Down Under the Dream Downtown, Electric Room Lights Up For Soft Opening

The first night of Electric Room.

Electric Room, Nur Khan’s tiny nook of a space beneath the new porthole-clad Meatpacking District monolith that is the Dream Downtown, is accessed through a storage ramp, the steel innards of the hotel exposed overhead. Like most ramps this one is big, as it needs to fit massive trucks, but the overflow from the ONE Management party still managed to fill it side-to-side, and soon the crowd spilled into the street. Electric Room was hosting the after party and, yes, the line is long, but surely the reported 100-person capacity was a slight exaggeration, no?

That number turned out to be pretty accurate. When The Observer pushed back the sheets of velvet on the door and entered Electric Room we found ourselves in a square windowless parlor just slightly bigger than a barber shop, soft blues washing over the walls. There were not more than two dozen people present, and at its peak the place could not have surpassed that magic number of one hundred by more than a few.

It’s a nice space, lit in a way that even a Banksy-ish painting of Sid Vicious didn’t distract anyone too much. The same can be said for a blue neon sign, which spelled “all things evil” in nimble cursive. It will undoubtedly get more crowded on other nights, but the couches are well-placed for close conversation, and the high ceiling offers some suggestion of class. The low-ceilinged Kenmare and Don Hills — past places from Mr. Khan — were more involved in suggesting crass.

Both approaches to a night out have their uses, though. To have a place as intimate as Electric Room has clear advantages — The Observer stood next to Adrien Grenier as he chatted up Courtney Love,  for instance, before watching as Mr. Grenier engaged in conversation with every model in a five-foot radius (there were many).

Toward the end of the night we ourselves sat next to Ms. Love, who had just finished playing a somewhat impromptu set at Hiro Ballroom. The singer recognized us from a recent interview regarding the talked-about pictures of her daughter, Frances Bean Cobain.

“I was so proud of Hedi [Slimane] for taking the pictures down,” Ms. Love said. “She’s 19, you know?”

Then Ms. Love looked up at the bevy of ONE models dancing with each other, all tall and skinny, standing in a nook where there was a painting — another Banksy homage — of a young couple locked in a kiss.

“Frances just wanted people to think she’s pretty,” she said.

Down Under the Dream Downtown, Electric Room Lights Up For Soft Opening