Nick's Picks: Cafe Sol and Skyway Lounge
Photo by Nicholas Abreu
From 2010 through 2014, Bill Hader made regular appearances on Saturday Night Live’s Weekend Update segment as a New York City nightlife correspondent named Stefon. In each sketch, Stefon would tell the audience about New York’s hottest fictitious club and the wild story behind it. For example, in one episode, Stefon tells the audience that “New York’s hottest club is Boof—this place has everything—pugs, geezers, doo-wop groups, and a wise old turtle that looks like Quincy Jones.”
If Stefon ever returns to SNL, he may refer to the Skyway Lounge and its unique set of characteristics for material. Located in the historic three-story glass building at 90 South Clinton, the Skyway Lounge, which may soon be Rochester’s hottest club, has everything.
During the day, from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Skyway Lounge uses only its first floor, a vast, spacious plane with sleek design, hardwood floors, and trendy furniture, to operate as Café Sol, an eatery that serves various Nespresso coffees, teas, pastries, and a small selection of sandwiches and salads.
Owned by Tom Ferrara, James Tabbi, and Anthony Molina—a trio of successful musicians and entrepreneurs—Cafe Sol is directly inspired by the group’s international travels.
“Cafe Sol is modeled after comfortable but stylized European cafes in Milan, Barcelona, Madrid, and Paris,” says Ferrara.
At around 4 p.m., the entire building is utilized as Café Sol transforms into the Skyway Lounge. On the first floor, which is outfitted with a high-tech DJ booth and a long, fully-stocked bar, tables and chairs used for the cafe are removed, opening up a huge space for dancing and socializing. With a sophisticated light system and state-of-the-art speakers, Skyway Lounge will look to keep its dance floor packed with fun music from various genres and live performances from internationally known DJs. Viviana Toscanini, a popular house DJ from Uruguay, is already booked for November 24. The mezzanine level, which is a relatively small, intimate space, is also outfitted with a bar and about a dozen stools overlooking the first floor. Finally, the third level acts as a lounge with couches and tables for patrons with reservations or bottle service.
The opportunity to offer a versatile experience is what originally drew Tabbi, Ferra, and Molina to this 90 South Clinton Space.
“We’re very interested in the three levels, the ability to create scene changes between floors, and the views in the building from all sides.” says Ferrara.
While each level offers a unique experience, all of Skyway Lounge’s assorted amenities combine for a cohesive, elegant atmosphere.
“From the location, to the interior design, to the sound, to the lighting, we really want to create an immersive experience that's only possible with all of those particular ingredients,” says Molina.
Cafe Sol and the Skyway Lounge are now both open for business.
Follow Nick’s Picks on Twitter at @NicksPicks585.