Airbnb’s ‘Night At America’s Gateway’ Contest at Ellis Island With Academy Award Winner Marcia Gay Harden
Airbnb’s ‘Night at America’s Gateway’ contest provided the winner with a once-in-a-lifetime experience at one of the most iconic locations in the world: Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty. Within this awe-inspiring experience was the opportunity to dine with Academy Award Winner, Marcia Gay Harden, in our Ellis Island Registry Room as one of the highlights of the event. We’re so thrilled to share images and details from the winners’ experiences at our unique NYC venue, and we thank Airbnb , professional photographer Mark Wickens , and Civic Entertainment Group for providing us with the fabulous details from this very special and unforgettable event at Ellis Island and Liberty Island.
We thank Mark Wickens for all of these wonderful photos.
Airbnb’s ‘Night at America’s Gateway’ contest winners Robin and Courtney, who are mother and daughter, began their patriotic adventure on a June afternoon, checking into the luxury yacht Arabella, which would be their ‘home’ during this 2-day experience. The interior and the exterior of the yacht were decorated with patriotic and homey touches, in suitable Airbnb fashion of quality design feel.
Early that evening, Robin and Courtney were led on a personal 2-hour tour of the Statue of Liberty with Matthew Baker, President of the Guides Association of New York City, treated to Mr. Baker’s fascinating information about the Statue of Liberty and Liberty Island. The winners were led to one of our normally inaccessible private docks, which was styled to look like a personal backyard complete with an umbrella-shaded table, hammock, seating and grill. A maître d’ attended the duo, who enjoyed music, finger foods and a champagne toast as they enjoyed the breathtaking views from Liberty Island. The winners then sailed via a private ferry past the gorgeous NYC skyline to Ellis Island.
Robin and Courtney then changed for dinner inside the Great Hall, where they met Academy Award Winner Marcia Gay Harden, host of the Airbnb contest for a private dinner with the star in our historic venue.
Genealogist Catherine Daly, director of the American Family Immigration History Center, Mr. Baker and Airbnb representatives also joined the group for scintillating conversation about the historical context of Ellis Island, and a personally-curated dinner menu created by our own Patti Golden, which included dishes of international flair, such as Moroccan vegetable tagine, tomato and mozzarella panzanella, Tuscan kale with roasted mushrooms, Insalata di Frutti di Mare (shrimp, scallops and hearts of palm,) and international breads with hummus. This unforgettable dinner at which the winners, host and media were surrounded by stellar achievers and knowledgeable experts was a highlight of the event, which continued to a private after-hours tour of Ellis Island and the chance to explore some of the winners’ and host’s family history.
Prior to the event, Robin and Courtney sent some of their ancestor information and photos to genealogist Daly, who guided them in further genealogical research in the Ellis Island research center. The group became so entranced by this portion of the evening, delving into their most fascinating family history, that they opted to spend most of their time in the research center.
At the close of this ‘Night at America’s Gateway’ experience, the guests returned to the Arabella for a midnight leisurely cruise around Manhattan, perfectly paired with champagne and fruit for a midnight spread before the winners turned in for the night aboard the luxury yacht. In the morning, they enjoyed a light breakfast on deck, then returned to Liberty Harbor Marina in Jersey City where they were interviewed and photographed by the New York Times.
NYC corporate events and weddings get up-close and personal with Lady Liberty when your event takes place on Liberty Island , a unique event venue for a one-of-a-kind experience at one of America’s most recognized and meaningful symbolic locations – The Statue of Liberty.
Lady Liberty’s home becomes a corporate event planner’s dream come true with the opportunity to hold a cocktail party outdoors on the grounds just steps away from the Statue of Liberty, providing an unparalleled selfie opportunity for each and every guest. Consider an outdoor reception, or hold your corporate event or wedding inside our clear custom tent created to your specifications, with clear views to the sky and sunset.
Corporate event and wedding guests are free to wander the grounds of Liberty Island, viewing our Walls of Honor and perhaps spotting their own ancestors among the names of honored citizens. And your own company’s founders’ names may be among them. National Park rangers may lead groups on walking tours as well, and child guests may embark upon a fascinating scavenger hunt.
Corporations with global reach are especially interested in the deep meaning and significance of this gateway to the New World, through which their founders may have taken their first steps on the path to creating their company and legacy. The worldly feel of our historic NYC event venue adds an awe-inspiring depth to any event held here with us on Liberty Island.
Of course, you’re not just limited to Liberty Island for your corporate event, wedding or celebration. You may plan for your event to encompass both Liberty Island and Ellis Island , with perhaps a cocktail party held on Liberty Island, followed by a quick ferry ride through the New York Harbor to Ellis Island, where your corporate dinner or wedding reception may take place.
And the ultimate ending to any NYC corporate event or wedding is a fireworks show over the harbor, a majestic and breathtaking close to your fabulously successful and unforgettable event.
Both islands have a capacity of 25 to 1,200 people, making an event entirely realistic for your event’s guest list.
Contact us for more information on corporate events and weddings on Liberty Island and Ellis Island.
We’ve been home to some of the most spectacular corporate events NYC has ever seen, most transforming our historic NYC venue into magical and exotic lands, and many lighting up the sky with jaw-dropping fireworks shows as a surprise to thrilled corporate party guests.
With corporate parties so elevated by a sensational party theme, we’ve collected some of the top corporate party themes for 2016 to help inspire your event.
What can a themed corporate event accomplish for your company? Besides rewarding your employees and their families with a standout celebration, your themed corporate party may just catch the eye of event industry award judges, such as the International Special Event Society’s Esprit Awards . We looked at the 2014 ISES Esprit Award winners list and spotted some fabulous, award-winning corporate party themes. Winning the award for Best Corporate Event Under $75,000 was a ‘Zombie Olympics’ event by Corporate Events Unlimited . Winning several awards, including Best Corporate Event over $150,000, Best Event Photography and Best Technical Production, was ‘A Night in Oz’ for West Jet Airlines . Both celebrations had engaging themes that added panache through every detail.
Even if you’re not interested in winning awards for your corporate party, and international attention for your company or charity, you’ll be inspired by these top corporate party themes for 2016:
- New Orleans
- Arabian Nights, with vivid colors, belly dancers and a Moroccan tea bar
- Wild West
- And of course, a Big Apple/NYC-themed party that ties in our NYC location and the non-stop energy of the city, a welcome theme for corporate party guests who have flown in for the celebration.
- 1950s sock hop
- 1960s boho
- 1920s/1930s speakeasy style
- James Bond
- Wizard of Oz
- Cirque du Soleil
- Academy Awards
- Old Hollywood
- The Walking Dead
- A Night in Casablanca
- Dr. Zhivago winter theme with Russian food served Russian style, and snowy, icy white décor
- Magic Garden or Garden Splendor
- Eco-Wonderland, fitting for our Ellis Island location, since we’re renowned for our award-winning eco-friendly policies and energy efficiency
- Black-and-White Ball
- Your corporate brand’s colors, made memorable by your event planners’ creative edge and spectacular lighting effects
In addition to these, one of the top corporate party themes is Denim and Diamonds, a blend of jeans-wearing relaxation with pops of sparkle and upscale brilliance in the party’s design.
Also taking advantage of our Ellis Island and Liberty Island inside-outside venue capabilities is the top theme of Under the Stars, such as a cocktail party and outdoor movie night, outdoor table settings and dance floor, for a celebration under the stars and an unmatched view of the Statue of Liberty and the New York Skyline.
We’re happy to help you plan your corporate event at Ellis Island or Liberty Island, making your celebration unforgettable. Contact us to get started.