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December 11, 2009 3:59 PM

Even Weil Tones Down the Holiday Party

Posted by Zach Lowe

If there is one firm that had a good to great year in 2009, it is Weil, Gotshal & Manges. Its gold standard bankruptcy department scored two mega-assignments (Lehman Brothers and General Motors) that continue to bring in piles and piles of work. 

So we expected that Weil might use the holiday party season to put on its best clothes, pour some top of the line champagne, and gather someplace luxurious to celebrate its ability to thrive amid a crisis. After all, the firm celebrated last year's holiday season at the Marriott Marquis in Times Square with a 12-piece (or perhaps larger) band. 

But the firm went a different route. It held its holiday party Thursday night on a semi-abandoned floor in its Manhattan headquarters. Instead of a live band, someone brought an iPod for background music. And the firm turned to its regular cafeteria catering service--Sodexo--for the food, though the menu (which included sushi and other goodies) was high-quality, says Barry Wolf, the firm's newly elected executive partner. 

"It was appropriately scaled down and it was fantastic," says Wolf, who confirms descriptions of the party we heard from several Weil sources earlier today. "And it was convenient. Attendance was better." 

Wolf says several Weil lawyers suggested that the firm hold its 2010 holiday party in the building lobby. 

Weil could not immediately provide cost details of this year and last year's parties, but we'll let you know if we hear anything further. 

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