History is oft dictated by a few great men—great not always in character, but in their capacity to shape the world around them. As epicenter of the nightlife universe, NYC’s shadowy godfathers of the night are of particular interest. As the minds behind the most successful, exclusive, and profitable clubs of their respective eras, these pioneers have almost single-handedly revolutionized the game.
Spanning the debaucherous, gilded '20s of the Jazz Age, to the current EDM-fueled bacchanals, the men behind the curtain have conceptualized nightlife into the brand it currently is. By marketing exclusivity, affluence, popular music, and atmosphere, these 5 men elevated revelry into an art form—of which they are the maestros.