The venue, a favorite hangout for celebs, Louis Vuitton-sporting models and high-flying execs, is accessible via an express elevator located off the lobby (right next to the regular elevators that whisk guests up to the rooms.)
However, enclosed by a set of velvet ropes and guarded a big, burly bouncer, this isn't the easiest elevator to get into. And it doesn't matter if you're a legitimate guest there—PhD has gotten a reputation as one of the coolest, most exclusive hotel hangout spots in the city, and it sure likes to keep things that way.
Depending on what party is being hosted the night you go (and what time you go), you might find yourself at the hopeless end of a line of VIP attendees, and not even a Harry Houdini magic trick is going to be enough to impress the stony-faced doorman. As one recent Yelp reviewer explained:
"If you're NOT on a guest list and don't get there prior to midnight, save yourself the cab fare, unless you know someone who knows someone who knows Heidi Klum, and she's WITH YOU to prove it."
The door is pretty tough here. On a recent Thursday night, we went up to check out the weekly After-Work party scene (every Thursday from 6–11pm), and made the mistake of showing up with a ratty-looking backpack around our shoulders. It didn't matter that we checked the bag before actually going in the elevator—what mattered was the doorman had already spotted us. Luckily, we were with two well-garbed women and with our powers combined we managed to talk the guy into letting us up.
But in general, the way to make PhD happen is:
· DRESS extremely well
· Show up with a GROUP of similarly-dressed people
· EXPLAIN to the doorman exactly what party you're there for
· DON'T try to lie about being a guest at the hotel, because it won't get you anywhere.