Ken Fulk, Sonya Molodetskaya, Mary Gonsalves Kinney Named Top Bay Area Hosts

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Ken Fulk
Ken Fulk

Photo Credit: Drew Altizer Photography

Despite San Francisco being a hard-working, tech-driven town, there are plenty of people here who like to party. On any given Thursday in December, there were multiple invitations on our agenda—from glittering store openings to holiday happy hours to intimate dinners. One website has taken notice of SF’s societal circle by honoring the area’s top hosts and hostesses. The Salonniere, a online destination for all things entertaining from Austin-based PR maven, Carla McDonald, has named the top 100 party hosts in the nation. The list has some notable figures including Lela Rose, Darcy Miller, Oprah Winfrey, Eva Chow, and Gloria Estefan, but also features names who are lesser known writers, educators, photographers, retailers, and philanthropists. 13 local luminaries are honored on the list: Alexis and Trevor Traina, Ann Getty, Anna Weinberg, Hillary Thomas, Kay and Sandy Walker, Ken Fulk, Pamela Joyner, Sloan Barnett, Sonya Molodetskaya, and Mary Gonsalves Kinney and Jason Kinney.

Atmosphere at Ken Fulk's at Valentino
Atmosphere at Ken Fulk’s book launch at Wayfare Tavern

Photo Credit: Andrew Caulfield for Drew Altizer Photography

To compile the list, The Salonniere spent six months researching the 100 hosts, speaking with local society reporters, cultural figures, and industry leaders. Professional event planners and entertaining experts were only considered for their personal hosting skills in their private lives. “From the dawn of humankind to the salons of 17th century Paris to the gatherings of today, socializing has always played a vital role in the quality and advancement of human life,” Carla McDonald said in a statement. “The Salonniere 100 is our way of honoring those who are dedicated to advancing the tradition of using parties to connect people, foster ideas, and promote joy.” Fulk, Joyner, and Alexis Traina are the only three people who also made last year’s list of top hosts.

Mary Gonsalves Kinney and Jason Kinney
Mary Gonsalves Kinney and Jason Kinney

Photo Credit: Drew Altizer

Many of the new names on the list are worthy of the title. Weinberg celebrated the 5-year anniversary of her restaurant, Park Tavern, with an over-the-top yacht themed extravaganza. She also re-launched two of her restaurant’s private rooms, Marianne’s at the Cavalier and the Eden Room, upstairs at Park Tavern. Molodetskaya launched a fashion collection earlier this month with a fashion and trunk show at Uncle Harry’s. Gonsalves Kinney proved that she is the fashionable hostess with the mostess—throwing events with Farfetch and Maki Oh, Stella McCartney, Marni, and Vogue.

The Eden Room at Park Tavern decorated for a dinner hosted by Mary Gonsalves Kinney
The Eden Room at Park Tavern decorated for a dinner hosted by Mary Gonsalves Kinney

Photo Credit: Drew Altizer

Some people who didn’t make this list, but should have? Jay Jeffers and Michael Purdy who were on last year’s list, but hosted many a fabulous fete in Jeffers namesake boutique over the past 12 months. PR star Allison Speer also threw countless store openings, including the Moncler and Coach events, and whose gracious hosting style is one to be admired. Martinibird’s Rebecca Revel is the exclusive hostess for the tech world’s upper echelon and an up-and-coming, innovative, and stylish hostess not to be overlooked. Lastly, New York-transplant Emily Holt‘s opening party of Hero Shop, with live band, potent whiskey cocktails, tacos, and a blank wall that guests were invited to graffiti, was one of the most fun events we attended all year.

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