Liv Lounge shuts its doors after two years

By ZEINAB NAJM
Times-Herald Newspapers

DEARBORN — The oft-troubled Liv Lounge, 21961 Michigan Ave., officially closed April 11 after its landlord bought out the club’s lease.

The club’s attorney Amir Makled said the owners decided it was the right move for them and the business. He also added that the owners do not plan to open another bar or club in Dearborn.

Liv Lounge is known for hosting broadcasts for the local Detroit radio station WJLB-FM 97.9 and parties on the weekends.

It opened in 2014 after the previous business, Silky’s Martini & Music Cafe closed.

Over the past few months, the club has had multiple issues with crime, fights and other citations, according to the City Council.

For the past month, the council had been holding hearings discussing the more than 20 citations and revoking of the club’s liquor license.

According to the city’s code, council members are allowed to revoke a business license if “a pattern of patron conduct in the neighborhood of the licensed premises which is in violation of the law and/or disturbs the peace, order and tranquility of the neighborhood.”

Dearborn residents attended those meetings to voice their concern with the club and incidents they witnessed from the neighborhood.

Police officers from the city also presented videos showing fights where gangs and guns were present at the club.

Makled, however, believes the club was unfairly targeted by the city and said he was willing to work with the administration to correct issues and discuss a plan to remain open.

The city council voted to suspend the remainder of the liquor license revocation hearings after news about the club closing was brought to them April 11.

“This sends a strong message to other businesses in Dearborn,” Council President Susan Dabaja said. “We have to think about the type of atmosphere we want for the neighboring residents and businesses.”

Councilman Thomas Tafelski praised the residents who attending meetings and said police needed to have more control over the situation at the club and area.

“We don’t want Dearborn portrayed in a negative way,” he said. “Public safety is important for everyone.”

Police Chief Ronald Haddad said the department is putting together a comprehensive plan to avoid future situations similar to Liv Lounge.

“The same thing that angers the council and residents angers me,” he said. “We need to work as a city with the businesses to have a better environment.”

(Zeinab Najm can be reached at zeinabnajm92@gmail.com.)

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