hush (457 richmond west, 416-366-4874)
CROWD 25 and up, although you won't get turned away if you're younger. There is a mild dress code, but security is relaxed and friendly. Run by many of the same people who ran the Living Room, so expect to see a few regulars from that now-defunct institution.
Vibe More of a big lounge than a club, with lots of seating and little corners to hide in, along with a small dance floor. Music ranges from house to R&B to rare groove, and the sound system is more than adequate to get bodies moving.
Gimmicks The only bar in town to boast a hair salon, featuring stylist Eugene Macintosh. Open early, around 6 pm most days, for hors d'oeuvres, drinks and acid jazz. One of the only places to feature chess boards all over the place. $300 a year gets you a membership, which means no cover, the chance to put up to 30 people on the guest list, and access to the VIP lounge and to the club's concierge services.
Bathrooms One of the only aspects left over from the venue's days as Aria, the bathrooms are still unisex, and you'll usually find an attendant. Luxurious and clean, the can almost feels like a little lounge in itself.
Value Put this one somewhere in the middle -- not cheap, but not the kind of place where you'll be grossly overcharged just so you can feel like a high roller. Not a bad place for a date -- nice enough to impress, but not so high-end that you have to walk home.