Once the twins and Michael moved on from Jour et Nuit, they pursued a summer opportunity in the Hamptons.They joined the promotional team at the Southampton hotspot “Dune” run by Noah Teppenberg and Jason Strauss.
After a successful summer in the Hamptons, having gained even more knowledge from two veteran operators, the twins were ready to recreate Day& Night. With Michael Wainstein’s support, Dual Groupe was formed.
They took on the competition head on throwing their own Brunch Party at the restaurant “Merkatto 55.“ “It was our first time ever working downtown.” Daniel says. “We didn’t realize there was a whole other market of people.We had spent our whole time in New York in this Eurocentric bubble. That’s where we got our masters in the hospitality business. We were able to show the Americans how it’s done.” Derek remembers.
The brunches at Merkatto were a great success. Drawing huge crowds in the early afternoon, which were unprecedented in the industry. “ Early on we promoted the party as Merkatto 55, but we wanted to brand it around Dual Groupe, so it could continue if the location changed.” Smartly, the brothers began transitioning to marketing parties with the “Day & Night” brand.
After establishing their brand over the winter months, they took the momentum they had gained and headed back east in the summer of 2009. They took over the “Pink Elephant” space in Southhampton to host their boozy brunches. “We were building our brand piece by piece, by giving people what they wanted.” Daniel recalls.
After the summer, word of their Day & Night parties was spreading and the brand was growing stronger. Even after the Bagatelle group actually bought the Merkatto 55 space, the party continued. They bounced around venues like Revel, I Tre Merli, and Cipriani Downtown Upstairs. By the following summer their Hamptons following had grown so big they took over a marina in East Hampton Point.
In the fall of 2010 the brothers made their return uptown, taking their Saturday brunched to the legendary space “The Oak Room” at the plaza hotel. However, they were not alone the Strategic group had started their own brunch parties at their new venue LAVO.
At the same time the brothers were about to open up their first restaurant under Dual Group called “MPD.” “We built it from the bottom up. From the moment that Joir Et Nuit closed to the moment that MPD opened we had grown up tremendously. We weren’t just kids throwing a brunch party.” Derek says. “We got a Michelin recommendation in the meatpacking district. It showed those people who just joined our crew a few years ago, that we’ve been around for ten.” Daniel boasts.
The party at the Oak Room was a great success bringing in up to $180,000 in a single afternoon. The brunch at the Oak Room was a tremendous opportunity, but the owners of the restaurant decided to close the venue after the brunch season was over.
The brothers spent this past summer in St Tropez, which many consider the Mecca of Daylife. Where beach clubs frequented by jet setters gave birth to the boozy brunch concept the brothers help make popular in America. “Our strategy was authenticate our brand by paying homage to where it lived before” Daniel says. “We took the brand there and people received it. When we brought it back to New York we were ten times stronger.”
Even with increased competition from Strategic Group and other venues adopting their brunch concept, Day & Night’s latest incarnation at “Anja Bar” is showing no signs of slowing down. The parties feature weekly themes influenced by their time spent in St Tropez. Their restaurant MPD enjoy continued success and recently celebrated its one-year anniversary.
What’s next for the dynamic duo? Only time will tell. However, the brothers hope to expand to other US markets like Miami and Vegas, as well as continuing to build their brand overseas in Europe.
It’s almost 6pm back at Anja Bar, as day turns into night the lights dim and the place takes on a late nightclub vibe. Derek & Daniel are in the DJ booth in Mel Debarge’s ear. Daniel takes the Mic and begins to calling out a client to “drink or spray” his champagne. The man opts for the latter spraying the bottle at one of his friends. Buffalo Bill’s linebacker Shawne Merriman is partying at a nearby table. The place is packed, Champagne wars are breaking out at tables around the venue. When it hit’s six Daniel gives the DJ the sign to cut the music. “The after party is at MPD,” the DJ announces, and I think to myself, “Why not? The night is still young…”
Photo Cred: GuestofaGuest.com