A "New Battle For New York" - Manhattan Magazine Launches, Leaving Us Wonder If Egos Are The Fuel That Will Keep Print Media Alive After All

by Rachelle Hruska · September 11, 2008

manhattan magazine [Like moths to a flame. Photo via Patrick McMullan]

Go HERE for more photos from this event by Ben Kaufman

Modern Luxury Media launched their newest publication "Manhattan Magazine" on Tuesday night amongst the tents at Bryant Park's Cellar Bar. This brand spanking new magazine caters to the interests and lifestyle of New York's finest and the September/October fashion and design special devotes over 100 pages to "uptown chic and downtown hip"...sounds like perfection, though hasn't this been done before?

These days, it is increasingly obvious that the only ones wacky enough to launch a print publication based around socialites in Manhattan, or any other area for that matter, must be ego-driven because, otherwise, it. just. don't. make. sense.  Back in June, the Post stated that:

"A new battle for New York is underway, as the well-financed Modern Luxury operation invades the city with a new magazine, to be called Manhattan. Richard Martin, who is currently the editor of Modern Luxury's recently launched Miami magazine, will be heading to New York to be the editor of Manhattan....The launch of Manhattan means that Modern Luxury's battle against Jason Binn, CEO of Niche Media, is going to intensify."

"A new battle for New York"?  What was the old one? Social Life versus Gotham?

Modern Luxury's CEO Michael Kong expects revenue to hit $85 million this year with the release of Manhattan, up from $69 million and has hired his brother Stephen Kong as publisher. Others are skeptical:

"I hope they've done their homework to see how New Yorkers are responding to economic pressures," said Caroline Miller, a former editor-in-chief of New York who also served as the editorial director of the now defunct Absolute, the magazine that "crashed and burned after its wealthy Spanish backer sold the business and the new owner bailed when he found out how expensive it was to launch a magazine here""

However, Kong insists that, although the same size as Gotham, Manhattan will be "focusing on a slightly older, more affluent audience"

Kind of like the one found at Cellar Bar this Tuesday night?

Oval Vodka served up Manhattan Oval Office cocktails while guests Tinsley Mortimer, Emma Snowdon Jones, Damien Fahey, Amanda Beard, and Zoe Saldana celebrated the magazine's release with DJ Sky Nellor, Editor-in-Chief Richard Martin and Publisher Stephen Kong.

Manhattan MagazineStephen Kong, Tinsley MortimerAmanda Beard, DJ Sky NellorZoe Saldana

Go HERE for more photos from this event.

[Manhattan Magazine Official Release Statement] [They'll Take Manhattan]