The always fashionable Pierre Hotel is fast approaching its tenth decade in business and the ballroom—which has been THE society showplace for galas, weddings and musical performances—has recently undergone an amazing renovation! There was a cocktail party to celebrate the reopening recently and they pulled out all the stops (just as you might have expected)! The best thing is that you can get any of the food we personally tried for your own event and that the seating is the most comfortable out of all of the NYC hotel ballrooms (it is very “retro modernistic” in style but feels super cushy)!
The ballroom reopening cocktail party featured a special hour-long performance by double Tony Award winner Brian Stokes Mitchell whom I profiled for BET Weekend Magazine about 20 years ago when he was in Kiss Me Kate. The extroverted Mr. Mitchell performed some of his most requested tunes from his roles in Ragtime and Man Of LaMancha. He also sang some of his personal favorites that went back to when he started getting into music after being exposed to his dad’s large jazz record collection. His stories about singing outside his Upper West Side window to the crowds below were especially amusing to the party guests.
The ballroom’s overhaul was done without taking out any of the 1930s Modernist details but the balcony rails were removed and the beige and gold paint was simply painted over in white semi-gloss. The floral carpeting was removed and now you just see gorgeous, highly polished white and grey Italian marble. The special detail for me—that has always been there—are the unique patterns in the columns. It’s a unique mixed Aztec and art deco vibe and can be best observed in the side seating area.
The seating area that is to the immediate right of the dining tables is stunning. There is a large screen where guests can watch the comings and goings of other guests and what is going on onstage but the gorgeous blue velvet furniture is a “wow” in anyone’s book. The furniture feels as good as it looks and wait staff members make their way over to serve bites and drinks to the guests sitting here! The dim lighting and gorgeous chandeliers are classy finishing touches!
The food served at the event was amazing. Above is a serving station featuring beef bournignon and grilled lamb chops. Guests lined up for assorted samosas with homemade Indian chutney and fresh seafood at other tables. There is a large bar featuring signature cocktails always available in the ballroom and since Taittinger has always been the Pierre’s signature champagne brand, you can count on tons of glasses of bubbly being circulated all night long at any event here!
All the architects, designers, chefs and crew who worked on the ballroom showed up to take their bows last night and try some of the great menu items that people can get for their own events. As an influencer, you learn something new everyday at events and I learned that Dover Sole is the top entree pick at Pierre weddings. (I would have guessed some kind of salmon dish would be the most popular these days, but I am certainly not an expert on weddings!) NYC foodies’ best kept secret is that best short ribs in town are served here in the ballroom but you can also get them in the hotel’s resto, Perrine. By the way, I also learned that everyone on the staff has been with the hotel between 8 and 43 years!
The amazing dessert table out by the ballroom’s entry doors was the grand topper for the evening—and best of all, guests got GO BOXES to take some home! Pierre Pastry chef Michael Mignano is at the top of his game as is Executive Chef Asher Biju (but that goes without saying)! This table had everything from classic churros to the legendary Pierre Milk-N-Cookies dessert which is kind of like a vanilla milkshake whose straw is pushed through a homemade cookie. (They think up all kinds of unique food reinventions at this legendary place!) I hope to be back soon!