It's truly the season of giving, a fact that was on full display this past Thursday at the Kimpton Group's Harbor Court Hotel's swanky Red Ribbon Gala to raise funds and awareness for the Richmond Ermet AIDS Foundation.
Well-heeled guests dressed to the nines in sparkling holiday attire overflowed from a special events room that had been utterly transformed, thanks to Blueprint Studios, into a plush Pink Wonderland with white leather and purple velvet seating that you couldn’t help but sink into. Hungry attendees enjoyed delicious passed appetizers from Jasper's Corner Tap, Scala's Bistro, Postrio and Blue Mermaid, Cafe Pescatore, Grand Cafe and Fifth Floor. They were all washed down with specialty cocktails made with 360 Vodka, including a Red Crème Brulee Martini (which was garnished with a melted marshmallow), Ketel One and Don Julio.
The highlight of the night was the silent auction that featured vacations, locally designed couture, and a bevy of restaurant gift certificates, all of which guests feverishly bid on to raise money for REAF, which helps treat AIDS patients in the Bay Area. Kimpton sponsored Red Ribbon Galas across the country this month to raise funds in the spirit of the season of giving.
“This annual event means a lot to our Kimpton family," said Steve Pinetti, VP Culture & Inspiration. "This year, we looked to Melinda Macfarlane, one of our most passionate managers and an embodiment of the Kimpton Spirit, to take the San Francisco gala to a new level. She exceeded our expectations–we raised more than twice what we did last year. Next year, we’re going to have to use one of our larger venues so that she can have twice the space to invite twice the guests so that we can raise twice as much or more again for the REAF foundation to support all of the work they do in our community”.
Melinda, in turn, passed on the credit, saying “None of this would have been possible without David McNeary [Argonaut Hotel Banquet Manager] and Riley Johndonnell whose visions were what was realized tonight.”