A far cry from City Saloon, the Wild West sports bar it replaced, Ruby is a hybrid mix of pumping River North club and dirty, shady basement hang. Unsurprisingly, red rules at this subterranean spot. The first things that grab the attention are the huge, stenciled red flowers on the large tan wall that separates the room into two areas (the floors, booths, walls and most of the club's accoutrements are also red). Meanwhile, the naked lady oil paintings that hang above the seating areas and the damask print wallpaper give the club a brothel feel.
On the other side of that large tan wall is a circular booth that sits in the middle of the club. The painted tigers and faux jewel accents let you know that it's special, the perfect area to reserve for a private event or girls' night out. Don't expect to get any special favors at the bar, though; the $8 cocktails are served in glorified shot glasses. If you're looking to booze heavily, you can try your luck at all four bars in Ruby until you find a heavy-handed bartender or, since the club doesn't get bumping until around 1 a.m. (it's open until 5 a.m. on Saturday), pre-drink and cab it there.
On the weekend, expect a young, suburban crowd. If you're not wearing hair gel, heavy makeup or a deep tan, you'll likely feel out of place. Looking for a more urban atmosphere? Ruby hosts live blues on Monday nights and local house DJs throughout the week.
Centerstage Reviewer: Maya Henderson