Thursday, December 19, 2013

Event Venues: The grass is much greener for Randall's Island in 2014

Located where the East and Harlem Rivers merge, Randall's Island is the site of many huge concerts and via Icahn Stadium, sporting events.  Using water taxis from Midtown East, the journey there can be half the fun.  This unique combined experience is why meeting planners frequently consider Randall's Island as a venue for major corporate events and galas.

Until recently, it has also been a venue for unwanted water.  Lots of it.

During this year’s Governors Ball, torrential rains and three days of music destroyed the grass fields of Randall’s Island, leaving the grounds in a state of disrepair.  Afterward, Governors Ball organizers helped restore the grounds to a substantially better condition than they were before record setting rains and thousands of fans turned the island into a mud pit. Working with the NYC Department of Parks, organizers laid down over nine acres of brand new grass and made important infrastructure improvements to prevent future flooding.

There might not be much green to look at on Randall's Island in December, but your outdoor event will have plenty of it there to enjoy in a few short months!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Broadway Update: Neil Patrick Harris goes transgender in 2014

The gritty rock musical "Hedwig and the Angry Inch" is coming to Broadway.  Starring Neil Patrick Harris as a transgender German singer, the production will open performances March 29, 2014 at the Belasco Theatre. Directed by Michael Mayer, the new production features Emmy-nominated choreographer Spencer Liff from "So You Think You Can Dance."

Hedwig and the Angry Inch is a musical comedy about a fictional rock 'n' roll band, fronted by Harris' character, Hedwig, a transgender woman and "internationally ignored song stylist" from East Berlin. The score includes memorable tunes "Tear Me Down," "Wig in a Box," "Wicked Little Town" and "Angry Inch."

Shackman Associates regularly provides association meeting, destination incentive and corporate meeting groups with unique Broadway experiences that have included backstage tours and interaction with key performers.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Corporate Events: Your logo and attendees mingle with U.S. Presidents

The New York Historical Society doesn't get the same headlines as The Museum of Natural History - its neighbor across the street - but it offers corporate meeting planners a very unique backdrop of American history with companion exhibit technology that can be customized for events.

The Historical Society also has opened a funky new restaurant - Caffe Storico - which features a robust Italian menu for private events by Steven Starr.

As we have said many times, destination meetings in New York do not have to settle for "the chicken" or "the beef" when planners can choose delicious options like Starr's antipasti and artisanal pastas.  However, our favorite is the slightly cheesy and creamy and extremely flavorful lobster!

Friday, December 13, 2013

Take a dip in a 107-degree Roman Bath with 25 of your meeting attendees

Destination corporate meetings are helping attendees take some serious stress away with an idea that is as old as Julius Caesar.

The new Russian- and Roman-inspired baths that have popped up in Manhattan are more luxurious and sexier than their predecessors. It's huge departure from the tech-driven team-building games, but why work so hard when your meeting can opt for some old fashioned hedonism?  We recently found a 16,000-foot underground brick-and-glass den in New York City's TriBeCa. Options include vast electricity-free villas to bathing coaches that hand-pour olive oil, red wine, or cava upon request. The hottest dipping pools are 107 degrees and the cold plunges are quite refreshing icy at 50 degrees. Also included are gauzy curtains, heated marble floors, terra-cotta lanterns and a no-talking policy that transforms turn a pretty basic thing like floating in water into a ridiculous pleasure.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Speakeasy 3.0: Drinks are no longer the only draw

It's no secret that speakeasies are a huge trend for destination corporate meeting groups.  And just when you thought they might get stale, new venues are reinventing old formats into different kinds of speakeasies that do more than please your creative tastes.

These new venues are often incorporating supper club components, going all-out in wardrobe, bringing in old-school jazz performers, and in some cases, even importing steam that looks like smoke.  Your attendees will feel like they are living in Boardwalk Empire!

Monday, December 09, 2013

"X-Men" stars take on "superhero" schedule with two Broadway productions

Ian McKellan and Patrick Stewart - both no strangers to superhero roles that include Gandolf in "Lord of the Rings", Magneto and Professor Charles Xavier in "X-Men", and Captain Jean-Luc Picard in "Star Trek: The Next Generation", are working a "superhero" schedule on Broadway and starring together in simultaneous productions of Harold Pinter's "No Man's Land" and Samuel Beckett's "Waiting for Godot."

