Fall Nightlife Preview

Brooklyn's new rock venue Studio B.Photo: Courtesy of Studio B.

205 Christie St., at Stanton St.; 212-477-6688; opens September 14.
Serge Becker of La Esquina nudges former twenties-styled rock hangout 6’s and 8’s a few decades forward into the sixties: The screen-door façade opens up to a freight-elevator-type foyer. Upstairs, exposed pipes, plaster-patched brick walls, mismatched vintage furniture, and gobs of tin foil look to evoke Andy Warhol’s Factory; downstairs, the low-ceilinged basement aspires to a bedrock lair lit by candles. Aaron Bondaroff (a.k.a. A-Ron) of the aNYthing clothing line has been brought on as programming director.

BB&R (Blonde, Brunette and a Redhead)
1720 Second Ave., between 89th and 90th Sts.; 212-987-5555; opens September 9.
Three childhood buddies have installed Galaga, Pac Man, and the Fast and Furious consoles in the 2,000-square-foot space that was once Manhattan Lounge. After adding a pool table and a photo booth, they rechristened it Blonde, Brunette, and a Redhead in honor of a conversation they’d had on the merits of each hair color. The bar staff represents all three, so Upper East Siders can carry on the debate while sitting at tufted brown-leather banquettes and noshing on organic pizzas from Slice.

The Box
189 Chrystie St., between Stanton and Rivington Sts.; 212-982-9301; theboxnyc.com; opens late October.
Richard Kimmel (The Wooster Group), Randy Weiner (The Donkey Show), producer Simon Hammerstein (son of Oscar), and busy Serge Becker (again) are spending $1 million to convert a historic Lower East Side sign factory into a dinner theater–performance space that will operate as a lounge later in the night. Inspired by the Wild West opera of Arizona’s Birdcage Theater, designer Cordell Lochin of Suba has paired salvaged twenties furniture with mix-and-match antique wallpaper of flowers, flappers, and cherubs. Becker expects that the eclectic programming will focus on modernized takes on the classics.

(Rendering courtesy of Columbus 72.)

Columbus 72
246A Columbus Ave., between 71st and 72nd Sts.; 212-769-1492, columbus72.com; opens October 7.
According to co-owner Marc Glazer, the perennial nightclub that used to house Star Club has undergone its first serious makeover in 40 years. The two dance floors and two lounges are going to be outfitted with upholstered furniture and will each have unique music programming: hip-hop, classic rock, eighties, and house. But what will end up defining Columbus 72 could be Glazer’s partnership with Copacabana’s John Juliano, the possession of the UWS’s only cabaret license, or the enlisting of the man who played Crazy Eddie to spin Euro house and techno on Fridays.

Photo: Courtesy of Comix

353 W. 14th St., between Eighth Ave. and Ninth Ave.; 212-524-2500, comixny.com; opens September 15.
Those accustomed to cramped comedy clubs may experience agoraphobia when they enter this renovated Strawberry Fields supermarket. Amid the marble floors, plasma TVs, and two waiting lounges (one equipped with a copper bar) in the 5,000-square-foot showroom, Bobby Collins and booker Wende Curtis of Denver’s Comedy Works promise to bring the likes of David Spade, Sarah Silverman, Kathy Griffin, and Triumph the Insult Comic Dog. They’ll need that level of talent if they hope to fill the 320 seats with $25-and-up cover prices. Great Performances staffs the kitchen slated to dole out fancy American grub.

Dirty Disco
248 W. 14th St., between Seventh and Eighth Aves.; 212-488-2525; opens September 15.
With reggae-hip-hop hotspot 2i’s long gone from the premises, Yuval Eder has arrived with this “miniclub”—a bi-level space for rock, eighties hip-hop and house with a modest dance floor, a cabaret license, a step-up VIP perch, and a $100,000 sound system. It’s considerably smaller than neighbor the Plumm, yet the operators, who also include former owners of Ruby Falls and model wrangler Danny Devine, assure no bottle reservations will be required to snag a low-slung pleather banquette.

Luna Lounge
361 Metropolitan Ave., at Havemeyer St., Williamsburg, Brooklyn; opens in fall.
Beloved Ludlow Street rock dive Luna Lounge suffered death by condo a year ago. Since then, longtime East Village resident Rob Sacher and wife Susan have banked on Williamsburg’s lower rents and chiller community board to support their year-long conversion of a parking garage into a state-of-the-art concert venue. Bigger than Mercury Lounge, smaller than Bowery Ballroom, the new Luna Lounge looks to lure national acts as well as signed and up-and-coming local bands. Post-performance cover charges (usually around $15) will be waived.

R Bar
218 Bowery; between Prince St. and Spring St.; 212-334-0484, rbarnyc.com; opens September 5.
Without sacrificing the liberal door policy or the many beers on tap, the owners of Pioneer Bar have given the Bowery stalwart a clubby makeover by throwing a black epoxy resin on the floors, red light boxes under the bar, and squares of pleather on the walls. The old-school hip-hop and indie Britpop tunes emitting from the D.J. booth (modeled after a Chesterfield sofa) should complement co-owner- artist Benjamin Kay’s paintings and photos of Mick Jagger and Deborah Harry. The icing on the cake? Stripper poles in a reservable private back room.

