I set out to find a venue for my boyfriend's birthday that offered a relaxed, sophisticated atmosphere, great cocktails and finger food for about 50 people. I wanted to pre-purchase food while my guests would buy their own alcohol. After an exhaustive search (I heard everthing from a $1,500 minimum just to reserve a seating area to my crowd might be too "ethnic" for the clientele being served and there might me a problem with entry for all of my guests -wow), I was genuinely amazed that I couldn't seem to find a trendy venue that valued a captive audience from a party. I hesitated because I frankly was unimpressed with the pictures I found, but was eventually swayed by strong reviews.
I spoke with Clare at Obivia and she invited me to come into the lounge. Once I saw the space, I was very impressed. I loved the intimate setting of the space. I reserved the front portion of the space, which consists of comfy seating. It was required that I meet a $300 minimum to reserve the area and I used most of it to order food ($300 in NYC is NOTHING!).
The night of the party was spectacular. I was slightly taken aback by the coat check fee, but it was cheap (I just wish I'd known about it). However, we were informed that we'd been upgraded to a separate section in the back, which was huge and exclusive (mind you, way better than the front space). We also received complimentary champagne and SUPER attentive service. Everyone from the bouncer to the bartenders to the waitress were amazing.
The party quickly filled up and guests loved the music, the tasty cocktails and the food. A server passed food on trays at my request. I also asked the staff to put birthday cupcakes on a tray for me. I was pleasantly surprised to see they had put the cupcakes on this amazing wooden serving piece, complete with candles (I didn't even bring candles). They even changed the music just for the presentation.
We were exhausted by the end of the night when everyone left. As we sat there, a waitress came and thanked me and gave me free drink coupons for a future visit. I am a Native New Yorker and have never had such amazing, attentive service, great food, better drinks, fabulous presentation, and a trendy venue, all for such tremendous value. To Clare and ownership, keep doing what you are doing! I will definitely be back to support Obivia and make sure you stay in business!! Many venues could learn a thing or two from you.
You will not go wrong here. And, yes, I loved the soft core porn on the televisions. If it offends you, please feel free to step into the year 2010. They show worse on ABC prime time TV.
Cons: Coat Check Fee