By James Wilkinson

Brisbane will get its turn to shine in the Australian bar scene tonight (October 10), when Zuri, the country’s latest multi-million dollar bar, opens its doors for the first time.

No expense has been spared for the opening of Zuri, located in Fortitude Valley on the former Sunbar site. A number of celebrities and media have been handpicked to attend the opening and are being flown to Brisbane this afternoon.

The celebrity line-up includes MTV’s Ruby Rose and Darren McMullen, Channel V’s Renee Bargh, Underbelly stars Alex Dimitriades, Damian Walshe-Howling and Gyton Grantley, pop star Emilia Deporet, hoteliers Dave Evans of Hugo’s and Toby Osmond of Will & Toby’s, an array of fashion designers and the who’s who of Australia’s fashion and hospitality media.

They will mix with Brisbane’s best at the opening as they party into the late hours with music by Sydney band the Martini Club and talented singer Paris Wells.

VIPs will then be accommodated at the 5-star Emporium Hotel, named Best New Hotel in Australia at the 2008 HM Awards.

Managing Director of Zuri, Joseph Maninno, said the venue is best described as 19th Century elegance meets 21st Century opulence. With more than a hint of decadence, guests will be spoiled from the moment they step through the towering iron gates.

“Brisbane is ready to welcome an evening lounge where everything is all about making the guest feel welcome and servicing them 130 percent. And with such a passionate team, Zuri will do just that,” Maninno said.

“I have worked in and seen venues across the world where the focus is on creating the ultimate experience for the customer and, until now, Brisbane really hasn’t had a strong focus on that. But now we are ready.”

Welcoming and warm, Zuri is set to spoil not just the celebrities but regular patrons too with every need from private rooms and valet service to the glamour of fully attended bathrooms complete with makeup stations.

Zuri is the first of up to five new venues set to open in Brisbane in the coming months. A four-storey venue on Ann Street from the owners of Press Club and Family is next on the list, before new bars arrive from the teams behind The Bowery and West End’s Lychee Lounge.

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The Shout Team

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