The South Loop-based club and lounge is emerging as a mandatory destination for movers and shakers on the hip-hop and entertainment scene. All the aforementioned artists, plus Common, Lupe Fiasco--who is appearing Sunday with aldermanic candidate Rhymefest--Devin Hester, LeBron "King" James and others have been to the ultra-modern lounge since it opened in summer 2009. It also is carving out a special niche as a place to see classic rap acts, including the recent reunion of Pete Rock and C.L. Smooth.Although the positive press is great to read, one quote about the challenges the club faces sticks out in our mind:
There are challenges to The Shrine's longevity, one of them: location. Russo says when he scouted the area three years ago, the South Loop was on the rise. That doesn't appear to be the case now, he said.Do you think The Shrine can survive with it's location? Personally I love the area down there. It's very urban, industrial and interesting to me. However, the fact is that for most people (including many South Loopers) south of 18th is no mans land. In our opinion it's mostly due to the lack of an EL stop close to this area. Another negative was the stigma that the Ickes homes had over the area. Since these have been torn down that shady element is as prevalent, but the perception still remains for most.
Anyway, The Shrine helps this area. The question is will it develop some foot traffic or is this just a wish?
(Image from Chicago Now)