WL Insider: 24-Hour Party People

by Editorial

Billed as the social event of the decade, The Global Party, seeks to bring 80,000 of the world’s top VIPs together to party for 24-hours for charity.
By Michael M. Clements

Lima Restaurant and Lounge (1401 K Street) has been chosen to be the exclusive local venue for the Global Party. Lima’s Global Party event starts at 8PM on September 16th.

There is a big party brewing. An ambitious project that combines the worlds of London hedge fund mangers, global brands, charities, and chic nightclubs worldwide all mixed together in a rarefied cocktail of exclusivity, privilege and altruism. Dubbed as the “social event of the decade,” The Global Party seeks to break the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest party ever while raising money for multiple charities.

From September 15th to 16th, 2011 80,000+ of “the world’s elite” will party for 24-hours at 80+ clubs from Amsterdam to Rio to New York, Dubai and Shanghai. In Washington D.C., Lima Restaurant and Lounge (1401 K Street) has been chosen to be the exclusive local venue for the event. Lima’s event starts at 8PM on September 16th.

How does someone become one of the elite 80,000 VIPs Earth has to offer? You could get a VVIP invite like Liz Hurley, Uma Thurman and Simon Cowell did, or you can buy a ticket – a limited number of corporate and individual tickets are available. Cover charge, you ask? Two individual tickets cost US$4,800. Corporate packages are priced at US$48,000 and include 24 invitations (12 pairs) to The Global Party and six invitations (three pairs) to the official world wide launch party at The Natural History Museum in London on September 8th. RSVPs begin July 15th, 2011.

“We’ve made the charitable donations as clear as possible,” said The Global Party, CEO/ Founder David Johnstone at a recent kick-off event at the exclusive New York art-based member club, The Core Club. On July 15th, when ticket sales begin, buyers can go to The Global Party website, choose a charitable beneficiary, and buy a ticket. According to Johnstone, the payment goes directly to the charitable organization. They in turn send you your ticket. “We’ve removed ourselves from the payment between individuals and charities to make the donations as transparent as possible.”

The Global Party is the brainchild of luxury lifestyle entrepreneur David Johnstone and former hedge fund manager Stanley Fink. Picture here at The Global Party kick-off earlier this year in Marbella.

Just a note: as of publishing this article, only individual ticket purchasers have the option to choose to pay one of the 15 designated charities directly. The payment gateway for corporate buyers does not have the same option. Charitable beneficiaries include:  IAA – The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award (International Award Association), IIE’s Scholar Rescue Fund, Blue Marine Foundation, Sentebale, Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund, Raisa Gorbachev Foundation, Pratham, ARK (Absolute Return for Kids), 21st Century Leaders, Merlin, Tusk, Keep a Child Alive, CLIC Sargent, Nordoff Robbins and Virgin Unite.

A ticket or invite allows the holder access to any of the participating venues worldwide during the allotted 24-hour party period. The select host venues are all top notch, ranging from Rain in Las Vegas, Bed Supperclub in Bangkok, Bungalow 8 in London and Greenhouse in New York, to Ocean in Copenhagen, La Zagaleta in Marbella, M1nt in Shanghai, Travolta in Frankfurt, and Liquid Club Bern. See map below or click here for a full list of venues.

Map of The Global Party venues

Besides its charitable component, the best perk of the invite is the Key-2 Luxury silver key ring, billed as “the ultimate corporate gift.” According to the Key-2 Luxury website, the key ring “ensures direct and continual exposure for your business to thousands of high-net worth individuals all over the world, facilitating a direct personal relationship between you and some of the most influential people in the world.” In sum, it can get you into a lot of places. Besides providing key holders with personal contacts at acclaimed hotels, restaurants and clubs, it also comes with special offers from the “finest goods, services, entertainment and travel,” and “opens doors to a world of VIP privileges for life.” This isn’t Groupon, folks.

Who currently owns a Key-2 Luxury? The website claims, “multinational company chairmen and women, directors, press, and key decision makers” along with celebrities such as Madonna, Beyoncé, Eva Herzigova, Daniel Craig, Adrien Brody and Helena Christensen. I’m not sure if Madonna needs one, but, hey, the premise and promise sound cool.

Back in the District, Lima Restaurant and Lounge owner Masoud Aboughaddareh says local attendees will “form the

The Key-2 Luxury "unlocks" access to all Global Party venues worldwide and comes with list of contacts and offers at some of the world's leading clubs, restaurants, and more

ultimate global guest list from Washington D.C.’s centers of business, art, fashion, media and society.”  The property is planning to add a number of special touches to heighten the experience, including illuminating the floors and providing “luxe experiences” and cuisine that “captures the imagination of philanthropic individuals at the premier international party for charity.”

The brain trust behind the The Global Party includes former deputy chairman of the Man Group, Stanley Fink – the Sunday Times as referred to him as “the doyen of the hedge-fund managers” – and David Johnstone, whose is described on his wiki page as a “luxury lifestyle entrepreneur.” They describe the event as “one invite to rule them all” and say it is “poised to eclipse the rest and set the precedent for 21st Century events.” Bravado aside, several large brands have come on board as corporate sponsors, including Mikimoto, The Orient Express and Harry Winston. All the pre-press events went off without a hitch and were run smoothly and professionally. Indeed, the concept looks poised to make quite the impact on social circles worldwide. It will be interesting to see, however, how “old money” takes to the idea.

For the more adventurous, there is the Global Party Challenge. A 24-hour luxe gumball rally filled with private planes, trains and automobiles all in an attempt to circumnavigate the world and frequent as many of the official party venues as possible. Each venue will be given a selected number of points dependent on the difficulty of the location.  I wonder where Lima will rank? The team with the most points will be crowned and announced globally.

At the end of the day (or world) if Johnstone and Fink succeed in pulling off the world’s largest party while raising money for worthy causes, more power to them. The world of philanthropic fundraising could use a jolt of sexy globetrotting. I’ll keep you posted on how it goes, and I’m interested in seeing the final amount ultimately raised. For now, however, the question is, which country and nightclub should I go to before I head to Lima Restaurant and Lounge? Looks like it’s time to cash in those frequent flier miles…

The Marbella Club in Spain is one of the 80 participating venues.

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