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The SPiN table at the Mondrian LA.
It looks like the SPiN Ping Pong Club is once again trying to make it in Hollywood.
failed venture limited engagement at the Mondrian Los Angeles last year, SPiN LA is being revived by Susan Sarandon and her boyfriend/biz partner, Jonathan Bricklin, along with fellow co-owners Franck Raharinosy and Andrew Gordon at the The Standard Downtown LA.
The Huffington Post reports that hotelier Andre Balazs is very much on board with the idea and will even make some "major" changes to the hotel's mezzanine floor of which SPiN will occupy the entire space.
The club is expected to launch in early Fall and its opening will be the culmination of a bunch of SPiN tournaments held at other Standard Hotels in Miami and New York.
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And the saga of hotelier-turned-upstate-farmer Andre Balazs—who's either going through a midlife crisis, or was just in desperate need of a career change—continues.
Now that Balazs' Locusts-on-Hudson farm continues to supply more and more produce to the Standard, it only made sense for him to install a designated "egg girl" at the Standard Grill, whose sole job it is to be, as the NY Post writes, "the modern-day version of the cigarette girl...in pigtails, a lemon-yellow gingham dress and Mary Jane shoes, selling eggs out of a basket ($5 for a half dozen)."
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Fans of the Top Chef judge will be excited to know that after the wild success of Craft and 'wichcraft (among others, of course), Tom Colicchio has decided to open his first hotel on Long Island, New York.
It won't be some flashy chain, or have any kind of gimmicky concept—at least not for now. The hotel is in fact an old, quiet 22-room inn in Bridgehampton called Topping Rose House (love the name!), and at the adjoining restaurant, Colicchio plans to use produce grown on the property in the dishes. Giving farmer-wannabe Andre Balazs a run for his locally-sourced money...
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Not too long ago, we heard rumors about Andre Balazs, the man who concocted one of New York City's most iconic hotels, spending time upstate, raising chickens and generally enjoying a quieter life in the country.
Well, now he's back from his sabbatical, and he's putting his produce to the test with a new seasonal cafe that's popped up outside the Standard New York. That's right—in the same spot where you once saw public art by KAWS, went ice skating, and enjoyed a little softcore porn, you can now munch on Andre Balazs' homegrown tomatoes. Ain't life grand?
The other day we gave you a sneak peek at the hotel in London that hottie hotelier Andre Balazs has been working on but now we've got another bit of info from a well-connected tipster--it's going to become an outpost of AB's legendary Mercer Hotel in New York. Whee!
This is actually what we suspected would happen way back in December when we found out the old fire station on Marylebone Place would not be a Standard. And considering our man on the street in London said the building was small, we thought it would be prime for a Mercer outpost as the original Mercer is quite an intimate place to stay. In fact, our exact words were:
Back then our spy told us the building was not very big and that if indeed AB turns it into a hotel, it would be a very small one. We agreed it was too small for a Standard outpost but it might be a perfect spot for another sort of Mercer Hotel.
We found it almost hard to believe when we realised it was as long ago as October 2010 when we first took pictures of the rumoured site of André Balazs' new London hotel. With very little detail available at the time, we wondered what the hotelier had in mind for this old fire station close to Marylebone High Street, not far north of Oxford Street.
Then in December of last year, we learned this was not going to be a Standard Hotel, but a "higher price-point in the ABP portfolio", and that it would not open until 2013.
Having passed by the hotel this week to check out for ourselves how far things have come along, we'd say that next year wouldn't surprise us; from the looks of the major construction going on at the moment, the property still has some way to come. Yet that didn't stop us from finding out what it will look like when completed.
Had a meal at Standard New York recently? No? Well, you're missing out. You see, in addition to being a magnet for all sorts of naked folks (and when is that ever not fun?), the hotel is also currently the test kitchen for owner Andre Balazs' newly-acquired upstate NY farm.
You read that right. Mr. Balazs, who in his spare time manages to date gorgeous blondes, launch his own branded seaplanes, and manage seven US hotels (with an eighth on the way), is now also trying his hand at raising chickens.
Because a lot should seem weird about this room at the Standard Hollywood, which isn't even a real room, but a re-construction of a room, assembled in the Standard's parking lot by a group of artists.
Yup. Apparently there's a citywide project, titled Art in the Parking Space, which inserts performances and installations into (you guessed it!) parking lots all over LA. And last week, it was the Standard's own parking lot that, according to one of the participating artists, "became a total hang-out spot."
Tova Carlin, Ania Diakoff and Katerina Llanes, dubbed their installation Sub-Standard (we could slip in a few jabs about the rooms here, but we'll try not to), and specifically intended for people to come, hang out, and "think about itinerancy and occupying space with their bodies."
Sorry, Andre is not quite sure what he wants to do with this space here.
While the Cooper Square Hotel is officially now the Standard Comma East Village, not much has changed. And it might be a while before things do as hotelier Andre Balazs told the Wall Street Journal that he was still figuring things out.
However, Andre does plan on making the hotel "cost-conscious" with rooms starting at about $190. Given that these rooms are incredibly small, we think that's a fair rate. He also new ideas for the hotel's public spaces--meaning the lobby and the restaurant and possibly that rooftop performance space we heart so much. But alas, no real plans for these areas seem to be shaping up.
However, Andre did get in a little dig to the guys who built Cooper Square--Greg Peck and Matt Moss. The two notoriously had a falling out during the construction of the hotel and needless to say, that probably affected the hotel's future. But another big problem for the hotel was how badly they pissed off the community before the hotel even opened. And here's where Andre puts in his two cents:
Just the other night we were perusing hotels in New York City on a couple of booking sites and lo and behold, look at what we saw--the Cooper Square Hotel is now officially rebranded as Andre Balazs Standard East Village.
We first got word of the hotel's Standardization back in October but now it looks like the transformation is complete, at least online. Not only do booking sites like Expedia and Kiwi Collection (pictured below) show the CSH as the Standard East Village, but when you visit Cooper Square's website, it redirects you to the Standard site.
Last October, we scouted out an old fire station in Marylebone at Chiltern Street where Andre's London hotel was rumored to open. Back then our spy told us the building was not very big and that if indeed AB turns it into a hotel, it would be a very small one. We agreed it was too small for a Standard outpost but it might be a perfect spot for another sort of Mercer Hotel.
And indeed that's probably what will happen. TheStreet.com reports:
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The paper reports that the deal will be finalized today and that Andre will rename the property The Standard East Village (but we're sure everyone will just call it Standard East.)
the 105-room hotel’s public spaces will be reconfigured, its rooms refurbished and its restaurants overhauled over the course of the next year.