Club Sugar

Club Sugar


Santa Monica, CA | 1999

This 3,000 square foot nightclub was designed to intensify the looking at and meeting of people – to both reinforce and poke fun at the inherent narcissistic and voyeuristic behavior. To this end, it brings people together in surprising ways, such as the space in the polycarbonate “tunnel” that allows people to see inside the restrooms through clear acrylic doors.

The design experiments with a palette of clear, translucent, and mirrored materials that affect the perception of the body and allow it to be presented in as many ways as possible. These include epoxy floors, stainless steel mesh curtains, zinc siding, and a number of new acrylic and polycarbonate materials. 

The new programmatic elements that make up the club were designed as semi-discrete set pieces that would slip into the existing wood and brick shell: the DJ booth, the bar, the raised seating area, the restrooms, and the polycarbonate “tunnel” that screens the restrooms from the dance floor. In this project, light is used as a material in itself. In the restrooms, it creates a sensuous, ethereal atmosphere.


Project Team

Principal-in-Charge: John Friedman
Project Team: Alice Kimm, Nina Lesser
Project Assistants: Joe Fleischer, Tom Steidl, Marlin Watson
Structural Engineer: William Koh and Associates, Inc.
Lighting Design: FIRE Ltd.
General Contractor: Ricki Kline
Photography: Fotoworks


1999 Interiors Entertainment Venue Category
Honorable Mention

1999 AIA Los Angeles Chapter
Merit Award

1999 Architectural Record
Record Interiors Award



David Reiss