On Location: Formal Events at New York City's Roosevelt Hotel
New York City hardly has a lack of hotels, but surprisingly few of them have more than 1,000 rooms, which can limit the kinds of events the city hosts. IMR recently had the chance to explore one of these larger hotels, just off of Grand Central and close to the UN and many of the city’s international consulates.
In the 90 years since it opened, the Roosevelt Hotel has been featured in plenty of movies and TV programs (1408, Man on a Ledge and Mad Men, among the most recent), and has preserved many historic elements for a classic New York experience.
|Like the lobby|
The 20-story hotel has 1,015 rooms, including 52 suites and the 3,900-square-foot Presidential Suite, which can be adjusted to have as many as four bedrooms, a kitchen, formal living and dining areas, and a wrap-around terrace. (This suite is a top pick for a visiting CEO, and can host a small board-of-directors meeting in the dining room.) Beyond the Presidential Suite, the hotel also has several one-, two- or three-bedroom suites, some with kitchens or kitchenettes, for VIPs and smaller gatherings.
|The Presidential Suite dining room can double as a boardroom.|
We began our evening at mad46, the hotel’s rooftop bar which hosts social gatherings during the summer and can be bought out for private events year-round. The outdoor portions of the venue have retractable canopies for inclimate weather, and while the rooftop does not tower over the surrounding skyscrapers, it offers a unique perspective on midtown’s buildings.
|An outdoor setup at mad46|
|A formal dinner at mad46|
For our event, a formal table was set up indoors with presentation screens placed around the rooms. The space can be blocked off as needed to accommodate groups of different sizes, and the floor-to-ceiling windows can open up for an indoor/outdoor experience. The event menu can be customized--be sure to request the meatballs with burrata for the winter or the signature Oysters Rockefeller for those who prefer seafood. After dinner, request Mexican coffee, served with a liqueur of each guest’s choice (Kahlua, Bailey’s or other traditional after-dinner drinks) in a sugar-rimmed glass with whipped cream.
To book mad46 for private functions, call 212-885-6095 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Downstairs, the Madison Club Lounge has a Billiards Room off to one side that can serve as a private socializing space (complete with a pool table, of course). It’s a good place for casual conversation and networking over drinks, and is a top pick for a small after-business reception.
In the morning, the Roosevelt Grill hosts a breakfast buffet with all the traditional New York elements (eggs, bacon, bagels, cream cheese) and some unique touches like southern-style biscuits stuffed with eggs, potatoes and sausage. With a nice nod to history, the room has photos of Theodore Roosevelt prominently displayed.
The Roosevelt Hotel has 30,000 square feet of event space across 23 function rooms that can accommodate up to 850 people. Each room has direct phone lines and PC compatibility. (The hotel has an on-site A/V company and video conferencing capability for tech-heavy events.)
|The Ballroom, as viewed from the balcony|
The largest venue happens to be one of New York City's few remaining traditional ballrooms, which covers 5,696 square feet and can accommodate 800 people for a reception or 550 for a formal banquet. (The room is decidedly classic in style, with a gold-gilded ceiling and a balcony for presentations or speeches.)
The hotel’s mezzanine also has four rooms for classroom and theatre-style set-ups.
On the Lobby level of the hotel, planners can host a reception in the Palm Room (just off the main lobby) or a formal conference in the Terrace Room, which can accommodate presentations of up to 500 and banquets up to 320. (The room was famously used for the “Greed is good” scene in the Oliver Stone movie Wall Street.)
Contact the hotel’s sales staff at email@example.com or call 212-661-9600.
With a strong focus on groups and events, the hotel has several offers and perks available for organizers.
90 Years of Hospitality
Book a group of 50 rooms per night now through March 31, 2015 and get 10 rooms at $90, along with free Wi-Fi in all rooms.
90th Anniversary Deal
In celebration of the hotel’s 90th Anniversary this year, the hotel has a deal for those organizing larger events. Planners who book and use a minimum of 90 rooms per night will get 5 percent off the final bill. Ten rooms of the group block will be upgraded to junior suites for $90 per night. Complimentary Wi-Fi is included in the rooms, and a one-hour reception can be arranged for $19.24 per person. Perhaps best of all, the meeting space is included in the package, and the planner will get a 25 percent discount off the meeting room rental for his or her next meeting at the hotel.
For the remainder of 2014, group rates can be organized from $279 per room per night, including free Wi-Fi in the guest rooms, free rental of a meeting room or a breakout room, a 10 percent discount on retail catering menus and one free guest room for every 30 booked.
The Roosevelt Hotel is located at 45th Street and Madison Avenue in New York City.