Sam Zell threw himself a birthday bash tonight (Oct 1), and Elton John turned up to rock the crowd.
Zell, the Equity Group Investments chairman, turned 75 Sept. 28.
This year the party was held at Cinespace Studios on the Near West Side. Among the chefs providing fare for the partiers was Erling Wu-Bower of Nico and Cosmos Goss of Publican. Eden Laurin of Violet Hour mixed drinks.
Paul Kahan of Blackbird was an attendee.
Zell is infamous for throwing lavish celebrations, the locations of which are kept secret from the hundreds of guests until the last minute. Invitees are instructed to meet at an assigned spot but it’s not until then that they know where the party will be held.
In past years, the musical entertainment has been the Eagles, Aretha Franklin, Bette Midler and Fleetwood Mac. The guests include Zell’s best friends, many of whom are real-estate professionals who fly in to Chicago for the festivities.
One year, guests were given black T-shirts adorned with white feathers, and had to wear the shirts to gain admittance to the party, according to published reports.
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