Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Since launching in 2004 as the sister club to one of Asia’s original superclubs — Zouk in Singapore — Zouk KL has become one of the leading lights in dance music’s continuing global expansion.
At the heart of the club’s success lies a burning passion to be the biggest and best club in the region. To achieve its aims, Zouk KL moved into custom-built premises in 2015 and spent eye-watering sums on fitting out its cavalcade of rooms with state-of-the-art Funktion-One soundsystems, luxurious décor and an astonishing number of LED light bulbs (there are a million alone in Zouk’s Mainroom, the EDM, trance and hard dance-focused space that hosts the biggest guest DJs and regular events).
As the club’s staff are keen to point out, Zouk KL is now the biggest superclub in Asia, though its 5,000 capacity includes numerous interlinked club spaces — Velvet Underground, Phuture, Ace and the super-exclusive, VIP-focused Imperial — and bars, plus a unique members’ area accessed via a slide from the floor above. Such variety allows the venue to run a plethora of events on the same night, with DJs and live acts booked to match carefully thought-out musical themes.
2018 was another hugely successful year for the Malaysian superclub, with high profile headliners including Hardwell, hardstyle stars Coone and Atmozfears, and Kearnage Recordings’ main man (and fast-rising trance superstar) Bryan Kearney. There was also the small matter of the club’s annual ZoukIN festival, an indoor answer to Singapore’s ZoukOUT festival that’s quickly become the highlight of the Malaysian clubbing calendar.
Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Re-opening in 2015 after moving from its old home and spending jaw-dropping sums of money (around RM38 million) on a new, purpose-built property, Malaysia’s Zouk is as much a complex as it is a club.
Eleven individually designed rooms pack unique personalities, from cavernous dark dancefloors lined with warehouse lights, to polished, sophisticated spaces in the upper floors. Sounds vary between big room EDM and slick house, unapologetic party anthems and heads down grooves depending on where you find yourself, and so it’s hardly surprising the average week sees Zouk welcome 17,000 people.
The place is so huge, in fact, that it hosted its own indoor festival, Zouk-In, with plans for another two similar events currently being hatched. Asia’s biggest dancing space, foreigners can drop their jaws at the sheer scale of the place for nothing thanks to the Tourist Lane system; present a non-Malaysian passport and you’re in for free.
It’s far from fun and games when it comes to spec, mind. The sonics are best described as serious, visuals nothing short of tech benchmarks, creating the perfect setting for visiting dignitaries, which in 2017 included W&W, Above & Beyond, Yellow Claw, Kolsch, and Luciano.
When you first rock up to Zouk KL you'll be blown away by the building's impressive, reflective, angular design, and once you're inside the heady, sensory experience goes up another notch. Funktion One soundsystems and millions of LED bulbs ping and persuade you onto the dancefloor. Now into its 13th year, this is without a doubt 'Asia's largest superclub’. It's twice the size of its previous venue and is an ever-evolving beast. Like an onion there are layers upon layers and the club holds eleven conceptual rooms within it. From members areas to an alfresco garden gathering, private rooms and a café, all bases are covered in this complex, state-of-the-art hedonistic utopia.
Respect goes to resident DJs Goldfish and Blink, BATE, Cza and T-Bone, Ken Master, Luqe, Radz and a whole lot more for paving the way and warming up the rooms for the likes of international gallivanters Hardwell, Doorn, Ferry Corsten and Bingo Players. Next month Zouk KL welcomes Trance MY, closely followed in August by Malaysia's first ‘multi-genre indoor music festival series', Zoukin. In a nutshell Zouk Singapore should be super proud of her sibling venture.
Since closing the old venue and moving into a new purpose built address at the centre of a planned ‘entertainment district’ last summer, one word best describes Zouk KL — massive. In fact, it’s currently the biggest super-club in Asia.
Split across multiple floors, the overall party space carries all the magic of its Singaporean mother, comprising 11 individual venues, with everything from EDM to heads-down house, commercial anthems to R&B and hip-hop heard throughout the monolithic building, via multiple event brands that are spread over the week.
Graced by the likes of Martin Garrix, Paul Van Dyk, Laidback Luke, John Digweed, and Dannic in the last few months alone, bookings equal the scale of this place, whilst residents come in the form of HypeEmBeats, Goldfish & Blink, Ken Master & Reeve, Mizz Kiya, Radzi & DJ Luge, Nazkimo & Ash, Ken Fung & Clifford, ensuring there’s a strong local contingency on-hand to support international guests. Music aside, it’s worth noting the complex boasts stunning views of downtown KL, with a balcony deck and VIP ‘glass box’ adding yet more bling to the offering. Oh, and did we mention tourists have free entry in 2016 thanks to a deal with the Malaysian tourist board? Probably worth a visit then.