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[Jan. 23rd, 2005|11:28 pm]
"A Young Taipei Finds Its Groove" - an interesting article in the New York Times.
In Taipei, there is a greater expectation of clubs, bars and lounges that look as trendy as those in New York or London. "The night life in the city has moved from an immature adolescence to now, where it's just catching up a bit to everybody else," said Mr. Lintott, who designed Opium Den, one of the first trendy lounges in Taipei, in 1996. He has watched the nightclubs become increasingly outlandish with each project.

His latest club, Mint, 45 Shifu Road, Section 4, (886-2) 8101-8662, is in the lower level of the world's tallest building, Taipei 101 (101 stories, and 1,667 feet, tall). Although the silvery structure is set for occupation this spring, the mall on the ground floor has been in operation for nearly a year.

Mint, whose name refers to its monetary connotation, includes a V.I.P. room, a modular mahogany wall full of wines, floating L.E.D. displays behind the bar, a translucent, glowing dance floor and custom-designed pieces of acrylic furniture. On a Friday night last fall, throngs of clubgoers occupied the dance floor. The dressy crowd was mostly Asian, but there were a good number of Americans and Europeans in their 20's scattered about.

Entry to the clubs, which can cost as much as $30, can be competitive. To get in, people need the proper connections and dress, and the social scene seems to lean heavily toward English-speaking Chinese, local celebrities and businessmen.