After a day of running around and being immersed in all things design, it’s always nice to take a break and refresh, which is exactly what I did after a whirlwind tour of the fabulous Kips Bay Showhouse, popping down to the brand new Whitby Hotel for a late lunch.
The Whitby Hotel is the second New York location of the Firmdale Hotel group, whose other properties include the Crosby Hotel in Soho, among others in London. I just love the way husband and wife duo Kit and Tim Kemp creates spaces – they are always fun and well designed, yet tasteful and chic. They are always distinctly “Firmdale” , having carved out their own distinct sense of style.
And the restaurant at the Whitby did not disappoint, with an eclectic warm, yet modern feeling, adding many different colors and prints to the classic space. The style is inspired by traditional British design, but updated with prints and patterns from around the world, as well as fun, bright colors, and some modern touches here and there. This is not the average minimal, modern style that is so ubiquitous in NY and LA. Rather, Kit has made a name for herself by bringing a little fun to the serious New York chic.
One highlight is the 30ft pewter bar, which mixes well with the colorful wickerworks from the British Isles that hang above. All of the seats, cushions, and even wall paper are covered in pleasantly incongruous textiles, with a variety of artworks hung over the walls. What’s surprisingly lovely about the space is that it somehow feels light and airy, despite all of the mixing prints and patterns. But, as we soon found out (our late lunch slipping into early cocktail hour), when the lights dim and the candles come out, the bar comes alive and it’s warm and inviting, making it perfect for day or night!