By Christopher A. Pape
In Manhattan’s Flatiron Hotel, Toshi’s Living Room and Penthouse is in one of the hottest spots of the appropriately named Flatiron District. The owner, Robert ‘Toshi’ Chan, studied at Columbia University while taking a mixology class on the side. He quickly developed a passion for events and creating fun atmospheres for guests. After several years working on Wall Street, he tried his hand at real estate, which is when he began throwing his iconic ‘Toshi Parties’ at his properties. The profits he made were turned towards establishing a bar that was alive with personality as he was.
Toshi’s Living Room and Penthouse is a large space, with areas for lounging and for dining. The décor is unique, with creamy white walls and floor and a range of colors in the furniture; there are some bold layouts but it all works well to provide a comforting yet energetic vibe that the bar thrives off. The outdoor area is relaxing and vibrant in equal measure and has a close view of the Empire State building, which is particularly impressive at night.
What makes Toshi’s creation so unique is its complete disregard for advertisement. They do not believe in creating hype or painting and sort of picture of themselves; the idea is that you go without any prejudice and experience what they have to offer. If you hear about them, it will be through a friend (or, of course, Resident magazine). As they put it, they believe in ‘no BS’, just a genuine good time.
The live bands are carefully selected. They do not tend to settle for simple groups that jump from bar to bar, they seek more ambitious musicians who have their hearts set on the bright lights. What they want to do is to provide a stage for these potential stars to go on to bigger and better things. The result is that Toshi often lands the best bands around.
Their mantra is based on the desire to enjoy life and ‘wanting to live forever.’ Toshi captures the essence of Manhattan’s nightlife and gives it a touch of home comfort to make it one of the most noteworthy of the New York bar scene’s recent success stories. •
Toshi’s Living Room and Penthouse
New York, NY 10010