Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Palm Beach Social Diary

Kids by the beach.
Oh my, my, spring break just ended in Palm Beach and the town had been buzzing with children of all ages, all over the place! And just in the nick of time after months of cold weather, the sun was shining so all the adorable bambinos could head to the beaches to have fun in the sun.

Restaurants were packed as were the golf courses and tennis courts, plus there were baby carriages, strollers, bikes, roller bladers, and surfers everywhere.
Eleanora Kennedy and family in front of the Slim Aarons' display of photos at the PB Michael Kors shop. Suzie Gaynor with her granddaughter.
Beautiful flowers abound in PB.
Then immediately after Easter, when most of the kids left, the days seemed a little quieter ... until the town started renovating Worth Avenue. It has literally been torn up, which sure makes it a bit challenging to get a parking space, but hopefully this project will be completed sooner rather than later.
Bike parked by Bethesda by the Sea Easter Sunday.
Little girl dressed for Easter Sunday. The "Easter Bunny."
Worth Avenue construction.
The rest of the action sort of slows down too, but not quite as there is always plenty going on (hey doll, this is PB). In between all the tennis, golf, etc., Wilbur and I were thrilled to go to the Palm Beach Preservation Foundation luncheon to applaud the very talented duo: architect Tom Kirchoff and decorator Mario Buatta, as they received the John and Liz Schuler award for the best new traditional house (yippee, it was ours!)
John Mashek. Tom Kirchoff, Liz Schuler, and Mario Buatta.
Jamie Figg and Alynne Massey.
Pat Wood, Mario Buatta, and Jamie Figg.
Last Saturday we headed to dinner at Carol and Earle Mack’s dazzling waterfront house. Earle was our former Ambassador to Finland, before that Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the New York State Council on the Arts, and now serves as Chairman Emeritus.

Have to say, driving up to this lovely house kind of takes your breath away as it has views of both the ocean and Intra Coastal. After being greeted by our beautiful and charming hostess Carol, dressed in short teal blue, we stepped into the heavenly pale blue-and-white living room for a little chit chat and champagne while being serenaded by a quartet.
The Mack's front door.
Ambassador Earle Mack and his beautiful wife Carol, our dinner hosts.
Muffy Miller, Lars Bolander, and Nadine Kalachnikoff. Christine Schwarzman, Grace Meigher, and Nadine Kalachnikoff.
Muffy Miller, Tommy Quick, and Carol Mack.
Carol Mack and Muffy Miller. Steve Schwarzman and Chris Meigher.
Musicians at the Macks.
We then headed outside to their loggia, with its pale soft green walls and shell encrusted details, to find two long tables covered in a pink and green warp cotton print, set with lush flowers and china in a chinoisere pattern with wicker chargers.

Dinner was scrumptious ravioli, fish and an irresistible dessert accompanied by excellent vintage wine. We had such a good time that most of us stayed past midnight, which is very, very late in PB.
Mack's terrace.
Musicians on the Mack terrace.
Guests coming out to dinner on the Mack's terrace.
Seating charts. Dinner table on the terrace.
The table setting with lovely "Chinoisere" china and wicker place mats.
Carol Mack, Steve Schwarzman, and Barbara Black dining al fresco.
Don Miller, Darlene Jordan, and Bill Koch.
Darlene Jordan and Bill Koch.
The fabulous dessert. Fresh whipped cream for the berries.
Eva O'Neill and Ambassador Earle Mack post dinner.
Steve Schwarzman. John Mashek and Hilary Geary Ross.
Bettina Zilkha, Brett Price, Karin Luter, and John Mashek in the Mack's blue and white living room.
Next night we had a tiny cozy dinner for Sunny and Lily Marlborough, aka Duke and Duchess. They were just back from the Dominican Republic Fanjul “Sugar “golf tournament that Sunny won along with Michel de Bourbon. Another sleepy quiet weekend, what can I say?

