SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- There would be no calm before the Super Bowl storm this year. The week leading up to the game was a constant whirlwind of celebrities and athletes walking red carpets, shouting across open bars and huddling around countless heat lamps and fire pits as temperatures dipped below 30 degrees in the desert. Despite the unusually frigid temperatures when the set went down, the stage was set for arguably one of the wildest Super Bowl party weeks ever and SI.com's
A very low-key affair with family and friends that ended around 11 p.m., earlier than most would have liked, but allowed Leinart and others to head out to the other parties taking place around Scottsdale.
Saying Ashlee Simpson is a terrible live performer would be misleading since she mostly lip-syncs, but getting booted from the VIP room ended up being a blessing in disguise for Leinart and his group as everyone was spared from listening to her piercing pre-recorded voice and were able to party back at the Mondrian.
A couple of the best visuals of the week took place towards the end of the party. There was Donovan McNabb dancing around the dance floor like a robot while a friend raised the back of his jacket as if he were a puppet and Joe Montana, Dwight Clark and Chris Berman sitting in a VIP booth with a bevy of beauties surrounding them. Montana seem resigned to the possibility that images of his night on the town might end up online. "It seems like everyone has a camera on these," he said picking up his cell phone. "You can't do anything privately anymore."
A perfect afternoon house party with a nice mix of celebrities and athletes, highlighted by Adrian Grenier of Entourage telling Dontrelle Willis to get in a group picture, prompting Willis to say, "There are no celebrity baseball players. Maybe
It was a nice effort, but the muted poker affair came off as more forced than a relaxing night at the tables. Nothing drove that home better than watching Alice Copper be escorted down the red carpet with two women and being asked to put his arms around them. "This brings out the dad in me," he said. "And the dad says, 'Put on a jacket.'"
A great party in terms of space and accessibility to open bars, but with
In every aspect the best Super Bowl party this year. Best guest list, best venue, best atmosphere. Every where you turned there was a celebrity; whether it was Reggie Bush and Kim Kardashian making out at the Stone Rose Lounge, John Elway squeezing down a staircase to the pool area, Steve Nash dancing with his teammates as a waitress brings the Suns' VIP table a tray full of beers and P. Diddy dancing in a cabana while DJ AM controls the turntables. It was the one party that every celebrity in town attended even if they had to be somewhere else.
The best house party of Super Bowl week and also the surprise choice as the best after-hours spot, beating out Hyde, which came into the week as the odds on favorite. In the end a mansion with sprawling views of the desert beat out the dark tent in the back of private residence.
Steinberg's annual party is old school in every sense of the word. It's the longest-running annual Super Bowl party -- this year marked the 22nd anniversary -- and the afternoon soiree attracts mostly an aging group of guests from retired players to business associates. That said, few hosts are as gracious as Steinberg, who stood by the green carpet for most of the afternoon welcoming guests and shaking everyone's hand.
There might not have been an abundance of star power on the red carpet, but any time you can see Jones and Phillips tear up on the dance floor and spend some time with Travolta, who greeted most of the guests as he walked into the party, you've done all right.
As the clock struck midnight, Hefner got up from his booth and raised the arms of his Girls Next Door and bowed out of his party "early," signaling the beginning of Super Sunday and the end of the week of parties that preceded it. The attention focused on the larger than life parties spawned by the larger than life game could best be summed up by the reaction one body-painted bunny had after someone suggested to her that Hefner left the party to get some rest before the "big game."
"What game?" she asked. "What's going on?"