Speakeasies, also called blind pigs or blind tigers, came into prominence during Prohibition in the USA. Now they are a definite, and secret, trend.
Montage Beverly Hills opened in 2008 with a secret-entry ‘£10’ bar, the idea of Macallan ambassador Eden Algie, and named for £10 note that showed Macallan Single Malt. Entry is by a wood keycard with a magic number.
Four Seasons Hotel Seoul, Korea, opened in 2015 with an ultra-secret Charles H bar, named for cocktail writer Charles H Baker 1895-1987. Designer is AvroKO.
In 2017 Mandarin Oriental New York GM Susanne Hatje turned what was the kitchen behind her lobby bar into a stunning speakeasy, The Office, a 45-seater designed by Adam Tihany: the hotel partners with Chicago-based Alinea Group.
And by the end of this year Rosewood will have added not one but two speakeasy bars. Rosewood Hong Kong’s Tony Chi-designed XX Bar is unique in that it is female only – the only males allowed in are mixologists, seemingly employed for looks as well as charm and undeniable bar-tending talent. Opening December 2019 is Los Cabos’ first speakeasy, at Rosewood’s Las Ventanas. Read more below.
In December 2019, Las Ventanas al Paraiso, A Rosewood Resort will open a clandestine doorway to La Botica, the first-ever hotel speakeasy in Los Cabos. Paying homage to the Prohibition era, La Botica – which translates to “drugstore” in English – is a multisensory journey to the 1920’s through design, music and cocktails evocative of the period. True to its name, the speakeasy is themed around an herbal apothecary and will quickly become the must-visit destination in Los Cabos for its antiquated ambiance, herbal- and wellness-minded cocktails and live entertainment.
Guests will discover La Botica through an obscure door off the lobby under the guise of a vintage Coca-Cola refrigerator. The humble entrance is the doorway to a glamorous space that will transport guests back in time through a space reminiscent of a 1920s herbal medicine pharmacy. The back bar will feature an elaborate display of herbs, spices and flowers to match the inventive cocktail menu. Live entertainment will include Afro Cuban, Jazz and live music and light bites by Executive Chef Diego Stefan.
Bar Manager, Philippe Zaigue is leading the charge on La Botica. Having co-founded the famous Speakeasy in Mexico City’s Juarez neighborhood, Mexico City, known as “Hanky Panky,” Philippe draws inspiration from his experience and worldly travels. At La Botica, he’s expertly crafted an apothecary-themed cocktail menu with ingredients including organic produce, herbs and botanicals. The menu will contain 12 signature creations, 10 house classics and a selection of low proof cocktails and mocktails.
La Botica will be open for hotel guests and visitors from Tuesday through Sunday from 7pm – 2am, with live music from 8pm – 12am.
by Mary Gostelow