Amber Ultra Lounge
The Fort Strip, Katipunan Circle, Bonifacio Global City, Taguig, Metro Manila
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This place has been in the Fort Strip since 2009, opening as Amber Ultralounge. During its heyday, I didn’t live in BGC yet, and I wasn’t really much of a party-goer then, so I never really stepped foot inside. Promotions for the place were big back then, though, so I already heard its name being thrown around social media a lot. I moved to BGC in 2010, and started going out late 2011 (I’m a late bloomer), and by then, the hype of Amber Ultralounge had died down. People flocked to the nearby Privé instead (which opened in 2011).
One day, while I was browsing through the current deals in DealGrocer, I was curious about a 50% off deal on a “hip dining discovery” at “A Liquor Lounge” at the Fort. I get to discover new restaurants through vouchers (I usually don’t get out of my comfort zone, unless I can get a discount haha), so I checked where this “hip” place was at. I was surprised to discover that it’s none other than Amber Ultralounge at the Fort Strip. Huh. I guess they’re trying to rebrand / resurrect themselves. Good move in renaming it, because to foodies out there, “Amber” will only remind them of that place that serves awesome Pinoy-style spaghetti (haha! Right, Jairus d?).
My college org also held its annual “Deconstruct” party here a few weeks ago, and some of my college friends and I decided to drop by, for old times’ sake. Errrm…it wasn’t exactly a trip down memory lane. Back in college (I won’t say how long ago), our parties consisted of beer, pulutan, and throwing people into the pool. College kids these days…mygod, I was in for the shock of my life.
Remember my review for White House Beach Resort a few months back, wherein I was shocked at the behavior of high school graduates at a party over there? It was like Paradise Island: a mosh pit of drunken teenagers, gyrating against each other. I thought back then that it was because they were let loose on a paradise island, away from their parents. Turns out that they’re like that EVERYWHERE. It was the exact same scene that met my eyes that night at A Liquor Lounge: drunk college kids having fun. Too much fun. LOL. To be fair, there were only a select few that were behaving badly (get a room, guys!!!!! SERIOUSLY!!!! ); the rest of them were just having good, clean fun.
I also saw my baby brother, Laurence E, in the crowd (he’s hard to miss, he’s the tallest one there! Haha). He was behaving well, thank God! He was like “Ate! What are you doing here?! This is a college party!!!” LOL.
Needless to say, my friends and I skedaddled outta there and went to a “club for grown-ups” (i.e. club for people MY age: Privé) where the people behaved appropriately (or pretentiously. Haha!). One of my friends had a spot-on observation when he said, upon arriving at Prive: “Parang nanibago ako. Wala mashadong sumasayaw dito.” Well, compared to the other place where it was one giant, jumping/gyrating mosh pit, Privé was pretty tame, with the grown-ups “trying” to act prim and proper.
It’s nice that Amber Ultralounge is trying to get back in the game, maybe trying to cash in on the recent popularity of the Fort Strip. I’m not sure, though, if their marketing efforts are effective: hosting private functions and/or promoting their food (dinner service only) via deal sites. They also do not have a door charge, like Imperial Ice Bar, so maybe that will get them some customers. They need to level up, since their competitors have gotten a head start: they have Privé, Urbn, Imperial Ice Bar, Aracama and Club Haze in the vicinity. From what I’ve seen inside, they will need to get some major renovations done, because the place is looking a bit shabby. The interiors were designed by THE Ed Calma, so the classy feel is still there, but maybe they should get some reupholstering done?
Update: my friend, who has been to this place before says that the interiors designed by Ed Calma are no longer the same. Before, it looked lounge-y and classy, now it looks more "gothic."
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