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Kabin Lounge “inspired by 1970s alpine culture” Opens in Dupont Circle June 29th

by Prince Of Petworth June 20, 2013 at 10:30 am 34 Comments

1337 Connecticut Avenue, NW

From a press release:

Discotheque meets après-ski chalet at KABIN, due to open in Dupont Circle on Saturday, June 29. Nestled above bustling Connecticut Avenue, KABIN dares Washingtonians to step out of the everyday and into the alps. Owners Kunal Shah, Vinoda Basnayake, Dustin Huynh and Rajeev Subramanian will spearhead the new venue just south of the circle. Shah and Basnayake are also the former owners of Eden nightclub and current partners at the Karma by Erwin Gomez salon.

The 3,200 square-foot, 252-person lounge pays homage to alpine culture, both in mise-en-scene and mood. The KABIN concept and experience, say the owners, completely upends DC nightlife norms. “At Eden, we tried to bring Miami to DC, but at KABIN we want to create something more reminiscent of destinations like the French Alps and Aspen,” Basnayake remarked. “It’s unlike anything else in the District.”

In addition to a full cocktail menu, DC partygoers will also have a chance to indulge in one very specific emblem of ski lodge culture: the Three Pins shot, named for the three pins telemark skiers used to lock their boots onto their skis, is a classic après-ski libation used to warm up after a long day on the slopes. The spirit is a traditional mountain villa herbal liqueur made with over a dozen herbs and flowers, most of which are found along the alpine trails and remote mountain passes that the Three Pinner calls home.

Designer Brien Z. Watson of Invironment Design LLC has invoked a sleek, modern aesthetic inspired by 1970s alpine culture, from Vail, Colorado to Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy. Guests can expect subtle stylistic gestures to these settings – not a heavy-handed replica of a log cabin. “We did not want to recreate a literal interpretation of an alpine ski chalet,” says Watson. “It’s a 360-degree departure from DC social life.”

KABIN is a chilly reprieve from the impending summer heat and a nightlife scene where guests get a breathtaking view at every turn – without shelling out for a lift pass. Old World luxury charm permeates: man-made design elements like bronze and raw steel merge with elegant, natural materials like charred wood and polished marble. From textured, charcoal-finished wood walls (a faux bois shou-sugi-ban technique) to custom furnishings – including tanned-leather banquettes, polished brass and bronze mirrors, herringbone floors and candlelit onyx accents – the space is fraught with fine-tuned details. Overhead, the mirrored prism ceiling refracts views and light from every angle, creating a visual experience akin to that of an abstracted mountain view. A virtual infinity fire-box warms and centers the room, while stone-and-glass VIP lookouts offer panoramic vantage points from which guests can watch every moment and movement of the soiree.

Thursday: 10 p.m. – 2 a.m.
Friday – Saturday: 10 p.m. – 3 a.m.

  • ledroittiger

    Isn’t “a 360-degree departure from DC social life” the same as DC social life?

    • Anonymous

      360 degree change: Going aaaalllll the way around (usually at great expense and upheaval), to arrive right back where you started.

      • justinbc

        Maybe they mean temperature. Global Warming and all…

      • Anonymous

        “Going aaaalllll the way around (usually at great expense and upheaval), to arrive right back where you started.”

        Then it’s not a departure, as claimed in the press release. And can we rename this blog “Prince of Press Releases” for the foreseeable future?

    • textdoc

      LOL! Indeed it is.

    • hma

      math is hard

  • Anonymous

    “1970s alpine culture” aka a whole lotta cocaine?

    • anon

      I was thinking reckless sex and turtlenecks.

      • jenster8dc

        Reckless Sex and Turtlenecks would be an excellent name for a rock band.

      • Early Times

        Their new club opening next summer (seasonal) will feature group sex on roof decks

    • Anonymous

      That was the 80’s.

    • Alan

      I’m already growing out my Tom Selleck moustache.

  • peachy

    Shouldn’t there be lots of fondue? This seriously sounds like the stupidest concept. Oh wait… we have lived through the cereal restaurant and the PB&J truck…

  • Anonymous

    Sounds like a press release written by Zoolander.

    • pabloraw

      *cough cough* I thinks I gots the black lung pops.. *cough cough*

    • Anonymous

      I won’t go here unless the beautiful JCrew models of DC are there!

    • Anonymous

      It’s “fraught” with fine-tuned details. Like the “candlelit onyx accents” may be lethal.

      • textdoc

        Actual LOL.

  • Anonymous

    They should decorate it with posters from Hot Dog! The Movie.

    • Anonymous


  • Anonymous

    What is a a faux bois shou-sugi-ban technique?

    • textdoc

      “Faux bois” means “false wood.” I’d never heard of “shou-sugi-ban,” but apparently it’s a method of charring wood to make it extra-durable. It looks like it’s mainly used for siding. So I guess “faux bois shou-sugi-ban” must be a trompe-l’oeil thing, where wood (?) is painted or otherwise treated to look as though it’s been charred.

  • Anonymous

    I hate when these press releases describe every detail of the decor in excruciating detail as though the customers should feel honored to see it. It’s a bar, not the Taj Mahal!

    • andy2

      This isn’t a slam at PoP – but a journalist should never copy and paste directly from a release like this. Instead do what Pop does well, go for a pre-opening visit and/or chat with the owners to figure out what all this means.

      • Anonymous

        Based on the tone of the press release, I have the feeling the owners don’t want some dirty blogger trampling all over their shiny new nightclub.

        • Anonymous

          Also, at least in this case, the press release is far more crazy and interesting than an actual preview would be.

      • Anonymous

        I’m not sure why you’d say that. If by “journalist” you mean “reporter” then I think you have a point, but I think “journalist” has a much broader definition. If you consider PoP a journalist, then I think your assertion about journalists is wrong.

  • Ryan

    I know nothing about the economics of night clubs, but is DC so flush with cash that they can serious afford to only be open three days a week?

    • zero_sum

      Tons of rich kids in VA and MD who live with their parents well into their 30s are keeping these places open. I know a bunch and they have way too much money and time on their hands.

  • andy2

    This makes my hot tub time machine obsolete

  • anomalous

    Though there is no mention of it in the press release, it sounds like this place is not looking to cater to the masses. I get a whiff of cover charges, dress codes and bouncers dishing out easy disdain for the average Joe/Joney.

    • Anonymous

      That’s pretty standard for any nightclub though, isn’t it?

  • Anonymous

    I’m scared

  • inwdc

    “Overhead, the mirrored prism ceiling refracts views and light from every angle, creating a visual experience akin to that of an abstracted mountain view.” …Or akin to an hourly hotel from the 70’s.


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