The Scoop on NYC’s #1 Luxury Pet Hotel!

There is certainly a lot to think about when planning your special day. Everything has to be organized down to the last detail – and it is not always easy to remember every single thing that needs to be done. One detail that is often forgotten is where your dog will stay on the night of your wedding, and for the length of your Honeymoon! While you two are off celebrating your special day and the days that follow, it is important to make sure that your furry friends are being well taken care of. Why not give them a vacation as well? A luxurious pet hotel in Chelsea is the perfect option! We interviewed the owner, Kerry Brown, to get more information for all of you. She is also a client, so we threw in a few questions about her upcoming wedding!

Do you accept any type of dog?

Kerry: As long as dogs present valid vaccines and pass our Temperament Test, we take any kind of dog.  We don’t breed discriminate! 

What types of services do you offer?

Kerry: We offer everything from overnight boarding to daycare to spa and grooming services.

What do the dogs do while they are staying at the hotel?

Kerry: Dogs can play in our dog parks (separated by size and temperament), chill in their suites (some of our suites are larger than most NYC apartments, boasting full size beds and 42 inch flat screen TVs!). We have a gym called Pant where dogs can get workouts, a spa where they can get fun pampering services like PAWdiures, a private chef for fresh meals and a chauffeur service.

How many dogs typically stay at the hotel at a time?

Kerry: That’s tough to say. During the week we get tons of daycare dogs…and then certainly during the weekends and especially holidays it gets crazy with dogs sleeping over. It’s like a slumber party!

What type of facilities do you have at the hotel?

Kerry: We have expansive dog parks, with rubberized floors so it’s super soft for the dog to play on. Our spa offers a wide variety of services and every one f our suites has a flat screen tv to keep the dogs company

What separates you from other pet hotels?

Kerry: Our staff and their experience (and utter love for the dogs) is second to none. Our attention to every detail, whether its medications, special meals, workouts, what have you.

Our boarding is also super unique because at a traditional kennel, dogs have to stay in cages or board altogether in one room.  Our suites allow the dog to get tons of play during the day but then wind down and relax as thy retire to bed for room service and sleep.  

How far in advance should a stay be booked?

Kerry: For holidays, we recommend booking several weeks in advance.  For daycare, dogs can come and go as they please once they are set up in our system.

What is the best way for potential clients to get in touch with you?

Call 646.478.PUPS or email us: Chelsea.nyc@dpethotels.com

For more information on the hotel, check out their website at http://chelsea.dpethotels.com/.

You can also follow them on Facebook and Twitter.

BONUS QUESTIONS ABOUT THE WEDDING:

 How did you two meet?

Kerry: At the gym on the upper west side.

Tell us about the proposal.

Kerry: We were in Hawaii! Chris proposed on the island of Lanaii at a beautiful resort.   We spent the rest of the day at the pool (i was sort of on a cloud!) and then had a lovely dinner complete with tiki torches and sushi :).

Why did you decide to hire a wedding planner?

Kerry: I am a control freak and have thrown many events. I knew if I didn’t hire someone, I would find myself folding chairs and refilling wine glasses!

Do you have any plans for your wedding (i.e. theme, colors, etc.)?

Kerry: Rustic beachy :).  It will be held at my great grandparents beach house in ocean city, New Jersey.  The ceremony will be in the sand and the reception on the lawn. Fun!

Super Bowl XLVIII Party Planning!

I don’t know about you, but I think most of us in New York City are really getting excited about the Super Bowl being in our neck of the woods!

If you’re planning to host a Super Bowl party, here are some things to keep in mind:

  1. Make sure you have a well stocked bar! Kegs are a great option and work well for big groups, especially those watching sports. My ‘go to’ place for beer and keg delivery in New York City is Beerrightnow.
  2. Have plenty of food and make sure you consider guests with different dietary needs. If you want to stay in the theme of football you can make a few fun items like in the images below.
  3. Organize a few games such as Super Bowl Bingo, Guess the Score and Super Bowl Word Scramble.

Happy New Year from KBNY!

In less than 12 hours we will be ringing in the new year whist toasting to champagne and contemplating resolutions for 2014. I always look forward to the beginning of a new year for many different reasons. I love reflecting on all the accomplishments from the previous year, setting new goals which challenge me to grow both individually and within my business, and looking ahead at all the possibilities for creating special memories with my clients and those around me.

