On March 20, the present day mingled with the golden age of Playboy in a retro-pop release party for the April Sex + Music issue. With a nod to the past and a wink to the future, it was truly a tribute to the original promise Hugh Hefner made in the first issue of Playboy magazine to deliver humor, sophistication, and a whole lot of spice.
Bruno Mars had always dreamed of having a Rat Pack themed party at the Playboy Mansion. When he became the tenth man in history to be featured on the cover of the magazine, Playboy and ZOē were given the chance to bring his vision to life. A tribute to the era of Frank Sinatra, The Temptations, and classic white bunny tails, “Doowops & Hooligans” abounded at the Mansion when Bruno Mars took the stage.
It all began on the evening of March 15 with a phone call from the Associate Marketing Manager at Playboy Enterprises, Inc., inquiring whether it was possible to produce a lavish V.I.P. event, with a live performance by the world’s top recording artist, that would take place a mere six days later. By any standard, it was inconceivable. Fortunately for Playboy, the ZOē crew thrives on the challenge to make the impossible… possible.
How do you produce an event of this scope in less than a week? With courage, grace, and awfully large quantities of caffeine. The finely tuned skills and experience of the ZOē team, as well as their collaborators, partners, and trusted vendors were the secret ingredients to pulling off the event of a lifetime at warp speed.
Within 24 hours:
The budget was approved, vendors were secured, and close to one hundred crew members were hired.
Within 48 hours:
The event was designed, menus were developed, set construction began at the ZOē Warehouse, and concert-caliber technical production plans were drafted.
Within 72 hours:
Installation of a clear-span tent began on the lawn of the Playboy Mansion, and load-in was underway.
Bruno Mars at the Mansion
By the morning of March 20, the ZOē team had accomplished what usually takes months of pre-production in less than 6 days. With production meetings and phone calls taking place in the wee hours of the morning to secure event details, one vendor observed…
Channeling the clubs of the 1960’s, the Playboy Mansion stepped back in time overnight. Once Bruno Mars hit the stage to perform, the energy of the room caught fire in a potent cocktail of Sex + Music. The toast of the town attended the party, including Britney Spears, Cameron Diaz, Chris Martin, Johnny Knoxville and Jeremy Piven.
Bruno Mars performed an electrifying set of covers including Led Zeppelin, Journey, Michael Jackson, James Brown, and more. Supporting the evening: DJ Spyder and a band of beautiful Bunnies.
Food provided by Playboy Mansion catering. Any hepcat worth his salt wouldn’t be caught dead without a martini in his hand.
A VINTAGE ATMOSPHERE
A black & white affair: all decor, furnishings and florals shared the classic two-tone palate. Immersive lighting created a retro-chic feel, accenting the luxurious upholstered lounge vignettes and houndstooth-patterned linens.
Ornate black chandeliers hung from the ceiling, and vintage inspired mirrors provided an elegant backdrop for the stage (which was custom tufted, along with the central bar).
A personalized touch was added to each table with exclusive photos from the Playboy archives.