A new bar opening up this month in New York City will look like a Victorian literary fan’s fever dream. Oscar Wilde, which will open in late June of this year, according to Time Out New York, is an intense homage to the 19th century Irish writer, to say the least.
The duo behind the bar, Tommy Burke and Frank McCole, already own a pair of New York City venues with a Wilde-adjacent theme. Lillie’s Victorian Establishment is named after one of Wilde’s friends, the actress and socialite Lillie Langtry, whose portrait hung in his living room.
When The New York Times got a glimpse at the future digs of Oscar Wilde NYC during its construction, the paper described its decor as "Lillie’s on steroids," and even if you haven't been to Lillie's, the "steroids" part is suitably evocative. Oscar Wilde looks like it was designed by a hoarder who deals 19th century European art. It's packed with marble lions, multiple antique fireplaces, and historic imports like glass panels from Italy, a Belgian player piano, and an English standing clock (plus 24 smaller timepieces). There are multiple statues of Wilde himself. It sounds a bit cramped, but there's plenty of space to park yourself with a drink—the mahogany bar is being touted as the longest in the city at almost 120 feet.
Like the space, the cocktails are designed to be opulent: The drink menu is "Champagne focused," according to a press release. "Extravagance is always in season," as the bar’s website proclaims. "Just like Wilde himself, we believe life should be lived to its fullest, with a touch of sophisticated debauchery."
The place hasn’t even opened yet, and it’s already living up to that mission. At the point that the Times took a look around in December 2016, estimates for the cost of decking out the space had reached $4 million.
[h/t Time Out New York]
All images courtesy Oscar Wilde NYC