Eat and Drink Gitano NYC brings a tropical oasis to SoHo By Nicole Levy email@example.com Updated June 30, 2018 2:22 PM Print Share fbShare Tweet Email A tropical oasis is now open for business in SoHo. The 30-foot coconut palms rising above the vacant lot at Canal and Varick streets (and piquing the curiosity of all passers-by) made their big debut last week with the opening of a new seasonal restaurant and mezcal bar. Gitano NYC is the American outpost of the original jungle-themed lounge in vacation destination Tulum, Mexico. The name "Gitano" means "gyspy" in Spanish. Business partners James Gardner and Melissa Perlman offer a taste of Tulum's natural beauty in a 24,000-square-foot tropical garden with the downtown Manhattan skyline as a background. Gitano NYC accommodates as many as 450 people on the grounds, under a central black matte Bedouin tent, on twin dining decks and in an uncovered outdoor lounge. The restaurant also features a 40-foot reflecting pool, a cafe featuring coffee from Intelligentsia, a resortwear boutique, an educational urban farm, oversize disco ball and a "meditation labyrinth." Helmed by Bodega Negra alum Yvan Lemoine, the kitchen will rotate menus throughout the summer, based on collaborations with famous chefs like Noma co-founder Mads Refslund. Mezcal cocktails, such as the Gitano margarita and Jungle Fever (chili, lime, cilantro), will be a constant. There's a huge, open oven on the premises too, so expect some wood-fired Mexican fare. Hours so far are: lunch Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; sunset cocktails and dinner Sunday through Wednesday, 5 to 11 p.m.; sunset cocktails and dinner Thursday through Saturday, 5 p.m. to midnight; and weekend brunch 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Take a first look inside, as captured in photos of last week's preview party: The central bar is located under a tent Photo Credit: BFA / Samantha Nandez The Bedouin tent, custom made in Canada, is made with a matte black material. It adds a gypsy vibe to the space. Banquet tables seat big groups Photo Credit: BFA / Samantha Nandez You'll find them on the twin dining decks flanking the central bar. The wooden furniture is pretty beach-y Photo Credit: Getty Images / Andrew Toth Hanging above the tables are market lights. Rattan furniture screams "tropical" Photo Credit: Getty Images / Andrew Toth And candles set the mood late at night. Hundreds of tropical plants offer shade Photo Credit: Getty Images / Andrew Toth As well as ambiance, and privacy. There's music Photo Credit: Getty Images / Andrew Toth But no DJs and dancing, per a neighborhood requirement. There's a big wood-fired oven on the premises Photo Credit: BFA / Samantha Nandez You can watch your food being prepared. The final menu will likely include tacos Photo Credit: BFA / Samantha Nandez The ones served at the preview party were loaded with pork belly carnitas, purple cabbage and salsa verde. Many of the drinks will feature mezcal Photo Credit: BFA / Samantha Nandez The smoky Mexican spirit made from the agave plant is related to tequila. Co-owner James Gardner may be wandering around Photo Credit: Getty Images / Andrew Toth According to Vogue, the restaurateur (pictured) used to work for Goldman Sachs, then became a digital fashion pioneer for brands like Marc Jacobs. Expect to spot celebs, too Photo Credit: Getty Images / Andrew Toth Actress Chloë Sevigny made an appearance at the Thursday night preview, sporting an all-black ensemble. By Nicole Levy firstname.lastname@example.org Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Comments We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.