Friday, January 4, 2008

Palm Beach Social Diary

The Coconuts at Michael R. McCarty's on New Year's Eve.
By Hilary Geary Ross

New Year’s Eve in Palm Beach
was hopping with what seemed like a dozen or more bashes all around town. There were big dances and little dinners; really something for everyone.

Mike McCarty had a pre Coconut “warm up“ dinner at his ever popular restaurant. Troy and Debbie Maschmeyer hosted a big buffet dinner for about 50 at their beautiful house. After nibbling on caviar, smoke salmon, beef tenderloin and chicken hash amongst other treats, most of the “grown ups” stepped across the lawn to where their daughter Liz Walker had  put up a very snappy black and white tent along with a bunch of her pals: Harry LeFrak, Elyse Maschmeyer, Alex and Louis Rose, Sara and Jay Sullivan, Whitney Stroh, Erik Waldin and Peter Geisler.
Bobby Leidy and Dabney Mercer
Sarah Reilly, Liz Walker, Rory Hermelee, and Valerie Aston
Elyse Maschmeyer, Troy Maschmeyer, and Liz Walker
Josh and Shoshanna Gruss
Alexandra and Louis Rose
Men: Erik Waldin, Peter Geisler, Louis Rose, whitney Stroh, Jay Sullivan. Ladies: Alex Lind Rose, Elyse Maschmeyer, Liz Walker, and Sara Gilbane Sullilvan
Elyse Maschmeyer and Robert Surtees
The “kids’” theme was "Bringing back the Roaring 20s ... Gatsby, Glamour or Flapper.” They started off the event with a DJ playing swing songs and opened it up around 10:30 pm, when the dancing started on the black and white checkered dance floor to hits of the 70s and 80s.

Plus for even more zip to the decor they added black and white boas, pearls and more. To keep those dancers movin’ and a groovin’, they fueled their guests with a large chocolate fountain with fruits and plenty of artisan cheeses. Vava voom!
Coconuts' fireworks at the Flagler Museum.
Among the revelers were Dabney Mercer, Ted Geary, Serena Nikkah, Thom Felicia, Shoshanna and Josh Gruss, Mark Gilbertson and more.

Neil Smith
Other fetes included the beautiful black tie seated dinner that Judy and Alfred Taubman had for about thirty of us at their oceanfront, treasure-filled palazzo. At this very festive party, besides fabulous wines and food there was fresh caviar and mariachis playing to set the mood. Also Club Colette was packed as everyone knows it is always fun there and this year’s decorations were in a festive Moroccan motif.

The Coconuts at the Flagler Museum were more glam, really better, than ever with at least a twenty minute Grucci Brothers’ truly spectacular fireworks display very generously donated by David Koch. Bill Robertson quipped, “The Coconuts are back!!!“

