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A Dutch nightclub is now allowing guests to 'dance' while seated in chairs

INSIDER logoINSIDER 6/9/2020 dschild@businessinsider.com (Darcy Schild)
a group of people on a stage: Dancers at Doornroosje nightclub sat on socially distanced chairs on Saturday. Reuters © Reuters Dancers at Doornroosje nightclub sat on socially distanced chairs on Saturday. Reuters
  • A nightclub in the Netherlands reopened to guests on Saturday with a new format to keep crowds at bay.
  • For the duration of June, dancers can enjoy music and strobe lights at the club, Doornroosje, while seated in distanced chairs.
  • Thirty guests are allowed in the club at a time in compliance with local public health guidelines.
  • "People really enjoyed being in our venue again and just having a little taste of the atmosphere and the loud music," the club's marketing manager told Insider.
  • Visit Insider's homepage for more stories.

One dance club in the Netherlands is welcoming guests who are craving a taste of nightlife, with one exception: All dancing has to be done while sitting down.

The club, Doornroosje, which translates to "Sleeping Beauty," reopened its doors on Saturday after being temporarily shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Doornroosje, located in the city of Nijmegen, is requiring guests to dance while seated in chairs that have been spaced out 5 feet from one another in compliance with the country's public health guidelines, the club's marketing manager, Koos Hornman, told Insider.

This month, 30 guests are allowed in at a time, which is in line with the Netherlands' current limit on in-person gatherings.

a group of people sitting on stage with stage lights and an audience: Seated club-goers at the Netherlands dance venue. Reuters © Reuters Seated club-goers at the Netherlands dance venue. Reuters

Doornroosje's reopening event on Saturday included eight sets from DJs and musicians, with each set lasting 20 minutes. Tickets for the event, which were sold for 10 euros (around $11.35) each, were available for individual sets.

All proceeds benefited the artists who performed, Hornman said.

"For us, this was all about bringing artists and visitors together again, making them happy with some live music," Hornman said. "Part of it is also a statement of how this 'new normal' [changes] the nightlife scene."

The club gave people a taste of nightlife with a new format. Reuters © Reuters The club gave people a taste of nightlife with a new format. Reuters

Originally, Doornroosje owners planned to let guests dance while standing as long as they were distanced from one another, but government officials ordered the club to set up chairs on the dance floor.

In addition, instead of the club opening at its traditional after-dark hours, Doornroosje has changed its hours to open in the afternoon, which offers guests a mid-day dance break.

"Sitting in this setting is, and looks, very strange," Hornman said. "However, people really enjoyed being in our venue again and just having a little taste of the atmosphere and the loud music."

a group of people on a stage: Guests at Doornroosje took in the surroundings from their separated seats. Reuters © Reuters Guests at Doornroosje took in the surroundings from their separated seats. Reuters

Just as other nightclubs have livestreamed DJ performances and raves while venues were closed during the pandemic, Doornroosje also shared virtual versions of its recent social distancing-style dance session on Facebook.

However, in-person attendees who returned to the popular club after its hiatus seemed to enjoy the experience — chair-dancing and all.

Hornman said that Doornrosje may have waited to open until local authorities allowed the venue to let guests stand, but that trying something new has already proven worthwhile.

"It's part of trying new ideas to see what's possible instead of waiting for this thing to pass by," Hornman said. "And it was a lot of fun."

Hornman added: "There were all happy faces after 20 minutes."

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