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New Denton bar keeps afloat in the middle of the pandemic

New Denton bar keeps afloat in the middle of the pandemic

New Denton bar keeps afloat in the middle of the pandemic
February 27
11:00 2021

Vinyl Lounge made its debut by bringing a groovy atmosphere to the city near the end of 2020. Denton residents can escape to the ‘80s with the lounge’s records and disco aesthetics with the motto “stay groovy.”

Vinyl Lounge owner Tom Martin had the idea of opening the lounge two years ago, and he started the process last year. Unbeknownst to him, COVID-19 quickly caused a serious a shift in the opening process.

“I signed the lease in summer [of 2019], [and had] never heard of [COVID-19] like the rest of us, and then we started construction right about the beginning of February of last year and were on a pretty aggressive schedule to get it completed,” Martin said. “By five, six weeks later, of course the world had changed. Construction was able to continue but I think that the urgency was gone. We were going to launch on July 1st, but on the 27th the governor had ordered bars to close for the second time at that point, so we were all dressed up with nowhere to go and spent the next three months being closed.”

Martin says the goal of Vinyl Lounge is to allow Denton residents to have the opportunity to have fun in a lounge different from any other they have experienced. It has achieved the ’80s scenery and is now looking forward to more visitors and busier nights Martin said.

The Vinyl Lounge currently has limited demand due to the impact of the pandemic. Martin says it is fully opened, but fewer customers have been stopping by. To reap the benefits of the lounge, Martin asks anyone who wants to visit to wear a mask.

“First and foremost, masks do work,” Martin said. “Our staff is constantly masked — we haven’t had a single staff member get sick in the time we’ve been open. So first, keep your mask on. We’re not out to make political statements, and we’re not out to do anything. We’re just trying to be safe.”

Kaelin Chien, UNT student and Vinyl Lounge customer, said Vinyl Lounge is a place everyone should experience.

“It is absolutely beautiful in there,” Chien said. “[Martin] has a lot of different vinyl [records], like in the name, around the lounge [and] a really cool area where [the DJ] has her own record player and that is what is DJing and playing the music there, and just has ,like, a groovy vibe. [It] seems like a great atmosphere.”

Kristine Davis, Denton resident and Vinyl Lounge customer, heard about the lounge through her roommate who has visited a couple of times before her. She said she has been to several bars and lounges in Denton, but the Vinyl Lounge gives a more laid-back setting that has an Instagram-worthy ‘80s flow.”

“I definitely didn’t expect it to be so beautiful inside — I was expecting you know the music and for it to be like you know some type of music lounge but when I walked in, I was like, ‘Wow, this is really cool,’” ” Davis said. “I think it’s more for aesthetic type of thing — go there with your girls, have some pictures, drinks—I think it’s more for the vibe in the music.”

Individuals interested in learning more about the Vinyl Lounge can visit its website.

Featured Image: Vinyl Lounge DJ plays music for guests on Oct. 29, 2020. Image by Samuel Gomez

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Daijah Peterson

Daijah Peterson

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