By: Sarah Carr
“Sometimes when I’m getting ready to leave at night, the antique firehose unwinds itself,” says Luca Hamm, membership manager at NeueHouse Bradbury. “I’ll wind it back up, and ten minutes later, it’s undone again.” Legend has it The Bradbury Building, built in 1893, has a ghostly tenant or two—perhaps the spirit of George Wyman, its original architect, or a bootlegger from the speakeasy housed in the basement during prohibition.
Apparitions aside, Hamm is busy running the bustling creative workspace that occupies Bradbury’s second floor—including The Wyman Bar, NeueHouse’s local haunt for members, their guests, and eventually, the public. “The Wyman Bar sits in a cozy, light-filled nook, and it’s my favorite spot,” says NeueHouse CEO Josh Wyatt. “I cannot wait to have a lovely, finely crafted cocktail as the evening sunset streams through the oversize windows.” NeueHouse Bradbury technically opened in early 2020, but this year the location is getting its moment in the sun—which pours through the skylit atrium, flooding the space with light flattering enough to please any Instagrammer. “We studied the sunlight to see how natural light would influence the mood and feel of each room from morning to night,” says Anwar Mekhayech, partner and co-founder of DesignAgency, the firm that gave the 25,000-square-foot interior a major zhuzh. “We also uncovered over a dozen old brick fireplaces, so we planned the spaces around them, to celebrate those moments as much as possible.”
Some of those fireplaces are in private offices, others the focal point of communal spaces filled with plush seating and low-slung tables. “We immediately knew we couldn’t compete with the building’s bold ironwork,” Mekhayech says, “we wanted to embrace the charm of the historic building, so we decided to create a juxtaposition that would express a sort of feminine softness.” That original French ironwork is a handsome ribbon of filigree balustrades that winds up the staircases and around the interior balconies. It’s what makes the iconic architecture easy to recognize in Blade Runner and other films, and part of what makes a NeueHouse membership so enticing. Among the other benefits: access to the brand’s cultural programming, which includes residencies by local chefs, artists, and tastemakers, plus exhibitions by Fotografiska, following a merger between the two brands (a summer gallery at NeueHouse Hollywood included a collection of Warhol photographs shows for the first time). From $3,200/year; neuehouse.com.