Little Black Dresses and Big Green Profits

The little black dress is timeless in fashion, and it’s proving to be timeless for one nightlife group, too.

Shrine at the MGM Grand at Foxwoods in Mashantucket, Conn., is a 225-seat Asian-styled restaurant upstairs with a nightclub concept below, owned by Big Night Entertainment Group. Marketing specialist Randy Greenstein created a successful formula in the Little Black Dress (LBD) Party, at which women wear their little black dresses, and men dress in black as well. Greenstein hosts the event just twice a year — first on a Wednesday at Shrine and then at his club Suite in Boston the following Thursday night.

“This past year, Moët Hennessy sponsored the event at Shrine, and model April Scott was the host,” Greenstein says. “We do these on a Wednesday and Thursday back-to-back because it makes it more promote-able to spirits companies. They want to reach both consumers and bartenders, and bartenders are often off on Wednesdays. Then for those who want to continue to party, there is Thursday’s event as well.”

Selecting a large supplier such as Moët Hennessy allows the night to feature not one but four signature cocktails, priced at $12 instead of the regular $10. The sponsorship also allows Big Night to not charge a cover, enhancing the attraction of the LBD Party.

“We do mostly Martini-based signatures with one energy drink cocktail on the rocks in a highball glass,” Greenstein says. “We were using an energy drink called Motley Bird for the last party. The actual cocktails are chosen from a list provided by the company we are working with at that time.”

Six to eight weeks of planning goes into the LBD parties — resulting in more than 1,000 guests attending and, on average, 35 cases of each signature spirit being sold. Greenstein and staff hand out wristbands at Shrine and Suite in the days leading up to the events, although it’s an open party. He says the wristbands just help him get an idea of the response of his early marketing.

“These types of parties have worked very well for us,” Greenstein says. “We plan to continue them with high hopes for the future.”


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