As I ponder on the weddings and events that Karen Brown New York has been part of the past year, I can’t help but feel overjoyed. I am extremely fortunate to have worked with so many amazing clients and supportive vendors. You have all made my job so easy, even in moments of crisis. Memories were made, charities have benefited and we partied way past our bedtimes. 2013 was most definitely an unforgettable year!

Here is a video recap of our year in wedding and event planning and the song “I’m Yours” by Jason Mraz was inspired by a client’s wedding where the bride sang this song to her husband in a flashmob performance. Enjoy!

5% Goes to Housing Works!

On November 9th I had the honor of being part of Michelle & Michael’s eclectic and swank wedding at the Housing Works Bookstore Café in Manhattan. For their 5% donation they have chosen to give to (of course) Housing Works! It’s another Event that Gives Back!”.

An excerpt from their website:

Since our founding in 1990, we have been at the forefront of advocacy efforts to ensure that New York City provides housing and related supportive services to low-income and homeless New Yorkers living with HIV/AIDS. We closely track the city agency charged with overseeing subsidies for poor New Yorkers with AIDS, the HIV/AIDS Services Administration (HASA), and we push for improvements and expansion of HASA services. Every year, we doggedly lobby the mayor and city council to make the best funding decisions around HIV prevention and care, especially for those most at-risk: drug users, transgender people, people of color, the poor, the homeless, and those with mental illnesses. Sometimes our lobbying takes the form of rallies, protests, and creative civil disobedience actions.

Housing Works logo

Stephanie & Steve’s Manhattan Wedding!

We could not have asked for a more beautiful day for Stephanie & Steve’s wedding which took place on the rooftop at Midtown Loft & Terrace. There was not a cloud in the sky and the temperature was perfect for an August day in New York City.

One of my favorite moments before a wedding ceremony begins is getting the bride ready to walk down the aisle. I love being part of that special moment before she says “I do” as I walk behind her, carrying her train. I’m the last person to see her face full of anticipation before the processional music begins, and I’m the last one to hug and congratulate her, other than her father, before she becomes “Mrs”. I can’t help but be overcome with emotion.

The style of the wedding was classic vintage and being that the bride thrives in creative concepts, she did a lot of DIY, even making her own flower bouquets for the bridesmaids and centerpieces. The bouquet she carried was made of antique brooches, including one from her mother on the stem of the bouquet.

During the speeches the bride had a special surprise for the groom – a flash mob she had organized with their friends singing “I’m Yours” by Jason Mraz. He was definitely surprised and it was so moving to see the love surrounding them and radiating throughout the room.

It was another successful wedding for Karen Brown New York and as always, I feel honored when couples trust me to take care of all the details on their special day!

To see more pictures, please visit the Karen Brown New York Facebook page. Professional photographs by Lilian Haider will be up soon.

Company Picnic in Central Park!

It was a delight working with my client Colonial Consulting again on their annual company picnic and the upside to this year was that we were actually able to have it in Central Park! Last year we had to make the dreadful decision to have it indoors at their office due to rain. Luckily we couldn’t have asked for better weather this year!

The day started with a pre-party at their office which included sangria and a few yummy snacks.

For the picnic at Central Park we reserved Mineral Springs and had BBQ catered by Virgil’s and custom clown cake pops by Haute So Sweet.

For entertainment we had a clown and face painting by Kiki’s Faces & Balloons and caricature artist, Steve Nyman.

To see more pictures, please visit the Karen Brown New York Facebook page.

MCC Seeds of Hope Event!

I was thrilled when The Manhattan Childrens Center contacted me in the Spring to be their event planner for the 3rd annual fundraiser, Seeds of Hope. It was a beautiful affaire at Bryant Park Grill on June 11 and celebrated the accomplishments of Dr. Catherine Lord, Professor of Psychology and founding Director of the Center for Autism and the Developing Brain (CADB), and Ms. Tina Jackson while raising funds for future of The Manhattan Childrens Center.

We were lucky to have Amanda Drury, co-anchor of CNBC’s “Street Signs” and Dave Price, former co-host of Fox’s Good Day New York, as the event emcees.

Amanda Drury of Street Signs

Amanda Drury of Street Signs

Dave Price of Good Day New York

Dave Price of Good Day New York

We were also fortunate to have so many fabulous donations for the silent auction!

