Friday, February 27, 2009

Would You Like To Spend Your Honeymoon Night On Top Of The World?

PR Director, Michelle Panzer of Brides Magazine, came up with the crazy cool idea to promote the 75th anniversary of Brides with a unique honeymoon suite. A partnership between the editorial and promotional departments supported the event. Genius Brides Wedding Style Director Maria McBride was responsible for designing the decor concept. Her job was to make a cozy nest, a glamorous rest for an urban princess.

Stock PR photo of Top of The Rock
before it was decorated for Brides 75th

With floor-to-ceiling windows soaring 25 feet, the Weather Room provides guests with the ultimate skyline experience. In addition to its magical atmosphere and unrivaled views, it offers access to two magnificent open-air terraces. This space accommodates as many as 300 guests for receptions and seated dinners for as many as 120.
Maria had nests on her mind since the success of her cool recent book Party Basics For New Nesters. She designed a giant fantasy bed high atop New York City in the fantastic Weather Room for the couple, and with the help of fellow designer Mark Musters, created a glam new nest for the newlyweds.

Ooh look at all the Lucite chairs for another party!
Brides actually used
leather ottomans and lacquered bar tables

In a city where a couple can marry at a movie premiere and hundreds of wives-to-be scale a giant wedding cake for cash, the idea of putting a honeymoon suite inside a tourist attraction isn't all that unconventional. Commemorating its 75th year—and perhaps looking to edge out the competition with a creative ploy for publicity—Brides magazine built a bedroom inside Top of the Rock for a pair of newlyweds. They hired a concierge for the couple, who spent the end of a long evening on the town at Top of The Rock.

The deck at Top Of The Rock

Dubbed the Mile High Honeymoon Suite, the promotion opened to the public, and closed with a fabulous cocktail party.

On one night, however, Ryan and Kelley Pattee had the 67th-floor perch to themselves! Chosen by the Condé Nast publication as a couple deserving of a unique honeymoon—the bride's ailing parents prevented the two from taking a vacation after their wedding in August—the Pattees were left to their own devices in the romantic east-facing corner of Rockefeller Center's rooftop observatory.

What a view!
Even the stanchions have Swarovski crystals used as the ropes

Ryan and Kelley getting their honeymoon package to Bora Bora
Millie Martini editor of Brides is on the left

Companies like Ann Gish, Swarovski, and Veuve Cliquot provided products for the suite, while Air Tahiti Nui, Tahiti Tourisme North America, and the Four Seasons Bora Bora supplemented the promotion with a vacation package for the Pattees.

To construct the grand Dorothy Draper-inspired four-poster bed, the magazine utilized its own resources. Maria McBride, a designer and consultant with six books on bridal style to her name, headed up the project with production handled by Mark Musters, the veteran event producer and designer now working under the name Studio Mamu. "Working with a space open to the public has inherent challenges," said Maria. With only a six-hour window to load in and build the suite, Maria relied on Mark's production experience to tackle last-minute problems.

A plaster cast for a mold was used, then multiple copies were made in foam, then sectioned together, and painted in gesso and acrylic. The back and sides of bed are velvet upholstery with Swarovski crystals. The posts are wood columns, and the finials are zinc molds.

Maria makes the bed

The most beautiful luxury linens and pillows are by Ann Gish. Swarovski buttons were used for the quilting on the headboard.

Setting up the bed
Love the Draper influence!

The molds for the "plaster" portion of the bed were done by a company called Transit Culture, and then the fantastic bed was put together and constructed by the amazing Iziquerdo Studio (where Mark worked 100 years ago).

Setting up the bed

Back story and installation

Maria and the crew

I did many event at Rockefeller Center with uber wedding planner Marcy Blum, and many fun and creative projects with Maria McBride. Mark Musters was on my crew and roster of the most creative people I used, and often worked on my most important projects.
I hope you enjoyed a little back story of a major marketing and event production. We often just see the finished result, and not all the interesting machinations that it takes to create something so beautiful and ephemeral.
Maybe one day I'll pull some photos out of the vault to show some of the great projects my company did with the fabulous three "M's".
30 Rock has always been glam, but it really is so hip now too. When I worked there the place was decked out with the most gorgeous Art Deco furnishings. Now it's all lounge-y and cool.


Karen said...

Wow! Valorie, New Orleans needs to put you to work! There are so many cool places that you know about - we should work on some project to get something like this going in the Crescent City!! Let's think on it!

vicki archer said...

What a fantastic promotion and how wonderful for that couple to have their honeymoon floating above the bright lights of New York. And the sets....Thank you Valorie for this gorgeous post, xv

Sweetie said...

Your post is gorgeous. Who would have ever thought what really happens behind the scenes. Thanks for sharing.

custardbydesign said...

What an amazing space - such an opulent space... champagne chic and smooth understated class are the words that come to mind here...I love it!

Anonymous said...

Okay, I admit it. I love the bed. I could live with it everyday. Or at least until the next time you post something else for me to love. . . like the lucite/ghost chairs I've come to adore through your posts.

pve design said...

Visual VAmp, you have a VAULT!
Love your behind the scenes photos.