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How To Build A Hot Spot 101: The Kenmare

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Almost every venue attempts to build a genuine buzz during their opening few days, hoping to make the leap from just another restaurant or bar to genuine hot spot. Most fail. But for those looking for a "How To Build a Hot Spot" manual, look no further than the Kenmare, the new Nolita restaurant that opened for some very exclusive previews over the weekend. If you recall, Rose Bar guru Nur Khan and DJ and downtown mogul Paul Sevigny took over the failed Civetta space and re-branded it as the Kenmare, and the duo worked around the clock to open in time for Fashion Week. From what we've been told, it was a smashing success.

1. Find a choice location that is ripe for a takeover. The best thing Civetta had going for it was its Nolita address, placing it in the middle of a nightlife hot zone near La Esquina, Cafe Select, Goldbar and Southside. Finding better foot traffic would be difficult.

2. Assemble the right team. Khan and Sevigny are perennial nightlife all-stars, giving the place instant cachet in the scene. The space was re-designed by Fernando Santangelo, who's past work included the praised renovation of the Chateau Marmont in Los Angeles.

3. If you are going to open a restaurant, make sure you hire a real chef so that people actually want to eat there. Count Little Owl and Market Table's Joey Campanaro as a real chef who will be in charge of the Kenmare's kitchen when it opens in a few weeks.

4. Book the right preview events. Friday night was a simple Friends and Family night. On Saturday, the Kenmare hosted a fete for the sizzling hot Nepalese designer Prabal Gurung. Sunday was the weekend's main event, when Olivier Zahm brought his entire Purple Magazine wrecking crew for a special Purple Dinner that moved over to a special Guns and Roses performance at Rose Bar.

5. Shut down for a few weeks after the previews end to focus on getting service ready, thus letting the buzz grow more.

6. Open officially without telling anyone.

By following these simple steps, you could be running the next hot spot in time for the next New York Fashion Week in the fall. It really is that easy, folks.

· Kenmare Gets Ready For A Big Fashion Weekend [~ENY~]
· All Fashion Week Coverage [~ENY~]


98 Kenmare Street, New York, NY 10013


98 Kenmare St., New York, NY

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