Monday, January 19, 2009

Consumption Spending by the Elite Roars On

NYC's Soho House membership waiting list has ballooned to 3,000 people (there are currently about 5,000 members). At the Core Club, the private members-only lodge that exists behind an unmarked door on East 55th Street and Madison Avenue, suddenly "you can't get a seat in the dining room at lunch," says Jennie Saunders, who founded the club in 2005.. The club, which costs $50,000 to join and then $15,000 annually, has maintained its 90 percent retention rate. Members include business moguls Harvey Weinstein, William Lauder and Ron Burkle, as well as Bill Clinton and fashion designer Tory Burch, according to a membership list obtained by Page Six Magazine.

"Every time I walk into the club for lunch, I say, 'No recession here,' " says Fred Davis, one of the founding members of the Core Club and a senior partner at the law firm Davis, Shapiro, Lewit & Hayes.

Davis, who works with clients such as Kanye West and Linkin Park, says these days he's using the club four times a week, and even hosted the reception for his 140-person wedding at the club last October. Another member, lawyer Adam Gottbetter, says, "I wanted to host a corporate event at the Core Club in December, but they had zero availability for me throughout the month. You hear about everyone canceling their Christmas parties, but no matter what date I chose, the club was booked." On a Tuesday afternoon in early December, the five treatment rooms were all in use, and the hairstylist was booked through the New Year.

Meanwhile at Soho House, "We've had 95 percent of our members renew their memberships," says director of operations Mark Somen. "They like the exclusivity without the pretentiousness."

No comments:

Post a Comment