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Home > NOTEWORTHY DINING > New York City Noteworthy Dining > Strip House > Space
Strip House is located on a quiet tree-lined street, at 13 East 12th Street in the heart of Greenwich Village. There, it sits in a space that once was occupied by President Chester A. Arthur, and much later by opera singers and lovers alike, who were regulars at the once treasured restaurant, Asti, which opened in the space in 1925. Originally named Adolph’s -- after its owner, Adolph Mariani, who was an immigrant from San Terenzo al Mare -- Asti at first was a speakeasy on Sixth Avenue. During World War II, however, its name was changed from Adolph’s to Asti in honor of the town that produces the sparkling wine of the same name. Owner Mariani, who had trained to be a singer, sang on the street in order to drive business into the restaurant, and it worked! The restaurant subsequently moved to 13 East 12th Street, where Strip House now sits. Known for its servers, who regularly broke out into arias, and for its customers, which included notable New York theater and opera stars, Asti lasted for 75 years and finally closed on New Year’s Eve 1999. The Glazier Group took over Asti’s space and opened Strip House in August 2000. The space received a complete renovation courtesy of designer David Rockwell, although photographs of Asti’s legendary customers remain on the walls as a reminder of the space’s previous life. Outside, the building’s white exterior is very unobtrusive, decorated with a red planter that’s filled with small green foliage and a large red awning that’s held up by brass poles, with a red neon sign above it. Both the awning and the neon sign are emblazoned with the words “Strip House,” which will draw you in as if you’re entering some titillating members-only nightclub. If the red signs don’t draw you in, the red-framed gold lettering on the red-framed window will, as it’s flanked by awards and a diaphanous red half-height curtain.

David Rockwell designed Strip House and created its sexy vibe using plush fabrics, dark woods, red leathers and special small touches throughout. You’ll see his influence first thing upon entry, when you’ll notice the bar toward your right, past the coat check. It is a traditional wooden bar with a tufted red leather base that’s framed in wood. Large red leather and dark wood chairs with woven backs frame the bar while small red votive candles in a beaded pattern decorate it The bar is backed by a mirrored wall in front of which are four sets of circular shelves -- each three shelves tall -- that hold a variety of spirits for your imbibing pleasure. The dark wood bar can sit up to 16, as it gently makes a rounded L shape and provides an excellent view of the dining area.

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