Plenty when it comes to words like “gentlemen’s club” and “speakeasy.” Because while the definition of the former, for example, “is a members-only private club of a type originally set up by and for British upper class men in the 18th century,” in today’s parlance it has more to do with very ungentlemanly dudes who paw scantily clad or nude women as they dance provocatively in darkened rooms.
Speakeasy on the other hand, refers to “an establishment that illegally sells alcoholic beverages. Such establishments came into prominence in the United States during the Prohibition era.”
However these days it generally refers to retro style bars that serve classic cocktails to, you know, gentlemen – not strip club habitués.
The $64 million dollar question: which of those definitions will apply to a basement restaurant/bar expected to in about 30 days in downtown Lawrence at 7 East 7th Street.
Lucky Seven, right?
Long as it’s not a gentlemen’s club in the modern meaning of the term.
“If that’s what going in over there, I’m not going to be very happy,” says one female worried business neighbor. “I heard that it’s being made into a gentlemen’s club for Doug Compton‘s friends.”
That would be celebrated Lawrence developer Doug Compton.
“I heard he is building a bar there in the basement and it’s going to be strip club, but what is a gentlemen’s club anyway? To me, it’s pretty much where call girls go and men have a good time.”
“It’s going to be a bar and a restaurant,” one construction supervisor says. “I don’t know the name and there’ll be a little elevator for the handicapped on the east side of the building.”
“I’m pretty excited about it,” says another business neighbor, a, um, gentleman. “I think it’s going to be awesome. So I assume it will be pretty fancy, pretty high end and have expensive cocktails. I went to an expensive speakeasy in Aspen per the holidays and all the bartenders wore vests.”
Then there’s the matter of a certain Lawrence resident named Letecia Cole, who applied for the permit.
Cole plans to convert “an existing mercantile use in the basement to a restaurant. The existing first and second floor apartment units will remain unchanged, other than adding a fire sprinkler and alarm.”
All for the sum of around $36,000, the permit says.
throughout the entire building.