Flipper's Roller Boogie Palace — originally a legendary skating spot in 1970/80s LA — screeches into White City this November.
A roller rink, live music venue, diner and pro skate shop make up the new destination, based on two floors of a former power station, which'll have London's skaters hotwheeling it to west London, for hip sessions on the rink, when it opens on 11 November.
From videos of the recent Flipper's season outside NYC's Rockefeller Center, there'll be glitzy outfits, choons and swish dancemoves galore. Skaters — many who'll inevitably sashay in wearing their glitziest gladrags — will flaunt their moves to DJs and musicians, and can refuel at the Hot Dogs and Caviar diner, where dishes include wagyu burgers, and fries decadently scattered with caviar. (Cost of living crisis — what cost of living crisis?)
Dubbed "Studio 54 on wheels", Flipper's was established by Ian "Flipper" Ross, and enjoyed a glamorous moment in the sun as a hotspot for west Hollywood celebs, drag queens, punks and various other cool cats between 1979-81. In that time, the ilk of Elton John, Sting, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Robin Williams, Cher, Jane Fonda and Nile Rodgers rolled up onto the rink, set beneath a golden art deco dome. Rock band the Go-Gos performed there regularly — and Prince even did a show there once, apparently wearing stockings, pumps and silky bikini underwear. God, we miss Prince.
Ian Ross' daughter, Liberty Ross, has brought the franchise into the 21st century, with the help of Kevin Wall (an entrepreneur who produced Live 8), and rapper Usher — so maybe expect a London cameo from him sometime. During its seven-month stint at Rockefeller, Flipper's hosted Will.I.Am, QTip, Mary J Blige and Alicia Keys, to name a few. Really not sure we're hip enough to be seen at this joint.
Flipper's Roller Boogie Palace, White City, opens 11 November 2022.