Image via Gerber Group
Every night brings a new opening, a redux, or a rethinking, as operators race to embrace the busy season which starts in a few weeks and runs till New Year’s Eve. Gerber Group, one of the worlds top Hospitality companies, has redone the Lilium space in the W New York-Union Square into Studio (201 Park Avenue South), and have thought outside the box with its design. New York artist Domingo Zapata has done up the joint from top to bottom. Artists involved in Club spaces is nothing new. Area was an ever changing art project, a moveable feast with Andy Warhol and countless others in the mix. Palladium used Keith Haring, Jean Michel Basquiat, and Francesco Clemente to define its caché. The legendary Julian Schnabel designed the Gramercy Park Hotel with its wonderful Rose Bar, and artists like Cy Twombly, Fernando Botero and David Salle added greatness to the already over the top ambiance.
Domingo Zapata isn’t stopping at the design, as he is personally curating the live musical performances, cocktails, and is providing a guest list. If I hear he’s sweeping out the place at the end of the night I won’t be shocked. Another cute twist is the “create-your-own” gin and tonic bar featuring house-made tonics and seasonal garnishes. Gerber Group. is a force with successful properties everywhere. Some of them you may know. There’s Whiskey Blue, Living Room, Stone Rose Lounge, THE LCL: Bar & Kitchen, Kingside and The Roof and The Whiskey at the Paramount Hotel which made them famous back in 1991.
The space is a basement off to the right of the Park Avenue action. Its ceilings are low and because of the hotels mechanicals and such, it is weirdly shaped. My team and I bid on the design a few years back and found it to be a daunting task. This redux makes real sense. It isn’t the same ol’ same ol’ attempt at cool and should bring in guests who want to experience its unique approach. Once inside the doors the tried and true Scott Gerber headed hospitality should make the guests enjoy their visit. I think this is a winner.