About MCC
We believe that every child must have the opportunity to become a functional member of their community. We understand that all children are unique and individualized instruction is essential to their growth. Our goal is to offer every child an opportunity to enjoy a quality of life and emerge as a functioning member of society. Our caring professionals focus on each student to enhance and foster his or her maximum potential.

To see more pictures of the event please visit the Karen Brown New York Facebook page.

New York Design Week!

I had the opportunity to work with DADA Goldberg and Grohe for the launch of their new product, Grandera, during New York Design Week. The New York City showroom is spectacular and was perfect for a cocktail event.

Photo credit: grohe.com

Photo credit: grohe.com

Architects, Interior Designers and the press were invited to GROHE Live! Center to get  a sneak peak of the newest, architecturally inspired Grandera collection and had the opportunity to experience and interact with digital water art by French artist Antonin Fourneau’s. It was the first time his Water Light Graffiti installation was featured in New York City.

To see more pictures of the installation and the event please visit the Karen Brown New York Facebook page.

Association of Bridal Consultants at the Essex House!

ABC members had the pleasure of going on a private tour of the newly renovated JW Marriott Essex House last night, then we enjoyed exquisite cuisine prepared by Chef Achilles, a Marriott master chef.

photo credit: Google images

photo credit: Google images

Lindsay from Simply Sunshine Events & me

Lindsay from Simply Sunshine Events & me

The JW Marriott Essex House is a luxury hotel offering stunning views of Central Park and features an Art Deco salon, as well as a more classic Victorian ballroom which can cater to a gorgeous New York City wedding.

photo credit: Bizbash

photo credit: Bizbash

WeDo 1 Year Anniversary Party!

WeDo put on a fantastic event for their 1 year anniversary party at Three-Sixty in Tribeca, a venue space that offers “breathtaking 360 degree views of Manhattan”.

After check-in guests were directed to the elevator to head up to the top floor. As you entered there was a bar set up with a bartender serving champagne – talk about starting the party off right!

The night included a scavenger hunt (which was cleverly set up to help guests meet new people), delicious appetizers and open bar, a live dance band, photo booth, prices and a marching drum line. The energy of the room radiated!

It was indeed an entertaining night and as always, it’s great to reconnect and meet new vendors in the wedding industry!

Toshi’s Penthouse & Living Room!

Wednesday night my 30th birthday client and I met with the Event Sales Manager at the Flatiron Hotel for a venue tour of their Penthouse and Terrace, and the Mezzanine level of Toshi’s Living Room. The Penthouse is a great space for a private party or corporate event for about 100 people and has all the necessary connections for a DJ to spin or for a company presentation.

The Terrace would be an ideal place for a summer cocktail party has spectacular view of the Empire State Building!

Toshi’s Living Room is on the first level of the Flatiron Hotel and is a cozy neighborhood spot for listening to live music, which is exactly what my client is looking for to cap off the night of 30th birthday party.

After our tour my client and I stayed for a drink and listened to the band that was playing that night. Even though I had heard that Toshi, the owner, and his dog were regular fixtures at the hotel, I was still a bit surprised when he was actually the who sat us in the Living Room and took our drink order! The menus are created to look like old family photo albums (clever touch for a “living room” theme) and include pictures of Toshi’s childhood, a very creative touch! The cocktails were listed under the heading “Glasses of Happiness” which I immediately loved. My client and I both selected “The Toshi” cocktail, a combination of gin, lemon & champagne (I must be ready for that summer cocktail party on the Terrace!) which was positively delightful!

Tasting at AYZA!

Last Thursday I had a private tasting at Ayza West Village with the Director of Public Relations & Marketing, Irem Eren.

I’ve been to the Midtown location several times for their famous chocolate martinis but have never eaten there. I was quite impressed with the variety of selections presented at the tasting!

To start, we had the assorted cheese platter with French Brie, Tete de Moine, Wild Boar Prosciutto, Di Parma, agave paste and hummus.

The second course was Angry Chicken Lollipops, Shrimp Dumplings, White Truffle Pizza, Hot Artichoke, Wild Mushroom Pita Tart and our wine selections were a Torrentes, Chardonnay, Garnacha and Tempranillo.

For dessert the chef presented us with assorted chocolate truffles from Jacques Torres.

There were so many things I enjoyed but I have to say my favorites were the white truffle pizza, Tete de Moine from the cheese platter (which was also shaved to look like petals from a flower) and Ayza’s very own wine, Garnacha.

