25 May 2024 By May Ng

Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong Celebrates the Evolution of Hong Kong Nightlife with the Launch of “The Aubrey After Dark”

As part of the celebrations of its 60th anniversary, Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong proudly introduces “The Aubrey After Dark”, a new luxury nightlife series created in collaboration with local and international nightlife visionaries. This ambitious project brings together Hong Kong’s own Andrew Bull, aka DJ El Toro, a legend with over 50 years on the decks, Marina Bullivant, a café-society powerhouse with deep roots in hospitality and club management, and Cosmo Webber, a trailblazer from London’s contemporary party circuit, as The Aubrey’s first curator-in-residence.

Launching on May 24th from 10pm until late, “The Aubrey After Dark” pays homage to the beginnings of Hong Kong’s nightlife which emerged around the same time as the opening of The Mandarin in 1963, marking a parallel ascent into global prominence. The series is hosted in the very locale of the former Harbour Restaurant, later renamed Harbour Room, on the 25th floor of the Mandarin Oriental. This iconic venue was a cornerstone of the city’s nightlife, drawing international acts like Eartha Kitt, Dave Allen, Les Dawson, Barry Humphries, Bob Monkhouse, Max Bygraves, and now, as The Aubrey, serves as the setting for this innovative series, reconnecting with its glamorous legacy.
Bull has been an instrumental figure in shaping the Greater China club scene from its infancy. Known for his role in pioneering venues like Canton Disco and his collaborations with cultural icons such as Ian Schrager, he brings a deep understanding and connection to both the history and evolution of Hong Kong’s nightlife. Working in tandem with Webber, who curates the international talent, and Bullivant, who lends her extensive experience in creating upscale, culturally rich environments, the trio focuses on integrating the best of Hong Kong’s DJ legends and contemporary international music culture.
Webber, a dynamic figure in London’s nightlife with an impressive roster of collaborations including Lily Allen, Benji B, Skepta and more, has been instrumental in shaping the direction of “The Aubrey After Dark”. At just 23, he has partnered with notable London venues such as Scotch of St. James, The London Edition, Chiltern Firehouse, Islington Arts Club, Pamela in Paris, Apartment 2000 and Spanky’s in Los Angeles and worked with major brands such as Nike and Louis Vuitton.
The vision for “The Aubrey After Dark” encompasses a curated series of Friday night events that seamlessly blend soulful house and disco with innovative sounds from the underground scenes of London, New York, and Paris. Their approach aims to foster a cooperative fusion of sound, energy, and exclusivity. Each week, international DJs will be paired with local talent, allowing guests at The Aubrey to experience a mix of Classic Disco and Chicago House enriched with new music genres like Amapiano, complemented by the latest Afro and Latin vibes. This initiative consistently bridges the gap between contemporary sounds and the timeless grooves that have shaped music history.
The lineup for the launch includes Hank Korsan, a 24-year-old producer and DJ from Los Angeles now based in New York City. Since he started DJing at 17, he’s already had gigs with Honey Dijon, Nic Fanciulli, Chris Lake, Diplo, The Martinez Bros., Seth Troxler, and Damian Lazarus. His most recent release, a remix of “NY to LA” by Bruno Furlan through Black Book Records, was followed up by his debut single “Wrong” released through Mad Decent and is primed for a big year with multiple releases coming with Black Book, Higher Ground, and his own label Fajita Disco. Webber will also be DJing alongside Bull and Gia Fu from Hong Kong on the night.
“The Aubrey After Dark” is more than a night out; it is a cultural homage to the evolution of a city and its nightlife, set in a venue with a legacy of entertainment and luxury. Mandarin Oriental, Hong Kong invites guests to The Aubrey to experience this coming together of history and modernity, celebrating the cultural tapestry that continues to make Hong Kong a global nightlife destination.