The plays, directed by Sean Mathias, have a revolving Broadway schedule. For

The plays, directed by Sean Mathias, have a revolving Broadway schedule. For example, "No Man's Land" plays Wednesday evenings through a Saturday matinee option, while "Waiting for Godot" runs from Saturday evenings through a Wednesday afternoons.

While the plots behind both plays are mysterious and delightfully absurd, the gold here is watching two distinguished actors in action.  In our opinion, McKellan and Stewart could be reading the classifieds and you'd still be captivated!

Shackman Associates New York provides corporate meeting, destination incentive and association meeting groups with unique Broadway experiences that regularly include backstage tours an interaction with key performers.

Corporate Events in Harlem: Chowing down in Uptown

Harlem's renaissance as a destination for foodies is leading corporate meeting groups to try some of the newest and coolest dining and event options in the neighborhood.  It is also an attracting intriguing venue owners such as former Time Warner CEO Richard Parsons. 

From cinnamon-scented fried Guinea hen to oxtail dumplings, Harlem is coming up with new twists on the cuisines of Africa and Asia.  And now, venues are leveraging their unique cuisines to launch other kinds of experiences such as jazz clubs that are located next door.

According to meeting planners, "We love jazz, and European visitors in particular have always had a very romantic perspective about Harlem."

Friday, December 06, 2013

Warrm up to afternoon tea at your next New York corporate meeting

It's about to get really cold soon in New York and as many of our friends in the UK can attest, nothing beats hot afternoon tea to warm the body and soul.

Meetings venues here in Manhattan have taken notice and are incorporating afternoon tea breaks in to their packages for corporate destination travel groups.  And we're not just talking about green tea.  Offerings are becoming more exotic and complex and meeting groups are often treated to "fusion" tea menus.  Popular flavors include pomegranate, grey vanilla creme, bubble tea and even "mojitea".  Combine this with one of New York City's many options for macaroons and you will have a meeting group that is feeling great just when it might be that time of day to hibernate!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Teambuilding: Graffiti gets a bigger office at New York corporate meetings

While there has been lots of controversy over the painting of graffiti at 5POINTZ, the art's popularity at corporate meetings is booming.  And that is leading to bigger venues appearing throughout New York City that can accommodate demand.

If you think graffiti as a team-building activity sounds familiar coming from us, you are right.  Shackman Associates New York blogged about this trend 2 years ago when it was more of a "pop-up" idea in selected hotel ballrooms.   Meeting planners can now rent out entire warehouses. 

And not surprisingly, Brooklyn is at the heart of this industry.  Meetings can now combine graffiti with an after-party at Brooklyn's many hot restaurants or a winery-brewery event.
(Photo: Creative Team Events)

Monday, November 11, 2013

Meeting Food Trends: Wild Boar and Pork Belly Replace "Rubber Chicken"

As further proof that the days of "the chicken" and "the beef" are over at corporate destination meeting luncheons and dinners, consider what options meeting planners now have to satisfy taste buds that are more demanding and curious than ever.

Meetings can feature personalized menus with vibrant flavors from the freshest of local, organic and sustainable ingredients. Chefs are also incorporating high-end infused oils such as Manni olive oil from Italy as well as sauces and condiments like Blood Orange Syrup, fruit-infused Balsamic and sophisticated combinations of herbs.

And there's wild boar.  It's appearing everywhere on menus at top restaurants, especially with pasta.  It can be featured at your meeting too.  Today's attendees are also dining on specialized cuts of meat such as pork belly, Kobe beef, Wagyu beef, Kurobuta and multiple versions of Long Island duck.

Friday, November 08, 2013

Broadway Review of "Disaster!": Quite the opposite. It's hilarious!

All of those "disaster" movies from the 70s would probably have been box office "disasters" if they were released today for obvious reasons.  We have found an off-Broadway musical named after the same adjective that has found a clever way to spoof all of them. 

But "Disaster!" is no disaster.

The production takes you back to the 1979 opening night of Manhattan's first floating casino and discotheque. With huge crowds gambling and dancing, no one knows that the owner has skimped on the safety measures. Unlike "Towering Inferno", which it obviously spoofs, this place is about to trigger an earthquake.  There is one scientist played by Seth Rudetsky, who issues dire warnings that lots of boogieing will lead to lots of shaking.  But it's very funny he is on the boat in the first place!

The rest of the characters are a motley group that includes a lounger singer diva, child-star, creepy-casino-guy, a quirky married couple, twins and a degenerate gambler-turned-protester. 

