A look at Los Angeles’ most buzzed-about openings, now through July: David Bowd’s newest hotel and first members-only club; a restaurant by industry heavy-hitters Marcus Jernmark (of Sweden’s Frantzén), chef Robert Sandberg and wine director Max Coane, and American artist Barbara Kruger’s latest exhibit, showcasing work spanning four decades.
Stay: The Aster
Labeled the “anti-Soho House” by its founder and chief executive officer David Bowd, co-owner of Salt Hotels with partner Kevin O’Shea (and formerly the chief operating officer at André Balazs Properties), The Aster is a members-only club and hotel (available to the public) that plans to “break all the old rules” when it opens its doors in June. Taking over a 95,000-square-foot building at Hollywood and Vine Street (once home to SBE’s Redbury Hotel and later Paul Allen’s short-lived H.Club), Bowd won’t limit members (capped at 3,000 people) to creative types or require guests to abide by typical club etiquette, like restricted cell or laptop use. In fact, there are no rules — or even check-in times.
With other locations in Provincetown, Massachusetts; Kingston, New York.; Long Branch, New Jersey, and Miami Beach, the 35-room hotel (all suites at least 700 square feet, priced starting at $509 a night) and club ($3,600 a year, if accepted) marks Salt Hotels’ first members-only establishment and West Coast property. Along with restaurants and bars among the amenities, expect wellness studios, recording studios, a screening room, workspace and pool.
Address: 1717 Vine Street, Los Angeles 90028
Marcus Jernmark — former executive chef of Sweden’s only three-star Michelin restaurant (Frantzén) — has partnered with chef Robert Sandberg and wine director Max Coane to unveil Habitué in L.A. Open now as a test kitchen in a residence in the Hollywood Hills (the house of NFT company SO-COL, it seems), dining reservations are by invitation or can be inquired about via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Dishes, with tableware created by Swedish pottery maker Stefan Andersson, include ama ebi (sweet shrimp) perfumed over almond wood embers with goat milk yogurt, mint and cucumbers in sudachi sauce; aged musk melon from Chiba, Japan, 24-month-old guanciale, caramelized buckwheat and hanaho blossom; arctic char perfumed over juniper wood, fermented stone fruit ponzu, plum pit oil and chrysanthemum, and matcha tiramisu for dessert (that is, according to Jernmark’s Instagram posts).
“Habitué is apt to become a ‘by invitation’ restaurant,” Jernmark wrote on social media in early May. “But in this stage, it’s about learning who will be our future Habitué’s. Habitué will grow from a small family into a community. Exactly who will be there with us when the permanent restaurant will open is not decided and we have a lot of fun evenings before we know that.”
The word around town is that the restaurant’s official opening is around the corner. For the latest, sign up for Habitué’s newsletter at habitue.us.
See: “Barbara Kruger: Thinking of You. I Mean Me. I Mean You.”
Showing at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art through July 17, the exhibition is “the largest and most comprehensive presentation” of Kruger’s work in 20 years, according to the museum. Located on the second level of the BCAM space at LACMA, the show spans four decades, featuring her video work from the 1980s, large-scale vinyl room wraps and audio soundscapes. Using imagery and big, bold text (with humor at times), the American artist presents a commentary on society, identity, culture, consumerism, politics, class, sex and gender.
Born in 1945 in Newark, New Jersey, Kruger attended Syracuse University, then Parsons School of Design in New York City and is distinguished emerita professor of New Genres at the UCLA School of the Arts and Architecture. The exhibition is co-curated by Michael Govan, chief executive officer and Wallis Annenberg director, and Rebecca Morse, curator of the Wallis Annenberg photography department.
It’s worth noting that LACMA offers free general admission for all visitors on the second Tuesday of each month, and free general admission to L.A. County residents Monday through Friday after 3 p.m. (closed on Wednesday).
Address: 5905 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles 90036