CatHouse A Let Down

Can you really run bait & switch at a whore house? Can you really pimp what you don’t have? The Luxor thinks you can.

You may have heard the buzz about CatHouse, the Luxor’s latest nightlife addition for adults. Part of the pre-opening press were these statements by Billy Cross (the Australian club owner behind CatHouse) and others who told us that CatHouse would be an intimate bordello-themed nightclub, featuring women in lingerie — sitting behind glass walls, primping at dressing tables — and that there would also be peepholes where patrons can peek at vintage erotic films. Oh, and red — red would be everywhere.

But it turns out CatHouse is little more than any other nightclub — well, one with an excellent chef. Luxor’s site says:

Truly the first in a new generation of entertainment experience, CatHouse effortlessly combines a world-class restaurant, orchestrated by celebrity chef Kerry Simon, with an upscale lounge to create an interactive nightlife venue, while remaining intimate and uniquely provocative. Two styles of music with two separate DJ’s will juxtapose tastes in different areas within CatHouse. Dancing, not restricted to a dance floor, is encouraged throughout the ‘loungerie’, with lingerie clad performers enticing participation.

But what’s most distressing is what a quick tour of the CatHouse website. “Peepshow” is now a silly photo booth, like you’d find at WalMart — so goodbye vintage erotica. And it’s unclear what else is left of the CatHouse visions which once danced inside my head…

Take away the red and the vintage appeal, take away the peepshows, the voyeuristic looking at ladies primping (apparently, that’s just one window, with one lady), and what have you got? Waitresses in lingerie.

That could be exciting — depending upon the lingerie (and the model/waitresses) but look at what the Luxor puts their CatHouse girls in:

Looks like most cocktail waitress garb to me. (Photo of CatHouse Girls via Las Vegas Magazine — from July.)

Then again, USA Today shows us a blue CatHouse — with equally uninspired lingerie.

We shouldn’t be disappointed. After all Liz Benston told us in July that this would be little different than other Vegas clubs:

CatHouse servers will flirt, dance and DJ for customers wearing custom-made bustiers and other revealing finery.

But the real kicker is what CatHouse is supposed to be. It’s not just a nightclub, a supper club, or any other joint in Vegas; but it’s all about whoring the lingerie.

According to it’s own website (and rumors I’d heard earlier)., the CatHouse staff will be wearing CatHouse Lingerie that we — eventually — can all buy. Which is to say that since the lingerie isn’t available now; they are waiting to see if the club does anything before they launch the lingerie. And if that’s the gimmick, to sell the CatHouse line of lingerie, then that’s a problem.

Not to mention that what little we’ve seen, the lingerie looks as if it came from Elegant Moments or any other general retailer — maybe even WalMart. What the heck?

No offense to Chef Simon, but the food will have to be pretty damn good to make up for all the broken promises.

CatHouse officially opened last night, without Mischa Barton, and you celebrity stalkers can see the folks who showed up on the red carpet here.

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