Shackman Associates New York regularly provides corporate meeting, association conventions and destination incentive groups with unique Broadway experiences that includes off-Broadway productions.  Attendees frequently are provided with backstage tours where they can interact with key performers.

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

Destination Incentive Hotels: Westhouse to open in Midtown

Another boutique hotel is opening in New York City, and instead of Chelsea, the Meatpacking District or Nolita location, the Westhouse is right in the middle of Midtown Manhattan on 55th Street.

The product of the award-winning design firm Jeffrey Beers International, The Westhouse has both stretched the imagination architecturally and provides a cozy atmosphere of a residence.  With 172 rooms, the Westhouse is ideal for a corporate destination incentive group seeking sophistication and superior level of services and amenities.

View of Central Park for the Westhouse

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Edgy corporate events with an intimate look, sound and taste of pop-ups

While a new wave of apps are driving explosive growth in pop-up events for consumers, corporate meeting attendees can get the same kind of experiences in unique settings.  This kind of event zeroes in on passion points that can re-create events of yesteryear, "salons", dinner parties and "living-room" concerts by undiscovered bands. 

Shackman Associates New York has previously blogged about celebrity chefs providing unique dining experiences for intimate corporate incentive groups, but we are seeing increased demand for dinner parties from up-and-comers.  Because there is an expectation that New York City weeds out the contenders from the pretenders, attendees simply love the element of surprise at a "pop-up" dinner party.

The same is true for music.  Because new apps are bringing undiscovered talent to music enthusiasts in living-room settings, we can do the same for corporate meetings.  Record labels are asking these app companies to find the 10 most popular unrecorded artists in a specific, and this provides meeting planners with booking opportunities because these artists in New York City for longer blocks of time. 

Finally, using a pop-up strategy to book corporate events is very budget-friendly, especially if your meeting is loading up financially on a major gala or team building event on a different day while in New York.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Broadway Review: Rafe Spall incredible in "Betrayal"

We checked out the much-hyped production of "Betrayal" on Broadway, and the play is even better than advertised.  Daniel Craig, who plays the lead as Robert, is simply one of the best actors of our time and sadly, few would have known it if he hadn't appeared on the big screen as 007.  His wife in real life, Rachael Weisz, was spectacular in her Broadway debut.  Her performance as Emma was full of emotion that still left you wondering where her character was really going or what was in her mind at the end of the play.  In entertainment, that is gold.

But we were blown away by Rafe Spall's performance as Jerry.  You could sense tension in the entire theater as his role playing the quintessential "man in the middle" had everyone personally feel the conflict between relentless desire and overwhelming guilt.  Born in London,  Spall is the son of Timothy Spall, who played the rat in the "Harry Potter" film series.  Rafe has followed in his father's footsteps. Named after the protagonist in "The Knight of the Burning Pestle", both Rafe and Timothy have played this role.

However, Rafe Spall's most notable performance prior to "Betrayal" was as Ian in the movie "One Day".  This movie and Spall's performance in particular have been known to make grown men cry, so you can imagine how good he is on stage.

Shackman Associates New York provides corporate meeting, association convention and destination incentive groups with unique Broadway experiences that have included backstage tours and interaction with key performers.

Ellis Island Re-opens Today

One year after Hurricane Sandy left Ellis Island with major damage, the iconic landmark will re-open today.  Shackman Associates New York has been closely following the repairs and can quickly add a customized trip to Ellis Island to your New York corporate meeting.

We have run multiple events and gala that have incorporated the historic elements into events at Liberty State Park, which connects Ellis Island to the mainland New Jersey.  These events have included period actors who greet meeting attendees when our chartered ferry lands.  

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Broadway Cocktail: Mix Homeland, Gene Kranz, Field of Dreams and a Drag Queen

While big stars by themselves will always be major draws on Broadway, this Fall's lineup of shows features pairing of actors that could be more interesting than a debut by a Hollywood name.

One such pairing is Mandy Patinkin and Taylor Mac in "The Last Two People; An Apocalyptic Vaudeville."  Patinkin is an established Broadway performer, but in 2013, he is becoming best known for his role as the CIA Director in the Showtime mega-hit series Homeland.  Mac, meanwhile, has been performing Downtown in "Good Person of Schechwan", which is one of his many roles in drag.

