Events — 22 December 2014
Unmasking at The Peacock’s ‘Holiday Masquerade Ball’

Blog: Masquerade Ball at The Peacock

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The William officially opened for business back in the spring where the Midtown East boutique hotel would unleash a decadently chic vibe upon its understandably high end clientele. Friday evening, the venue’s distinctive setting would play host to a holiday inspired Masquerade Ball. The black-tie affair would serve to showcase the hotel’s unique elegance through a spectacle of delicious fare, elaborately crafted cocktails, live music and performance pieces amid the space’s ornately outfitted rooms.

The evening would span six full hours, where guests- each donning a masquerade masks which ranged from the basic to the intricate- would trek between the different rooms and enjoy passed around fare like savory “Quail Scotch Eggs” and “Shrimp Bisque Shooters” and a handful of sweet desserts. But eating aside, there was plenty of entertainment throughout the evening to keep attendees engaged. Live band The Rakiem Walker Project held court inside of The Peacock where the room soon turned into a full-on dance party while periodically, a handful of scantily-clad dancers would invite a dozen or so guests into a nearby private room for a risque burlesque performance courtesy of the “Vanity Vixens.” The evening even boasted a local magician to approach guests with a dazzling array of card tricks inside of the dimly lit space.

Part of the charm of the evening was the setting where cocktail bars like Raines Law Room and aforementioned mixology lab The Peacock were slinging together crafted concoctions like the ‘make-your-own’ “Old-Fashioned” and a refreshing “Penicillin,” made with delicious scotch, lemon, honey and ginger. Guests were also welcomed to downstairs bar The Shakespeare, a more quaint and casual space that offered some additional room to move about and ample seating for our aching feet. Fortunately there was also a nice selection of wines from which to choose courtesy of Frederick Wildman & Sons, and choice pours of reds, whites and sparkling (the always dependable “Lamberti Prosecco”) wines also made their way into our rotation.

After dancing for quite a bit (and candidly, taking in two burlesque shows), the heavy pours of stiff cocktails began to take a toll. The aura of the dark rooms coupled with masks shrouding the faces of many of those around us certainly made for a unique and festive atmosphere around The William, perfectly designed to house the three separate and differing bars housed inside. Although Friday evening’s Masquerade Ball was our initial foray into the East 39th Street hotel space, we garnered enough appreciation for the environment that a repeat trip is absolutely in order- with or without our Phantom of the Opera-style mask.

- Jane Van Arsdale

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