There is nothing in the world like Christmas in New York City. My favorite time to be there is during the week of the Christmas tree lighting at Rockefeller Center. The tree lighting ceremony is always the last Wednesday in November and draws a very festive crowd from all over the world. This marks the beginning of shopping season for all the famous stores and their window and facades are fully decked for the season. The only thing even better than being there is planning and sharing the experience with 30 friends.
This trip was a year in the planning. My business associate, Spencer, and I traveled to the Big Apple during the time of the lighting last year to map out all the important events and to find the perfect hotel. At the time, we were staying at The Plaza because it is part of the Fairmont group, with which I am a specialist. While I would most certainly admit this would be my very first choice to stay during Christmas, I knew the price may not be conducive for a group trip. Luckily, however, their exceptional concierge service helped guide us to the perfect way to view the famous Christmas tree lighting ceremony. We had not realized how tight the security had gotten and that you are no longer able to just walk near the Rockefeller Center that evening to catch all the festivities. It is completely barricaded, and you must show proof of a VIP invitation to attend a party or special reservation to enter the area surrounding the tree.
The Plaza set us up for a dinner with a private club that was the highlight of our trip because we could watch the tree lighting from their terrace. It was also the time I met a wonderful lady that just happened to be one of the reps at Chanel.... thus, the beginning of a great relationship that led to another idea for our Gals trip! I began to copy Oprah’s idea of “My Favorite Things” and started piecing together everything I loved in NYC at Christmastime all in one three- night package.
Upon returning, I immediately contacted our marketer, Mary Pat, to begin spreading the word that our trip would be a go. We carried it through and even though we caused our plane to be overweight with luggage ... (SERIOUSLY!) ... what can you expect from that many women carrying fur coats...we finally made it and had a ball!
This was our schedule:
Flight and transfers to our hotel
Meet and greet at our private rooftop bar reception
Choice of three plays (of course Beautiful and Pretty Woman were most appropriate for this group!)
-Chanel CLOSED their store for an hour and a half for a private champagne toast and appetizers for shopping and to discuss the history of Chanel just for us! Truly fabulous time! Everyone received a complimentary bottle of perfume!
-Free time to shop and wander the streets to look at the wonderful window decorations.
-Private club dinner, music, and Christmas tree lighting ceremony.
-After party at the Rainbow Room where the famous NYC Tree girls were waiting for us!
-Free time for shopping, museum and sight-seeing
-Lunch at Ellen’s Stardust Cafe
-Christmas Spectacular at Radio City with the Rockettes
- Dinner at the 21 Club (we were seated at their famous Presidents table!)
-Dancing the night away at a Latino nightclub!
We all agreed that we would have liked to have stayed another day or two... but there is always NEXT YEAR!!!!!
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