The other notable production pairing, running Off-Broadway, is Ed Harris and his wife of 30 years, Amy Madigan, in "The Jacksonian".  Most people recognize Harris and Madigan from their roles in very high-profile films. "Failure is not an option," which Harris boomed as "Gene Kranz" in Apollo 13 might be one of the best movie lines of all-time.  And Madigan's role of "Annie Kinsella" in the 1989 film Field of Dreams has probably been watched by even the most casual movie fan dozens of times. 

But both Harris and Madigan have decades of Broadway experience and it's great to see them together on the same stage. And don't forget to add Bill Pullman to the mix, who has a little experience shooting down aliens as President.

Shackman Associates provides corporate meeting, association meeting and destination incentive groups with unique Broadway and Off-Broadway experiences that have included backstage tours and interaction with key performers.

        Stage of Dreams: With and Harris and Madigan, "Failure is not an option" for your meeting group!

Rockefeller Center's Rainbow Room to Re-open in 2014

New York City’s Rainbow Room, where music greats such as Tommy Dorsey and Guy Lombard performed, will reopen to the public in the fall of 2014.

The Rainbow Room first opened as a supper club in 1934 after the repeal of Prohibition and it became the first art-deco venue of its kind long before art-deco became cool and trendy.  The iconic nightclub closed in 2009 because of a landlord-tenant dispute, but Tishman Speyer, which operates Rockefeller Center, announced on Tuesday that the Rainbow Room is on its way back!

                                                 Photo courtesy of Elena Bachman Schmidt;

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Teambuilding for Sushi: Kayak from Manhattan to Japan, sort of

Kayak tours on the Hudson River have become incredibly popular for corporate meetings and destination incentives, and we recently found a new twist on this trend that includes some of the best sushi on the East Coast of the U.S.

This new kind of kayak tour takes meeting attendees from Midtown West across the Hudson River to Edgewater, NJ, which has become a major Japanese culinary destination and boasts one of the most vibrant Japanese-American neighborhoods anywhere.

Whether your attendees go for the craziest of rolls or the taste of elegantly prepared fresh sushi, it's a trip that combines a little adventure, spectacular views of the Manhattan skyline, and an incredible meal that will give your meeting plenty of energy for the row home.

Just steer your kayak for the left tower of the George Washington Bridge and enjoy how the current takes you to your destination!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Corporate Events: Manhattan Skyline Views and Foliage all at once on the Hudson

Corporate meeting attendees love the Manhattan skyline, but it often requires a cruise on the Hudson River to acquire a truly panoramic perspective.

Just 12 miles north are new and exciting event venues that are right on the river, and looking South, offer a truly unique skyline view of Manhattan that is tucked between the hills of the Palisades and behind the George Washington Bridge.  They also feature breathtaking views north to the Tappan Zee Bridge and beyond to 20 miles of foothills.

In the Spring and Summer, event venues in the "River Towns" provide a breath of fresh air and cool breezes off the Hudson.  But we think the miles if foliage attendees can see in the Fall could be something special for your next New York meeting. 

The "River Towns" are also an ideal option for a corporate retreat or off-site lunch for executives attending large association conventions.  Shackman Associates New York has previously blogged that these kinds of retreats are often an hour or more north of Manhattan.  Meeting planners now have much closer options that offer the best of both worlds.
Look north at the Husdon Valley

 Turn south an take in the Manhattan skyline.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Broadway Update: Denzel Washington back in 2014

(via Denzel Washington will star opposite Diahann Carroll in the Broadway revival of Lorraine Hansberry’s classic A Raisin In The Sun. Previews begin March 8, 2014, with opening night on April 3, 2014 at the Barrymore Theatre where the original production opened 55 years ago. Set on Chicago’s South Side, A Raisin In The Sun revolves around the divergent dreams and conflicts within three generations of the Younger family: son Walter Lee (Washington), his wife Ruth (Sophie Okonedo), his sister Beneatha (Anika Noni Rose), his son Travis and matriarch Lena, called Mama (Carroll). Rounding out the cast are Stephen Tyrone Williams, Jason Dirden, and Stephen McKinley Henderson. Washington won a Best Actor Tony for his performance in 2010′s Fences. The Kenny Leon-directed A Raisin In The Sun is a limited engagement, running 14 weeks only through June 15, 2014.

Friday, September 13, 2013

Hotel Trends: Long Island City the next Brooklyn

While the word is out on how hot Brooklyn is for corporate meetings and destination incentives, its neighbor just few miles to the north is start to heat up as well.

