Avenue Toasts Chris Blackwell

by AVENUE insider Photographed by Chris Blackwell
Wednesday, March 9, 2016

On Wednesday, March 2, advertising expert Richard Kirshenbaum and his wife, Dana, invited many notable guests to their home to toast music legend and AVENUE‘s February cover star, Chris Blackwell.

Kirshenbaum’s Fifth Avenue duplex was transformed into a buccaneer-approved faraway tropical destination, where attending New Yorkers were greeted with reggae music, Jamaican jerk chicken, and signature Blackwell’s rum flowed freely as it does on the sandy beach Caribbean getaways.

The man of the hour, who had put Bob Marley, U2, and many other music artists on the map and had founded the Island Records label, kicked off the evening feting his latest endeavor, a rum collection. At 72, Chris Blackwell, the iconic barefoot entrepreneur, just launched Blackwell Black Gold Rum.

As his beloved reggae kept the island vibes going, guests like David Lauren, Adam Haggiag, Lexi Bowes-LyonMax McGuinness, Andrew and Erica Tobin, Jessie Fortune Ryan, Priscilla Zoullas and Alexis Theodoracopulos forgot all about the gray New York March, dreaming of azure Jamaican skies with a cocktail in hand.

Photos by Ross White/


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