Wednesday, 15 April 2009


This is what the Haçienda looked like, if you were wondering.

Famously designed by Ben Kelly in 198 ... something, it is easy for us to laugh at the Hooky owned parody of the the club these days, but when it was built it must've been like a spaceship landing on Whitworth Street.

To quote Kelly himself;

"Within a cooled-down space (painted in blue and grey tones) the emphasis was diagonal and vertical, with brightly clad balcony supports and diagonal stripes painted on columns setting-up various “journeys” through the building. Siting the stage to one side, and using fly bars for theatre lights, made the space both flexible and dynamic — visual compositions of colour and texture were everywhere. Directional and warning markings created an inside/outside tension — bollards and cats-eyes delineated the dance-floor — a city within a city, of pathways, plazas and bars, which acted as intimate refuge amid the cavernous space."

Beyond the bastardised, Voodoo Ray soundtracked, mad for it aesthetic was a very beautiful collection of contemporary design. Oh well, we've got the Printworks and Deansgate Locks now, so all is not lost, eh kids?

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