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January 04, 2017
Choosing a wedding cake
According to Kaitlyn Clark, of Marketing Marriage, the cake cutting ceremony is the perfecdt opportunity "to playfully smash cake into your partner's face, or romantically feed one another."  Here's some tips: Love the taste: Cake tasting is key to ensuring that you have a delicious wedding cake.  Be Creative.  Choose a theme, or a color, or something important and unique to you.  Choose a quality bakery. You need a top baker.
Some additional remarks added by Sam Milliken:
Make sure the baker will deliver on the day of the reception.
Make sure the cake will be constructed at the location if it is not delivered in its final form.
Decide whether the cake will be a focal point from the beginning or brought out later for the cutting.
Make sure the maitre d' knows whether you want to keep the top layer and when you will pick it up.
Make sure the cake is refrigerated if necessary before the cutting.
Make sure to say what to do with cake left over aside from the top layer.
My favorite cake is lemon white with real French buttercreme icing outside and inside, but most cakes these days are chocolate.  I like traditional looking wedding cakes, but my wife and I had three Croquembouches for ours, cakes made of filled profiteroles drizzled with caramel, made by my fine French chef.
Note: We have a nice tall rolling cake table to make presenting the cake easy.
January 03, 2017
Recent improvements

We have just finished our latest round of modifying decor at The Manhattan Penthouse.  We changed the color of our walls from French Cafe Yellow to a very warm very light grey, which is much more modern and goes with our silvery steel Palladian windows.  Our ceilings were painted a very light tourquoise bordered by white ceiling mouldings. To continue in this direction we purchased beautiful silver chairs.  In addition we installed remote controled wall wash and stage lighting for certain occasions.  Our long-term clients and we are very excited about these changes, which follow some we made about a year ago when we installed some stained glass and mirror panels to carry the feeling of our handsome bar around the Reception Room.  We love working on our venue and on our menus.

December 20, 2016
Create a wedding that represents you

From the moment you were born, you began developing your own style and personality.  Factors in life change you, but you will always be a unique individual.  There's no one else like you, and yhour partner fell head over heels for the person you are.  Your wedding day should reflect who you are and your unique personalities as a couple.  lanning a wedding is already quite time consuming and a rather difficult task.  When you delve into the world of wedding planning, it can really help to reflect who you are within your big day, and stick to it.  At The Manhattan Penthouse on 5th Avenue wedding venue we understand that your wedding day is a significant milestone in your life, as you become one with your partner.  That's why we have gathered a few ways to help you create a wedding that represents you.

DREAM BIG.  Before you start planning decor and hiring vendors, it's important to envision your dream wedding, right down to your bridal details.  Think of the weddings you've been to and the movies about weddings, for ideas.  No, not THAT movie!!!  FOCUS ON YOUR STYLE: YOu may want to think of a theme that represents both of your experiences, travel, hobbies, etc.   Is your style formal or inforlal?  Do you like speeches and toasts, or do you just want a party to flow?  CHOOSE YOUR COLOR PALATTE:  What's your favorite color to emphasize in linens, flowers, and lighting?

December 07, 2016
Manhattan Penthouse Make-Over 2016


Every year and often every season we have improved out extraordinary venue in some ways.  The following is what we accomplished in 2016:

Stained Glass and Mirror Panels: In order to carry the feeling of the stained glass and mirrors in our great bar around the Reception Room, we installed stained glass and mirror panels around the windowed walls, adding a special richness to the room.

Polishing our Steel Pallasian Windows: We polished our steel window frames and oiled them to preserve the shine.  Then we installed up-lights to make the frames gleam in the evening.

New Paint Job: It was time to modernize our look, and we hired a consultant to give an opinion. This resulted in our changing our French Cafe Yellow paint job to a beautiful light grey.  To correspond with this, we changed our gold ballroom chairs to beautiful silver chairs.  Everyone loves the look!

New Lighting: It was time to upgrade our stage and wall-wash lighting.  Two friends of mine from our Blue Hill Troupel, Betsy and Sam Militello, who help with staging in the Troupe, helped us order and install new remote controlled lighting for our stage area and our wall washes.  We featured alternating red and green lighting for the holiday season, and we established a beautiful lavender lighting for normal use, plus other alternative combinations and shades.

Holiday Decor this December: We decorated our space with huge magnolia wreaths, a Santa Clause, a Christmas tree, a Minora, and two giant topiaries at each end of the bar.  We ordered poinsetia plants for our dining tables.

Invitation: Our clients and guests are always invited to suggest ideas.

October 12, 2015
How to Find the Most Affordable Dates

Looking for a great space at a reasonable cost? Here are some key details that influence venue pricing.

All event venues price according to certain factors that are simple to understand, and, once you know what they are, you can use that knowledge to work in your favor.

PROXIMITY: The closer you are to your desired date, the lower the price will be for booking it. No venue wants to let a date go unused.  Booking within two to four weeks is optimal.

COUNT: The more guests you have at an event, the lower the charges can be. If you agree to pay for a guaranteed number of  guests, you may get a rate reduction for additional guests. You can also ask for a separate rate for different levels of guest count.

WEEKDAY EVENINGS: Monday and Tuesday are the lowest cost days of the week for corporate and charity events. Wednesdays and Thursdays are in greater demand so they tend to cost more. 

WEEKDAY DAYTIME EVENTS: We give rates of great value during the day.  Continental Breakfasts and light lunches are favorite daytime catering strategies.  Manhattan Penthouse and its wrap-around views are great in the daytime, and the feeling is very uplifting for conferences, wine tastings, brain stormings and presentations.

WEEKEND EVENTS: Saturday nights are the most expensive, then Friday nights, then Sunday.  Sunday weddings often start around 3 or 4 pm where guests enjoy the different feelings and views of day, dusk and night.  The least expensive weekend time is a lunch event on Saturday.

HOLIDAY: December events generally cost more than other months because of the demand.  But we cater post-holiday parties in January, which are enjoyed very much.

WEEKEND EVENTS/WEDDINGS: Our SATURDAYS in JANUARY, FEBRUARY, JULY and AUGUST are less expensive.  And our SUNDAYS in those months are even better deals. 

October 31, 2013
International "Food Fight" at the New York City Yale Club

Hello All,

Sam here. My Yale Club creates interesting culinary events, and this one, called International Food Fight, involved four teams of alums cooking four different meant to be judged by famous French chefs. The chefs were Jacques Pepin, Alain Sailhac, and Andre Soltner. 

The cook off benefitted two food-oriented charities supported by the Yale Club. Our chef with Green Mansions Catering, chef Noga Andriani, taught French cooking at the Culinary Institute with Jacques Pepin years ago. Three of the meals consisted of lamb with oriental sauces and sides, and one was a tofu entree. Some of the sauces, rubs, glazes, and slaws were of particular interest to me.

See some of the photos below, and watch out for any new additions on our menu based on the entrees we saw at the Food Fight!