Sunday, October 17, 2010
"You can pay for school, but you can't buy class" - Jay-Z
Fresh off of my rant from yesterday, I wanted to show you a prime example of those who buy their way into "cool".
Ok, so Brent Bolthouse used to be a pretty big deal back in the day.
His events and weekly clubs were the place to be, and be seen.
Do you recall in my last blog post "Why-Y-Why", where I stated that if you and your friends walk up to the door person and they don't know you then its probably not going to happen for you and bottle service maybe your only way in.
Well, lets just say that was the case for Mr Sam Nazarian.
So what does he do? He decided to BUY his coolness or his way into the Hollywood nightlife scene.
I just finish reading a 2006 Los Angeles Times newspaper article (entitled: The King of Clubs by Steve Baltin) on how Sam partnered up with Brent Bolthouse to take over the Los Angeles nightlife scene. lol
Here is one of my favorite quotes, I'm going to copy & paste it here:
As a clubgoer in L.A., Nazarian was well aware of the Bolthouse mystique. "Growing up in L.A., obviously the Bolthouse brand is a huge brand," Nazarian says. "I remember nights I was outside Las Palmas and waited an hour. I had never really spoken to Brent; the first time we really spoke was at his club [Body English] in Vegas, but obviously you understand that the following's huge. That I knew."
Did you catch that part?
The part about "waiting outside for an hour".
Here you have a pretty successful guy, with enough money to buy the place, standing outside for hours. Why? Because he ain't cool.
Because he doesn't fit in. Because he heard that this is where the cool kids like to party and he wants to be a part of it.
Sorry, pal. Get in line and pay. Tables start at $2,000 dork.
Then Nazarian had to stalk Bolthouse in Vegas and offered to buy his coolness.
Nazarian thought that he's part of the "in crowd" and now he's "cool".
This just goes to show you that, sometimes you just can't buy cool.
Sam came in and bought Brent Bolthouse out and neither one of them have been successful since. Why?
Well, you cannot force big corporate, money making idealogies on tastemakers & influencers. Its not exclusive and its not cool.
The fallout of that partnership is this:
Sam Nazarian's vision of hiring all the "young promoters in town" to be taught by Brent Bolthouse didn't work. They ended up firing all of them once their contracts were over.
Bolthouse and SBE are not in partnership anymore.
Bolthouse's name is not a big draw anymore in the nightlife scene (ask the Saturday night PlayHouse guys about that experiment).
Bolthouse has moved on to 944 Magazine (which is a great read by the way....lol).
And, Sam Nazarian's businesses aren't so hot (when was the last time anyone went to XIV to eat,or to Hyde Lounge on Sunset, or stayed at the SLS Hotel?).
Here is another quote from the newspaper article:
"We see the bankers who come in from Wall Street and they're like, 'OK, the deal is great. But let's go out. We want to see Paris Hilton,' " Nazarian says. "It's pretty powerful to be able to have [those] relationships with celebrities."
Yeah, because I'm sure that the celebs and hipsters want to hangout and party with middle aged guys from investment firms.
I've said it before and I'll say it again, the influencers are a lot less impressed with average stuff for average people.
There are just certain things that your money just can't buy!
When you try paying your way in, and you start selling out, your run will not last long.
This is my last post, until my next post.