Visiting the Hilton Westchester on Westchester Avenue in Rye Brook, New York, brought back many wonderful memories of school and shul dinner dances, weddings and bar and bat mitzvah celebrations. As a volunteer for day schools and the shul my family attends in Westchester, I often headed dinner and luncheon committees and our first choice of venue was always the Hilton Westchester, then known as the Rye Town Hilton. Friends’ weddings and children’s bar and bat mitzvahs were wonderful happenings at this lovely hotel. The courteous and knowledgeable staff always provided first-class affairs, using only the best kosher caterers in town.
Fast forward several years. I recently had the pleasure of meeting Brian Finneran, director of catering at the now-renamed Hilton Westchester. Purchased by Fred Manocherian, real estate developer, author and founder of the National Road Safe ty Foundation and the New York Health & Racquet Club chain, and owner of the Kimberly Boutique Suite Hotel in New York City. Since January, 2017, the hotel has been undergoing extensive renovations and remodeling reported Finneran. The beautifully furnished lobby is inviting and relaxing, with coffee and hot apple cider available to all. One is drawn to the beautiful sparkling white vintage car that occupies a central space near the indoor pool area. Manocherian, a devoted car collector, selected this car, with its interesting license plates, to showcase the grandeur he is bringing to the hotel. Known as the “Waldorf in the Woods,” the hotel occupies 30 acres of lush landscaping. Beautiful trees and meandering walkways dotted with large sculptures, comfortable seating, a heated outdoor pool and play areas for children invite one’s attention.
Finneran discussed the owner’s desire to attract the “kosher crowd” to the hotel by providing top-notch conveniences that will create the perfect wedding celebration. With over 40 years of experience with kosher weddings, Hilton Westchester offers a full second kosher kitchen, kosher beverage options and high ceilings for chuppah ceremonies with an open chuppah. Two of the largest ballrooms in Westchester County provide space for a mechitza, with generous dancing areas. Guests can choose from kosher caterers such as Newman and Leventhal, Mauzone, Prestige and Foremost, and the hotel can plan a magnificent, memorable wedding for as many as 800 guests.
Bar and bat mitzvah celebrations are easily accommodated by the flexible spaces in the hotel, where the catering team can design configurations meeting the family’s needs. Whether looking for a sit-down lunch or dinner, separate areas for adults and children, or a standing reception, individual preferences can be satisfied. Weekend functions are also an option, with the hotel offering 445 guest rooms, all with metal keys, the majority with double beds and a separate private room for davening. The Hilton Westchester has even created an eruv. Valet parking is available.
Finneran further explained that the key factors to offering a grand, successful event are location, grandeur, capacity and the quality of service. Westchester Hilton is succeeding in offering these qualities to its guests and will work to ensure your satisfaction.
For additional information or to discuss your next simcha, please contact Finneran at his direct line, 914-934-2571, or the Hilton Westchester at 914-939-6300, or visit www.westchester.hilton.com.
By Yvette Finkelstein