DBTH recently got a backstage tour of the Breslin, April Bloomfield and Ken Friedman's new gastropub project at the Ace Hotel. The place has been progressing quickly since the last tours went through the space, and they are committed to being ready for the upcoming FergusStock celebration on October 17. A few heady nuggets of intel: The wine list will feature 100 wines for under $100; SixPoint will be brewing a special Breslin Ale, and there will be multiple spaces used for aging meat! The kitchen for the hotel and event space is about to be up and running, and they expect to offer a full room service menu and lobby snacks (charcuterie, meat pies, cheeeeeese) by next week. We also got a sneak peak of the massive event space in the basement, which is progressing nicely. While not the Boom Boom or the Jane, the space can hold 200 people for an event, and has the capability of hosting anything from a fashion show to a concert. All in all, color us impressed and excited for opening night.
Entries in New York City Hotels (21)
We are just days away from the beginning of Fashion Week, which means we are just days away from the opening of the Standard's roof top bar, the Boom Boom Room. The space, towering high above the High Line park, is certainly one of the most anticipated openings to hit New York in a long time. According to our Little Birdy, the Boom Boom Room is jaw-droppingly awesome, with floor to ceiling windows offering magnificent views in every direction. But the kicker is the portions of the room that have glass floors, offering views 18 stories down to the ground. Hope that doesn't make you too jumpy. The festivities kick off Saturday night with a private party and then Purple Magazine takes over on Sunday for what is sure to be a wild fiesta. Boom Boom!
Has there ever been a more problematic development project than the Cooper Square Hotel? Let us count the ways.
- The futuristic design is out of context with the neighborhood and has been panned by both civic groups and architecture critics.
- Management failed to get approval for its planned bar and lounge spaces, and . . .
- The bars that were approved are subject to early closing times, and its patrons are constantly harassed by the neighborhood residents.
- They have opened during the worst travel recession in New York since 2001.
- The development partners are no longer speaking to one another.
And the final kick in the teeth? Frank "the Tank" Bruni comes in and gives Table 8 at the Cooper Square Hotel a big fat zero stars. Zero! Frank says, "The people behind Table 8 have given too little thought to logistics and comfort. They were inattentive when they put the place together, and they’re inattentive still." Ouch. On a positive note, Table 8 does draw a crowd on a nightly basis, and in a big eff you to the Community Board, the Coop does host those kicking penthouse parties. But will this place ever get some good press? Oh Coop, we weep for thee.
It's been a long time coming, but the best things come to those who wait. 18 months since Stereo closed and after months of rumors and the news that another operator was involved with the space, Iron Mike Satsky and Brian Gefter are ready to announce their latest venture, Provocateur, at the Gansevoort Hotel. A Little Birdy happened on the scene as the finishing touches were being made to the billboard, saying that Satsky himself was watching the artist at work. That's him there in the bottom right. Branding itself "The ♡ of International Nightlife", this announcement clearly signals the beginning of the end for Garden of Ono, and shows the level of commitment that New York's nightlife community has for the Meatpacking District. And they use a billboard to annouce it - how old fashioned! Coming soon!
Here's some non-exciting hotel news. Gone are the days of swank hotels planting their flag in exotic downtown locations. Let's say hello to the generic chains getting buildings on the cheap to offer discount rooms to tourists! Marriott has snatched up a building at 181 Varick Street in West Village/Hudson Square/Soho no man's land, and will open a Courtyard by Marriott. How glamorous!They are calling it the Courtyard Greenwich Village, which means that they went to the Frank Bruni School of New York City Neighborhoods. The hotel opens in Fall 2009. [Via HC]
Have you been dying for a $20 cocktail in a staid setting close to Central Park? Good news! The Pierre hotel has opened its revamped hotel bar, 2 E, aptly named for the hotel's address at 2 East 61st Street. Nifty by all accounts.
