Inside Usher’s Secret Garden Met Gala After Party

What sort of secrets did Usher’s Secret Garden hold?

For guests headed to the singer’s Met Gala after party, a trove of New York classics awaited them. There was a hot dog cart and ice cream sundaes with an “I heart NY” garnish, DJ D-Nice on the decks, and the sort of crowd that only happens once a year on Met Gala Monday. Not to mention, the location: Times Square.

Usher had changed out of his Alexander McQueen caped gala look, and into a maroon velvet suit with an oversized boutonniere, for his after-hours celebration at the Times Square Edition Hotel. Leon Bridges, donning a cowboy hat, and Ne-Yo were early arrivals, helping to kick off the festivities.

Usher made his way around the botanical-adorned party, all smiles with a rocks glass always in hand as he sung along to the playlist of classic radio hits — a couple of his own tunes, a few of Ne-Yo’s, and, for those keeping score recently, a Drake song.

Dwyane Wade, Gabrielle Union, Usher and Jennifer Goicoechea at Usher's Secret Garden Met Gala After Party held at The Times Square Edition

Dwyane Wade, Gabrielle Union, Usher and Jennifer Goicoechea.

Gilbert Flores/WWD

While there was a small area sectioned off with buckets of coconut water and Hennessy, the dance floor quickly became the true VIP section for guests including Janelle Monáe, whose googly-eye dress drew the attention of even more eyeballs in the room, Taraji P. Henson, Dwyane Wade and Gabrielle Union, Naomi Campbell, Michèle Lamy, Erykah Badu, Storm Reid, Coco Rocha, “Yellowstone” actor Ian Bohen, and designers Willy Chavarria, Christian Siriano, Jonathan Simkhai, Andrew Kwon, LaQuan Smith and Victor Glemaud.

“Shoutout to my brother Usher,” D-Nice called out, as Usher grinned and continued to hold court on the dance floor. The energy was infectious: by the end of the night — or was it the middle, who knows? — even Wade was singing along, as he and Union waited for the elevator to take them to their next stop.

Janelle Mon‡e at Usher's Secret Garden Met Gala After Party held at The Times Square Edition

Janelle Monáe

Gilbert Flores/WWD

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