We’re only a few days into 2012, but it’s clear that this will be a great year for dining, culture and entertainment. Here are some of the top openings and cultural happenings we’re excited about this month.
70 West 68th Street, near Lincoln Square
Opens early January
Joe Germanotta, better known to many as Lady Gaga’s papa, is just days from opening the doors of Joanne Trattoria to the public. Located on the Upper West Side, this Italian eatery has been hyped as one of the biggest openings of 2012, and it is where the pop star rang in the New Year. Germanotta’s culinary partner is celebrated chef Art Smith, who worked for Oprah Winfrey and was a contestant on Top Chef Masters. The menu will combine Germanotta’s Italian heritage with Smith’s Southern upbringing, offering dishes such as a Caprese salad with fried green tomatoes and grits instead of polenta. The small and inviting space will feature seating for 65 guests, including a bar area.
Acclaimed British designer Charlotte Olympia Dellal will open her first luxury accessory store in the U.S. this month in a yet-to-be disclosed uptown location. Since its debut in 2007, the Charlotte Olympia shoe brand has become internationally recognized and is sold in some of the world’s finest boutiques and stores. Handcrafted in Italy, the shoes feature funky prints, intricate detailing, unique color, and each pair is finished with a signature gold spider web on the sole. The brand has been showcased on many high-fashion runways and is coveted by celebrities including Sarah Jessica Parker, Blake Lively and Beyoncé, among others.
Tony and Emmy Award-winning actress Cynthia Nixon stars in the first Broadway production of Margaret Edson’s Wit. The play follows an intelligent, yet demanding, poetry professor (Nixon) as she undergoes experimental treatment for ovarian cancer. A scholar who devoted her life to academia, she must now face the irony and injustice of becoming the subject of research. This Pulitzer Prize-winning play, which has received universal acclaim since its original New York performance, is both emotionally moving and funny. Directed by Manhattan Theatre Club artistic director Lynne Meadow, Wit began performances at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre on January 5.
Set in in Charleston, South Carolina, Porgy and Bess is a thrilling love story based on the classic 1935 opera by George and Ira Gershwin and DuBose Heyward. It tells the story of a beautiful, yet troubled, woman named Bess, who is struggling to escape the restraints of her controlling lover. Bess seeks refuge in a crippled but courageous beggar named Porgy, and the two soon fall for each other. Although they face challenges from Bess’ former lover, and a colorful troublemaker known as Sporting Life, their love triumphs as one of theater’s most exhilarating love stories.
Jenene is one of the foremost experts in concierge services and lifestyle management. Over the past 10 years, Jenene forged and executed concierge programs with some of the world’s leading hoteliers, real estate developers, hedge funds, and Fortune 500 clients. Previously, Jenene ran guest relations at CNN for 7 years. At CNN, she learned to address the exacting demands of high net worth clients, and developed relationships with hundreds of exclusive vendors to seamlessly execute and exceed requirements. At Luxury Attaché, she leveraged her expertise to create a unique lifestyle service provision fueled by proactivity to provide clients with personalized service delivery, access, convenience and once in-a-lifetime experiences. Jenene attended the NYU Stern School of Business, and the University of Colorado, Boulder.