ATLANTIC CITY — Resorts Casino Hotel debuted its latest addition to the Atlantic City nightlife and entertainment landscape with Torch, a whiskey lounge and cabaret — and the first of it’s kind in Atlantic City. Torch opened Friday, May 20, on the dining level of Resorts. It will be open every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night from 5pm-1am.
Torch is a collaborative effort between the casino-hotel, Danielle Gomes-Chapman and Dave Pena, nightlife impresario and creator of Resorts’ retro nightclub Boogie Nights. Torch is a cocktail lounge specializing in premium scotches and whiskeys in a uniquely elegant yet hip space. It will showcases some of the most unique talent to ever perform in Atlantic City, including torch singers, musicians, avant garde performers, and independent singer/songwriters, in a cabaret setting.
Located in the vicinity of Resorts’ upscale dining establishments Asian Spice, Capriccio and Gallagher’s, and down the hall from Boogie Nights, Torch’s design was inspired by the luxurious lounges of cities like Paris, London and New York. It recreates the feel of a dimly lit library with rich wood paneled walls, soft leather chairs, plush sofas and Persian rugs, and there are chess and backgammon game boards on shelves lined with leather bound books. A crystal chandelier reflects the glow from the space’s most notable feature — its intricate fireplace — an original to the building.
“Basically what we did was build around the fireplace,” says Pena. “We’ve created a cozy, hip lounge-type atmosphere, almost like going into someone’s library or living room in a mansion somewhere, and a place that you’ve seen in movies and photo shoots and always wanted to be in. It’s an interesting contrast to the entire floor. What we’re selling, really, is the beauty of the room, a wonderful incredibly beautiful space to be in.
“The whole idea was to create a beautiful lounge that offers the most premium scotches and whiskeys. Most places tend to focus on wines, vodkas or other spirits, but not many places are focusing on the spirits that are becoming more popular like scotches and whiskeys. We still offer everything else, but it’s all the best of the best.”
Besides the ambience and the premium spirits, Torch intends to serve as a forum for some of the top musicians, avant guard entertainers and torch-song (typically a sentimental ballad) singers on the fast track to fame.
Pictured right — Anjelia Pelay will perform this weekend and next at Torch.
“The next person on the cover of Rolling Stone, the next person accepting a Grammy — we’re going to be discovering those types of people, and you’ll see them performing at Torch,” asserts Pena. “We’re going out and hand-picking talent. It can be local, they might be from Philly or New York City, but it’ll be the type of talent that really hasn’t had a stage to showcase original singer/songwriters. The next Adele could be on that stage. The next Sade, the next Sinatra or Bob Dylan could be performing in that spot — that’s the way we’re treating it.
Torch’s initial performer was Anjelia Pelay on (Friday and Saturday, May 20-21) and this coming week (May 26-28) Pelay will co-headline with Dina Rudeen. Pelay is a singer, songwriter, actress, and multi-instrumentalist (piano, guitar, melodica, harmonica, ukelele, and accordian), born and raised in Toms River who began playing Mozart and Beethoven pieces by memory on the piano at age five.
Also on the schedule for early June is Phoebe Legere — a composer, multi-instrumentalist, actress, painter, recording artist, Pulitzer Prize nominee, and singer with a four-octave range. Legere is a virtuoso keyboardist who led seminal East Village rock bands before being signed to Epic Records at age 16. She starred in such underground film classics as Toxic Avenger 2 and 3, and Mondo New York, and regularly performs at the famed jazz club Iridium on Broadway with her quintet Phoebe and the Ooh La La Coq Tail.
“[Legere] was Lady Gaga before there was a Lady Gaga,” says Pena.
There will likely be a recurring, rotating slate of performers at Torch along with regular special guests who — like the top-shelf liquor — is representative of only the best.
“The room is for the drinking connoisseur as well as for musicians music aficionados to support one another,” says Pena. “I’ve always wanted to be part of where somebody’s going to be discovered. Where is the hangout or the comfort zone for talented performers and musicians? I like being around these people, and we like having them around. It’s important to nurture and support each other. Danielle [Gomes-Chapman] both feel passionately about the room, the talent and all the main points of Torch.”
“With Torch, we wanted to create a lounge that offers customers a return to elegance and sophistication while also providing a space that is comfortable and romantic,” says Gomes-Chapman. “We wanted it to be the perfect place to unwind and enjoy the surroundings, bathed in the glow of candlelight with some good company, a smooth scotch, some soothing music and the comfort of a soft leather chair. All the elements are in place.”
“It's really that missing piece to the puzzle of the dining and entertainment level,” adds Pena.
On June 3 and 4, the rootsy, bluesy, singer-songwriter acoustic duo - Jeff & Tam will make their Torch debut. Check back for more details about this guitar-violin combo.
For more go here.
“I’ve played quite a few times in [Las] Vegas, including on the Penn and Teller show and doing several private parties, and I’ve spent some time in what they call casino culture, but I’ve always longed to play Atlantic City."
ATLANTIC CITY — The transformation of Resorts to a '20s theme, sparked by international interest in the Atlantic City depicted in HBO's hit series Boardwalk Empire, continues to evolve. And the results have been very impressive. First the first gay club within an Atlantic City casino opened — Prohibition — which is doing very well and packing in both straights and gays to the high energy dance club. Then Boogie Nights developer Dave Pena, a former writer for Atlantic City Weekly, and owner of Planet Rose at the Tropicana Quarter, opened Torch — Atlantic City's first whiskey bar, serving high-end whiskey in a gorgeous space with dark wood, comfy seating and a trend-setting bar. One of the special things about Torch is that it also has a piano and will feature live music Friday and Saturday nights — and on Thursdays later this summer. Not the standard casino lounge acts either; we're talking singer-songwriters from all around the country. It's one of a few places in the entire region where professional singer-songwriters will be encouraged to play their own songs; hats off to Resorts! On a gorgeous Friday afternoon on the Boardwalk, Resorts owner Dennis Gomes, his family, including son Aaron,were present, along with the...
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