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« Thursday, May 27th, 2010—Bar 137 | Main | Tuesday, May 25th, 2010—Bar 135 »

Wednesday, May 26th, 2010—Bar 136

Day 136—Sunday, May 25th, 2010
Doubletree Hotel Bar (Originally headed to Covet)

First off I really want to thank all of you who stopped by the 365 Bar Store, that 365 resident artist, “Boris” set up. I appreciate those of you who purchased items and encourage everybody to stop by as “Boris” will be adding items every now and again. Don’t forget, wear your 365 colors loud and proud! And thanks again to “Boris” for setting it all up, great job, daddio! And remember that “Boris” does freelance artwork and design for websites, CD covers, books, designs logos and a whole lot more. If you have a request, simply email me and I’ll pass it along to “Boris.”

Do you hear what I here? Ding, ding, ding, the donation board has just lit up. My friend Fran Hughes generously sent me 10 bucks with this stated purpose on her PayPal receipt: “Hey Marty...for old times...have a brew on me. HUGS from Fran Hughes.” Great big hugs right back to you, Fran, thanks so much!

Okay, on to the crawl. Yesterday I did a radio interview on the show, Happenings Q & A, hosted by Frank Carmichael on radio station WLIP 1050 AM out of Kenosha, Wisconsin. This is the second time I’ve done the show and it went great. Frank’s a great interviewer and the show is a companion to Happenings Magazine which you can check out here: Happenings Magazine. So anyway, we were talking about the bar crawl and he brought up a club in midtown called Covet and the fact that they sell a cocktail for $160 bucks! For that kind of money it better come with a happy ending from one of the waitresses! Anyway since I do this thing pretty much on the fly and don’t plan night to night, I told Frank I’d go check it out.

I went to their website and it is a fancy-Dan joint. At first when I was reading about the place I thought it said the dining room had Led Zeppelin chandeliers and I’m like, “Wow, this place might be kind of cool after all,” but then I realized it said, “Large Zeppelin chandeliers.” Now that’s just plain weird. Anyway, I give it odds of 40/60 that they let me do my bar crawl thing in there, we’ll see. If worst comes to worst, I’ll tell them Frank Carmichael sent me and he’s going to get all medieval on their asses if they don’t let me do my thing. Okay, shine up those shoes and let the swanky-franky crawling begin!

Okay, I've been up and down this block three times and can't find this place, it's really getting on my nerves!

The reason I couldn't find it is there's no address on the building and just a tiny little sign. I guess it's their way of being cool. Anyway, a woman was standing outside behind the velvet rope (velvet ropes always are a sign there's going to be trouble, especially when there's a velvet rope and no one waiting to get in) and when I took out my camera she asked, "What do you think you're doing?"

"I'm taking a picture, then I'm going to go inside," I answered.

"You can't take a photo," she told me in halting tones.

"But I'm on the sidewalk, I can do whatever I want to do," I explained while aiming my camera at the club.

"Well, then you can't come in here," she haughtily shot back.

"Aaah, it looks like the place sucks anyway, I'll move on," I told her and headed down the street.

The sad thing here is I had scoped out the area before, anticipating that the club wouldn't let me in and it looked like there weren't any bars around. And so we begin our lonesome walk down Lexington Avenue.

Wow, i've walked about ten blocks and I haven't seen one bar. I hate this part of town!

Hello! Can you say "Hotel bar?" I knew you could!

It's not too fancy, but it's a bar so it'll do.

And Sandy the bartender not only served me up an ice cold Corona, he encouraged me to do my bar crawl thing in the bar.

And so it begins! Cheers!

Seated next to me were (from left:) Joe, Melissa and Kerman, who's the Guest Relations Manager at the hotel. He too was supportive of me doing my bar crawl thing in their bar. Take that Covet!

Melissa designs jewelry and here's one of her lovely bracelets. She said she'd have a website up soon and I'll post a link when it's up. Her father Joe was visiting from India and told me he'd buy me a drink in India if I took the bar crawl over there. I need to get a passport!

Okay, things started to fall a little flat as I asked people over here to pose for a photo and they all declined.

The same thing happened here, shit, no meet and greet photos to be had.

But all is not lost. There's snacks at the bar! Hooray!

And then a photo savior sat down at the bar. Georgia was in town for a book convention, she's an editor at New World Library and had lots of friends who would pose for my 365 camera.

And so here we go: Georgia with Joe.

Georgia with Monique who's the Publicity Director of New World Library.

Georgia with Monique and a guy originally from Kalamazoo who's name I didn't write down, so we'll call him Kal.

And finally I have to get in on the action, myself with Monique and Georgia. It was great meeting Georgia and Monique and all their friends from the book expo.

And I almost forgot the obligatory bathroom mirror shot for Danny the Sut, but I remembered when I got home and here you go, Danny. Goodnight everybody!

