Want to party like an international jetsetter? These are the people you need to talk to
Time Out Bahrain staff
For anyone who counts themselves as a class act when it comes to partying and who’s been out to a night spot, looked around and wondered how some people were allowed in or why certain individuals bothered coming, Bahrain’s new private club The Select Few (TSF) might just be the answer. Targetting ‘cultured, educated, trend-savvy citizens of the world who stand out yet fit in,’ this group aims to make partying with sleazebags, fight-starters and party-poopers a thing of the past for a ‘select few’ who join up.
TSF made waves of curious enthusiasm by kicking off with several events that were off the Bahrain nightlife charts, most notably the glamorous Nikki Beach parties on the Ritz Carlton Island (a franchise that added Manama to a list of glitzy party-towns like Miami, St Tropez and Marbella). We attended the first of these, which was an uncontested hit thanks to a relaxed, cool vibe and the novelty of partying on the beach to DJs, in-between volleyball games, a fashion show and massages.
But was this a one-off or can the group keep pulling this kind of thing out of the bag? Is the annual membership fee worth it when we could just hang out with cool people at Bushido for the price of a couple of drinks? And who are these people who feel qualified to decide whether we’re prime party people or not? We went in search of some answers and discovered three individuals who’ve all spent time doing London’s party circuit, and wanted to bring Bahrain up to speed.
‘We saw a great niche to be filled,’ says Nadeem Ansari, founding partner of TSF’s holding company Ode Events, along with Mishal Karim and college friend Robin Doble. ‘We heard the same complaints over and over again – there was nowhere to go in Bahrain and parties were rarely done properly. So we decided to do something about it.’
They decided the best way to offer nightlife of a premium standard was to create a members’ club with certain selection criteria similar to several clubs back in the UK. ‘At first people thought we were insane,’ Nadeem adds, ‘but the enthusiastic response proves that the market exists for providing the right kind of event to the right kind of people.’
Isn’t it kind of elitist, we ask? ‘No,’ says Nadeem. ‘We’re creating a group for like-minded people and providing them with an environment in which they feel comfortable. It’s not about money or social standing; it’s about who you are and what you like, having the right attitude.’ We wonder if we have the right attitude, so we log onto the website and check out the application form, which includes a list of credit-card-application-style questions: age, employment, level of education…
So unless one’s attitude is defined by being a banker, say, or having a degree in microphysics (or not), then it does seem to depend on your social standing. There’s also a request for a photograph ‘for the membership card’, which we suspect might play its role in the selection process since there was a high quota of beautiful people at the party we were at.
We’re told that the application procedure is currently being worked on and will be updated on the new TSF website to be completed by mid June. It’s a new business, they point out, and things are developing all the time. Mishal adds that, while they can’t guarantee that you’ll have a good time or like everyone there, they can assure members that every effort is made to ensure the kind of high-quality vibe they’ve enjoyed at some of their best party spots around the world.
One way they’re doing this is by transporting nightspots lock stock and smoking barrel to Bahrain. For example, in June, they are planning to bring in London’s exclusive members-only nightclub Jalouse, with its resident DJ, hostess and dancers, and will transform the Ritz’s Al Noor ballroom into an exact replica of the club’s home base.
Whether it’s elitist or not, with many nightspots closing down lately and options for going out becoming more and more limited, we can only welcome a group that wants to give us more options. Let’s just hope we qualify as one of the select few.
Applying for membership
There are two membership types: Gold and Silver. Gold membership, which costs BD100, allows you entry into three TSF events and is valid for six months. Silver membership is BD50 per year and gets you into the first party for free; after that you pay for your entry, but at a reduced rate. The key difference is Gold members have the option of bringing a guest, will always have a table ready and can skip to the front of the queue. Jalouse is scheduled to take place on June 11. For more information about The Select Few and the upcoming events planned, or to apply for membership, visit www.theselectfew.com or call 17 310 407.
Jeez..Cheese Attack..These guys should consider audio-visual entertainment if they wanna bring about a change in Bahrain. Do something new and Different
Craig Jun 25, 2009 02:12 pm
These "so" called Elite people are living on wanabe land. It makes me laugh when i read anything they wish to be publicised about them and when recently i saw a hummer with their website advertise (ha-ha) still chuckling at these superstar wanabes!
Keep the humour up boys, erm i mean select super cool people.
unimpressed Jun 25, 2009 12:31 pm
These guys need to take a step back and just appreciate the absolute laughability of this whole operation. The Select Few??? haha. I mean come on. This is Bahrain, and as much as they may wish it so, the place does not exactly offer what one might call an upper echelon of nightlife or social scene. I can agree that most parties here are quite bad, but just by charging some absurd fee to hang out together, you are going to get nothing but the same bunch. There is simply not enough going on here and not enough people to cultivate a truly quality nightlife or social scene. Bringing N.B. or anyother party to the shores of Bahrain will do nothing but give the same people a new place.
I take my hats off to these guys because they're going to rake in the dough for a little while and laugh themselves silly! Bahrain, let's get real, no?
anonymous Jun 02, 2009 04:34 pm
loving this article. This is what Bahrain needs more of in the press: the truth! Whether they paid or not. Totally agree with this piece. This concept that makes no sense to me, nore my friends, at all. 'Select', except anyone can be a member (don't worry you probably do qualify, and if not, just pay a wad of cash at each event and you're in - so I hear). And 'Few', except there's no limit on members?
Either these guys think we Bahrainis are silly, desperate (or both), or they are - both.
Whichever one it may be,..anyone who falls for this, clearly does not understand the meaning of sophistication, or select few for that matter.