21 Aug 2014
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Not Ready for 'American Idol'? Try Ai Tunes Karaoke

Each week, Norcross Patch profiles a different business in the area. This week, we talk to Martin Chan, owner of Ai Tunes Karaoke Lounge.

Not Ready for 'American Idol'? Try Ai Tunes Karaoke Not Ready for 'American Idol'? Try Ai Tunes Karaoke Not Ready for 'American Idol'? Try Ai Tunes Karaoke Not Ready for 'American Idol'? Try Ai Tunes Karaoke Not Ready for 'American Idol'? Try Ai Tunes Karaoke Not Ready for 'American Idol'? Try Ai Tunes Karaoke

Maybe it’s the “Hot Pot” or Asian fondue. Maybe it’s because you can sing songs like “Hey Jude” in seven languages. Maybe it’s the hookah. Whatever the reason, is gaining attention in Norcross, as it was named a Readers’ Choice 2012 winner for .

Somewhat different from a typical karaoke bar, at Ai Tunes you can rent private rooms in case you’re not ready to try your Lady Gaga or Bruno Mars imitation on complete strangers. Nor do you have to listen to someone sing yet another off-key rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody.” Unless, of course, it’s one of your family or friends.

And if you're prepping for "American Idol," there's an open mic contest on Friday nights.

What is your business and when did you open? 

Ai Tunes Karaoke Lounge opened its doors on Jan. 1, 2011. Our business is very unique, we consist of multiple attractions that entice patrons to come visit us and repeat the experience over and over.

We also just completely revamped our entire menu. We would like to introduce our “Hot Pot.” It is basically Asian fondue. The minimum to eat it is four people, as the serving size is very large. You first get a boiling pot of broth and a table full of ingredients, you then put whatever meats or veggies you would like into the pot and cook it at the table. Sauces and extra spices can be added as you see fit. It is a very traditional Asian-style cooking, another name for it would be “Shabu Shabu.”

How did you get the idea to open a karaoke lounge?
 
Private-room karaoke has actually been around for a long time. In the last decade, it has been a huge part of the culture throughout Asia. It has gotten pretty popular in New York and California, and I wanted to introduce it to the masses here in Georgia.
 
What makes you unique?
 
The idea of karaoke is not a new concept, private karaoke rooms may be, but the desire to sing is in everyone. People have been doing it for years, but it is the way we want our guest to feel that is different and uniquely ours. We provide a very cool and updated setting so anyone can feel like they are a superstar when they come in to sing. We have custom-made drinks and one-of-a-kind foods that can’t be found anywhere nearby. There is no expense spared when we want our customers to feel like they can come back again and again and never be bored.
 
What is rewarding about owning Ai Tunes Karaoke?
 
I have learned a lot after opening Ai Tunes Karaoke. Running a business in this economy presents a lot of challenges, but being passionate about what you do pushes me to go to work day after day. The people I work with and meet every day is reward in itself. A lot of customers are turned into friends, and employees turned into fans who promote their workplace as a great place to go. The high energy everyday is very inspiring and fun. Sure, there are a lot of new technical skills that have come out of it, but for the most part, the best part is the people.
 
What is challenging about owning Ai Tunes Karaoke?
 
I guess the most challenging aspect of Ai Tunes Karaoke is to get the masses to notice us as a unique restaurant and bar. Through our unique services, we are unlike any venue nearby or even in Atlanta. Americans in general [are not aware of private-room karaoke]. They do not know private rooms can be rented out for a low cost. Our No. 1 challenge is to create buzz and awareness for our product.
 
What do you like about being located in Norcross?
 
Norcross is a very unique area. It isn’t inside the perimeter, but it isn’t that far out of it, either. One special thing about Norcross, especially where we are located, is the racial mix. There is a little bit of everything here. I can take a five-minute drive and I can find any type of food I like – be it Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, Mexican or Jamaican. This gives us a very diverse crowd of customers. Because of this factor, we have karaoke in multiple languages. It’s one of the reasons we are so unique.  

Ai Tunes Karaoke Lounge is located at 4771 Britt Road, Norcross, and can be contacted at 678-218-3883 or aituneskaraoke.com

Want to know more about a Norcross business? Tell us in the comments.

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