I Belong to Glasgow
Tina Warren, co-owner of Club Noir reveals what she loves, from Glasgow’s vintage togs to its cafe culture
‘Although I’m from Stirling I consider myself a certified Weegie having lived and worked in the city for ten years. Glasgow’s Victorian heritage manifests itself through the architecture of its buildings and residences. Whilst Glasgow is known for rain and four seasons in a day it resembles the rose red city of Petra when the sun shines and it looks magnificent like the first blush of dawn.
As one of the owners of Club Noir I’m very keen on anything retro, especially clothes and over the last few years several shops have opened offering me the chance to browse on a semi-permanent basis. Saratoga Trunk is a vast warehouse in Hydepark Street, full of vintage clothing through the ages. My other two favourites are Mr Ben on King Street and Vintage Guru in Byres Road.
Being a vegan it’s not always easy to find a restaurant where I can eat without having to order something that’s not on the menu. However, I do occasionally find myself returning to The Red Onion where Chef John Quigley will cook something for me in a jot - he used to cook for Bryan Adams, who is also vegan. Otherwise I find myself in 13th Note, Stereo, Papperino’s on Byres Road or The Italian Café in The Merchant City. If I feel like a curry then it’s usually Mr Singh’s or Mother India: neither of them use ghee.
There are lots of club nights to choose from in town and naturally I think that mine is worth a visit, as it’s a chance to get dressed up, regardless of whether you’re male or female and enjoy six hours of fun and decadence at the world’s biggest burlesque club at the O2 Academy. Also, I like to relax at All Tore Up which is a rockabilly night at Blackfriars Pub in the Merchant City and sometimes a group of us will go to Love Music at the ABC in Sauchiehall Street for their Saturday night club.
I do a lot of my own marketing for the club so I need lots of stop-off points for coffee or tea: Tinderbox and Kember & Jones are Byres Road favourites, with iCafé, Biblocafe and Beanscene getting my vote in Woodside Road. On my way home or on my way into town then Tibo on Duke Street is one of my places to relax and sometimes meet my business partner. They all stock soya milk.
I simply love cocktails and when I’m feeling flushed it’s off to Blytheswood Hotel to get pampered by Malcolm Spence, the best barman in town. I love cocktails in The Straivagin on Gibson Street, which is just round the corner from Otago Lane, a cobbled courtyard housing a book, record shop and tea shop, Tchai Ovna.
If you don’t want to spend any money then just wander in the botanical gardens and take a picnic, if the weather allows. Alternatively, the music scene in Glasgow is awesome but if you want to do something really out of the ordinary join 'Detour' on Facebook. They kidnap bands or take you on a mystery tour of venues with bands playing in unusual places; or simply take advantage of Scottish Opera's
Look out for Tina Warren at Club Noir Halloween, Sat 30 Oct, O2 Academy, Glasgow. www.clubnoir.co.uk