It is very okay to sip a cup of hot drinking chocolate while looking at the flow of humanity in the Nairobi CBD on a Monday afternoon from the Views Hotel, squeezed on the 14th floor of the Bihi Towers on Moi Avenue, next to The Bazaar.
The way the sun kisses the horizons will amaze you, and the rays forming patterns of colours – red, yellow, scarlet and gold – will make you awe at the way God syncs nature. The feeling of hot chocolate washing your gut will make you forget your unkind boss, and, if you are a schooler, it will make you forget the scathing images in your inbox sent by a stupid a***ole who thinks you can lay him for the size of his private parts. The hot chocolate at Views Park Hotel is medicinal: Levitation.
But we are not here to talk about hot-drinking chocolate. And we ain’t gonna talk about men who have refused to grow up, or bosses who came forth from Cain’s groins. Marry, I am not in the mood to speak about a slow Monday, one that makes the alcohol sitting at the base of your belly call for attention all day, giving you an extra hell on your deadlines.
Nairobi lives for a Friday. She strains herself through freaking six days for this day – even spares the most expensive clad, the shortest dress, best-cleavage-creator-blouse and the thongest (sic) pantie for this day. And you, dear reader, you gotta match. Not less, unless you are not sagacious.
You could draw an obtuse triangle connecting Tom Mboya, Dedan Kimathi and Jomo Kenyatta statues, and just off the line of the longest side, you will slot in the Sky Lounge and City Casino (it is really a cool lounge and a casino, each existing independently in the same establishment), a reveler and playboy joint that stretches from Kaunda Street to Mama Ngina Street; right there, at the heart of Nairobi.
Skip the complicated gambling boards and climb the stairs to the first floor. My bet is that there will be a lady, tall to abstraction, beautiful to submission, curved to elevation and – this is another bet – she will be spotting a white smile and a red lipstick that will make you scared your ass down to smudge. That, my son, is the chief supervisor. If you miss her, there will be another one, probably in a black or grey dress, slimmer body and a better attitude.
That’s the whole point.
The pain of hustling needs to be compensated by the flow of good things, and Sky City Casino is a river of goodness, the dream of the voyeur and a habitation of comfort in the art…uhm…heart of a city that is fast and slow, kind and harsh; and a political space that keeps on adding more heat.
The first ticker in the measure of a club is the hospitality – the person who ushers you in and the smile of the lady who shows you to your seat. It helps, even more, when that person can make you lose your mind at that short moment when she is leading you to the vacant seat.
And that is what matters. Mostly. The pain of hustling needs to be compensated by the flow of good things, and Sky City Casino is a river of goodness, the dream of the voyeur and a habitation of comfort in the art…uhm…heart of a city that is fast and slow, kind and harsh; and a political space that keeps on adding more heat.
For the political conscious young Nairobian, Sky Lounge & City Casino offers proximity with founders of this country, and the DJ plays music in a way that allows a good conversation without bursting your voice box to get heard is it is the norm in any club.
It could be anything in your glass – the good old lady (Tusker) or some exotic whiskey, but that does not matter. The space is also very impersonal, and you will not feel offended my wheeler-dealers trying to score a government contract. You will realize that, this impersonality is also very personal, making the club feel like a convergence of extremes, of people out to have a Friday evening drink before going home to celebrate another good week with family.
When every other DJ in town is pumping up the volume of the same playlist shared by dozen clubs in Nairobi, the mood is different in Sky Lounge. Perhaps it is the gamblers, or, maybe, it is that the crowd is different: cool, mature and seasoned. Of course, there will be the random dancer who started binging a little too early and the eventful hooker crisscrossing the whole place looking for a catch, but…but…isn’t that business?
For someone used to the heavy beats of Nigerian music or the early hi-hop session that has become the standard club-starter in Nairobi, there will be some little disappointment as you will not hear Dre, Coolio, Ice Cube or the good King, 2Pac. Time will tell whether that is a good thing or not, but there is little doubt that it is a breath of freshness in a city that is patterned by a mosaic musicals and singular crowds.
The tapestry – the colorful waitresses, beautiful supervisors and logical music – is stained by the prices. Beer sells in the region of $3, too much for a poor country where more than 40% of the people live below a dollar every day. It is an illegal pricing that has many criminals in Nairobi, and, it seems that revelers have accepted the terms and conditions.
Pass by Sky Space City Casino, drink one…two…or three. Tell us what you think in the comments.