Entrepreneur Tiffany N. Young has built a thriving business in Atlanta, starting with over-the-top kids’ birthday parties--which became a favorite of celebrities--and now includes a hotel and glamping site. Oh, and she’s also written a business book, The Switch, and just launched Entrepreneur University (E. University); a 501-c3 Non-Profit designed to teach entrepreneurial skills to kids ages 12–17, who are committed to growing their communities through small business ventures.
A key to her early success was attracting and catering to a celebrity clientele. As we emerge from the pandemic, and the trend for pod-style private events prevails, hertelier gets Tiffany’s top tips for dealing with VIPs.
Herstory: Tiffany N. Young launched The Pink Hotel in 2009 with a dream and vision. Throwing everything into her business, she actually slept on the premises in a closet for the first year and a half. Her big break came when music impresario, Sean "P.Diddy" Combs and Sarah Chapman, discovered her business and threw a birthday party for their daughter. “Sixteen months in a mop closet and no car could make the strongest person throw in the towel or move back in with their parents. But I'd known struggle all my life, so I knew it wouldn’t last always,” says Tiffany, who lived in and out of shelters growing up, as her single mom struggled to support three children. The event with P. Diddy helped launch her in the right circles… and the rest is history.
Now, The Pink Hotel in Atlanta has become the number one birthday party destination for celebs, professional athletes, business leaders, and their kids. With multiple themed rooms: nail salon, cooking area, gaming rooms, photo and video zone, and glamping site, there’s no party theme out of reach. She’s worked with everyone from Martha Stewart to Shaquille O'Neal, Chris Brown, Future, Cash Money Records, and The Real Housewives of Atlanta. In December 2020, along with Platinum-selling rap artist Lil Baby, The Pink Hotel hosted a socially distant surprise 7th birthday party for Gianna Floyd, the daughter of George Floyd. Tiffany was honored to make a special day for Gianna who has endured so much in her young life.
Giving back to her community is not just a party trick for Tiffany, last week she launched Entrepreneur University a non-profit, dedicated to teaching young people age 12 - 17, not how to get a job, but rather how to create their own jobs by teaching business skills. Her mission is to build strong work ethics and cultivate a ‘generational wealth’ mentality. “It is time to get our youth inspired about their own abilities, and not focus on what others can do for them,” says a passionate Tiffany. Inspired by her own struggles as a teen, when she had to lie about her age at 14 to get a job to help her single mother. “The day I had to lie about my age to get a job, I vowed that when I “made it” in life, I would give any child in need the opportunity to earn, regardless of their age.” She hopes Entrepreneur University will create a ripple effect of success in her community.
As we navigate new distancing rules, the trend for pod-style creative events will continue for the coming months and possibly up to a year. Here are Tiffany Young’s top five tips on attracting and understanding the special needs of celebrity clientele and hosting private events for VIPs.
Respect their privacy when booking. This should go without saying--but is especially important. Celebrities feel like they will be exploited for their fame, so guarding their privacy throughout is paramount.
Ask for and follow stated protocol for who to talk to about specific details. If the celeb client has designated certain people for you to talk to about their booking, deal only with that person and always loop in their assistant.
Focus on the person at the center of the celebration, if this is a child, your focus should be on the child and give their parents space and privacy.
Source and present clients with the best of everything, celebrities always want to feel they are getting the five-star top-of-the-line treatment.
Restrict photos to a single designated location (we often use a step and repeat with logos). Get permissions in advance from the publicist, advise guests and your own staff about the limitations on photography.