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Back in June, The Plaza, whose neoclassical Grand Ballroom is one of the most expensive, lavish, and coveted hotel wedding venues in all the land, hosted its first-ever-in-106-years gay wedding. Now, you can witness Jay & Tony's ceremony for yourself in all its fabulous -- and in many ways, quite traditional--glory (heck, it is The Plaza!).
Here's the recently released wedding video, shot by John Armendariz of NewYorkFilmworks. We love how it starts off with a chuckle as the priest awkwardly stutters, "Well, it's a little unusual for me to be the only one in white at one of these things!".
But we warn you, have a tissue in hand--this one's a tearjerker!
Though we have to wait until May 2013 to watch the film, the holiday tree inspired by the upcoming movie Gatsby was just unveiled within The Plaza. The tree sits inside the hotel's famous Palm Court and, just like the movie, was designed and dressed by Catherine Martin, costume/set/production designer, film producer and wife of Baz Luhrmann.
Yesterday evening at the debut, we asked Catherine if the finished tree matched her original vision. "Yes and, from the first, I wanted the hundreds of 'JG' monograms you'll find on it," she replied. "I hope that this would be the sort of tree Jay Gatsby would have in his foyer."
And the biggest challenge to making this vision reality? "Getting this 900-lb tree to turn!"
Last minute alert! Tonight, The Plaza Hotel will not only officially light its Christmas tree, but will debut the holiday themed tea. For many, especially Home Alone purists, the holiday spirit doesn't kick into gear until The Plaza goes through this ritual, and 2012 is going to be especially glitzy.
Why? Because the theme for both the tree and tea is Gatsby! Yes, as in they are teaming up with the Baz Luhrmann movie version of F. Scott Fitzgerald's classic 1920s novel to apply the roaring 20s glamor to this festive season, even though the movie's release date has been pushed back to late spring 2013.
It's that time of the year again! SighFashion Week, when Manhattan's nicer hotels book up their event spaces with runway shows, after parties and viewing appointments while travelers book up the rooms, hoping to catch a glimpse of the fashion set heading to them.
We're preparing for a deluge of Fashion Week hotel package announcements here at HotelChatter, but The Plaza is leading the way. The "Fall Fashion Week Package" is a pricey affair in Plaza style; a three-night minimum is required, from $865 per night. For that you receive:
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Just completed and lit during a tea service yesterday, the Betsey Johnson/Eloise tree is perhaps the hottest pink tree you'll ever see; it's 18 feet high and some of the ornaments are stuffed with Betsey goodies (like jewelry and underwear).
It's free to stop in and see the tree, which is not in the lobby but nearer the Palm Court, but it'll only be shining that fuchsia glow through January 4. Meanwhile if you'd like to buy a few things off the tree, the pop-up in The Plaza's downstairs shops will be open longeruntil January 9.
For a whole slew of photos of the tree's decorating and Betsey striking poses, hit up the Facebook gallery.
Visiting New York's famous Plaza Hotel is a dream for many people, but what about mixing The Plaza's upper-class hoighty-toightiness with some good ol' casual fun? Now that's something we could get into, and it looks like we won't have to wait too long. A Flip-Flop Ball will go down at The Plaza on June 10, in celebration of "Caribbean Week" in NYC.
The event is open to the public, so long as you cough up $350 for a ticket (most proceeds go to scholarships "for Caribbean nationals pursuing careers in tourism").
From the ankle-up, you should dress as if you're attending a regular floofy ball at The Plaza. However, from the ankle down, feel free to bust out the plastic flower-bedecked thongs, your favorite pair of cozy $2.50 Old Navy flops, orour personal favoritesthe Reef sandals with bottle-opener soles. That little extra gadget surely helps cut some of the time waiting for your beer at the bar.
Oh, waitdid we mention there'll be Caribbean rum tastings all night? Stay tune to their Facebook page for when they release the tickets for the ball.
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Just days after his 56th birthday, actor Kelsey Grammer took to the Plaza Hotel to celebrate his marriage to 29-year-old Kayte Walsh—a former Virgin Atlantic flight attendant who may now count herself as Grammer bride No. 4.