Long Island City is in the middle of a renaissance, and the once gritty industrial neighborhood known mostly for its cab garages is becoming a mod oasis for business travel, meetings and events.  Boutique hotels are finding Long Island City to be the perfect location outside of Manhattan while providing spectacular views of the skyline and iconic bridges.  One rooftop venue is next to the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge and provides a corporate event group with an exciting pan-Asian experience.

And finally, Long Island City has the advantage of being a 10-minute subway for cab ride to Midtown East!

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Lincoln Center Update: Ethan Hawke to star as Macbeth

Broadway isn't the only entertainment venue heating up as the weather gets colder.  Ethan Hawke will reunite with director Jack O'Brien in a new production of Macbeth at Lincoln Center.  Limited showings will begin on October 24.

According to a recent interview with E!Online, Hawke said he has always wanted to play this part.  He and O'Brien previously worked together in Henry IV.

Shackman Associates New York provides corporate meeting, association meeting, and destination incentive groups with unique entertainment experiences on Broadway, off-Broadway, and at other spectacular venues like Lincoln Center.  This is frequently included backstage tours and interactions with key performers.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Association Meetings and Conferences: Consider private technology to filter out endless social media updates

While there is continuing debate on how to use social media during business components at conferences and large association meetings, we recently came across a firm, QnA, via Twitter (@NYCmeetingDMC) that figured out how to create a hyper-intelligent, private system to deliver very targeted results.

The key is to provide moderators with more control than ever over questions, answers and even who gets asked the questions. 

With this kind of technology, your association meeting attendees can now ask unlimited questions, and moderators can quickly filter out ones that don't make sense or disrupt the flow.  Furthermore, because speakers can clearly see the questions being asked, they do not get lost among the noise of status updates.

Need to export data into a spreadsheet or pdf format?  It's a one-click process.  Moderators and speakers can also create components for live polling, discussion capture and event feedback.  And finally, we are seeing an opportunity to run meetings without requiring attendees to download apps that might work differently on the iPhone versus a Galaxy. 

Photo courtesy of QnA, @QnA_Event_Tech

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Broadway Update: Fantasia Barrino and Wynton Marsalis a dream team in After Midnight

It seems like so long ago when Fantasia Barrino became the Season 3 winner of American Idol.  Since then, she has become a Grammy Award-winning R&B vocalist and Broadway star.

Director Warren Carlyle and superstar fashion duo Isabel and Ruben Toledo are teaming up with  Barrino and nine-time Grammy Award and Pulitzer Prize winner Wynton Marsalis and The Jazz at Lincoln Center All-Stars in After Midnight, which recreates the days of a hip Harlem nightclub to a new generation of theater fans.

In 2007, Barrino made her Broadway debut in the lead role of Celie in musical The Color Purple.  The musical was based on the Pulitzer Prize-winning 1982 novel by Alice Walker. After appearing on American Idol and The Oprah Winfrey Show to pitch her upcoming appearance, the musical rolled in over two million in pre-ticket sales in one week.  The Color Purple had sold 6.5 million tickets before Barrino first took the stage on April 10, 2007.

Shackman Associates New York provides unique Broadway experiences for corporate meeting, association meeting and destination incentive groups.  The experiences have included backstage passes and interaction with key performers. 

With previews beginning on October 18 and the show's projected run to end in February 2014, we are expecting After Midnight to be a very high-demand production.

Photo courtesy of

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Food at Corporate Meetings: Turn Cocktails into Cupcakes!

Cupcakes, mini-cupcakes, and many other versions of this delicious treat are already a big trend at corporate meetings and destination incentives.  But we've found a new take that just might take the cake!

One New York City bake shop is flavoring cupcakes like your favorite cocktails.  There is real alcohol in the frosting and filling and feature flavors like Old Fashioned, White Russian, Margaritas, Car Bombs, and Sex on the Beach.  They cater events and are the perfect dessert or treat for a quite filling cocktail hour!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Major Events: Brooklyn continues to boom with Video Music Awards

With the Video Music Awards (VMA's) being held at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn on August 25, New York City is proving once again that it is a top destination for major events and conventions.  In fact, the Barclays Center is now the #2 grossing arena in the world. 

Shackman Associates has been accommodating increasing requests by corporate meeting and destination incentive groups to hold major components of their trip to New York in Brooklyn.  The borough has a rich history and culture that does not exist anywhere else.  When the Barclays Center first opened, the area surrounding it was still a little raw from the massive construction project.  What a difference a year makes!