The bar in the Doubletree hotel is a perfect lesson I’ve learned on this bar crawl. It’s not the bar surroundings that make it special, it’s the people inside that do. After Covet gave me the boot I just wanted to find a bar and get this night’s crawl over with and get home. So I stumbled upon the Doubletree hotel, thought, “Aha, hotel bar,” and figured I’d have my three drinks and go home. But once inside the bar, Sandy the bartender was more than accommodating when I told him what I was doing and encouraged me to take all the photos I wanted to. Then I met Melissa, Joe (who was traveling in from India) and Kerman, who’s the Guest Relations Manager of the hotel and had a great conversation with them. Soon they had to take off  and most of the other guests I approached were a little leery about what I was doing. And I don’t blame them, you’re in New York from out of town and some guy with beer on his breath wants to take your photo for his website, naturally all of them turned me down. But then along came Georgia, a book editor from New World Library and she introduced me to all her friends and I not only got plenty of people shots, but great conversations with Georgia, Monique and all their friends. You never know how your night is going to end up on the crawl and it was a fun one tonight! Woo hoo!

The Doubletree Metropolitan Hotel opened in 1961 as the Summit and it’s been restored to its original glory and has modern day amenities like high-speed internet access and their restaurant and lounge. The hotel is close to Park and Madison Avenue, Broadway theaters museums and all the attractions available in New York City.

And you get a chocolate chip cookie when you check in. Who could ask for anything more?

Doubletree Hotel Bar
569 Lexington Avenue. (Near 51st St.)

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Reader Comments (19)

Once again, you have turned a less than gracious start of the night into something better.
How many times this has happened proves your point that is is truly the people,
characters and inhabitants that make the places unique and special.
Thanks for the patrons that have visited the store thus far and for those who plan to shop.
I plan on continuing adding things and new designs as "we all crawl together."
This place truly has taken on a life of it's own.
The Media and Press have taken notice early on and continue to.
(are you listening Covet?)

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered Commenter"Boris"

You did better, anyway. Any place that would actually CALL itself "Covet" and have velvet ropes outside is ITSELF "coveting" the exclusivity of Studio 54. And falling far short--didn't look like too many people were lined up in front that velvet rope, did it? Maybe they should change their name to "Coven: Where The Satanists Gather." That might perk business up with their type of folks.

Doubletree Bar looks fun for a fancy place! (At least the one in downtown Chi is fancy.)

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAaron

You are always welcome at sushi samba. They are a "no velvet rope" zone.

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterNick beal

Nice bounce back! Georgia and her friends look like nice people. Love the Doubletrees free cookies!

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBarfly

I have a theory stemming from my experiences as a cab driver with a certain bar I used to service every night that shall remain nameless, but it is mentioned under a false name in my book; 'Two Fisted Cab Driving Tales'. A false name to prevent the ownership from buying a contract on my life or something melodramatic like that. Some bars are intentionally rude and inhospitable to Johnny come Late-lies to protect the interests of their drug dealing clientele and in some cases the bar ownership's interests as well. This was definitely true of the aforementioned bar I'm referring to. You never saw so many death's head tattoos, cowboy hats and cowboy boots in your life as in this place. Covet's clientele is probably more of a high end type than that, but now you've got me wondering what the regulars there are into.

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

P.S. - $160.00 for ONE COCKTAIL?!?!?! With my trusty bartender's guide and a selection of off brand or generic liquors, I could stay drunk as a coot for two months straight for that kind of money!!!

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

PPS - For $160.00, I could drink enough chocolate martini's for the little pink oompa-loompas to come and drag me off to a hell never yet imagined or considered by yours truly!!!

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

Sorry baby I explain high end drugs in my 160 dollar coctail.. Not some pricy hard to get spice.
When you guys were talking about it on the air I was all whatever not gonna get me to try it...
I am way too practical.. And seriously anyone who would invent a drink like that has got to be a pretentious snob.
So there...
Good bounce back..
I love hotel bars. Never the same.. Always something new...Doubletrees and Marriotts are my faves.

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterGidget

i love it when you do a spontaneous bar after being shut down, it's like improv theater. somebody needs to sign you to a tv deal! georgia and her friends seem cool, love how you always find the friendly folks in town!

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered Commenterrita r.

Doubletree (and Georgia) to the rescue! I love hotel bars. They're so convenient! And the cookie is a nice touch. More places should do that (are you listening, Washington Square Hotel?) Glad you met some nice folks who helped you bounce back from velvet ropedom. Boooo, Covet!

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBiff

Forgot to add - nice jewelry, Melissa!

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterBiff

Rick Nelson's Lonesome Town is the perfect song for unfriendly places that hire snotty people, Im glad you moved on and found a bar with a nice crowd.

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAl

Keep the Bars and the people real as you've done for the most of the crawl. $160 cocktail? Does it come with a dusting of cocaine on top?
Nice call about the happy ending from the waitress! Give em' (Covet) enough velvet rope....

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTim

PPS; Didn't Covet do the theme song from Billy Jack?
Go ahead and hurt your neighbor...
Go ahead and cheat a freind...
Charge 'em $160.00 for a cocktail...
You can justify it in the end.....

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

Ha ha ha! You made me Google it, Jaws, it was Coven. You're close!

May 26, 2010 | Registered Commenter365 Beers

I know. I thought it was a good gag, and I had a point to make.

May 26, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJaws the Cabbie

Point taken, Jaws! Check and check mate!

May 27, 2010 | Registered Commenter365 Beers

Glad that you were able to include a hotel bar.

June 1, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterTiki Bar Susie

People look nice in here, and I like Melissa's designs jewelry, waiting the weblink so, I'm crazy about those kind of jewelry!!
Marty if you go to India I come with you!!!! and we go drink beers with ganesha there! But anyway, get your passport since you must come in France, and you CAN'T refuse the invitation! ;)

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