Stella Artois East River Riviera

Stella Artois Creates Ferry System to Help New Yorkers Beat The Summer Heat!

Published On
Aug 18, 2020


There are certain tastes and smells that scream “summer.” Among them: a sip from a tall, cool beer. Anheuser-Busch set out to make Stella Artois the beer of the summer for men and women by “injecting vacation vibes” into everyday occasions. Last summer was the hottest on record in New York City, and Stella took note of the headlines surrounding the sweltering heat below the streets. Subway riders, their potential customers, were drawing connections to a “hell” ride.

Stella came to their rescue by creating two Riviera-styled “Port de Stella” footprints in the Dumbo section of Brooklyn and at Brookfield Place in Manhattan. The environments served as sampling stops with European-inspired décor and picnic tables—the perfect place to cool off with a beer at the end of a long day. But Stella wasn’t finished yet. The brand imported a fleet of six vintage Riva boats to offer free transportation for one week between New York City and the Port de Stella locations, essentially creating the “East River Riviera.” A branded booking microsite sold out in four minutes with more than 850,000 total website visits.

Also impressive: the permitting process. The program required approvals from the U.S. Coast Guard and the city to create a new ferry service and sample alcohol. But the hard work paid off. Stella recorded some 175 million earned media impressions, and 452 earned media and social media placements (surpassing the goal of 200). Beer me.