Recent rumors have spread that the Jane Hotel's booze plans are going nowhere fast, mainly due to community board issues and pushback from its Jane Street neighbors. We never bought it, since Socialista managed to open and operate for a time in the space and get along OK. Well, unless you count that whole Hep A scare. Mostly the delays are because owners Eric Goode and Sean MacPherson simply take their time to get things right, which is why the planned April opening has slipped in June. However, certain events are beginning to take advantage the new lobby bar, with a small little film premiere party being held in the space last night. Since there is no pending application for the hotel on the Community Board's June calendar and CB's don't meet in July, we expect the Jane to try and wrap up the roof top application in August, allowing for 1-3 months of sweet Hudson views.
Everything is turning brown outside the Cooper Square Hotel, as the 5th Street neighbors abutting the great glass wang in the sky deal with scensters congregating on the multiple terrace spaces attached to both the lounge and Table 8. But long time East Village residents are not known to take much guff, so they have begun a guerrilla campaign to chase the vodka soda crowd away from their homes. Tactics to date have included screaming at people through megaphones, blasting arcane comedy routines over their home stereos, and our personal favorites, stringing a clothesline across the courtyard complete with soiled men's underwear. You can see it in the picture above! We aren't sure if the feces was real, or if it came from the woman or a nearby animal, but a gutsy move for a neighbor desperate for some R&R. The lesson here is that the Cooper Square knew they were going to have issues, and failed to mitigate them properly, either through design or cash payouts, and since it's too late to go back to the drawing board, we expect these problems to continue until Peck Moss comes up with some moolah to shut them up. [NYP]
Our good friends at Hotel Chatter invaded the Ace Hotel as paying guests to get the low down on the much hyped and much delayed space. How exciting! They loved the furniture, amenities, ambiance and low introductory prices (as did DBTH), but were a bit turned off by the location and dark rooms, but were generally in favor, saying "For $199, this cannot be beat. Granted, after soft opening they will raise rates to $349 and up (except for the bunk bed rooms), but getting in now means enjoying something so new and so unique, while fearing not for your wallet."
The wait is over. Matt Levine's redo of the restaurant space in THOR will be called Levant East. We aren't sure if it's related to Levant in London, a Lebanese restaurant that is very east of Levant East, but you never know what this marketing genius will try next. Coming in May.
UPDATE: A Little Birdy breaks down the name Levant East, saying "Levant (meaning lower / rising) in French, and east, to represent and fuse together French and American cultures. The plan is to create a cuisine which will be French (Levant) American (East), meaning the Lower / Rising of the East side, the growth of the Lower East Side."
It's a head scratcher for us because we don't speak French, but we kind of get where they are coming from. Kinda.
Matt Levine is many things to many people. Clothing designer, television star, bar owner, philanthropist, philosopher. You get the drift. But now it seems we can add savior to the list. According to a tweet by a man with some free time on his hands, Levine has been tapped by The Hotel on Rivington to take over its cursed restaurant and bar space, which has churned through multiple chefs and operators since its opening in 2004. We turn to our friends at Eater for some of the history.
- August, 2006 - Original chef Kurt Gutenbrunner departs to concentrate on his other restaurants
- August, 2007 - The entire restaurant area is gutted, hoping for a fresh start
- October 2007 - Mark Spangethal is installed as the third chef, replacing Kevin Pomplum
- October, 2007 - The secret bar area is re-christened Bar 105
- May, 2008 - Jesi Solomon is announced as the fourth chef
Solomon was firmly in place by the end of summer, 2008. By April 2009, the concept was trashed, ready to be turned over to Matt Levine, a newcomer with a much debated business model. Four chefs in four years is enough to make an owner do crazy things. But is it crazy, or is it just crazy enough to work?
Further analysis and a comment by Matt Levine himself after the jump.
It's not just Bar Martignetti appearing on the Community Board 2 calendar tomorrow night. Our old friends at the Mondrian NYC who are applying for a liquor license at tonight's meeting. While it's well known that Sam Talbot is working on the restaurant space (seafood heavy with a nod to Chinatown), the hotel lounge hasn't gotten much play lately. A hotel rep tell us, "We’re still working on final lounge / bar concepts, but know that we’ll have a boutique beverage program with great mixologists, handcrafted cocktails, quality product and longevity!" We're admire your pep, and hope that travellers and NYCers will still want to head down Lafayette on a consistent basis.