For the last 17 years GBK Productions has hosted a pre-Oscars gifting suite inviting celebrities and industry VIPs to get gifts. This year the event was held on the rooftop of the Kimpton La Peer Hotel in West Hollywood. And in typical Hollywood fashion, it felt like a party. The DJ pumped jams and the bartender served drinks while the stars and businesses schmoozed. Several of the participating companies are new businesses hoping to get the attention of celebrities and get noticed in the press.
Gavin Keilly is the CEO of GBK Productions. He says most of these brands can’t afford the high dollar rates that most celebrities get for advertising. So they come here in the hopes that someone famous will take a picture with their product and generate buzz for them.
“These gift lounges are a win/win/win. Meaning these celebrities are able to come in and find products, but we also have charities here who are able to get them involved,” Keilly says. “The brands in turn have the opportunity to meet all this talent, get photos with them and use those on their website or trade shoes.”
Entertainment industry VIPs could snag swag from White Tiger vodka and Sproud vegan milk, to Vanish PFB skincare and Sunday Dinner Candle Co. And if the stars are looking to get away, they were also gifted trips to Fiji, The Mansion Bali, and a week at a 5-star resort in Los Cabos called Le Blanc Spa Resort, courtesy of Swanky Retreats.
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“The brands get more out of it than the celebrities ever could,” Keilly says. “But the celebrities come to the gifting suite because they like to stay relevant in the press. They like to give back to the charities we have. And finally they really do like to help those small brands grow.”