Last summer, Center City’s club scene looked bleak. G Lounge on South 17th and Whisper on Walnut Street both closed in order to re-conceptualize. G Lounge’s Mark Marek reopened that space quietly around Thanksgiving as the burlesque-lite 1925 Cocktail Lounge (with Clark Maloney, Whisper’s one-time manager, as 1925’s GM). Now, Drew Milstein’s Walnut Street spot debuts as Coda this weekend with DJ Etienne de Crecy at the helm, with regular hours supposedly starting Feb. 20.

Pierre Calmels, the most notable French chef, will return to Bibou, the Italian Market BYOB he shares with his wife, Charlotte. This means Pierre will leave Le Cheri in Rittenhouse Square (the couple’s other, newer French restaurant) in the capable hands of chef Steve DeLorean.

Why the change? First off, Bibou’s chef Ron Fougeray is leaving town. “Plus, Bibou is turning 6 and needs freshening,” says Charlotte. The restaurant will close in April for a month of renovations, and will reopen with a new look — “definitely a paint job,” she says — and a “more refined” seven-course prix-fixe menu for $100 a person. “Pierre wants to return to the truly rich ingredients he used earlier in his career when he was at Le Be Fin,” Charlotte adds.

Philly’s best-dressed author/horticulturist Allen Crawford, aka Lord Breaulove Swells Whimsy, got noticed when his 2006 self-help book, “The Affected Provincial's Companion, Vol. I” was purchased by Johnny Depp’s production company. There’s no movie yet, but there will be a mock funeral, as Crawford is retiring his pseudonym and holding his “final farewell…albeit a rather unusual one” on Feb. 11 at the Institute of Contemporary Art.


Celebrity sightings

Zosia Mamet (HBO’s “Girls”) and beau Evan Jonigkeit ("X-Men: Days of Future Past") caught a preview of Theatre Exile's "The Whale" at Studio X in South Philly.

Wayne Simmonds, Steve Mason and several other Philadelphia Flyers hit up teammate Claude Giroux’s bowling event at Lucky Strike benefiting Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation.

Natalie DiDonato from VH1’s “Mob Wives” challenged the other Natalie on the show, Philly’s Natalie Guercio, to a fight during Damon Feldman’s celebrity boxing event at Marple Sports Arena in Springfield.

Latest From ...