A new era of community in Atlanta: The Rise of Modern Social Clubs

8 min readApr 22, 2022
Photo by Robert Bye on Unsplash


I’ve lived in Atlanta since 2014. My partner and I make a habit of exploring new ideas, experiences, restaurants, and spaces. Once we find a new space/experience we then tell everyone we know about it.

I host private dinners and generally, it is the exploring that we do that gives me options to share with my friends in the ecosystem.

One of the early finds that we had were in the spaces that offered a place to build community. The first was a hosted event at General Assembly that celebrated street artists — some of which are now featured in murals all over the city.

After that experience, we looked into different spaces offering an experience of building around specific categories (or “vibes” as we like to call them).

Now that I have seen it over the last eight years, it occurred there is an underlying trend that is happening all across the United States. For this piece, I want to explore it a little deeper (but not too deep).

New Era of Community

There has been this new resurgence of articles and tech around building digital communities, which is great, but it will never replace that feeling that you get when you walk into a place where the “vibes” are you.

It is what people felt when they walked into a Starbucks, an Apple Store, or a Spencer’s. When you feel it — you feel at home. That is the original goal of the “third space” ideal, producers of the space want you to feel that there is truly a comfort in between home and work.

Side note: there are gyms aiming to build third spaces as well. This makes sense due to the fact that every day the U.S. is getting healthier — why wouldn’t you add workspaces inside of a spacious gym.

For this new era, I can see builders operating just like restaurants with a particular theme and cuisine. When you go to a nice Italian restaurant it’s night and day from a fast-casual Italian space…which is much different from a hole-in-the-wall Vietnamese spot on Buford Highway. Every place has its own vibe and you know it instantly when you walk in.


Just a guy who enjoys thinking about what could be.