Photography by Griffin Lipson
It's hard to believe (just) three years have gone by since The Blond opened its SoHo doors to New York's coolest partygoers. Alongside its boutique hotel home of 11 Howard, the Aby Rosen nightclub has been a veritable center for private events, chic cocktails, and a vibrant dance scene ever since its opening in spring 2016. With celebrity-hosted parties occurring more often than not, The Blond's short existence has been a smashing cultural success, so L'Officiel USA hosted a party over the weekend to celebrate its third anniversary and look forward to all the wild nights to come.
The party was a "Primal Affair," a theme that called for a colorful reimagination of The Blond's elevated space. Guests arrived wearing neon, animal print, and classic all-black looks to find groundbreaking arrangements of fresh(ly painted) flowers glowing under the black light as dancers posed on pedestals, wearing green leopard body paint from head to toe. The bar featured a special cocktail menu by Belvedere, Volcan, and Veuve Clicquot, so attendees could embrace their wild sides with the help of the Fantastic Beast, Leopard Print, or a sophisticated version of Jungle Juice. An appropriately neon artwork by Vernon O'Meally was up for silent auction and partygoers alternated between receiving glowing face-paint makeovers and dancing to a combination of current hits and lively throwbacks. Lil Nas X's breakout hit "Old Town Road" energized the crowd, but so did songs from ABBA and Earth, Wind & Fire, bringing old and new tastes together for a fête that celebrated timeless New York nightlife as much as it did its contemporary venue.
Mathilde Ollivier, Makenna Cart, Benjamin Chabanon, Sean Ford
Our primal affair attracted a lively mix of models and influencers. Connie Fleming, who recently featured in our digital-issue tribute to New York, attended, as did model-slash-musician Miles Garber and social media star Parker Kit Hill, whose entertaining date advice once featured on our Instagram stories. Also in the wildly neon crowd were artist Chloe Wise, who recently illustrated Jacquemus' Spring 2019 campaign, multihyphenate fashion favorite Marina Testino, and models including Frida Aasen, Jessica Hart, and Vanessa Moody. And while the night was undeniably an elite celebration as guests enjoyed a jungle within the concrete jungle, all that partying was for a good cause, as the event benefited Brooklyn animal shelter Rescue City.
It's been quite the month for a L'Officiel USA party, as Saturday's The Blond affair followed our serene Coachella celebration from two weeks ago. After returning home from the desert, it was the perfect time for us to toast one of New York's chicest modern clubs with an evening as fluorescent as the venue's future. While last year's summer of scam, full of stories surrounding the likes of former 11 Howard resident-cum-grifter Anna Delvey, may be long over (coincidentally, Delvey's grand larceny conviction happened just days ago), our event on Saturday proved that NYC energy is warming up alongside the weather for a vibrant few months ahead.
See photos of our primal affair and its fluorescent crowd below.