Behind closed doors: an inside Vue

It’s a Friday night at ASU, and the pressure is on to find the wildest party in all of Tempe.

Luckily, one needn’t go far; that party exists on the campus’ doorstep, and lasts all weekend, every weekend. The Vue, commonly referred to as ‘Club Vue’ by its residents and regulars, is an upscale apartment complex just outside of campus.

Yet, even without explicitly designating itself as a student-housing complex, it is one. According to the FAQ on The Vue’s website, “The Vue is privately owned and operated and is no way affiliated with ASU. Because of the location and lifestyle, many of the tenants living at the Vue attend ASU.”

Each Thursday, Friday and Saturday night, The Vue becomes one of Tempe’s most exclusive nightclubs, although many of its guests are less than 21 years of age.

During these evenings, black rope creeps out the front doors and down the sidewalk, keeping dozens of ASU students in an orderly line.

At the door, a team of private security stands ready with a clipboard and several laptops.

Howls and screams drizzle to the street below from the iconic orange balconies, and across the street, Tempe Police sit eagerly, biding their time: a strange set-up for what is a mere apartment building during the daylight.

“If you want to get somebody in, you have to text a phone number with a list of the names of your guests,” said Jon Spitz, a first-year resident at The Vue.

After a name has been texted from an apartment above, it appears on the security’s computer screens in the lobby below, and after cross-checking that name with a visitor’s ID, they are granted permission to leave the line and head inside to hop aboard one of The Vue’s high-speed-Las-Vegas-hotel-style elevators, complete with built-in trash bins to accommodate the piles of beer cans.

Once inside, a guest can pick any floor they desire, seeking the college party of their dreams, and there’s a quick remedy for those not finding what they’re looking for.

When a visitor tires of level eight, for instance, a quick ride on the elevator to level six will bring them new faces, new music and new booze.

There’s definitely a few perks being a Vue resident. “It feels bad when you can’t get into parties,” said Spitz, “but now, I don’t have to worry about those pressures — where the party is, how to get there, how to get in. Now, I live where the party is.”

The Vue essentially eliminates the need for a fraternity, or a risk.

The “private owners” have certainly paid attention.

“In a four bedroom suite,” said Andrej Simeunovic, a first-year resident, “a single person’s rent comes out to about $713, plus utilities, plus $85 a month if you need a parking space… The Vue caters to a crowd that wants to keep their Fourth Amendment rights while living near or on campus–they want their money, and we want our privacy.”

It’s easy to see how The Vue capitalizes on the generations-old desire of undergrads to get “piss drunk” on the weekends. It all comes down to three very important words: location, location and location.

That, and the unquenchable thirst for alcohol and cold hard cash.


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