By Mike Armstrong Translated by Sharon Yang Photography by Allen Hsieh



18, SongShou (SungShou) Rd., B1
(inside Warner Village complex)
Tel: (02) 2345-2778

So, you feel a little bored with the scene in Taipei and know that you need a change. Money isn't really the point; you just feel like having fun and, if possible, maybe meeting some people.

The antidote might just come in the form of a place called Room 18. I guess I steered away from it before because, although I knew of it, I didn't want to pay a lot of money and not have fun. I mean, after all, you work hard and cash doesn't come flowing in all that easy. So what am I saying here? Is this place, Room 18, expensive? Well, to a Wyoming guy, it ain't cheap, but it is a value product.

After paying the cover (usually to a very beautiful woman), you walk into a place where the atmosphere is hip, young and happening. The neon-lit bar is nicely set up (a big plus in my book) and bartenders are fast with getting you your drink. The lighting is low but not so overly-dark that you can't see who is in the crowd. The dance floors are large enough to let a lot of dancers have their fun while still giving the opportunity to mingle. Mingling is good.

The music is excellent but even better are the "guest stars" that get up on the stage and perform. This place has its fair share of celebrities coming through, so sighting someone you've seen on TV isn't really any big deal although, in a way, it still is. This is a club that gives an air of being an "in" sort of place. That is all good but what is really special about Room 18 is that the place is constantly changing. The management isn't scared to change the look after six months or so, which definitely makes it interesting. PR spokesman Rod Davidson says it best: "We are always changing to play to the people. Most importantly, we are here for people to have fun."

The cover changes nightly. Prices for drinks are around the NT$200 range. That makes my signature Jim Beam and Coke a little expensive. However, when you weigh it all up, it isn't the price of the drink you are paying for, but an atmosphere that is ever-changing with special attention given to fun.