Ultra has been a Toronto young professional staple for the past nine years. With it’s stellar patio, Ultra was a hot spot for visiting celebrities, many YP birthday parties and perhaps even a hot summer make-out. All good things must come to an end, however, and Ultra went out in style with a stellar New Year’s Eve bash on December 31st. Enter CUBE, INK Entertainment’s (Ultra’s former owners) latest project. Destined to be the city’s next hotspot, CUBE is an avant-garde nightclub that caters to the affluent members of Toronto’s elite.
“Evolution is part of growth. INK has its finger on the industry. We create new urban experiences that help define an era. The growth of INK and the introduction of CUBE is our testament to always improving on what has been achieved, and a desire to create something completely new,” says Charles Khabouth, INK Entertainment’s Chief Executive Officer.
According to Khabouth, it was simply time for a change. He wanted Ultra to be remembered for what it was in its heyday, and to bow out gracefully before it became run down or tired. Although he acknowledges that the space was not physically rundown, he said the crowd was tired, as many Toronto crowds become after a certain time. YPs have a short attention span, after all. He was even losing interest himself. Thus, it was time to reinvent the space.
Khabouth wanted a more mature, retro feel as he noticed a lack in the Toronto nightlife scene. For him, it also marks a return to his 20-year-old self, when many of the city’s clubs were in hotels. CUBE brings back the mature, sexy and retro vibe with no shortage of black interior, brass mirrors and shelving and along the wall. What’s old is new, as they say.
This was more than just a renovation; the space was completely gutted to incorporate INK’s contemporary vision, infused with 70s glam and retro and a dash of eroticism inspired by iconic vintage motifs. The space features custom-designed brass fixtures and ceilings, black high gloss lacquered woods, bronze mirrored surfaces (including the ceilings), black velour walls, a state-of-the-art sound system, floating brass panel lights with a rain-shower effect and a continuous LED wall around the entire club that is reminiscent of a filmstrip. Adding a provocative, playful twist to the design mix, CUBE showcases a collection of tasteful, textured art inspired by retro erotic photography. Globally renowned and award-winning design firm Munge Leung is responsible for the sleek retro design.
Never ones to overlook detail, INK has collaborated with Danier Leather to create custom-designed uniforms for CUBE’s staff. The staff is all new as well, contributing to the renewed energy of the place and the overall goal of a completely new experience altogether. Speaking of experience, to reflect the mature feel, bottle service-loving YPs can expect six servers for the VIP booths as opposed to the three that Ultra had.
We can also expect a return to and a greater emphasis on music, a huge influence on Khabouth and his status as the legendary king of Toronto’s nightlife. That’s why INK made the costly but essential investment of sound proofing the entire space. As he says, there is no point in having a top-quality sound system if you can’t soundproof the space properly.
The city’s stylish set can expect to indulge on decadent late night edibles with CUBEÊ¼s menu, served 10pm-3am. The finger food-inspired menu includes six items, with veggie, fish and meat options. With three INK restaurants set to open in the near future, they wanted to steer away from the dining scene.
Toronto young professionals can look forward to the spring and summer, when INK will launch their award-winning rooftop patio, fully redesigned and complete with a seasonal menu, bottle service tables and DJ booth. Toronto’s starry skyline will serve as a stunning backdrop. Ultra’s now overdone white Miami influence will be no longer as the patio will stay in tune with the design of the interior.
CUBE celebrates its grand opening weekend Feb. 23rd, 2012, followed by a DJ set by internationally acclaimed Dubfire on Feb. 25th. CUBE is also available for corporate bookings and charity functions. For now, CUBE will be open Friday and Saturday nights from 10pm onward, and will soon open its doors on Thursdays. Once the weather improves and the patio opens, it will be open seven nights per week.
INK currently owns The Guvernment and Koolhaus Entertainment Complex, This is London Nightclub, Dragonfly Nightclub, CUBE (formerly Ultra), La Société, Tattoo Rock Parlour and Spice Route, a partnership with Liberty Entertainment Group.
Click here for the full gallery.