Chix on Dix Before Bar Rescue
In 2005, longtime bar-owner Richard Skinner opens Chix on Dix, a topless club in Detroit, Michigan. It’s on Dix avenue, so Richard thought “Chix on Dix!” Richard has been in the bar business since 1976 and has owned numerous bars, but having a strip club make some profit is something he’s never done. The only topless bar in its area, it was successful for its first year. The first six months they were open, they did about $50,000 a month. Riding high from his early success, Richard changed his focus to his other businesses and Chix on Dix soon suffered. Plagued with fights, the bar was hurt badly.
In order to revitalize profits, Richard brought in bar expert Darren Lee, who has been in the bar business for nearly 30 years combined. Darren is like a miniature Jon Taffer and has butted heads with Richard numerous times. His first move was to bring in agent Chuck Whisnat to hire in new women. However, female “entertainers” Athena, Selena and Sweetie disagree, and all the new girls don’t last long anyways. Chuck is supposed to be the guy who gets all the girls, but Richard will come in sometimes and there will only be one girl on stage. Chuck is not living up to his expectations.
In an effort to change the business, Darren then changed the name of the bar to “Industrial Strip” since he could not overcome the reputation. Richard had high expectations, but Darren is too headstrong and thinks he knows everything. Darren was put on a strict budget, but Darren insists that you need to spend money to make money. All the small things they do add up to big things, but Darren thinks that all the small things don’t matter without any big things. Jon Taffer has been called in to work on fixing Chix on Dix, and rescue them from their $200,000 in debt.
Chix on Dix on Bar Rescue
Jon and his car full of experts pull up, and Jon mentions that they are each at the Industrial Strip or Chix on Dix – there are two clashing signs. Lisamarie Joyce has joined Jon, and she says that it definitely looks like two different bars. Lisamarie Joyce is a master of TGI Friday’s Bartender Championship, winning the award twice. The name is so unclassy and quite offensive, Renae Lemmens explains. Rennae is the entertainer director at world-renowned Sapphire Gentleman’s Club in Las Vegas and has 17 years of experience in the industry.
They are about 10 minutes from downtown Detroit and across the street from one of the largest automotive plants in the world; the median income for the area is only $29,000 a year. This is a blue-collar working man’s place, Jon explains. A place like Chix on Dix instead chases people away. Inside, two women dance, and Richard is completely absent. Darren is patrolling the floor, and has been supposedly running the place as a GM-Consultant-Assistant Manager. Darren tried to refresh the place by hanging guitars on the wall, a horribly unoriginal idea a month, and they are losing $5,000 a month. Darren is a horrible consultant. Chuck, the dancer agent, sits off to the side on his phone call. Lisa points out that one of the dancers is falling asleep at the bar, but the dancer is an entertainer with connective abilities. There are almost no patrons in the bar for the women to work on, and several of the dancers are already drinking.
In the back, Darren works on preparing food for the customers. Jon sends in his squad of eight men for a bachelor party, and the mess begins. Jon has provided the dancers with a great opportunity, and the spies enter the 3,500 square foot space, grossing $64 per square foot in sales, $336 less per square foot than Detroit’s top gentleman’s club. A bartender in an environment like this can be a catalyst for the women – a shy man is more likely to interact with a bartender than the entertainers. Rennae agrees with Jon, and Chuck instructs the bartender to give the bachelor a shot. The bartender loosens up a little bit, forcing Lisamarie to think that was a good interaction.
The bartender takes the order, consisting of 5 long island iced teas and a manhattan drink. The liquor dispensing system is equipped with a ring, meaning that the liquor will not pour unless a ring is held – this keeps the bartender responsible for liquor sales. A system like that minimizes interaction in a lot of ways and really slows down the drink making. Chuck then instructs Sweetie to walk around and mingle with the customers, and she asks one of the bachelors to get her a drink.
Rennae is offended by one of the entertainers who simply says that she is tired and has a long day, and says that it is the worst customer service she has ever seen. One of the dancers performs, and Jon says that the performer has her back turned on the observer, making it “strictly eye-to-ass.” She should have some kind of connection, but without a connection, the guy is just going to walk away. One of the guys touches the stripper, which is absolutely against the law according to Rennae.
One of the strippers mentions that it is absolutely dead in the bar, and Athena is called up to perform a dance. She complains that she doesn’t want to go and she does horrible at dancing, burning her back. Jon, Rennae and Lisamarie have seen enough of the pathetic display, and they enter to sit down with the three men in charge of the bar (after calling Richard in) to set things straight.
Chix on Dix Now in 2024 – The After ‘Bar Rescue’ Update
After being featured on Bar Rescue, Chix on Dix had quite a transformation, both physically and operationally. The Bar Rescue team renovated the interior of the bar, introducing a sleek and modern design that replaced its previous outdated look. However, the biggest changes were not just cosmetic. Chix on Dix also received guidance on improving their business strategy and customer service practices.
Since the show aired, they have been working hard to maintain the momentum gained from their Bar Rescue experience. They’ve been dedicated to keeping up with Taffer’s recommendations and have been making continuous efforts to improve their services and ambiance. The staff has been trained to provide better customer service, and the menu has been revamped to offer a wider variety of food and beverage options.
However, it hasn’t all been smooth sailing for Chix on Dix after Bar Rescue. Like many businesses in the hospitality industry, they have faced numerous challenges that have tested their resilience. There have been issues with management changes and some negative customer reviews. Yet, they have shown determination in overcoming these hurdles.
Despite these challenges, Chix on Dix managed to stay afloat and attract a steady stream of customers for the next few months. They became particularly popular among locals who appreciated the bar’s laid-back atmosphere and friendly service. The establishment also received positive reviews for its live music performances and special event nights.
But it didn’t last long. Less than a year after they appeared on the show, they sold the establishment and closed their doors for good. As of 2024, there is a gentleman’s club at their old Detroit location.
While the journey of Chix on Dix after Bar Rescue hasn’t been entirely trouble-free, it’s clear that the bar has come a long way since its time on the show. The experience seems to have provided a much-needed boost, turning Chix on Dix into a more vibrant and successful establishment. It serves as a testament to the fact that with the right guidance and commitment, any struggling business can turn its fortunes around.