Feels Like 2007 in Here

Mr. Moinian peered out the window, admiring the skyline of water tanks, and guffawed at a neighboring rooftop covered with a motley array of potted plants. “Take a look—the guy is like in the Hamptons,” laughed Mr. Moinian. We were in the flower district. The hotel itself is couched in between Associated Cut Flower and 28th Street Orchids. 

“Now, we’ll show you our rooftop!” Mr. Moinian said.

The rooftop will be called the Glass Bar. It takes its name from the 7-foot-high perimeter glass separating drinkers from the abyss below, and it will be lit indigo blue.

“Blue lights all around, blue light everywhere,” said George Buchelli, the hotel’s general manager.

“I’m saving the best for last,” Mr. Moinian said. “Next stop is the restaurant, called the Blu, B-L-U.”

“You will love it. It’s full of art. Full of charm,” he said. “It’s designed in a very clubby atmosphere.”

Indeed, the restaurant looked charming. There were Italian-style chandeliers, forty colorful, happy photographs by Jonas Mekas. “Also, the mirrors are angled so you can see everybody from every point in the restaurant,” Mr. Moinian said.

Two men walked by carrying a plastic bin full of raw, beheaded chickens.

Mr. Moinian led the way to the kitchen, from whence, presumably, the chickens came. There, Roberto Bellissimo, formerly of Le Cirque, will reign.

Perhaps it’s a prerequisite of the hotel developer gig, but Mr. Moinian, like Mr. Pomeranc, professed himself utterly lacking in fear amid the economic wreckage.

“It’s going to be great,” Mr. Moinian said softly, back in the lobby, nary a smile to be seen on his weary-looking face. “It’s going to be great.”


drubinstein@observer.com

Feels Like 2007 in Here