Your best-matched Soho House, according to your star sign
From aquatic Cancerians in Copenhagen to loveable Librans in Paris, astrologer and member Clarisse Monahan charts the 12 (Soho) Houses of the zodiac
Sunday 16 October 2022 By Clarisse Monahan Illustration by Rosa Viktoria Ahler
In what we’re dubbing our first-ever ‘Sohoscope’, we thought it might be fun to assign our Houses their very own sun sign. In creating the list, we’ve taken into account a combination of factors: the vibe of a particular House’s members, the history of the building, and the ambience, climate and geography of its locale.
And in terms of each zodiac sign, we looked at its element (fire, water, air, earth), modality (fixed, mutable, cardinal), ruling planet, and general characteristics (rash Aries, lovely Venus, etc). Admittedly, this isn’t an exact science, but then neither is psychoanalysis and anthropology. So, without further ado, please enjoy your ‘Sohoscope’ below.
Aries: Soho House New York
Ruled by tough guy Mars, Aries is a brash sign that likes to butt heads. It’s also cardinal fire, which means its energy serves to initiate stuff. When it’s time to relax, you want to be around a Taurus; when it’s time to take over a company, Aries. The Ram is also independent – it doesn’t work well in groups, but it shines during guitar solos. Unlike Capricorn, its energy is youthful (it’s the first sign of the zodiac and has an adolescent bravado to it). But above all, there’s a kind of confrontational swagger – big ego jostling in the mix of the world, grinding. Well, Soho House New York feels very Aries – you’re rubbing elbows there, not stretching out. And it’s this competitive atmosphere that produces the greatness that is this House, where you’re not being coddled near a beach, but rather having a stiff scotch after work, planning which industry to disrupt.
Taurus: Soho House Nashville
Taurus is a fixed earth sign ruled by Venus (love, beauty and money). The Bull’s influence tends to be calm and steady. When you’re in Taurus season, you want to take your time, walk not run, and get more decadent than usual. This low-key vibe fits perfectly with the glorious new Soho House Nashville. It has been renovated from an old sock factory that used to make garments for NASA, among other less high-tech hosiery. The low-slung brick building sits nestled away in its own urban oasis far from any frantic city bustle. Its relative seclusion, coupled with its southern hospitality, creates a sense of slow-motion opulence here, where it’s not uncommon to see members shuffling through the lobby with large goblets of red wine, speaking in the easy, hypnotic twang of southern comfort.
Gemini: Shoreditch House
If languorous Soho House Nashville bespeaks a quintessentially Taurus vibe, Shoreditch, without question, embodies the most frenetic sign, high-speed Gemini – the zodiac’s most talkative member. The Twins are ruled by the fastest planet Mercury (communication and commerce), and you feel a similarly dizzy Shoreditch House pace when here, a pace that electrifies each nook, cranny and coveted power outlet in the building. Situated in one of London’s buzziest neighbourhoods, Shoreditch House instantly makes you want to wheel and deal. We could add White City House in west London (the former BBC Television Centre headquarters) here as an honourable Gemini mention as well.
Cancer: Soho House Copenhagen
One piece of advice during Cancer season is to be near water, as much as possible. After all, the Crab is the water sign and no House is more aligned to this aquatic imperative than Copenhagen’s lovely new entry into the Soho family. The building floats on a drowsy harbour joined by a canal lined with picturesque boats. And the outdoor deck to the House is so close to the water that at night you feel as though you’re on a ship at sea. There is an intimacy between public and private space here that earns Copenhagen a unique place in the Soho House canon. And did I mention Cancerian care? To be sure, all of the staff are sweet, but Soho House Copenhagen’s belong in a confectionery, tied up with red string.
Leo: Soho House Istanbul
Leo is the most regal sign and Soho House Istanbul the most regal House – bar none. Ruled by the kingly Sun (selfhood), Leo season has to do with putting ourselves on display or on stage amid pomp and circumstance. There’s a big ego element to the sign, where things need to be the best and the brightest. Enter Soho House Istanbul with the largest spa, the highest ceilings and the biggest windows. It used to be the American Embassy, which also goes some way in explaining the Leo-esque ego energy that went into the building itself. But more than all of that, the reason we must associate Leo with this House is that it’s the most cat-friendly: an orange feline (known as Soho Cat) struts around like it owns the place, while in the evenings other tabbies and gingers are allowed to lounge about the palatial premises as well. It’s all very charming, like Leo itself.
Virgo: Soho House Chicago
Chicago is forever relegated (unjustly, in my opinion) to ‘second city’ status in the States. Virgo, too, doesn’t have the purported star power of, say, Leo. No, the Maiden is the most behind-the-scenes sign. Ruled by Mercury (communication, commerce, engineering), Virgo is associated with hard work, practical reason, and no nonsense, much like Chicago, the city of big shoulders, in Carl Sandburg’s memorable phrase. Soho House Chicago itself, with its glammed-up industrial chic and epic boxing ring in the gym, recalls the site’s hard-nosed past. And where Virgo is an earth sign, the members here are the most down-to-earth. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, Virgo is connected with food, the harvest and nutrition – and there’s no House better situated for culinary cornucopia than Chicago’s, with Au Cheval across the street and dozens of other choices within two blocks of Fulton Street Market.
