February 15, 2007

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Club Nashua
The Amber Room plans to open soon in the Gate City
By Erica Febre efebre@hippopress.com

First the Sky Lounge and now Nashua’s nightlife is getting another boost.

The Amber Room, a new entertainment complex set to open soon in Nashua, claims it will bring an upscale nightclub environment to downtown.

“Nashua is a non-saturated market. Demographically, it’s one of the biggest growing areas in New Hampshire and there’s really not too much going on. Everything is basically a restaurant that may have music and dancing at night,” said Rich Gehrlein, with the Amber Room.

There are four entertainment masterminds behind the concept of the Amber Room: Gehrlein, Charles Koehler and Rick Naples (who also all have ownership of Boston-based TKO Sound and Lighting, a full-service sound system and atmosphere lighting company), and Dennis Troso, who works in the security enforcement field. Naples also works as a DJ in Boston and will DJ at The Amber Room on Saturday nights.

Together these four guys have more than 80 years of experience.

“There hasn’t been a full-out nightclub in Nashua since the Bahama Breeze Club in the ’90s. We know the market will work here because we’ve all seen it work. We’ve taken into account our own history of working in clubs, seeing the things that work and what doesn’t work and we’ve integrated all of it into the design,” Naples said

The Amber Room boasts almost 9,000 square feet with two separate rooms.

The front room (The Amber Room), which will feature music from today, has an 86-foot bar (which owners say is the state’s biggest bar yet), a stage, DJ booth and a sectioned-off dance floor. Plush banquettes will run all along the walls of the entire club, providing seating for more than 500 people.

The back room (The Retro Room), which will feature hits from the ’80s and ’90s, features a 46-foot bar as well as a specialty drinks bar for signature drinks and high-end wine selections. There’s also a stage in the back room that’s connected to the front stage, so performers can work both rooms or two acts can be going at once.

“The facility’s designed to handle any sort of entertainment, whether it’s a DJ or band or solo performer. We’ve made it capable for anything: a one-man band, to a heavy metal band to something as simple as karaoke,” Gehrlein said.

Other entertainment features will include go-go dancers to entice the crowd to the dance floor.

“It’s kind of like a wedding party — no one gets up to dance until that first person gets on the dance floor,” Koehler said.

The Amber Room is also considering opening the space for special shows, like fashion shows with local boutiques, or photo shoots and movie premieres.

With a custom-built sound and lighting system (31 sheets of plywood just for the speakers), the facility will have all the capabilities and features needed to show a movie, and the lights and stage room to feature a fashion show.

“I built the whole sound system from scratch. It’s literally a one-of-a-kind sound system. No one else in the world has this monster we’ve created,” Koehler said.

But don’t worry about Nashua getting rattled because these guys aren’t talking about a booming sound system, although they have the ability to turn the volume up.

“It’s about accuracy, not necessarily volume. It may not be the loudest sound system but it’s the clearest sound system,” Koehler said.

The lighting system in the Amber Room is also a unique design unknown to Nashua nightlife, with tons of LED lighting all throughout, strobe lights galore and amber colored tape lighting along the bar fronts and stairs to add that extra amber glow.

“People are really getting sick of having to drive into Boston just to find a quality place to go. This will be an upscale place where people came come to meet and dance, without having to make the long drive,” Gehrlein said.

The Amber Room is currently still under construction. However things are moving along quickly and a grand opening party will be held within a matter of weeks.

Dance party Nashua
What: The Amber Room
Where: 53 High St., Nashua
For more information: To keep posted on The Amber Room’s progress, go to theamberroomnightlife.com or myspace.com/theamberroomnh.