By Lori Simmons Zelenko
Photos by Christopher Soto-Chimelis
Even though Donna Summer may be chanting “Hot Stuff” the only thing that’s going to heat up Manhattan’s new ice bar Minus5 at the Hilton Hotel where the temperature stays a crisp 23 degrees, Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall is a little romance. No harm then in admitting that you might even get caught giving Santa Claus a cuddle as you sip a Holiday cocktail amidst a snowy forest aka Central Park intricately, beautifully carved in ice. This is not the destination for madly crafted, insanely complicated artisanal cocktails; the motto here is ‘Keep the drinks simple and your body warm’. Faux fur coats and gloves are available with the price of admission and the drinks – Three Olives is the vodka of choice – are served in chunky tumblers carved of ice, indeed gloves are required for enjoyable freeze-free sipping.
Despite the pop soundtrack and the neon lights that change the scenery with Jello shot colors – lime green, strawberry pink, glowing grape – there’s a spontaneous coziness to this ice bar. Park benches made of ice invite lounging with fur throws tossed casually (to save certain assets from freezing) and an ice cave makes for a unique VIP room.
Definitely worth a visit this Holiday season but do realize that UGGs are more practical here than your favorite stiletto-heeled, open-toed Louboutins. But no matter there’s always love to keep you warm. The glamour here is in the glittering ice sculptures that surround – from the larger than life Nutcracker to the American Flag which would have made Jasper Johns proud. How to make the most of Minus5? Well, heat things up with a hot date at this frosty, fabulous hideaway at The Hilton. Dash on over after your office Christmas party, they’re open well past midnight.
1335 6th Ave (at The New York Hilton) New York, NY 10019 Neighborhoods: Midtown West, Theater District