Igor was born in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Hercegovina in 1973. After graduating High School in his hometown, he proceeded to attend the School of Economics at the University of Zagreb on a Soros scholarship. In 1996, he was granted a refugee status in the United States and promptly moved to New York where he had a long stint of odd jobs. He was a dishwasher at a summer camp for overweight Jewish kids, an AC unit assistant installer and a bathroom attendant at a Chelsea nightclub – among others that we won’t mention here.
Tired of dispensing liquid soap and dangling out of windows in Upper West Side high-rises, he found his place as a barback at Keith McNally’s Pravda. Shortly thereafter, Igor was promoted to bartender and spent the next three years manning the bar. In 2000, he moved to The Park, at the time, one of the most taxing high-volume gigs in town. And finally, opened Employees Only with the crew he met at Pravda.