The mismatched couple—known for shameless public displays of affection—were reported to have booked the hotel back in early February, andthanks to a TMZ-released five-page banquet orderdetails of the lavish wedding reception soon became public knowledge. A $400 per head cost of the event guaranteed a "Premium" open bar, champagne toast (unfortunately, the speech itself remained un-published), and mouthwatering hors d'oeuvres like goat cheese truffles, butterflied ginger prawns, and handmade arepas. After reading through the five-star menu, even we would be willing to tolerate a poolside groping session with the Gramms himself.
We went to afternoon tea at The Plaza last Sunday. Whoopdee do. It was perhaps the worst and most expensive tea service we've ever had, and yet this was The Plaza, for Pete's sake. We were excited, we were going with two friends, and we knew the hotel would be in full holiday regalia so that we'd get the full, heartwarming experience. But so many things went wrong that our tea, and the over $100 check, left nothing but a bitter taste in our mouth.
First, we understand that the hotel may have been busier than normal, seeing as how it's a holiday season Sunday. Second, the hotel used to have tea in the opulent adjoining Palm Court, but when that idea failed to make a profit despite costing $60 per person, they moved it to where we had the $35 version: in the lobby, in the area they call the Champagne Bar.
Perhaps the first sign of trouble was when we noticed everyone drinking bottles of Dom Perignon around us, at noon on a Sunday...
How much is that Santa in the window? No really, how much did New York's Plaza Hotel pay to get this guy, who has a full real beard and the perfect joviality for this gig? We're guessing big bucks, considering the custom Santa suit complete with The Plaza's crest on the hat.
On December Sundays, you'll be able to take your kids down into The Plaza's Retail Collection shops on the lower level and have them pose with not just any mall Santa, but The Plaza Santa. He's just down around the corner from the Eloise Shop, which was our original reason for venturing into The Plaza's bowels in the first place. If you stop by, tell him we say "hi" back.
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If you think that little girls go gaga over American Girl, then you haven't realized that little girls will love anything pink and pint-size. This past weekend, we hit up The Plaza Hotel to check out how the holiday tourist season was treating it, and also to wander down into their shops for a peek at the newly-opened Eloise Shop.
Entering the thoroughly pink space at the end of the lower-level Plaza Retail Collection, we realized that American Girl (and the buying frenzy it generates) is exactly what The Plaza is going for with this space. Perhaps they finally paid attention to how many bright red American Girl shopping bags come in with their guests during this season.
So in the Eloise shop, you'll find a tea room with mini tables and chairs, a boudoir-type space where the moms sit, a powder room, a "closet" with little stage and mirrors, and an activity room with bean bag chairsalso pink. But in each nook and cranny is stuffed stuff for sale, at prices that would make an American Girl weep.
Granted that it's a day late in showing up, which leads us to think that this might be a one-day only deal because of the weather. Light rain now falls on both the Tesla Model S (the white one) and the Tesla Roadster (the hot little red number), and yet the curious continue to approach for cell phone snaps and quick chats with the Tesla representatives. Luckily we snapped our pictures before the Tesla reps surrounded the cars with stanchions.
Says a Tesla rep of their decision to park in front of The Plaza, of all places: "Well, this Model S is just our push car, so the interior is filled with foam. The working model took publicity pictures yesterday in front of MoMA, and we've been all around New York. Here is great exposure." You heard it here first, folks: The Plaza Hotel is now doing double-duty as an eco-auto showroom. Get there today, just in case they split before the weekend!
Check out all of our pictures from the Tesla's visit to The Plaza at the Flickr Set.
It may be auto show time in the more car-centric cities of the United States, but New York City, as usual, has other plans. Instead of packing a convention center with the newest gas-guzzlers, the city will have one of the Tesla Model S electric cars on display for two days in the lobby of The Plaza Hotel. Although we definitely don't equate eco-friendly innovation with The Plaza, the fact that they're allowing Tesla to squat in their opulent digs raises our opinion of the place a tad.
Just a tad, though, as the car will only be on display on April 30 and May 1, reports Treehugger, who also notes that Tesla representatives will be on hand to answer questions and even take orders for the Model S. If you're not in New York, you can catch the Tesla car on the David Letterman show the night before its Plaza debut, April 29.
Expect us to totally be checking this out, and we think that the lobby will be packed with other curious urbanites, green advocates and car fans during its brief Plaza stint. If one can no longer drop $60 on a single tea service in The Palm Court, then at least the hotel has given people something else at which to gawk and snap pictures.