World-renowned billionaire and fighter Joe Fournier has opened another premiere nightclub location. This time, Fournier set his sights on Tulum, in Mexico. Tulum used to close down after the sun set, but Fournier’s club Bonbonniere – the first licensed nightclub in the city – is changing things and bringing the breathtaking Mexican coastline city’s night scene to life. CELEB sat down with Fournier to get the details on the new nightclub.
A Global Company with Local Partners
Fournier is a bit of a renaissance man, with experience in writing a book, boxing, business, entrepreneurship, fitness, personal training and now – running a successful nightclub in Mexico. “I own my global brand 100%. But locally in Tulum, I have partners – Anderson Group. They own over 220 places in Mexico, and they’re the strongest hospitality group in this part of the world. And I do the luxury stuff with them. I came down here for vacation, and a mutual acquaintance connected me with the Anderson Group. We got along so well. We’re into the same things like watches, sneakers and fitness. And so we got the financial part of the agreement hammered out in like 5 days. We didn’t even argue about money. The only thing we had any sort of disagreement on was when we would open, because I was in disbelief that they could build it as quickly as they said they could.”
But Anderson Group not only was able to meet the projection – they beat it. And the success of this first venture has encouraged Fournier to consider other partnerships with his new pals; “We’re looking to do hotels and beach clubs together. I’m even looking at doing some passion projects, like I want to open a British pub down here in Mexico. We’re looking at Mexico City together, and maybe the other side of Cabo. They just don’t do uber luxury yet, but that’s what I bring to the partnership.”
A Night at the Club
Once they identified the plan for Tulum and hammered out the deal, all that was left to do was to bring it to life. There were no licensed nightclubs in Tulum before Anderson Group and Fournier moved in, so restaurants, bars, and lounges closed down at a relatively early time. The government was amenable to the idea of a single late-night venue, operated responsibly by capable hands, and so Fournier’s club was born. “There’s no competition. It’s the only licensed nightclub in Tulum. It’s new construction, custom from the ground up. That’s like gold dust, right?”
Fournier closed the deal in May – and the club is already up and running, with customers packing the venue since Mid-October. Bonbonniere is in the middle of the Hotel Zone with a private road that allows for valeting, which is nearly unheard of in Tulum. The 750-person capacity venue has a Mykonos vibe, and offers a fully retractable roof. “You can party under the stars. We also offer secret members’ rooms, and to get into them you need a special golden key – made of real gold. That’s only for members though! We have a three DJ booth setup, and we can have the resident DJ perform in the speakeasy, for just around 60 people.”
With an option to party big or spend a more intimate night immersed in luxury nightlife, Tulum’s Bonbonniere offers something for everyone. “We’re open Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday the moment. We were absolutely packed every day on the opening week, which I was shocked about because we opened the middle of low season. And we have been slammed every day. We had to turn people away every night.”
The nightclub functions as more than just a nightlife spot, with a speakeasy restaurant and the club blending seamlessly together as the hours turn through the night. “Half of our team came from Europe, and half of the team is local. We created 100 jobs, which is great. Once you arrive at the venue, one of those team members will greet you. Then you have your VIP area behind the DJ booth, a VIP area in front of the booth and then the main dance floor areas, and then the bar area opposite. So you’ll get taken by the hostess to your area – depending on where that is. If you’re coming for the clubbing, you want to come to the rooftop. If you’re coming for dining, you’ll be there earlier – like seven o’clock, where you can watch a sunset over the jungle. The dining area is the more intimate space, deigned for 60 people, and you’re 50 feet in the air looking at the skyline of Tulum, it’s magical. If you’re enjoying yourself and want to keep the party going, there’s always the members only area which is open all night.”
Fournier Has Been Busy
Across the Atlantic in Greece, Fournier’s Mykonos Bonbonniere is closed for the season. But fans of the club of delights don’t have to wait, because Tulum’s Bonbonniere embodies all the pleasure, fun, and joy of its Greek sister location. “We tie up the first week of October, and some of the staff go to Tulum. It’s peak season here now. Some will go back to their families and their lives elsewhere during the slow season in Mykonos.”
But bouncing between trans-Atlantic nightlife hotspots isn’t all Fournier is up to. “I’ve managed to keep my boxing career going. I only get about 5 hours of sleep a night, so I wake up and hit the boxing gym, train, and then go to the offices. I also like to keep an eye on everything happening in the club.”
Fournier adds, “I just fought on the Triller card in Miami in the HardRock which was used for the heavyweight World Championship and Exhibition. I was the third person ever in history who’s taken two points against Vladimir Klitschko and Ishmael Abdo. I went up two weight divisions, which was crazy. And Donald Trump was the commentator, while 50 Cent and Evander Holyfield were fighting on the card. Tito Ortiz was there. I was kind of like wow, I’ve really done something in this industry. It was a bit surreal, because I started as a dishwasher at an Indian curry house at the age of 13 in London. So just to be in the mix of those guys was a big deal. And I fought on the 11th. And we opened the club on the 14th. So I had bumps, bruises and black eyes, and I came to the opening and trained the staff for two extra days. And we opened.”
Fournier adds that he’s been humbled by how far his career has come. “That’s the three rules our team has: teamwork, stay humble, and have fun. The number one thing is to stay humble. Because when you lose the grounding, you stop enjoying it.”
Fournier wants to be more involved with Triller, which he says has the right ideas and is changing the game of fights and content production. And the billionaire has plans to expand his hospitality portfolio as well. With all the experience behind Bonbonniere in Mykonos coming to bear at their Tulum location, it’s certain to be a place you won’t want to miss.