Courtesy of The Morning News
SAN NICOLAS — An icon of Aruba’s carnival celebration, and considered by many the island’s most talented singer, musician and composer, is popular performer Claudius Phillips. A superstar of the annual carnival musical competitions, he has won a record number of crowns as Roadmarch, Calypso and Tumba King, as well as bringing a lively style to the great pop songs of past decades at various hotel venues.
Claudius is a San Nicolas boy, born and bred, and with many friends, government dignitaries and members of his community, celebrated the realization of a long-time dream with the opening of his club, “Dress 2 Impress,” better known as “D2I.”
He unveiled the new club to this select group and media on Wednesday evening, but the official grand opening is tonight. This is a new kind of venue for Aruba’s “Sunrise City,” elegant and chic, but cozy. It has a comfortably-sized dance floor next to the ample bandstand, a stunning VIP lounging area, and a stylish bar section for conversation and admiring a fraction of the owner’s many musical awards, which are displayed on his “Wall of Fame.”
Claudius has long been a staunch supporter of his neighborhood, and the many attractions and virtues of San Nicolas. He is very proud to present this extremely appealing venue targeting the over-21 crowd with discerning taste in music. Patrons can expect some of the best from this dynamic performer, who will be on hand regularly to perhaps do a turn at the keyboards, with very little coaxing. During the unveiling event, Claudius expressed his heartfelt gratitude to his interior designer, Anthony Angela, for the tasteful decor and ambiance. Converting this corner spot just at the end of the block of the old Astoria Hotel, was a Herculean task, which he took on personally with the help of his “Cheezy Boyz” team, a group of devoted friends eager to see such an attractive venue established in the heart of downtown San Nicolas. Located where there is ample parking available, it is sure to become a popular place for the regularly scheduled happy hours and live performances throughout the week.
Media personality and an aficionado of island clubs, Elvis Weert, declared “I am truly impressed with what Claudius has done here. I have known him since childhood, and he was determined to make this happen, and he has done it beautifully. It is a very unique and important step for San Nicolas.”
Aruba’s Minister of Economic Affairs, Communications, Energy and Environment, Mike de Meza, who harbors a special interest in his home town, lauded the club as a precursor to other attractions that will revitalize commerce and social exchange in San Nicolas.
This charming lounge offers an excellent destination for vacationers to rub elbows with the local community and experience a stylish taste of island life and play. Phillips cited his choice of name “D2I” or “Dress to Impress” as a prompt to patrons to realize this is mature club with an elegant atmosphere “where the ladies can dress in their best, as I know they like to do. When we go out looking good, I know it makes us feel good, and so that will set the atmosphere for the place. It is a welcoming, cozy, but elegant lounge where people can enjoy a snack, hear some great music, dance, and feel they are among friends.”
The staff and management of THE MORNING NEWS offer Claudius congratulations on realizing the dream for which he has worked so long and hard, and all success in his new venture.