Hospitality Design (HD) magazine hosted its 25th Annual Platinum Circle Gala at the Conrad hotel in New York on November 12th with more than 300 people in attendance. The gala was sponsored in part by Gold Sponsors Preciosa, Samuelson, Valley Forge Fabrics Inc.; Silver Sponsors Durkan and Hansgrohe; and Benefactor Sponsor Fabric Innovations; and Bronze Sponsors America Trading Company, Couristan, Hubbardton Forge, Kraus, Robert Allen Contract, Royal Botania, Simmons, and Waterworks.
Past and Current Honorees
The event honored Pamela Anderson and Laurie Miller of Anderson/Miller Ltd.; Daniel Boulud of the Dinex Group; Margaret McMahon of Wimberly Interiors; and Ian Schrager of Ian Schrager Company, who were all in attendance to accept honors for their lifetimes of achievement in hospitality. The evening brought together many industry icons including Tony Chi of tony chi and associates; George Yabu and Glenn Pushelberg of Yabu Pushelberg; Trisha Wilson of Wilson Associates; Michael Bedner of HBA; and Wing Chao, former executive vice president of Walt Disney Imagineering.
The evening, in short, “was inspirational and just the right mood. It was glamorous, chic, and low key, all meshed together,” says Alexandra Champalimaud, founder of Champalimaud. Adds McMahon: “To be inducted into Platinum Circle, which includes the who’s who of the hospitality industry, is truly a great honor. The 25th anniversary event was so special and to be inducted with Anderson Miller, Daniel Boulud, and Ian Schrager was the icing on the cake.”
In recognition of the anniversary, the gala moved from Las Vegas to New York City this year. "It was a brilliant idea to bring Platinum Circle to New York, and what perfect timing for our industry. It was a joyous celebration and a tribute to new beginnings (and goodbye to the last few years of angst). It was the best event of the year,” says Joyce Romanoff, president of Maya Romanoff.
First-time attendee Larry Traxler, senior vice president, global design of Hilton Worldwide, says, “I thought that the Platinum Circle Awards gala was incredible. The Conrad team did a fantastic job of hosting incredibly educated VIPs at this iconic event. The evening provided a great platform for catching up with old friends and business colleagues who I haven’t seen in a long time. It was great to see the inductees speak about the formative stages of their esteemed careers and reflect on those relationships that helped to make them great."
Pamela Anderson and Laurie Miller
An additional highlight of this year’s Platinum Circle Awards was the awarding of the inaugural $10,000 Fabric Innovations Legacy Scholarship to Karen (Karahm) Paik, a student at Cornell School of Hotel Administration, on behalf of NEWH, Inc. and Fabric Innovations. “NEWH is thrilled that Deborah Herman and Fabric Innovations have committed to this generous multi-year scholarship,” says Shelia Lohmiller, executive director, NEWH, Inc. “Presenting this scholarship in the prestigious company of Hospitality Design’s Platinum Circle Gala makes the occasion even more special.”
"Our first Platinum Circle Gala in New York City succeeded beyond our wildest dreams. Hospitality celebrities packed the room to cheer on the new honorees and the atmosphere was charged with good will, high spirits, and love for the industry,” says HD’s editor-in-chief Michael Adams. “We can't wait for next year."