My City: Hell’s Kitchen Musts From Nightlife Personality, Justin Luke
If you’re a New York City gay in his 20s-30s, you either know of or have met nightlife promoter Justin Luke at one of his weekly parties across Manhattan. And if you are a traveler to the city, odds are you’ve been to at least one of them in your last visit during a night out.
Just getting his start four and half years ago at the soon-to-be closed Splash, Justin is the co-director and head promoter of longtime NYC gay nightlife promotion company, BoiParty. Justin is also a published author, a fellow blogger, and has a knack for social media; creating a private VIP Facebook group of over 7,700 international gay men in their 20s, Gorgeous Gay and Twenty-Something (GG20).
Kicking off this new series, Justin gives us his favorites and musts for the ever growing gay hub of Hell’s Kitchen; where he resides and the hottest parties take place.
Favorite Hell’s Kitchen Eats & What To Order:
Fuel Grill & Juice Bar - A local chain that offers “tasty, freshly prepared healthy food.” Justin recommend’s #66 with whole wheat pasta and extra spicy teriyaki.
Southern Hospitality - Justin Timberlake’s BBQ chain (with another one in Denver). “I’m angry at Southern Hospitality because they took their barbecue nachos off the menu,” says Justin. In the meantime, he recommends their BBQ quesadilla.
Schmackary’s – Justin’s sweet tooth go-to is the gay owned Schmackary’s: “Completely not healthy. Absolutely delicious! The Maple Bacon cookie is the death of me, and their shakes are equally deadly.”
An Outdoor Space To See:
“There’s an amazing garden on 48th between 9th and 10th [the Clinton Community Garden]. But you need to apply to get a key, or you have to wait for public hours!”
Place To Kill Time & People Watch:
“The New World Plaza between 49th and 50th and 8th and 9th. You’ve got two restaurants with ample outdoor seating and amazing frozen cosmos (Mother Burger and Blockheads). Plus tons of sunbathing gays.”
Where To Shop:
For A Quick Drink Go To:
“Boxers Hell’s Kitchen – bright, new, and the bartenders are quick! Plus, sports on ten million TVs if you dig that sorta thing.” Justin also shared his drink of choice, which is the same wherever he goes: “Absolut Citron with soda and a splash of cran – It matches my glasses!”
Your Hell’s Kitchen Nightlife Guide:
Justin provides his picks for where to go out each night of the week. His biggest parties of the week include Q Thursdays, Penthaus Fridays and VIVA Saturdays, and you can find them at all three each night.
Monday: DIVA at Industry, Songs at the New World at New World Stages
Tuesday: Saliva at Ritz, Trick at Hardware
Wednesday: Chateau at XVI. Real Deal at Ritz
Thursday: Q at Marquee (closer Meatpacking), Queen at Industry
Friday: Penthaus at Copacabana (with beautiful views on Manhattan when roof is open)
Saturday: VIVA at Stage 48, Saturday Rox at Hardware
Sunday: Summer Camp at Sky Room (seasonal), Slurp Sundays at Vlada
Justin shared his pick for a hidden gem in Hell’s Kitchen nightlife, which he says is the weekly programming at the Time Out New York Lounge at New World Stages—calling it “amazing”.
Even with all different parties to choose from, Justin says Friday is his favorite night of the week for Penthaus (recently named the hottest NYC party by Logo) and its “breathtaking” views when the roof opens.