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189 Chrystie St., New York, NY 10002, United States

This chandelier-draped, Moulin Rouge-esque destination—a multihyphenated performance space-cum-cocktail lounge-cum-celebrity hangout-cum-restaurant—opened in late 2006. Its gaggle of owners—including Simon Hammerstein (grandson of famed lyricist Oscar) and nightlife entrepreneur and downtown fixture Serge Becker—intended the two-story former factory space to hark back to the performance artist-dominated downtown scene of 25 years ago. They’ve largely succeeded, with their Weimar Republic, anything-goes extravaganzas: on any given night you’ll spy bands, tap dancers, burlesque acts, fire-eaters, lasso champions, one-man orchestras, aerialists, and contortionists, some with impish X-rated elements—as well as a velvet-rope-burn-inducing door policy that keeps out gawkers and the uninitiated.

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This chandelier-draped, Moulin Rouge-esque destination—a multihyphenated performance space-cum-cocktail lounge-cum-celebrity hangout-cum-restaurant—opened in late 2006. Its gaggle of owners—including Simon Hammerstein (grandson of famed lyricist Oscar) and nightlife entrepreneur and downtown fixture Serge Becker—intended the two-story former factory space to hark back to the performance artist-dominated downtown scene of 25 years ago. They’ve largely succeeded, with their Weimar Republic, anything-goes extravaganzas: on any given night you’ll spy bands, tap dancers, burlesque acts, fire-eaters, lasso champions, one-man orchestras, aerialists, and contortionists, some with impish X-rated elements—as well as a velvet-rope-burn-inducing door policy that keeps out gawkers and the uninitiated.