HP2P Harlem Hospitality Conference


Last month, HBA’s marketing manager, Christina Celuzza, was a panelist at the 3rd annual Harlem Hospitality and Culinary Conference at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.

Christina was also quoted in the village voice: “Social media is missing in Harlem. I speak for the millennials: We do everything online, we read everything online, and we believe everything online.” (Full article : Here’s What’s Going On in the Harlem Dining Scene)

The conference was hosted by Harlem Park to Park and included discussions on growing the hospitality and culinary industries in Harlem. Panel discussions included :

  • Harlem Renaissance: Then
  • Panel (B) Harlem Renaissance: Now
  • Building Your Brand Through Partnership with HP2P
  • Building a Rich Harlem Hospitality Experience
  • Celebrating Black Men in Hospitality & Culinary
  • Maximizing Your Cultural & Culinary Brandwidth
  • Legacy Builders: Celebrating Harlem’s Pioneers

There’s an amazing race coming to Harlem – are you ready?


Harlem Routes is competition with a mission – participants will race around Harlem with a team of friends and colleagues while discovering the hidden gems in Harlem’s local businesses, cultural institutions, and non-profit organizations.

Get 10% off a individual or a group of 4 ticket through May 1, 2015 at 11:30 PM with HBA’s discount codeHBA5215. Not valid for Day of Race Tickets or Child tickets. Only one coded discount or access code can be applied per order. There’s a limited number of codes available — get one before it’s sold out!

Visit www.harlemroutes.com for more information or Eventbrite to reserve your ticket today!

You can also follow Harlem Routes on Social Media to stay up to date:
@HarlemRoutes and Harlem Routes on Facebook

HBA clients on the move

Limation receives rave reviews at the NY Restaurant Expo


“Lemonade has been an American staple beverage for generations but Long Island City entrepreneur Charmaine DaCosta feels that it’s time for the lemon’s less heralded citrus rival to get some attention as a liquid refreshment. Her new company, Limation (mylimation.com), has three flavors of bottled limeade: original, passion fruit and lavender. Limeade is chock-full of vitamin C and antioxidants. It should be noted that it is not a low-calorie drink as it contains pure cane sugar. The flip side of that is that it provides energy after a workout.”  -Lloyd Carroll, Queens Chronicle

“Not only was the beverage amazing, but Charmaine DaCosta is too. This woman entrepreneur is investing her heart and soul in her brand.” -Nancy A. Shenker, Craves and Faves, Bad Girl, Good Business

Tnemroda is international

Tnemroda - Axis Expo2

Tnemroda, was a featured brand at the Inagural AXIS Trade Show.

AXIS, a fashion lifestyle trade event, is targeted towards young and trendy women. It was a perfect opportunity to showcase Tnemroda.

This was founder Samantha Smikle’s first professional trade show. Her participation at the trade show directly led to new domestic and international orders!

Seasoned Vegan

Seasoned Vegan - Wholefoods event1

The UWS Wholefoods selected Season Vegan’s owner, Aaron Beener, to be a panelist at the 2nd Annual Black History Food Expo.

After the panel, guests participated in a food tasting panel inspired by the African diaspora.

HackHarlem Hackathon


Creative Workspace @HBA Hosts the 1st #HackHarlem Hackathon!

On March 21st, the Harlem Business Alliance & Creative Workspace @HBA hosted a one day Hackathon. Coders, designers and business people got together and created apps that benefit Harlem, its businesses and residents.

Congratulations to our 1st place winners- SnapMap! Great app& amazing teamwork!

I Bike Harlem Wins HBA’s 6th Annual Biz Plan Comp

bplan winner edit outside

The Harlem Business Alliance (HBA) is proud to announce the winner of its Sixth Annual Business Plan Competition.  

It was another exciting year for our business plan competition!  We received strong, innovative plans from diverse fields. Business plan submissions were reviewed by members of the Judging Committee and narrowed down to six finalists. Our finalists gave their elevator pitches to the Judging Committee, and the winner was selected. The grand prize was awarded to Maxine Daniels, creator of I Bike Harlem.

I Bike Harlem is a bike tour operator offering guided “Bike and Bite” tours throughout Harlem.  This tour will offer riders a guided multi-decade history explore Harlem’s history from its founding in 1658 to today.  I Bike Harlem plans to expose the influx of tourists and other visitors into Harlem neighborhoods, to its dynamic history, promoting support of local business and landmarks.

Ms. Daniels spoke of her experience, “Winning this competition was the affirmation I needed to know that this business will definitively succeed. The business plan competition gave me the deadlines to get the business plan done.  It feels good that other people believed in I Bike Harlem as well.

Maxine plans to use the $5,000 prize money to complete her website and begin her marketing strategy. She plans to open the business for tours in April 2015.

The competition’s participants needed to meet the following requirements; be at least 18 years old and a legal resident or U.S. citizen; live in Upper Manhattan and have an interest in establishing a for-profit start up business in Harlem; or be an owner of an operating for-profit business located in Upper Manhattan with maximum annual gross revenues of $500,000.

If you are interested in receiving one-on-one assistance with your business plan or loan packaging, please call HBA’s office at 212.665.7010 or email bharte@hbany.org.

Congratulations again to our winner!

2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 2,000 times in 2013. If it were a cable car, it would take about 33 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

HBA Staff and Board Updates

After years of unparalleled service as HBA’s Financial Director, Lisa S. Jones, has moved on.  Ms. Jones has been an integral part of HBA for over 10 years. We would like to thank her for years of service and dedication to HBA and the Harlem community.

HBA would like to introduce Brenda Buksha our new fiscal director. Ms. Buksha previously worked for Lacoste and De Beers. We are happy to have her on the team.

We also welcome two new members to HBA’s Board of Directors, Adrianne C. Smith, AdHere Network and Mark A. Samuel, Samuel Realty.  Adrianne is the Managing Partner of the AdHere Network an affinity/relationship marketing and video production firm.  Mark A. Samuel is the sole proprietor of Samuel Realty, LLC, a full service real estate brokerage and property management company based in Harlem, New York.

We look forward to working with our new financial director and board members to continue to providing the Harlem community with excellent business development services.

Become M/WBE Certified and Expand Your Company’s Revenue Prospects

Visit www.nyc.gov/getcertified and download an M/WBE certification application. If you need assistance with completing the application, the Harlem Business Alliance offers free classes or individual sessions.

For one-on-one assistance with the certification process, please contact Jules Webster at 212.665.7010 or by email at jwebster@hbany.org to schedule an appointment with a certification specialist.


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