From a Prohibition-themed speakeasy to a luxe French escape, these creative new nightlife concepts are raising the bar in Los Angeles.
The new Roaring ’20s-themed speakeasy features Victorian decor PHOTO BY: SYDNEY BROWN
Brooklyn native Dave Oz opened his first Roaring ’20s-themed speakeasy behind New York’s Stone Street coffee shop in Chelsea 10 years ago. Named after the homemade alcohol that was watered down in bathtubs during Prohibition times, Bathtub Gin’s hidden entrance, live jazz and burlesque, gin-focused drinks and authentic decor—including an actual bathtub—were an instant hit. In December, Oz brought his popular concept to a secret Melrose Avenue space hidden behind the “front” of all-day coffee shop Stone Street L.A., both of which Oz owns with actor-writer Joel David Moore and hospitality vet Laura Parkening. Conjuring 1920s Hollywood, the intimate 75-person upstairs haunt features Victorian couches, dark parquet floors, opulent antiques and movable furniture to accommodate DJs, musicians and burlesque performers. Bathtub Gin signature cocktails like the Negroni accompany more citrus-forward and nonalcoholic L.A. options, in addition to a gin and tonic menu with local gins. West Hollywood, bathtubginnyc.com
Bathtub Gin has an extensive gin and tonic menu PHOTO BY: MARIAH KUNKEL
An antique water fountain greets Bar Lis guests.
The pièce de résistance of the new Thompson Hollywood hotel, the stunning rooftop lounge Bar Lis transports patrons—who’ve already included Robert Pattinson, Anya Taylor-Joy and Rita Ora—to the French Riviera. Overlooking the Hollywood Hills, the glamorous Ten Five Hospitality hot spot boasts indoor and open-air spaces for dancing and dining on chef Lincoln Carson’s shareable Cote D’Azurinspired delicacies, such as Kusshi oysters, Regiis Ova caviar and a gelato fudge sundae. Along with an extensive list of bubbles and wines, sunny gin cocktails like the French Riviera and St. Tropez Bramble reflect the venue’s light and spirited vibe. Thirty cypress trees line the walkway, and a 10-foot antique water fountain filled with flowers greets guests. Inside, a disco ball, retro photography and blue velvet banquettes are a ’60s-style backdrop for the curated nightly entertainment. Popular DJs like Rick Trainor and Wade Crescent play Thursday to Saturday, and on Tuesday, Bar Lis hosts a long-running live modern jazz night. Hollywood, barlisla.com
Vintage Palm Springs meets Pioneertown at tommie Hollywood’s Desert 5 Spot rooftop lounge. PHOTO BY: MICHAEL MUNDY
Seventies vintage Palm Springs meets the quirky Old West of Pioneertown at tommie Hollywood’s new desert-themed rooftop pool, lounge and live music spot. The hip 5,000-square-foot indoor-outdoor hangout operated by Ten Five Hospitality is named after the Mojave Desert flower, and aims to be a free-spirited haunt for creatives to linger and socialize. Inspired by road trips through California, Arizona, Utah, New Mexico and Texas, the cacti-filled and neon-lit space designed by Studio Collective and styled by Bernadette Blanc and Wade Crescent flaunts vintage furniture and art sourced from antique dealers and thrift shops. Bright mushroom wallpaper and a Seeburg ’67 jukebox greet guests, who can enjoy tequila and mezcal drinks and Wes Avila’s street food bites while the house band plays country and classic rock hits and live DJs spin late into the night. Mechanical bull riding and monthly line dancing parties are also on tap. Hollywood, desertfivespotla.com
Bavarian-inspired Homebound Brew Haus moves into Union Station PHOTO BY: KATRINA FREDERICK PHOTOGRAPHY
Renowned hospitality group Pouring With Heart—behind The Varnish, All Season Brewing Co. and Arts District Brewing Co.—transformed Union Station’s former Imperial Western Beer Co. into a grand new venue inspired by a Bavarian-style beer haus and German beer gardens. The historic space, which originally debuted as the 300-person Harvey House restaurant for Union Station passengers in 1939, has been restored with original art deco design and a new 80-seat patio with four 75-inch televisions for prime game viewing. The beer menu features a variety of German-style brews, in “lighter,” “hoppier” and “flavor full” categories, and a cocktail program includes classics like an Old Fashioned and Whiskey Sour. Shareable bites such as a soft baked German butter pretzel, wurst sausage options and a Brew Haus signature smash burger will entice commuters and locals alike. DTLA, homeboundbrewhaus.com
The Green Room’s Three Wishes cocktail for two
Inspired by the green rooms in theaters and studios where talent relaxes prior to going on air or performing, this scenic Burbank lounge reopened last fall with a brand-new food and beverage program. Hidden within hilltop restaurant Castaway, the glamorous rooftop escape boasts panoramic views of the city, cozy fire pits and a starworthy service experience. Indulge in shareable gourmet eats like steak tartare cigars; truffle popcorn chicken; or the selection of oysters, caviar and raw bar options. Cocktail concoctions designed for two, like the Three Wishes or The Great Escape, are a festive choice for your party—as is the bottle service menu featuring top-notch Champagnes. Burbank, tgrburbank.com