2 min

Crews & Tangos is open for business (and pleasure)

Lots of excitement and long lineups as much loved bar reopens

Crews & Tangos owners Michael Ramawad and Paras Prashad. Watch our video interview at the end of this story.

It was a night of orderly chaos on Friday, when Crews and Tangos reopened to the public.

For the official opening party, the two storey Victorian was a packed house with homos and hags rejoicing in the resurrection of the Church St centerpiece.

Favourites like Daytona Bitch and Amanda Roberts anchored the main stage with energetic performances, while partygoers packed the multiple dancefloors, bars and patios.

Equally packed, however, were the sidewalks out front, where guests waited in droves to check out the new digs. But in true Crews fashion, the evening proved that good things come to those who wait.

One partygoer, Johnny, says Crews’ reopening was a blessing for both himself and his social life. When the bar closed almost a year ago, he says he “stopped going out completely.”

Another guest, Justin, “expected more change” but was likewise pleased to be back. Like many others, he praised Crews’ diverse crowd and eclectic variety.

“I love that you have the option of the drag bar and then dancing upstairs,” he beamed, admitting he too went out less after it closed.

Co-owner Paras Prashad says he was “flabbergasted” by the response, which was warmer than he had anticipated.

“I knew Crews was popular but this was phenomenal,” he marveled, “People loved it! We got great reviews!”

One less-than-great review came from guest Michael Finley. Like many, he was disenchanted by the seemingly endless lineups, a problem that has long plagued the popular Crews and Tangos.

“We were in line ups all night,” he said. “I stood in line for the toilet. I stood in line to get a drink. I stood in line to get in this cardboard box with no roof,” referring to the smoking patio.

Others shared his sentiments, but as everyone, including owner Prashad, knows, you can’t make an omelet without breaking some eggs.

“You can never make everyone happy,” Prashad said, “but we try our best to address everyone’s concerns.”

And despite souring delays at the door, few were actually deterred from entering. Not even Mike Finley, who was admittedly charmed by the new motif.

“I do like that the smoking area now has tables,” he said.


The night before, Crews and Tangos held an invite-only party Thursday night, giving Church St business owners and VIPs a sneak peek at the revamped space.

Xtra videographer Michael Pihach was there. Check out his report:

Video by Michael Pihach.