The West Village location is ideal for a private event, whether it’s a birthday or anniversary, a bridal shower, engagement party or wedding brunch – it has a cozy and comfortable atmosphere and they have different party packages to meet your needs. It’s also a great place for a romantic date or a girl’s night out. They even have Live Jazz Monday’s from 7-10pm if you’re looking for a fun group outing!

Happy Holidays from KBNY!

2012 was such a wonderful year for Karen Brown New York! We had the pleasure of working with so many wonderful clients and creating unforgettable events for their special occasions.

Here is a video recap of our year in event planning and the charities that benefited from “An Event that Gives Back!”.

Holiday Party at Madame Tussaud’s!

Hands down, one of my favorite client holiday parties this year was at Madame Tussaud’s. I had never been inside the museum before my first site visit during the planning process. It just felt like one of those touristy type attractions that you would only go to if you were a tourist but after going I was actually quite impressed with the realness of statues and the grandeur of the Star Room, the private room for events.

The museum is over 85,000 square feet and has over 200 wax figures expanding through nine levels. There are several different rooms which group the wax figures into genres; actors, news anchors, sports figures, musicians, politicians, superheroes, and more. There is even one level dedicated just to New York; Statue of Liberty, a Yellow Cab, famous New Yorkers such as Woody Allen, Al Roker, Matt Lauer, Beyonce, the Rockettes, etc.

On the day of the party, festivities started at my client’s office with a “Yankee Swap” (also known as “White Elephant”) gift exchange and custom holiday cookies by Me Too Cakes.

A few hours later I helped prepare the in-house cocktail party, then headed to Madame Tussaud’s to set up final decorations and make sure everything was ready to go before guests arrived.

The party started with cocktails in the Star Room, a star-studded affair including the newly unveiled Jennifer Aniston!

From there, guests went on a self-guided tour of the wax museum, ending with a Superhero short film in the 4D Cinema, a ultra-sensory experience with special effects including wind, snow, mist, scent and digital surround sound.

Guests were then brought back to the Star Room for a buffet dinner, more cocktails and delicious dessert!

Catering by Café Metro, one of the preferred vendors for Madame Tussaud’s.

Catering by Café Metro, one of the preferred vendors for Madame Tussaud’s.

Cake by Me Too Cakes

Cake by Me Too Cakes

Cake by Me Too Cakes

Cake by Me Too Cakes

At the end of the night everyone left with a custom cake pop (or two!) from Haute So Sweet.

To see more pictures, please visit the Karen Brown New York Facebook page.

5% goes to AutismCares!

After planning a whimsical Willy Wonka themed bar mitzvah for my client’s son (post-Sandy), they chose AutismCares for their 5% donation – another Event that Gives Back!

An excerpt from their website:

“AutismCares provides grants for individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders during times of crisis or unplanned hardships. Financial Support Awards provide financial relief up to $1,000 for individuals with ASD and their families to help cover costs associated with critical living expenses such as housing, utilities, car repair, funeral expenses, and other essential items on a case-by-case basis.”

Through Autism Speaks, AutismCares is financially helping disadvantage families to cover costs that have arisen as a result of the effects of Hurricane Sandy. Families can apply online to be considered for assistance.

Autism Speaks logo

A Willy Wonka (post-Sandy) Bar Mitzvah!

Now that things are starting to normalize in Manhattan, last week feels like a blur. I had several friends without power and water due to the aftermath of Sandy, all looking for places to relocate. Even though my apartment building was right on the border of the outages I lucked out and continued to have all utilities which enabled me to take in friends who weren’t so lucky.

While all of that was happening, the bar mitzvah that I had been planning with my client since July had to be completely re-planned in three days. The venue was located in Chelsea and they were not expecting to have power back until sometime on Saturday, the day of the bar mitzvah. Since we couldn’t take that risk my client and I discussed alternatives with the most viable solution being to have it at their Synagogue. The final decision to change venues was made on Wednesday and I knew I would need to see the space as soon as possible to get a better idea of what we had to work with. Public transportation wasn’t in service and cabs were rare to find due to the gas shortage so my only option was to ride my bike to the Synagogue. I meet with the special events coordinator and the catering representative, Shari Vermeulen. Before we met we were told that the Synagogue had restrictions on the food that could be served – it all had to be kosher which we hadn’t originally planned for. This presented another obstacle but the executive Chef, Angelo Sessa from Sezz Medi and Shari didn’t miss a beat – in less than 24 hours they presented us with a new menu that met all of the kosher requirements!