Room Service
35 E. 21st St., between Broadway and Park Ave. S.; 212-254-5709; opens September 15.
Chris Reda and Mike Romer of the short-lived Rock Candy are banking on a novel gimmick to revive their old space: Off a main room accommodating thirteen tables are nine curtained-off rooms that range from a ten-by-ten-foot standard to the fifteen-by-twenty-foot “presidential suite”; each of these auxiliary spaces can be rented for $350 to $800 per evening and are attended by waiters dressed like Bellboys who are ready to deliver a bottle, a brewski, some comfort food, or any other edible your heart desires. (Just give the concierge 24 hours to stock up.) Those who don’t think a cubicle with a DVD player, a minibar, and a drawer full of condoms, toothpaste, and Snickers bars is the height of sexiness can slip out through a sliding door to the adjoining gents’ club Tens.

Star Lounge
222 W. 23rd St., between Seventh and Eighth Aves.; 212-255-4646; opens in October.
The Chelsea-in-the-Hamptons trend reverses when the perennial East End hot spot Star Lounge takes over the space under the Chelsea Hotel currently occupied by Serena. Owners Charles Ferri and Vekrum Kaushik have enlisted designer Heidar Sedeki to give the two rooms a respectively modern and classical feel. House-hip-hop D.J.’s Cassidy, D Nice, and Sky Nellor are expected to spin for a strictly guest-list crowd.

Studio B
259 Banker St., between Meserole and Calyer Sts., Greenpoint, Brooklyn; 718-389-1880; clubstudiob.com; opens September 21.
The rockers behind the Delancey and Studio A in Miami have commandeered a onetime Polish nightclub on the outskirts of Greenpoint and are using its over-the-top lights and smoke machines, industrial flavor, and gigantic dance floor for live performances (promoter Todd P. brought the Black Dice to a pre-opening party) and D.J. nights curated by Justine D. (of Motherfucker). In addition to a raised VIP lounge with leather couches overlooking the stage, an intimate, bordello-esque side room hosts its own spinners.

26 Little West 12th St., between Ninth Ave. and Washington St.; 646-624-2410; tenjunenyc.com; opens September 6.
Diddy has already graced the D.J. booth; Janet Jackson, the private VIP bathroom. Even after Fashion Week has ended, it won’t be easy to get past the doorman and into the new lounge from Eugene Remm of Level V and Mark Birnbaum. Located beneath the luxury steakhouse STK, the small horseshoe-shaped dance floor is surrounded by two tiers of tables and a D.J.-performance stage. A leather bar, marble accents, zebra-print tables, and a velvet-rich Purple Room are sure to give nearby Double Seven a run for its money.

37 W. 26th St., between Broadway and Sixth Ave.; opens September 28.
Sure, the Chelsea debut of Tommy Tardie of Fuelray boasts a VIP room, but it’s the VIP “tree house” that sells it. The structure, which fits 30 people and is raised two flights above the main room, is bedecked with flowers and ivy and has volume controls for those who want to turn up the house music. (There will be nights of classics and eighties tunes, too.) Entrance to the main room, which sports an 80-foot-wide projection wall, will be limited mostly to members, so don’t get too thirsty for cocktails created by mixologist Stefan Trummer of Bouley and Masa.

The Volstead
125 E. 54th St., between Lexington and Park Aves.; 212-532-7474; opens late October.
The operators behind Tribe, Vig 27, and Punch and Judy are bringing the formula that has made their Park Avenue South restaurant-lounge PS 450 successful to the subterranean midtown space vacated by Light. Mahogany and dark-cherry woods will emit a speakeasy feel in honor of namesake Andrew Volstead, the teetotaling congressman behind Prohibition. Older business lunchers are expected to cede to younger professionals who’ll come later in the night for D.J.’s, brown-liquor cocktails, and tapas.

Also on the Horizon…
Scott Sartiano, who was set to open a club in Plaid’s old space, has relocated his plans to West 17th Street. The unnamed nightclub, which should be bigger than his other spots, Butter and G Spa, may open in the winter at the earliest … Top nightlife realtor Alex Picken has just closed a deal with international investors that will bring a live-music-and-dinner venue catering to a 25-plus crowd to the Meatpacking vicinity … Steve Ballinger, who just opened the Village Pourhouse next to his club Webster Hall, will soon reopen the 11,000-square-foot midtown space formerly known as Downtime as an 800-seat concert venue called the Rebel … Starting Fashion Week, Pacha’s second floor, soon-to-be-dubbed the Funky Room, will be enclosed in retractable glass and given an Ibiza-style makeover so that D.J.’s can spin hip-hop and rock amid plants and near curtained cabanas … Owners of FUR and promoters of Snitch have bought out the latter club’s “wannabe hipster” owners and redesigned the space, added a gourmet comfort-food menu, and brought in a new booker who they promise will deliver juicy big-name performers… This week the Blind Tiger Ale House reopens at 281 Bleecker Street at Jones Street. Modeled after a farmhouse complete with a stone hearth imported from Dublin, it’ll serve espresso, breakfast, and pressed sandwiches while awaiting a liquor license … Leisure Time, the bowling alley at Port Authority, is going the Bowlmor route: An $8 million renovation will add a nightclub, leather couches, a huge bar, and two private VIP lanes by October 1, a bistro come December, and a 200-seat downstairs restaurant for a Scandinavian-style buffet shortly thereafter.

Fall Nightlife Preview