THE BEYONCÉ EFFECT: SWEDEN’S INFLATION FEELS THE HIT - Kanebridge News
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THE BEYONCÉ EFFECT: SWEDEN’S INFLATION FEELS THE HIT

Danske Bank economist estimates Renaissance Tour contributed about 0.2 percentage point

By JOSEPH PISANI
Thu, Jun 15, 2023 2:50pmGrey Clock 2 min

Call it Bey-flation.

Sweden’s higher-than-expected inflation in May was due in part to Beyoncé launching her Renaissance World Tour in Stockholm, according to an economist at Danske Bank.

Fans flocking to Sweden’s capital city sent hotel prices soaring, said economist Michael Grahn. Calling it a “Beyoncé blip,” he estimates that Beyoncé’s tour contributed about 0.2 percentage point to inflation.

“This is very rare,” Grahn said about the effect that Beyoncé’s Stockholm performances on May 10 and 11 had. “Basically, her fans vacuumed hotels around Stockholm with a radius of some 40 miles,” bidding up hotel rates.

Inflation in Sweden was at 9.7% in May, falling from 10.5% the month before, according to Sweden’s government. Economists surveyed by FactSet were expecting inflation to drop to 9.2% last month. Statistics Sweden, which puts out the country’s inflation and other economic reports, said hotel and restaurant prices rose 3.3% in May from the month before.

“Beyoncé probably had an effect on hotel prices in Stockholm the week she performed here,” said Carl Mårtensson, a price statistician at Statistics Sweden, “but it should not have had any significant impact” on Sweden’s inflation.

The Renaissance tour, named after Beyoncé’s most recent album, is making its way around Europe before coming to the U.S. next month. The superstar’s first tour in seven years is playing in soccer and football stadiums, where fans watch her dance with robots and sing while riding a mirrored horse that floats in the air.

Beyoncé, whose hits include “Crazy in Love” and “Formation,” broke the record for most Grammy wins in February after “Renaissance” won best dance/electronic music album. She’s had 32 Grammy wins over her career, the most of any person.

When Renaissance tour tickets went on sale earlier this year, Beyoncé superfans, who call themselves the BeyHive, tried to buy tickets in several cities, fearing they would go quickly. A day after tour dates were announced, Ticketmaster said fan demand for the first round of tickets exceeded the number of tickets available by more than 800%.

Grahn said Sweden’s currency, the krona, is weak, which means tickets and other costs are likely cheaper for fans outside the country.

Other superstars touring this year after a long break have also made an economic impact on the cities they have visited.

Taylor Swift, who is in the midst of her Eras Tour, helped Las Vegas nearly match pre pandemic visitor levels when she performed there in March, the Las Vegas tourism authority said. Cities have been going all out to welcome Swifties in town for the Eras Tour, lighting up monuments in her signature colours and temporarily renaming streets after her.



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Milestone birthdays and anniversaries, weddings, and graduations are momentous life occasions that some like to mark with large and elaborate celebrations.

And the deep-pocketed set are still in catch-up mode after a party-throwing standstill during the pandemic that went on for many months during the height of the lockdowns and social distancing. Bashes since then have become ever more extravagant and experiential—mere get-togethers, they’re not.

Hosts are also seeking any excuse to throw an event and having parties with the same “wow” factor for far less significant reasons, or for micro-occasions as they’re called, and even “just because,” according to luxury event planners who work with this elite set.

Colin Cowie, a planner based in New York and Miami who regularly orchestrates multimillion-dollar gatherings and was behind Jennifer Lopez’s and Ben Affleck’s wedding, calls it the “event revolution.”

“Large-scale events have become the norm,” Cowie says. “The wealthy, who are used to celebrating their life moments in a big way couldn’t do anything during the pandemic and are now going all out for anything they host.”

His company, Colin Cowie Lifestyle, plans 30% more events today than pre-Covid and has a lineup booked for the next two years. An example includes an upcoming million-dollar dinner party in the Hamptons simply to socialise with friends. It’s an affair with free-flowing Dom Perignon, centre-cut filet mignons, and unlimited caviar.

Colin Cowie Lifestyle plans 30% more events today than pre-Covid
Calen Rose

Other high-end planners also attribute the rise of over-the-top celebrations to a “live life to the fullest” attitude that’s become prevalent in the last few years. But they say that these parties aren’t necessarily about spending more than before—rather, they’re increasingly creative, thoughtful, and, with respect to weddings, longer.

Lynn Easton, a Charleston-based planner, says that her typical wedding used to span two days and entailed a rehearsal dinner plus the wedding itself. “Now, it’s a five-day bonanza with events like a groomsman lunch,” Easton says.

Easton also plans glitzy milestone birthdays such as one for a 60th where the host flew 60 friends and family to a private island. Dinners were multi-hour affairs in various locations around the isle with the showpiece being a five-course meal where the food was presented on dishes that were hand-carved in ice.

Another planner, Victoria Dubin, based in New York and Miami, says that, in a new precedent, the weddings she’s tapped to design kick off with striking welcome meals. She recently planned an al fresco rehearsal dinner at the Brooklyn pizzeria Roberta’s that recreated a Tuscan garden. Elements included potted herbs, lemon trees, vintage olive oil cans, ceramic plates, and table cards presented with palm leaves in limoncello cans.

Another planner, Victoria Dubin, recently planned an al fresco rehearsal dinner at the Brooklyn pizzeria Roberta’s that recreated a Tuscan garden.
Aletiza Photo

Pashmina shawls hung from chairs to keep guests warm, and freshly baked pizzas and Aperol spritzes were in ready supply throughout the evening.

Stacy Teckin, the groom’s mother, hosted the party with her husband, Ian, and says she sought to pull off a dinner that made an impression on their guests. “The wedding was delayed because of Covid, and now that we had the chance to celebrate, we wanted to go all out,” Teckin says. “I’m not sure we would have done that before.”

In another example, acclaimed planner Norma Cohen threw a wild safari-themed bar mitzvah for a client.

A four-day wedding in Paris where the ceremony was in a historic chateau and the host paid for guests to stay at Hotel Crillon
Norma Cohen Productions

The memorable occasion transpired at Spring Studios in downtown Manhattan and saw 400 guests be transported to the African plains: Details included mammoth replicas of wildlife such as giraffes and elephants, servers in safari themed attire, and entertainment dressed like giraffes. The event was one of several over-the-top parties Cohen’s arranged recently.

A four-day wedding in Paris where the ceremony was in a historic chateau and the host paid for guests to stay at Hotel Crillon, one of the city’s most luxurious properties, also ranks high in Cohen’s memory.

Then there’s a destination party in London that Cohen planned for a client who was turning 40. It as a six-day affair with dinners at swanky spots such as Cipriani, the Arts Club, and Cecconi’s at Soho House. The finale was Lancaster House, a mansion in St. James, where guests were entertained by cabaret dancers from the famed Ibiza club Lio Ibiza and feasted on prime rib and lamb chops and imbibed on Krug champagne.

“People today don’t want to host events,” Cohen says. “They want experiences that take you away to a different place and make you forget that the real world exists.”