Nur Kahn

Gatekeeper of Cool: Nur Kahn

There are those who know how to work a room, and those who make the room work. Nur Kahn has made a science of this practice.

Over the last decade, Kahn’s vision and concepts have set new precedents on the nightlife scene. He’s been credited with creating some of NYC’s most elite hotspots such as Wax, Sway, Hiro and most recently, Rose Bar at the Gramercy Park Hotel. Though each lounge has a different downtown vibe and décor to match, cutting edge music serves as the common thread, personally curated by Kahn. The sounds worked; bringing these venues to life by drawing a musically literate crowd.

Rose Bar is by far the most elite, with Ian Schrager’s Studio 54-esque door policy, and all of the trappings of a palatial European lair filled with multi-million dollar artwork, as well as its usual bevy of models and fashionistas. However, what has been drawing the A-listers of late are the Rose Bar sessions that Kahn launched. If you are lucky enough to get on the guest list, you may catch recent performers such as Velvet Revolver, the Kooks, Perry Farrell and Dave Navarro, Evan Dando, or Gibby Haynes of the Butthole Surfers.

With the usual hand-selected crowd, the bands can perform and promote their new releases in a casual atmosphere without bodyguards or shrieking groupies. The Rose Bar sessions have become so popular, Kahn plans to move the gigs to a monthly series in a larger venue, where bands perform in a relaxed atmosphere and linger with the guests making a night of it. In the not so distant future he plans to take these sessions on the festival circuit road to Coachella and South by Southwest.

Rose Bar, Gramercy Park Hotel, 2 Lexington Ave, New York, NY

– Hillary Latos