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April 24 2014

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blasblog: the russian take on the in-store party

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By day the first floor is a showroom and a retail shop. By night, the black leather padded walls pulsate with techno rhythms and Moscow’s coolest kids dancing under heat lamps in what is the city’s hippest new 24-hour bar. Welcome to designer Denis Simachev’s eponymous space in Moscow’s Stoleshnikov Pereulok fashion realm. For the past three nights—and I’m not sure if this is a rite of passage or an embarrassing feature of the less-than-scholarly brand of tourism I’ve implemented on this trip—I have tasted the ups and downs (never wear white corduroys on a Russian dance floor, by the way) of this nighttime venue. Last night was particularly starry, with Vito Schnabel, Natalia Vodianova, Allison Sarofim, Yvonne Force Villareal, Eugenie Niarchos, Carlos Mota, Barbara Bush, and Amy Greenspon piling in for the unofficial after-party for Dasha Zhukova’s opening of the Center for Contemporary Culture. Though New Yorkers might look down on the idea of mixing shopping with dancing, the fact that Simachev’s bar doubles as a store during daylight hours matters not at all to Russians. (On a personal note, I would like to make the point that some of locals must have been drunk when they got dressed and/or got their hair cut—there are more mullets in Moscow than there are fur coats.) And what does Simachev, a designer who makes millions in the Russian market, make of his popular nighttime gig? Wished I could have asked him, but he spent the whole night swinging his ponytail behind the DJ decks as Euro girls Olympia Scarry, Victoire de Pourtalès, and Alexia Niedzielski formed an art-girl mosh pit. So presumably he’s pleased.

Photo: Derek Blasberg

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