Halo's grand opening party proves that Hollywood still loves excess
Ladies donned their tightest and brightest miniskirts on Thursday night to celebrate Halo’s grand opening party, which also brought out Omar Epps, Bill Maher, Ryan Cabrera and a smattering of reality TV stars. The party’s real attractions, though, were the buxom models dressed as sexy dream angels, wings and all, luring ogling guys to the back bar.
The evening played out as if the Paris Hilton-inspired era of excess had never ended, with an open bar and tray-passed appetizers teasing the forthcoming menu from chef Andy Pastore. “We’re going to have a lighter menu,” said Eric James, owner Chris Breed’s business partner. And while the menu hasn’t been fully realized yet, James calls it California cuisine with a Pacific Rim influence. For those of you who get the munchies when you’ve been drinking: Yes, the menu will have calamari. (Halo doesn’t have proper dinner tables, though, and the menu will be reserved for high rollers who order pricey bottle service. In Hollywood it sometimes seems like the recession never happened.)
For Breed, it was a homecoming of sorts (he presided over the Halo space when it was White Lotus but wasn't involved in its more recent incarnation as Ritual), and he celebrated with the full bottle service treatment from cocktail waitresses clad in buttoned-down white shirts and short shorts that left very little to the imagination.
When asked over the phone whether he had any reservations about opening a lavish club in this economy, especially since he already owns three other Hollywood nightlife destinations (Green Door, Cabana Club and Pig ‘N Whistle), Breed answered: “There’s still a quality crowd going out, but there are fewer people,” he said.
To accommodate the changing nightlife scene, he has split the venue in two to make a more intimate 300-capacity dance club. (The patio portion of the space will reopen at a later date with a different concept and entrance.)
Breed, who has a thing for old Hollywood glamor, decked out Halo with a black-and-white motif, replete with Regency-style elements and crystal chandeliers and wall trimmings. There’s an elevated area beside the dance floor that’s built like a box seat. When celebs are seated, they’re hidden from the crowd; but when they’re up and dancing, they become the focal point in the room. Genius.
Halo is at 1743 N. Cahuenga Blvd. in Hollywood. Get there early tonight if you want to get in to see Mickey Avalon.
-- Alexandra Le Tellier
Top photos: Alexandra Le Tellier
Bottom photo: Jessica Gelt