To hear the nightlife obsessives at Down By The Hipster tell it, things are off to a bad start at West 21st St.’s newly opened Citrine. Occupying the space that once housed the rock ‘n roll flavored Snitch, Citrine aspired to a more exclusive, polished vibe. Digital renderings of the place looked promising and press releases boasted of waitresses decked out in $10,000 gems, a touch meant to lend the club a dose of the insta-flash that generally plays well with the models-and-bottles crowd they hoped to attract. (Un)fortunately, the combination of the recent financial bloodbath and good, old-fashioned progress has been eroding the appeal of that template for a while now. Even if people were still flocking to West Chelsea to spend $300 on carafes of SKYY and Tropicana, early reports suggest that Citrine still isn’t quite up to snuff. Below, two party reports from the hyped opening night event, a private party for designer and socialite companion Richie Rich:
"The actual interiors of Citrine look like they just took the old Snitch (which itself looked like a car repair garage without the fun lift, but was actually appropriate for the garage bands that played there) and added some long drapes, painted plywood, and cheap rubbery/plastic covered stools and cushions for the banquettes. The sort of thing I might have done when I was 8 or 9 trying to ‘dress up’ my friends grease-pit garage in order to impress and seduce 10 and 11 year old girls."
"Walking into the party was like entering some kind of bizarro nightlife world. We were already feeling disoriented given our locale, then we saw Richie Rich next to some NYU undergrads, then some drag queens dancing on couches, then some businessmen on their Blackberries snapping photos. All packed into a fairly tiny space, which started clearing out around 12:30am. Not sure who the club is meant to attract given the area and the turnout last night… but with such masterminds behind the concept, we are expecting interesting things.
Opening nights are tough, of course, but something tells us next week isn’t going to be much better. According to Grub Street, the very recently shuttered Radar is hosting a Halloween party there on Wednesday. Scary!
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