Handsomely designed in modern blues and woods, Rodan fulfills the fantasy of the hipster who’s moved on from squalid nights sucking PBRs in no-name dives. DJs spin wildly eclectic sets to their own tastes–anything from Afrobeat and soul to space rock and psych–and the big video screen and weekly live avant-jazz make it a multimedia mecca.
The emphasis is on wide-open space at this after-work lounge that turns clubby later. An interesting LED lighting fixture captures the theme, while some of Chicago’s harder-hustling disco and electro DJs man the booth.
Though it’s nestled in the lobby of the chic and somewhat stark Hotel Sax, walking into this bar feels a lot like walking onto the set of Sofia Coppola’s Marie Antoinette: The space is filled with Victorian-esque chairs and chaises, and an eclectic soundtrack that encompasses disco, indie dance, rock and more commercial fare on weekends. The result is a place that feels cold and antiquated yet sexy and new at the same time.
This groovy, compact hotel luxury lounge has almost nothing to do with the hotel, the James, to which it is attached. Weekly residents spin energetic electro or trendy hip-hop, many nights actually see a cross-genre mix of both thanks to party promoters @superfun and Crossfader King.
Briefly a celebrity hot spot, Y—owned by the Sound-Bar folks—still looks the part with amber and wood shades and a bottle-service orientation. DJ bookings vary from easygoing house to hip-hop, but the sophisticated crowd it caters to might pack the place one night and go somewhere else another.