Club Rio … returneth?!: A Weekly exclusive announcement


It doth! Following the signing of a four-wall deal to lease and reopen Club Rio as ND's Fuego – The Evolution of Nightlife, soon-to-be nightclub magnate Nicole Durr (better known as ND of ND's Space opening Labor Day Weekend 2009 at the Palazzo) will take the cast of her show Raw Talent Live to the Rio. The new upscale Latin nightclub soft opens on February 12 with a grand opening loosely slated for March.

Raw Talent Live showcased at the Sahara for a limited run and featured her so-called Video Illusion Technology, which will be incorporated into the new venue as high-energy vignettes that will periodically interrupt the resident and guest DJs, live musicians and concerts to briefly steal the show before seamlessly returning to the music. The club will incorporate all iterations of Latin music, but will also touch upon other genres.

Says Rene Lavan, official spokesperson for ND's Fuego The Club, "It's a crossover experience, like if you come to a club in Ibiza or Miami … something the Latinos will embrace, but something that everyone will enjoy."

Helmed by GM Mike Milner and Operations Manager Natalia Badzjo (both formerly of Studio 54), ND's Fuego will renovate and refurbish the vastness of Club Rio's cavernous interiors without entirely gutting the space, says Lavan. An industry night is already in the works, and there will be a cover for the club experience.

Lavan notes that ND's Fuego is the natural evolution of Raw Talent Live, which was itself the next step for performers who had been practicing for two years in a Vegas warehouse.

An official press release will be issued Monday, revealing the names of the two salsa acts that will be ushering ND's Fuego into the Vegas soundscape on February 12, but for now it's safe to say they're "huge." Check back Monday for the announcement and updates.

"Fuego means fire and it stands for the passion in all of us," says ND, owner/director and creative force behind the project. "The club will manifest this passion with hot Latin rhythms and will create the next generation of nightlife in Las Vegas. It will truly be an 'Evolution of Nightlife'."

If the trademarked tagline—"The Evolution of Nightlife"—sounds familiar to you club aficionados, it's because it served as the unfortunately un-trademarked marketing slogan for Studio 54 for over a decade. Between that and the resuscitation of Club Rio, we're wondering if this sort of recycling is itself the modern evolution of nightlife in response to tough economic times in which new construction is hard to come by.

"ND's Fuego will complement the high-energy and uninhibited environment of the Rio, says Rio president Marilyn Winn. "The concept fuses both entertainment and nightlife, offering an ever-changing club experience that will appeal to anyone looking to spend a memorable night in Las Vegas."

ND's Fuego will hold open auditions for all nightlife positions including: Model/VIP Server, Model/VIP Assistant, Model/Apprentice Bartender, Model/Bartender, Model/Cashier and Model/Bar Porter. Yes, even the bar porter has to be a "model" (a bona fide occupational qualification or B.F.O.Q.) to get around the culinary union. The auditions will be held on Monday, January 26 and Tuesday January 27 at the Rio's Fiore restaurant, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 3 to 6 p.m. Qualified applicants are asked to please bring a headshot and resume. For additional information, please call 339-4939 or visit


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