Editor's Blog

Behold the Obaboom

With constant news of redundancies and companies going into administration, it’s nice to see there’s one sector of the events industry booming – the sale of tickets and hotel rooms linked to the inauguration of new US President Barack Obama.

The ‘event’ itself will play over several days of activities, including no less than ten balls, with estimates for the final events bill likely to hit a staggering £110m, making it the most expensive swearing-in ceremony in US history.

Tickets for the inauguration apparently hiked to an astonishing asking price of $20,095 (£13,840) and once you’ve shelled out that, there’s the problem of finding accommodation in Washington to contend with. Reports from the US claim the city’s 95,000 hotel rooms are full, so punters are having to look for accommodation in neighbouring Virginia and Maryland.

Hotel offers which caught our fancy include the Willard Hotel’s pricey four-night package, with a gift each evening, one from Tiffany the jewellers, while the Fairmont is offering an ‘eco-inaugural’ package complete with four nights in a suite filled with organic materials, a ball gown from an organic designer, and the use of a hybrid car, all for $20,000 (£13,782).

Money, it seems, is no obstacle when it comes to witnessing and celebrating what is, admittedly, an incredible historic moment in American history. Certainly, it does not seem likely Brown or Cameron could stir Brits to such fervour or largesse. One can only hope that once the dancing shoes are put away, they still have the stomach to cope with the financial hangover from Dubya’s administration.

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