The next hurdle was to make sure that all of the vendors could still deliver. Our A/V company Tallen had to be relocated from their New Jersey office to Philadelphia, our DJ company Scratch Events was without power and staff were working from home, our Long Island gluten free baker was without power and had no means of communication and our custom 36” balloons were trapped in the Party City on 14th Street with no way of getting them back in time. Needless to say we had a lot of challenges ahead of us!

In the end the bar mitzvah was a success! All of the vendors were able to make it into the city and my friend who had to relocate to my apartment due to not having water or electricity was nice enough to help me pick up balloons from another party city and deliver them personally by a Zipcar that was already running on empty due to the gas shortage.

Although the plans for the party weren’t exactly what I had prepared for, the most important thing was that the bar mitzvah boy was happy and had a great time!

To see pictures, please visit the Karen Brown New York Facebook page.

The 15th Annual World of Children Awards Ceremony!

Event planners from around NYC came together to volunteer at the 15th Annual World of Children Awards Ceremony last night, an event I feel proud to be part of.

Awards were presented to six “change-makers” who are striving to create a better life for children around the world, and nearly $800,000 was raised at the event which was held at 583 Park Avenue with over 400 guests in attendance.

Actress Stephanie March hosted the event and Glamour’s editor-in-chief, Cindi Leive and Gossip Girl actor, Matthew Settle presented the Awards. To learn more about the honorees, click here.

My task, along with about 10 other volunteers, was to promote further donations to tables by selling commemorative silver keys which symbolize that “together we can unlock a brighter future for vulnerable children, one child at a time.” Sales from the keys alone raised $43,000 which will go toward important programs helping children in real need.

Other volunteer tasks included ballroom prep, assembling centerpices, decorating, checking-in guests, assistance with seating and preparing “take-aways” for guests.

For more pictures of the event visit the World of Children Facebook page or BFA.

 
world of children award logo

Visiting Chef Dinner at the Yale Club!

Each month the Yale Club hosts a “Visiting Chef Dinner” and last night I had the honor of attending the October dinner with photographer Lina Jang. We were guests of Kevin O’Brien, Director of Food & Beverage and the visiting chef was Carmen Quagliata, Executive Chef and Partner at Union Square Café, a Danny Meyer restaurant.

The menu consisted of four courses and included wine pairings and cooking demonstrations. Everything was absolutely scrumptious! For the appetizer we had sunchoke sformato with white truffles, first course was hand-rolled garganelli with speck, brussel sprouts and sage, second course was beef braised in barolo with polenta and root vegetables, and the third course was a honeycrisp apple cobbler with sour cream ice cream. My mouth is watering just thinking about it!

If you’re not familiar with the Union Square Café, they have received The New York Times’ three-star rating twice, and also earned Zagat Survey’s #1 ranking as New York’s Most Popular Restaurant for the past nine years and have numerous James Beard Foundation Awards. They also have a mission to support the community, delivering meals to patients of the Jacob Perlow Hospice Center at Beth Israel Hospital, and buy most of their ingredients from the Union Square Greenmarket.

In addition to the restaurant, they have a venue called located in the Hudson Yards neighborhood called Kitchen with spectacular views of the Hudson River. The space is available for seated dinners, cooking classes, film shoots, cocktail receptions, and more. If that wasn’t enough, they also operate Union Square Events’ which offers off-premise catering for special events.

The Yale Club is also a spectacular place for events; whether you’re looking for a wedding venue with outdoor space or private dinner with your closest friends, their facilities are open to the public but there is a screening process if you’re not a member.

Wish Upon A Wedding – NYC Launch!

Tonight is the launch of Wish Upon a Wedding in New York City at the Eventi Hotel. It’s wonderful to see so many industry friends coming together to support such a wonderful cause!

If you’re not familiar with Wish Upon a Wedding, it is a non-profit organization that “provides weddings and vow renewals to couples facing terminal illness and serious life altering circumstances, regardless of sexual orientation.” Thanks to industry partners, sponsors and individual donations, everything from the venue to the flowers, the cake, the wedding gown and more are provided to the couples free-of-charge. To find out more, please visit their website; Wish Upon a Wedding.