When looking for a cheap venue in NYC, you come across the usual suspects, Alger House, Manhattan Penthouse, Riverside Church, etc. The bottom line is "cheap" is still going to cost you over a hundred per person when you count in tax and tip. Oh and P.S., I'm getting married in February, a week and a half after Valentine's day, so all that "out of season" b.s. isn't really helping much either. New York Magazine published some ideas for how to throw a wedding for under $10K, but that either meant getting married in Central Park (see February, above) and/or doing a pre-fix lunch at a swanky restaurant. None of these options accomodated my 90 person guest list or provided me with a proper reception complete with bacon wrapped mini foods, open bar and dancing.
After lots of depressing phone calls and flexing my bargaining muscles to the point of exhaustion, I was ready to give up. I called my church and asked if I could rent a room there for free. They said yes and even offered to waive the $300 ceremony fee, but after seeing the room, I knew it still wasn't me.
Enter Alison. Not only is she my savior at work, the woman who works so hard she makes me look good and who listens to me rant without ever contributing a negative comment to my life, but she's a NYC fixture and went to school right in the neighborhood where my church was. This particular day she was listening to me moan and mentioned that her cousin had her daughter's bat mizvah at a restaurant a block away from my church. "I forget what it cost, but I remember it was obscenely cheap," she said. "What is your definition of 'obscene'?" I asked her. "Like a few thousand dollars."
She got my attention.
Long story short. 107 West offered to host my 5 hour reception for 90 people for $5,000. This includes 5-6 passed aps, buffet with steak, salmon, chicken, pasta, salad, spinach, etc., apple crumble and open bar beer and wine. I practically humped Nick, the manager when he told me. Oh and the icing on the wedding cake? They are clearing out the glass enclosed dinning area after dinner, putting up speakers and letting me dance the night away. Eat that Alger House!