Sunday, March 30, 2008

Debauchery at The Box

I spend my evenings in ways diverse in this city, but watching bare breasted women singing Superstition & shaking their booties hasn’t, until, now, been one of the usual ones.

The evening started in a calm, grown up fashion, as I drank a glass of Burgundy, did my hair (nearly asphyxiating myself with hairspray) & picked out a microscopically short black tunic dress with dull black pailettes, which I paired with Wolford satin opaques and my burgundy patent Mary Janes.

I cabbed it to the West Village to pick up glamorous CA (perched on her new Prada floral wedges) and head to a private view at Plane Space on Charles. It was rammed, with some rather attractive men throwing us some extremely gratifying glances, but they were serving beer in plastic cups from a keg, an economy I understand when your event has attracted maybe 200 people, & we were aiming for a slightly more sophisticated vibe so we hopped it to a party at the Alex Beard Gallery in Soho thrown by a friend of a friend in London.

I found E & introduced myself, (she’s English & charming, which is always a relief when you have to report back) and then milled around, eating delicious canapés (white bean, & artichoke bruschettas and tiny Vietnamese summer rolls).

We decided to end the evening, or so I thought, at Employees Only, a fabulous speakeasy style bar in the West Village drinking Champagne, and blackberry and lemon vodka cocktails (I like to suck down some vitamins with my alcohol). After walking CA home to Perry, I was going to jump in a cab home when S rang me with the lure of a table at The Box. Irresistible.

It’s a tiny jewel box of a club, which always reminds of 19th century vaudeveile theatres & saloon bars, all velvet, flock wallpapers, mirrors & chandeliers. Pocket sized, with a stage, several big curved banquette booths down the side, and maybe five huge velvet sofas in the middle of the room, it's always rammed with beautiful people (& people who think they are beautiful). Upstairs is a pretty curved gallery with six velvet-curtained booths (we were in one of them), and another bar with more sofas. There’s also another recessed salon with a pole for private performances.

It’s extremely exclusive (although there are a few too many louche Eurotrash kicking around for my taste) & fiendishly expensive – a table upstairs costs at least $1500 and I reckon a night out can top at least $3000, although there are a few standing people let in each night. (But, given the ferocious door, I don't recommend trying). Fortunately the irrepressible S is a banker, with clients in tow, so it was all on them.

The USP is the twice nightly revue, which is where the bare breasts came in. Nudity, circus performers, singers, tap dancers, skits: they don't discriminate. Last night’s was a second rate mixed bag (altho the aerialists were exceptional) but highly amusing all the same, and fitted in with the general atmosphere of controlled debauchery throughout the club (there’s a topless girl gyrating in a ring above the bar).

I had lots of amusement. It definitely involved Champagne, strawberries, a bottle of tequila, dancing and talking to funny boys.

And now I need to feed my hangover. (I arrived home somewhere around 4.30am, although the club was still going strong). I am off to eat huevos rancheros with the papers at my favourite Nuevo Latino restaurant on Avenue A.