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“This will be a trend setting spot for sure”- Doboz interview


  • We Love Budapest

25/08/2011 2.00am

We have been curious for a while what's been going on behind the doors of Klauzal Street 10, what does this new nightclub have to offer: what is beyond the walls of the Doboz. There were rumors around the city since last September that this was going to be the biggest nightclub and pub in the 7th district. The guessing game has come to an end, since this Saturday is the official opening of the Doboz.

There are such definitions floating about as: ‘Ruin pub deluxe’ or the ‘mainstream underground crowd's Mekka’. Besides the video made prior to the opening of the Doboz and an upcoming Facebook event, the organizers were consciously very secretive about the spot, to the point that we couldn't wait anymore and stopped by. Promoter Vera Vida and architect Peter Szendro shared stories about the Doboz and of its trend setting power.First off, lets make it clear what is the Doboz and what we need to know about it?

What you need to know about the Doboz that it is not a ruin pub, but then of course that depends on how you describe a ruin pub. From the outside it seems to be an ancient apartment house. When you look at the building, you don't think much of it; indeed, it doesn't look any different from those next to it. You need to go inside to experience the contrast: you'll see a courtyard, a tree and an interior that makes you go "yeah".

This spot will be the largest entertainment venue and pub in the 7th district with a capacity of a 1000 people.It was supposed to be officially open to the public in the spring but the date changed to August. There is a lot of secrecy about the opening party and the Doboz. I feel there might be a strategy behind this: the rumors could spread curiosity. Was this communication planned?

Yes, from the very beginning we made sure to use a build up communication strategy. When promoting a place it is very important to target the most sensitive audience, the ones that love to criticize and can be a bit spiteful. For example, when we opened our Facebook page, none of us posted on our own walls. We invited 10-15 opinion-makers, the kind we would like to see at the spot, and just waited for their comments. These kinds of people always bring a following. Also as you may have noticed, not once did we upload photos that would reveal too much about the place. We only published little details, parts of images and graphics. Instead of flyers we made adhesive tapes and stickers with QR codes. They had no text on them, just a logo, this way the people could associate with it. Our video was made with a specific concept, so we don’t hit the front pages with headlines like: “New pub opening in the 7th district”. We wanted to be associated with our video.

Photo: Doboz

Who is the target audience?

Hmm, this is a truly interesting question. In order to identify the target audience, it is important to note that this spot is in a dirty, cobbled street slap bang in the middle of the entertainment quarter in the 7th district. The crowd we are targeting is Budapest mainstream underground, who appreciate quality. You will not see dirty walls and cracked chairs or have to balance yourself with one finger when in the loo.
When it comes to music it will be pretty much the same as at any other underground spot. We just transfer that feel into a more high-end interior with a great sound-system and service.What can we expect when it comes to drink prices and choices? 

Basically it won’t be more expensive then any other place in the 7th district, actually the beer will be even cheaper. We are also offering a big choice of premium products: cocktails, sparkling wines etc. We also have wine on tap for the same price, so you can always enjoy a spritzer or if you fancy to go to your table with a bubbly strawberry wine we can also make that happen.How did you divide the space?

As you enter the front door you practically find yourself in a garden, with a huge tree in the middle that is mounted by Gabor Miklos Szoke’s gigantic ‘King Kong’ statue. Here you can also see the red ‘doboz’, where the dance-floor is located and a very unusual bar. We also have a grill-bar, a house party room and a salon. They all have their own function with creative design and unique atmosphere. The space upstairs (old apartments, 40-100 square meters each) will be sold to people who fit the Doboz’s image. There will be showrooms, offices, clothing stores and studios. Upstairs you will also find house party apartments available for rent in case you want to throw a party but don’t want any damage to your own furniture or simply don’t want to lose time on transportation from house party to club. Here the alcohol will be sold in the same price as at any grocery store.You can find works of Hungarian artists throughout the place. Who are they and what was their contribution?

Sculptor Gabor Miklos Szoke’s creations can be found in three different locations. Sculptures: ‘King Kong’ in the garden, the ‘Harapós kutya ‘(‘Biting Dog’) in the Doboz and the ‘Polip’ (‘Octopus’) in the grill bar. These art pieces were all born here.
Photographs and photomontages of Mark Viszlai can be seen in several locations. Eszter Laki did the wallpaper and the posters. She’s also the one responsible for the design. David Horvat created one of the wall paintings and I would also like to bring Mark Suveg’s art to your attention, he worked on photos and wallpaper

What was your concept for interior architecture of the house and how much of it came to life?

Luckily the owner gave my imagination a free hand, so 99% of what we wanted was accomplished. We had to make sure that we respect the architecture, meaning we wanted to preserve the characteristics of a ruin like building and put new clothes on it. We tried to recycle all existing materials: for example we used the boards from the attic in the grill bar, the bathrooms where made out of old doors and you will see bricks - also from the attic - in the courtyard. We made sure that you can see the history, but gave place to youthful, clean forms too. This will be a trend setting spot for sure!What about the interior design?

We got our furniture from 3-4 retro furnishers. The unique pavement and the wall fountain were ordered from Pecs. These are all exclusive pieces, not the design you are used to at a ruin-pub. Besides the chairs and tables everything is a unique design. For example in the washrooms you can see Zsolnai ceramics. Since we worked with so many different materials and where very specific, supplying the product was quite a challenge.
Did you have trouble with the construction?
Yes, we had some problems with the construction of the red box. We significantly went over our budget, which was unexpected. Also we couldn’t paint the façade the color we wanted. The even side of the street was classified as a historic Jewish quarter; therefore we had to let go of the idea of the iconic red. The fact that the place’s functions would change from time to time made our job a bit more complicated and our schedule was not moving as planned, due to all the spaces being completed in a different faze.
The tragedy in the West Balkan definitely didn’t make or lives easier. Safety regulations were changed right in the middle of the construction. I have to say, that in the end all this made the Doboz one of the most prime spots. We met all the desired conditions with five emergency exits and more than enough safety equipments.

Photo: Doboz

What can one expect from the opening night this Saturday?

Already more then 2500 people would like to attend, and lets face it, even for a place this big that’s way over the capacity limit.
Are you prepared for the worst?

Yes, we are in constant preparation for opening night. We know a lot of people are interested in the spot. One thing I can promise, this Saturday will be a huge party, which means you can also count on a line just as huge to get in. I suggest you come on time, untill check out our video.

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