The new music venue, The Sultan Room, opened the doors of its brilliantly lit-up facade on Saturday night. Located on Starr Street around the corner from House of Yes, The Sultan Room is the live-music venue attached to the new supper club, The Turk’s Inn.
With its ‘70s kitsch vibe and imagined Ottoman Empire aesthetic, The Sultan Room sticks out amongst the many music venues currently operating in Bushwick, and it aims to double down on this uniqueness by bringing a diversity of programming to its room.
Upcoming acts will span the genres of dance, house, jazz, rock, and hip hop, and feature both local and national talent. The Sultan Room is also bringing some specialty offerings to the table to further differentiate itself, like a Pina Colada made with garam masala, a full-service rooftop, and a variety of food available from both the Turk’s Inn restaurant and an attached late night kebab counter.
The Sultan Room plans to be more than just a fun night out, too. Owners Varun Kataria and Tyler Erickson expressed their hopes that the venue will create a community centered around the space, and that the audience will get to share the sense of joy and celebration that the community develops. Erickson and Kataria said, “Our first night with Naeem (Spank Rock) and Amanda Blank, followed by a dance party with Eli Escobar was very much in that spirit. All faces were smiling.”
The Turk’s Inn is a re-creation of a famous Wisconsin supper club of the same name that closed down in 2014. The original Turk’s Inn was opened by George “The Turk” Gogian and his wife Isabella Gogian after emigrating from Istanbul and Armenia to Hayward, Wisconsin. Kataria and Erickson grew up attending the original Turk’s Inn, and upon hearing of its closing, decided to purchase as much of the memorabilia at the closing auction as possible, with the plan to one day revive the restaurant. After spending time working in the worlds of jazz in New Orleans and Manhattan, Kataria and Erickson decided to open The Turk’s Inn and The Sultan Room in Bushwick.
When asked about why they decided on Bushwick as the location of their first business, they replied, “When we first started looking at Bushwick, we were attracted to it because it felt a little remote, and we could afford the space we needed. In the years it’s taken us to build and get open, our neighborhood has emerged into a bustling destination for nightlife. In a certain sense, Turk’s could be anywhere and do what it’s supposed to do: it’s an escape. When you walk through the doors, you are no longer where you just were. You’re on vacation, in the midwest.”
The music programming team, which is handled by DJ Bruce Easley and Jono Bernstein, has put together a diverse lineup of local talent, including Native Sun, Max Pain and The Groovies, Gesserit, and Homeboy Sandman, as well as a drummer-curated series of jazz shows called “Batterie.”
Maybe most importantly of all, if anyone ever works up an appetite dancing at one of their shows, they can always grab a bite from the takeout kebab shop, which is open late, or the dining room of the Turks Inn, which serves food until 11pm Mon – Thur, until 12am Fri – Sat and until 10:30pm on Sunday.
Cover image courtesy of Jeff Brown.
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