I hear it all the time. Nightlife people say, “It’s all about relationships,” almost as often as they say, “It’s all about service.” But “relationships” is a broad term. It’s relationships with customers, staff, celebrities, P.R. firms, promotional entities, cops, robbers and relationships with lots of broads, models and other beauties. In an era where night life spaces—faced with increasing overhead— are open on more nights, and often days, it is important to have partners you can depend on. The modern nightlife entity must expand or franchise it’s brand elsewhere, like another space or city or even country. It is increasingly important to partner with like minded individuals. The successful groups like Tao, Strategic, Butter, The OneGroup, and Emm have multiple players with a common purpose.
A minute back I congratulated Dual Groupe partners Daniel and Derek Koch for their continued success and the seasonal opening of Day & Night. But I got a note from them saying they were no longer involved with Day & Night or Dual Group—they are working on something new. But as they say in showbiz “the show must go on,” and so it does. For me, the brand Dual Groupe referred to Daniel and Derek, the twin brothers, the two or duo. I got confused and I got in touch with Michael Weinstein, a Dual Groupe partner, to find out how this happened and what will happen now. Lawyers are way deep in this, so answers were expectedly guarded.
I myself was confused by the “tiff.” I assumed that Dual Groupe referred to the two, the duo that are the Koch twins. Has the public been confused? Does the public care?
Dual Groupe started as a collaboration with Derek & Daniel, but the Day & Night brand has continued to grow without their input. The public is only interested in a quality experience, they know that they will continue to enjoy the best brunch party out there. We not only have an amazing venue in Highline Ballroom, but continue to present the biggest DJ’s and the highest energy team.
The Highline Ballroom brunch is a hit. People are going, spending money, having fun but eventually, Derek and Daniel will start a rival brunch. How will this affect you?
We aren’t concerned. We just celebrated our 5th anniversary and the crowds consistently prove to be non-plussed by any outside noise. They are only interested in the product, not by drama. Our task is to provide that experience. Our partners at the Highline Ballroom have really turned up the offering with an amazing new sound and light system. There is nothing like it in the city. We are also looking forward to taking the show on the road; we have some exciting plans for Art Basel Miami Beach at the Ritz Carlton, St Barths for the holidays, and the Sundance Film Festival.
I’m sure that Derek and Daniel will come up with something creative, it just won’t be Day & Night.
Can you talk to the reasons why the Groupe broke up?
Without getting into specifics because of pending litigation, I will say that there were differences of opinions as to the direction of what we do. It’s no different than any business arrangement. Sometimes people don’t agree, but how they react that makes all the difference. Sometimes things are said and done that change relationships irrevocably.
How has brunch changed nightlife?
We truly have created a new category that many have tried to duplicate throughout the country. Restaurants from NYC to Miami to LA all offer an alternative to what we do, but none come close to what we offer. We are the archetype for this category.
Who are the faces now of Dual Groupe and what are their backgrounds?
We have a great team. My partner Andreas Huber and I have partnered with Tsion Bensusan at Highline Ballroom. Our hosts for the brunch are Phillipe Bondon and Olivier Lubrano, both of whom have a wealth of hospitality experience. They couldn’t be more debonair or charming.