Libra: Soho House Paris
An easy match: Libra is ruled by lovely Venus, while Soho House Paris sits ensconced in the City of Love. But Venus also symbolises erotic desire, which is fitting given the building’s location near the red-light district of Pigalle. An interesting titbit: ‘venereal’ derives etymologically from Venus. So, there’s that, too. Moreover, Libra is an air sign, and while most Soho Houses have an open roof-deck concept, the very structure of this one seems built to beckon airiness to it. The central, glassed-in retractable roof is open all summer to the vaulted heavens, so you’re always connected to the sky. And even in the colder months, you can look up from your table through the transparent courtyard to the stars, including Venus, Soho House Paris’s guiding light.
Scorpio: Soho Beach House Miami
Scorpio is a nocturnal sign, ruled by fiery Mars. Its element is fixed water, and in medical astrology it rules over the sex parts. Scorpio combines the heat of its ruling planet with its watery nature, making it the steamy jacuzzi of the zodiac. Did somebody say jacuzzi? Cue Soho Beach House Miami. The climate there is pure Scorpio, docked just off the Atlantic Ocean, but all muggy and churning with late-night machinations. Unlike its more staid European counterparts, this House pulses with a sexual frisson aroused by its fixed water poolside bikini culture. Scorpio is also a strategic sign – Mars here plays the role of field general qua mastermind. Like Shoreditch House, there is an intensity at Soho Beach House Miami, but its libidinal economy is unmatched by anywhere else.
Sagittarius: Soho House Austin
Fun, fun, fun – the Sagittarius mantra. Also loud, loud, loud. The Archer is a mutable fire sign, always changing, always optimistic, always burning the midnight oil. Ruled by lucky Jupiter, Sagittarius is a big risk-taker and dice-roller. It’s a voluminous sign – and Austin, located in the politically liberal heart of red-state Texas, is known, too, to pump up the volume. Infamous for being one of the live music capitals of the world, the city gets boisterous, including up on the beautiful Soho House Austin deck, where the speakers crack in the dry heat of the night. All this raucous Sagittarius energy continues down South Congress Avenue, with its myriad bars spilling patrons and beer out on the streets and its shops selling cowboy gear. Symbolically, Sagittarius is half-man, half-horse, so if any sign needs a nice pair of boots and a Stetson hat, it’s this one.
Capricorn: Soho House Amsterdam
As a cardinal earth sign, Capricorn energy has to do with things of this world. It relates to commercial interests, trade, banking, institutions, and business. It’s a paperwork sign. Bureaucracy is its friend. Structurally, no building has a tighter match to a sign than Soho House Amsterdam, the site of a former trading headquarters. You can feel the riches of profits, goods and merchant intrigue invested into the heft of the building’s eternal granite and patrician wood panelling. This sense of weight and longevity relate likewise to Capricorn’s ruling planet, Saturn, the lord of time. Capricorn energy is sober, a bit austere. But also elegant. You feel that in this House – but, of course, you also feel the wheels of commerce just outside, as the canals rush with youth energy, which circulate like life-blood among the members of this House, at once old and new.
Aquarius: Soho House Berlin
Aquarius is the loner of the zodiac. It does its own thing and delights in its oddness. Ruled by grim Saturn, it can be a bit cold and socially awkward. Aquarians fancy themselves the most forward thinking and futuristic of the signs and are drawn to techy devices that signal social advancement. They are cerebral, often too much in their own heads. They are basically Soho House Berlin, by far the most off-kilter spot on the register. Robotic techno always pumps from the Store X, a grand ground-level shop stocked with Berlin fashion, i.e. outlandishly large bubbly white runners and oversized raincoats with neon reflective gear. The music points to Aquarian future cool – no soul records from Motown traverse these Berlin decks. You’re welcomed to the House with a big artwork by Damien Hirst, depicting a shark spray- painted on a large expanse of plywood. The piece seems to be the House’s spirit animal –beyond our mortal ken, out of reach.
Pisces: Soho Warehouse
Pisces is the dreamiest sign and also, perhaps, the one most smitten with glamour. The main reason for this: it is co-ruled by Neptune, lord of art, illusion, and other such smoke and mirrors dimensions beyond the rational. I was lucky enough to give tarot readings at Soho Warehouse and found that each attendee was involved in scriptwriting, acting, or film. Of course, that is so LA, but also so Neptune – and ultimately so Pisces. The making of dreamworlds (through writing, film, etc) is deeply connected with the visionary nature of the Fishes. As the final water sign of the zodiac, Pisces also likes to be near water, so luckily Soho Warehouse is close enough to the Pacific Ocean. Even the bedrooms, with their gorgeous blue subway tiles and festooning bath and shower, make one feel submerged in a kind of Atlantis or wonderland.