Leon Black’s Birthday Party Was a Subtle Affair, in Keeping With the Economic Climate

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Stylish, subtle, sophisticated. Photo: Jed Egan; photo by PatrickMcMullan.com

Oh wait, no, that was Tim Geithner's. Meanwhile, Black, who founded private equity firm Apollo Management, transformed his backyard into a faux nightclub with a seared foie gras station and steak buffet to celebrate his 60th. The buyout billionaire, not worried about dating himself with his musical choices, also spent at least $1 million to hire Elton John for his 200 guests, including Vera Wang, Howard Stern, Michael Bloomberg, and Michael Milken. The whole thing was reminiscent of Stephen Schwarzman's famously opulent 60th birthday party in 2007, as was not lost on one sharp-eyed observer in the crowd, reports Dealbook.


Before the concert, around 8 p.m., as a full moon rose over the Atlantic, Mr. Blankfein and Mr. Schwarzman stood at the foot of the stairs leading down to the beach. Guests overheard Mr. Blankfein playfully ribbing Mr. Schwarzman about his fin de siècle affair.

“Your 60th got us into the financial crisis,” Mr. Blankfein is said to have told the private equity titan. “Let’s hope this party gets us out of it.”

That's definitely how it works.

Birthdays Are Still Big in Buyout Land [Dealbook]