2011 12:03 PM |

Not a stripper.

  • Not a stripper.

“This is as reasonable as an establishment like this can be” is not exactly a ringing endorsement, but that’s the reason Community Board 6 member (and Brazen Head owner) Lou Sones gave for his vote to recommend a liquor license to one Dave Ruggiero, who plans to open a place called The Paris Burlesque Club in Red Hook, the Brooklyn Paper reports. The burlesque club had previously attracted controversy: residents didn’t want a lot of clubgoers leaving the large space late at night, Ruggiero “declined” to tell a reporter about his previous club experience and neglected to reach out to the city burlesque community, leading residents to speculate that The Paris Burlesque Club would in fact become a place in Red Hook where the naked ladies dance.

So: is Red Hook getting a strip club?

CB6’s Public Safety Committee was a little bit worried, but Ruggiero told them, “There aren’t going to be stripper poles or runways.” He added that his dancers would only strip down to bikini bottoms (so… topless-only? It’s unclear, at least to me, what “no nudity” means).

Not a stripper either.

  • Not a stripper either.

And the club will also feature classic burlesque entertainments: the BP lists “live jazz, comedians, mimes and jugglers.” He’ll also hire professional security “not just some big goon,” to keep out anyone under 25, and other undesirables.

The Paris Burlesque Club will operate at 18 Commerce Street, a few blocks off the nice yuppie bars on Van Brunt, north of the ball fields, and close to the BQE; it was previously the location of The Hook and other troubled clubs. It’s a pretty desolate area, if I recall: an easy place to park your car—as most of the places Community Boards permit strip clubs to operate are—and a great place to get mugged as you walk back to the car you’re probably not in shape to drive home anyway.