The pool party season is well under way, but there are few events for those of us who could never be recruited for Jersey Shore. The Love Hangover at the Artisan on Sunday attempted to fill that bill.
The brainchild of Santana singer Andy Vargas—yeah, that Santana—the party featured DJs like Reggie Escobar and live drummers and vocalists inspiring night owls with everything from funk to Latin house. Although the cabanas were reserved for the bottle service crowd, the scene was pretty diverse—a mix of Kardashian wannabes in skintight dresses and patent leather heels and tattooed rocker types in T-shirts and jeans.
At first it seemed there were more beefy security guards than guests, but afterhours parties often don’t get going until the wee hours. As promised, the night began with some old-school, LL Cool J’s “Going Back to Cali” mashed up with house. Vargas’ collective of DJs and musicians, dubbed the Soul Pymps, went even further back with a disco set, including Diana Ross’s appropriate “Love Hangover.” Corseted cocktail waitresses served shooters of tropical Ty Ku as attendees snapped pictures of one another and waited for the celebrity billing—including Chuck “Mean Hands” Prada, drummer for The Black Eyed Peas—to get the party going.
Although the Artisan replaced oversized poolside beds with tables and chairs, there was no obvious dancefloor. Attendees did more mingling than dancing, making the smoke machines and strobe lights seem slightly out of place. There was even an unmanned step and repeat for Oscar-style photos. But that extra-clubby atmosphere eventually paid off. The famous percussion lineup played while renowned DJs spun a mix that cast a wide net, and people took notice, stopping their conversations long enough to enjoy the live performance.
At around 2 a.m. as the herd began to thin, a new crowd arrived at the valet stand. The party was infused with fresh bodies—fully alert and far from any variety of hangover, amorous or otherwise.