These pink walls are made for Instagramming. And yes, there's plenty of wine, too.
It all began with the Museum of Ice Cream. That pastel-colored paradise promised to celebrate all things ice cream-related, but, really, the Instagram-bait pool of rainbow sprinkles was its biggest draw. Did the museum offer samples? People genuinely forgot to ask. They mostly wanted to take photos in its meticulously-staged, prop-filled rooms and watch the likes roll in.
Since then, a buffet of similar pop-up experiences has appeared—including Candytopia, Museum of Pizza, and Egg House—all of which lead visitors through a series of food-themed, #influencer-level Instagram backdrops. The latest of these is New York City’s Rosé Mansion, which opens on Thursday, July 12. I got a first look inside.
Here’s what makes the Rosé Mansion special: It doesn’t forget that people also come there to drink. As soon as you walk in the door and ascend the stairs, you find yourself in a pink-walled altar to rosé. Once you approach the entrance of the maze—in which a series of stations, each focusing on a different aspect of pink wine, are set up—you get your glass. At each station you get a refill—and an impeccably designed stage for your Instagram photos.
There’s Rosé Airlines, and a rainbow scratch-and-sniff wall (this is not a gimmick, the wall really smells like each color’s assigned flavor), a room lit by a disco ball and filled with plastic bubbles labeled “Champagne Dreams,” and a bathtub filled with white and pink rose petals. I haven’t even listed all the photo-opp ready props—trust me, there are more. My favorite, though, is a short hallway near the scratch-and-sniff-wall that contains six closet-sized rooms each outfitted with a full-length mirror and different background—peach-colored roses that actually smell like roses, and plastic flamingos, for instance. These rooms have absolutely nothing to do with rosé, but so what? We all know why we’re there. To get the perfect selfie! And so the Rosé Mansion provides.
The Rosé Mansion wants you to learn something too, though. At every station, you can get a short tutorial about how rosé works. At the blending lab, for instance, you learn about how it’s made. In another room, a guide presents with you with a grapefruit gummy bear and asks you to describe how your wine tastes after you eat it. In one of the hallways, a friendly docent explains some of the historical figures who have influenced the history of wine.
At the preview, guests nodded politely along as each presenter gave his or her required spiel, and then quickly pranced off with their friends to continue taking photos. Who can blame them, really? The walls are painted in eye-candy hues of peach, magenta, and bubblegum, and we’d all been sipping free wine for the past half an hour. The atmosphere is light and celebratory—there’s no need to pretend that we showed up for any other reason than to show off on social media.
A building filled with art created specifically for the purpose of being photographed for Instagram does seem like an unnecessary indulgence, but not everything needs to be serious. If you want to learn about rosé, there are books for that. If you want to put on a pink dress and stand in front of a wall covered with roses, there’s now a mansion for that. It looks beautiful, and for the half an hour you'll spend wandering the Rosé Mansion’s hallways, that’s all that needs to matter.
The Rosé Mansion is open until October 7. Admission is $45.