Walk into Rule G, a new nightclub on the third floor of the Railyard in the West Haymarket, and the first thing you'll notice is the lights.
Lights everywhere — more than 500 color-changing LEDs on the walls, the ceilings, behind the bar — that pulse to the music in the "Las Vegas-style" dance area called the Spin Room.
It's an attack on the visual and aural senses, and it should be a welcome addition to the DJ and dance scene for the club's target demographic, college kids and 20-somethings, when it opens next week or soon after.
Owner Eric Marsh, an Omaha-based accounting systems consultant by day, has wanted to open a bar for years but admits he didn't know how to start.
So he brought in a pro — Chris Lenahan, a Vegas-based night club, bar and restaurant consultant who has opened more than a dozen venues across the country. He is part of the operation behind openingabar.com. Lenahan posted half a dozen videos on Rule G's Facebook page detailing the process.
“His visionary insight has helped to create a venue like none other in Lincoln,” Marsh said. "We looked at how successful clubs around the country looked and operated.
“It came down to this great opportunity with this great location near the arena, other bars, hotels, football and the Haymarket — there were way more pluses than minuses.”
The gem is the Spin Room that can change from a small 40-person dance floor to a 90- to 100-person venue when the DJ booth is moved back. It also has private VIP booths, dance platforms and a 15-foot LED TV behind the DJ to show music videos or live video of the crowd.
Marsh said they want well-known DJs from the region.
But the dance club is only one of a three-faceted approach for Rule G.
In addition to the Spin Room, Marsh wanted other venues for different styles — the Ultra Lounge will focus on a high-class VIP experience with the option of personal hostesses, he said.
“We're not going to act like we're the first people to do an ultra lounge. We just want to do it well,” Marsh said. “We're serving drinks that everyone knows, but doing it better. We're mastering the basics.”
The area is decorated with sophistication — bronzes, platinum and stainless steel surround the bar and intimate seating area with a great view of the arena across the street.
The Rooftop Patio should be visually appealing, too, with LED trees, similar to the ones outside nearby Hiro 88, lining the area.
At nearly 4,500-square-feet, the patio is the largest area of the bar and will be covered for a year-round outdoor experience with heating in the winter and air conditioning in the summer. It also will serve as an outdoor party area with speakers that face north to limit the noise for the nearby Canopy Lofts.
A barbecue smoker for Longwells, a first-floor restaurant also owned by Marsh, also will be on the patio.
Throughout, Marsh said they focused on cool details -- purse hooks along the bar, USB and power outlets underneath to charge phones, TVs hidden behind mirrors in the bathrooms and the "nicest women's bathroom downtown" complete with a couch nook to get away from the crowd.
Other high-tech items include almost 70 security cameras to monitor the crowd, including some called “social cams” that will show the crowd on TVs around the bar.
As for operating hours, Marsh said he wanted to keep them short.
"Hopefully, if we restrict the hours, there's more demand during those hours," he said.
The Rooftop Patio and The Ultra Lounge will be open Thursday through Saturday from 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. with special operating hours for Pinnacle Bank Arena events and football Saturdays. The bar has two 15-foot LED HD televisions to catch the game.
They also will feature a Friday Afternoon Club with happy hour menu from 3 to 7 p.m.
The Spin Room will be open later from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m. Fridays and Saturdays.
Rule G also will host private events.
The dance club joins other dance floors such as Grata, Rich Bar and Lounge, 10 Below, the Brass Rail, the Fat Toad and Main Street Café in Lincoln.
It will be the first true bar and dance club in the Railyard, which has a concert venue, arcade bar, half a dozen restaurants, a bank and a food court-type area.
As for the odd name “Rule G” -- it’s a throwback to an old railroading term, which prohibited workers from drinking while working in the rail yard.