Jean-Georges Vongerichten Is Opening a Members Club in New York City

New York certainly isn’t wanting for members clubs. There’s Zero Bond, Casa Cipriani, ZZ’s Club—the list goes on. But that isn’t stopping some of the city’s biggest names from getting into the private-club game.

The latest is Jean-Georges Vongerichten, who is set to open Chez Margaux sometime this year, Eater New York reported on Wednesday. Across 18,000 square feet, the members club will include a restaurant serving modern French cuisine, a lounge with a Japanese-inspired menu, a library, private dining rooms, and a caviar salon that will turn into the club Gaux Gaux from 10 p.m. to 2 a.m.

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The establishment is a collaboration with the developer Michael Cayre, whose family owns the building in which Chez Margaux will be located. (It used to be the site of Vongerichten’s Spice Market, which closed in 2016). In an email to Eater, Cayre wrote that the inspirations behind the private club include “London’s renowned nightlife culture” and “the elegance of Paris in the 1930s.”

While some members clubs target the crème de la creme by charging thousands of dollars in yearly dues and high-priced initiation fees, Chez Margaux will be on the relatively affordable side. Those ages 21 to 31 will pay $1,800 annually, with an initiation fee of $1,000. And those 32 and older will be charged $2,600 a year, with $2,000 due up front. Once inside, all members will be met with the rules typical of these businesses: no photography, no use of laptops or iPads, and no ripped denim, baseball hats, sandals, or flip-flops, according to Eater.

There’s not yet an official opening date for Chez Margaux, but the members club marks the beginning of a new journey for the 403 West 13th Street address. After Cayre’s Midtown Equities bought the building in 2015, it sought to bring an experiential retailer into the fold, Eater noted. Dean & Deluca was attached to the project at one point, as were Marc Forgione, Larry Forgione, and the Butter Group, which is best know for 1 Oak. The trio was set to open a restaurant in the space in 2019, but it never materialized and then the pandemic led to a full pause for the building.

Now Vongerichten is returning to his former stomping ground, building it into the sort of space New Yorkers can’t seem to get enough of.

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