Event attendees can choose from multiple shopping venues around the arena and we are seeing new restaurants and coffee shops popping up that provide the hipster look and feel people love about the borough.

Photo courtesy of Sports-Kings

Monday, August 12, 2013

Off-Broadway Update: Be the star of the worst remake ever

The movie "Point Break" was a huge when it was released in 1991.  It also launched the career of Keanu Reeves as undercover FBI agent Johnny Utah, and had Patrick Swayze and Gary Busey in roles that now all seem kind of laughable.

But Alcorn Entertainment decided to order a remake a few months ago, which has led to an explosion of YouTube parodies.  It has also led to the birth of a very unusual Off-Broadway show: "Point Break Live."

This show travels around New York City doing its own remake of the movie and has an interesting catch: the part of Johnny Utah is selected from the audience!  Shackman Associates thinks this is a great way for corporate incentive groups to have a little fun at the expense of an good-sport executive who might be selected as the next Keanu Reeves.

It doesn't take a real actor to make a good Johnny Utah because as the show's producer noted to the New York Times, "In the movie, it looked like he just received his lines, so feeding them on a cue card to a volunteer won't look that much different."

Shackman Associates New York develops unique experiences for corporate meetings, association meetings and destination incentives that often include backstage passes, interaction with key performers, and off-Broadway shows that attendees won't find in other cities throughout the world.

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Corporate Team-building: Use Foursquare for Four-day Scavenger Hunts

Here's a new team building idea that is turning the corporate scavenger hunt on its side: Foursquare for scavenger hunts that can last as long as four days.  Think it sounds impractical?  It's not.  Especially when a corporate meeting has heavy business components that last most of the day.

Here's the real kicker: museums love these kinds of events because they know they can promote new exhibits and pad visitor statistics while helping a meeting group incorporate other items they need to find. 

Of course, an organized scavenger hunt that lasts for hours is easier to manage than something that requires days self-discipline and a version of the "honor system".  But that is why Foursquare is the equalizer.  If your team as to check-in, it keeps everything even.  And it helps meeting attendees find a cool way way to manage their down time.

Thursday, July 25, 2013

CSR at Meetings: Event venues become the give-back

We were recently inspired to learn that the founder of one corporate event venue in Manhattan is redefining CSR.  George Faison, the first African-American Tony Award winner for his choreography of the Wiz, has founded a fantastic venue in Harlem that is ideal for a major destination meeting event or a simple cocktail hour.  Working with Tad Schnugg of the American Performing Arts Collaborative, Inc., Faison's vision for a community based arts organization has brought together the artistic and business communities and takes an active role in mentoring the youth of Harlem. 
This is truly a win-win for everyone, and most importantly, Harlem's vibrant youth community.
Shackman Associates New York helps destination corporate meeting clients develop exciting and unique CSR programs.  Some of these team-building activities have included sustainable meeting components and bike-builds for youth in economically challenged neighborhoods.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Opening Receptions at Corporate and Association Meetings: Try a Sunday Rooftop

Shackman Associates New York is seeing a new trend in rooftop venues that provides an opening for meeting planners to book Sunday opening receptions without reinventing the wheel.

One rooftop venue is taking a very unique approach: it is booking weddings during on weeknights and opening up its schedule for other "private events" on weekends.  Weeknight weddings are exploding in popularity because of the exponentially increased cost of getting married.  This is putting less financial pressure on venues to book weddings on Saturday and Sunday.

We have previously blogged that opening a corporate, association or incentive meeting on a Sunday in Manhattan is a great way to save costs.  It's becoming easier than ever in New York City.

Corporate Event Venues: Art showrooms offer flexibility, style and space

Art studios in Manhattan were once primarily used for, well, art shows.  The are now becoming exciting venues for corporate meetings, cocktail receptions, and even galas because of their unique design elements. 

The key is choosing a studio that offers the right size, look and feel for your company's sense of style.  Some studios are offered 100% bare and provide AV components such as hanging projectors that create powerful videos on the walls.  Other studios include fashionable wall designs, unique lighting and hip furniture that provide a lounge feel for your event without having to rent out one in a club.  If you like SoHo or Tribeca, the neighborhood has event studios that are converted industrial sites and have exciting entry options such as modern, glass-centric garage doors.  They can remain open as late as November and provide fresh air if your event is packed.  And finally, Manhattan has art studios that are over 5,000 square feet, which is large enough to accommodate over 300 meeting attendees.