And he was right on target as partygoers whooped it up way past two a.m. It was some night as there were even "dueling" fireworks as a little further south at Mar-A-Lago where the sky was also lit up over the waterway. Happy New Year!
Rodney Dillard, Wilbur Ross, and David Koch
Peggy Dillard, Peter and Connie Lacaillade, and Gerard Brownlow
Peggy and Rodney Dillard
Chris Meigher and William Surtees
John and Rena Blades
Sandy Tompson, Michael R. McCarty, and Mary Davidson
Maggy Scherer and David Ober
Julia and David Koch
Virginia Coleman and John Mashek
Maggy and Allan Scherer
David Koch, Blakely Paige, and Piper Quinn
William Surtees, Billy David, H. Loy and Inger Anderson, and Laddy Merck
Mary and Mandy Ourisman
Britty Cudlip and Brian McKenna
Hilary and Wilbur Ross
Richard and Jackie Cowell
Leonard Lauder and Grace Meigher
Deborah and Troy Maschmeyer
Bud and Carol Adams with Alex Fanjul
Michel de Bourbon and Maria Pia di Savoia with Alex Fanjul
Bingo Gubelmann, Byrdie Bell, and Blakely Paige
Scott Moses, Stephanie Rockwell, and James Craven
Kelly and Rick Hopkins
Greg and Kim Dryer
Mark Gilbertson and Margo de Peyster
Todd Peter and Frances Webster
Richard Reventlow and Connie McIntosh
Erin and Richard Cowell
Kristin Runco, Nico Fanjul, and Nicole and Alex Fanjul
Merrill and Bobby Debbs with Darian Boyle
Joanne Paull, Harold and India Paull, and David Adams
Harry Jones, Lindsey Page, Blakely Page, and Brent Morris
Eleanor and Jon Ylvisaker
Darian Boyle and Jessica Cadwell
Debbie Bancroft and Michael McCarty
Star Haymes and Cyrus Massoumi
Keith and Penny Williams with Bill Kopp
More Palm Beach New Year’s: While much of new Old Guard Palm Beach was swaying and swinging to the strains of the Neil Smith Orchestra at the Coconuts bash at the Flagler Museum, about a hundred hipsters stormed Ohio Rolls Royce dealer Mark Brentlinger and partner Bryan McDonald’s first open house in their newly renovated Jungle Road digs with the paint barely dry  -- thanks to architect Michael Perry and interior designer Jack Young’s Herculean efforts.

For the past three years, this behemoth bordering Ivana Trump’s palazzo and across the road from Emilia and Pepe Fanjul has been the subject of much speculation- what with its gargantuan griffins guarding the massive pool and everything from Vatican doors to Chagalls to concert grand pianos being carted through the entrance like something out of “Citizen Kane.”
Musclebound bartenders at Mark Brentlinger and Bryan McDonald’s first open house in their newly renovated Jungle Road digs.
The results are overwhelming- DaVinci-esque barrel vaulted ceilings, artisanal stone work, an entire coral and shell grotto bath and complete pecky cypress rooms like no one has built in Palm Beach in decades. Over-the-top? Absolutely, but totally true to the original 1920s jazz age mansion -- only now with high tech touches like plasma screens that descend from the ceiling, a swimming pool that dances with fiber optic lights and a garage that houses the most luxurious cars that easily cost more than the average American home- or homes. Not to mention the laundry room that rivals a Laundromat complete with mangle? Do you even know what a mangle is? (A commercial size presser).

Jazz chanteuse Charmaine Ford performed with Café L’Europe’s virtuoso pianist David Crohan. There were flat screens placed throughout so everyone would know exactly when to kiss their nearest and dearest at midnight. In the crowd: Don Burns and Greg Connors, Marjorie Gubelmann, Chip and M.A. Quinn with daughter Liz, Susan Goodfriend with Tom Shaffer, Peter Cromarty, Ann LeConey, Dennis Miller, Milan Hughston, Maribeth and Ellen Welsh, Steven Stolman, Rick Sabag, Rod Thorne, Phyllis and Richard Krock, Scott Kent, Club Colette’s Dan Ponton, Stefane Castoriano, Kathy (ablaze in diamonds) and Alan Bleznak, Graham Klemm, Matt Lynn, Nancy and Michael Peacock, Scott Kent, Richard Lambertson and John Truex, Will Murphy and Randy Kirk with son Bower, Carly Seymour and scores more all were overheard saying that it was the best New Year’s Eve party they’d been to in memory.

That could have been because of Chef David’s amazing buttery oatmeal raisin and chocolate chip cookies and crackling crème brulees that came out from the kitchen as the ball dropped in Times Square; or for others perhaps because of the shirts that came flying off the musclebound bartenders as the clocks struck twelve. (The bartenders at the Coconuts kept their shirts on – as well as their jackets.)
Liz Quinn, Alez Carantza, and Steven Stolman
John Truex
Host Bryan McDonald revs things up behind the bar
Bryan McDonald and Liz Quinn
Good times behind the bar and across the way ...