On The Avenue

The Year in Review: 2018’s Best Parties

Friday, December 28, 2018

AVENUE had quite the social calendar this year. From Palm Beach to New York to the Hamptons and back again, we spent 2018 celebrating the people and places that make our city the most entertaining, the most philanthropic and the most fun. Here, we present a roundup of the year’s best:


Virtue & Vice and Everything Nice



…That’s what all parties should be made of! On Thursday, March 15, the Frick Collection invited its Young Fellows to make a choice between good and evil, as the 19th annual Young Fellows Ball drew its theme from Paolo Veronese’s Choice Between Virtue and Vice.  


The First Monday in May



No, AVENUE didn’t go to the Met gala. Why? Because it’s “not meant for you or me.” AVENUE investigated how the gala has evolved from its high society days to the red carpet circus it is today. 


A Night in Hawaii in the Bronx



There was a lot to say “mahalo” about at the New York Botanical Garden’s annual Conservatory Ball in June. The evening, tied to the opening of a new exhibition of Georgia O’Keeffe’s Hawaiian paintings, was a proper Polynesian party. 


Eighty is the New Forty



“I’ll do it again when I’m 90, but it will be smaller,” Leonard Stern announced to guests arriving for his motorcycle themed 80th birthday party in June. Invitations wrapped in black leather mini motos that opened with a thick zipper featured Stern on the Vintage Harley he rides around the East End.


No Lifeguard at this Beach



It’s hard to say what was shorter at the Nikki Beach pop-up at Oreya in Southampton in early July: the menu, the dresses, or the duration. The much-hyped popup from St. Barths arrived in Southampton just before 4th of July weekend, and departed less than 24 hours later.


Authors Night



Robert Caro stole our pen at East Hampton Library’s 14th annual Authors Night over the summer. The event, hosted by Alec Baldwin, was themed “A Celebration of Books and 121 Years of Reading at the East Hampton Library.”


New Yorkers Meet Jaap



September 20 ushered in a new age of the New York Philharmonic when Jaap van Zweden officially took his post as the acclaimed organization’s new music director. To celebrate, the Phil threw quite the party. “He has a vision for the future, and it’s full of energy,” said Philharmonic president Deborah Borda. The program, dubbed New York, Meet Jaap, opened with a world premiere of Filament, composed by Ashley Fure; followed by Ravel’s Piano Concerto in G Major and then Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring. As a surprise encore, the orchestra played Wagner’s Ride of the Valkyries.


A Hulava Good Time


Wynton Marsalis and Bette Midler

On October 30, New Yorker Bette Midler hosted her annual Hulaween gala to benefit the New York Restoration Project. The costumes stunned—and the annual contest was judged by none other than Michael Kors. 


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