Judy Taubman, John Pickett, Lily Marlborough, and Wilbur Ross.
Hilary Geary Ross and Dick Pearman. Diana Ecclestone and Brett Price.
Lily Marlborough and Wilbur Ross.
Pat Wood and her fiance, Ambassador Edward N. Ney.
Judy Taubman and John Pickett.
Lady Henrietta Spencer Churchill and Howard Cox.
Audrey Gruss and Sunny Marlborough.
Palm Beach Opera had lots to celebrate at its 2010 Opera Ball, held at the Brazilian Court Hotel’s Café Boulud. A season full of rave reviews, a major matching grant campaign and the opening of a new production of Carmen in the offing had the crowd of devoted opera fans ready to party- and they did.

Chairman Mary Freitas chose a springtime violet décor exquisitely realized by Tom Mathieu & Company, while local favorite society bandleader Doug Verga brought out the big guns ala Duchin and Lanin that had the dance floor packed from the very first downbeat.
Cocktails in the Courtyard
David Espinosa, Terry Mersentes, Graciela Caggiano, and Daniel Biaggi
Mark and Mary Freitas, John Andreu, and Missy Geisler
Star Boulud chef Zachary Bell crafted a light, contemporary menu, from his jewel-like canapés served in abundance in the dreamy clear-tented courtyard to a perfectly presented dinner of escargot and lemon sole, to compotiers of petit four, macaroons and pastel French marshmallows that would have made Marie Antoinette swoon.

Bacardi USA served as exclusive spirits sponsor and created a signature cocktail, the ruby-red Grey Goose Diva, to lubricate the crowd. In between — a spirited live auction conducted by the chairman’s husband, Mark Freitas, featuring a Tank Francaise watch courtesy of Cartier, a two-week opera cruise up the Eastern seaboard donated by the Metropolitan Opera Guild and, best of all, a walk-on role, won by Ari Rifkin, in the 2010-11 production of her choice.
Christopher and Brewer Schoeller with the Grey Goose Girls
Palm Beach Opera’s Young Artists performed selections from West Side Story, South Pacific and La Boheme. But it was the Flower Duet from Lakme that brought tears to everyone’s eyes.

The Young Artists were then joined by guest artist Magdalena Wor for the electrifying quintet from Carmen to round out the evening’s musicale.
Young Artists perform the Quintet from Carmen
Justin Terzi, James Berwind, and Ross Meltzer
Guests included: Palm Beach Opera Board chairman Marc and Cathy Solomon, general director Daniel Biaggi, Maestro Bruno Aprea, Town & Country's Pamela Fiori, Michele and Howard Kessler, Susan and Dom Telesco, Cartier’s John Andreu, Brewer and Chris Schoeller, corporate sponsor US Trust’s John Domenico and wife Susan, Victoria and Eugene Pollingue, Viscount David Linley, Robin and Norberto Azqueta, Melissa Parker, Ann and Robert Fromer, Arlene and Robert Kaufman, Helen Persson, RADM Phil Whitacre, Dr. Elizabeth Bowden, Doran Mullen and scores more.
Marc and Cathy Solomon
Maestro Bruno Aprea and Lois Pope
Mark and Mary Freitas
Susan and John Domenico
Susan and Dom Telesco
Ross Meltzer, Blair Griffin, and Justin Terzi
Gladys Benenson and Maestro Bruno Aprea
Steven Stolman and Melissa Parker
Dorothy Lappin and Sy Malamed
Katie Saia
Robin and Norberto Azqueta
Eugene and Victoria Pollingue
Daniel Biaggi and Dr. Elizabeth Bowden
Lynn Paradise
Whether he is best known as an accomplished furniture designer, a member of the British royal family, or now chairman of Christie's UK, the venerable auction house, Viscount David Linley has a lot of friends on Palm Beach who look forward to his annual visits.

“Star Pieces” awaiting inscription.
PB is a burg that has always loved its brushes with British royalty — from its early days as a regular stopover for the Duke and Duchess of Windsor to the Duke of Edinburgh, Charles and Diana, Edward and Sophie, Princess Michael of Kent, the Duchess of York — all have laid their crowned heads on the beds of someone’s Palm Beach guestroom. So for Her Majesty the Queen’s engaging and talented nephew, out they came.
To celebrate Linley’s latest book, “Star Pieces- The Enduring Beauty of Spectacular Furniture” (co-authored with Charles Cater and Helen Chislett), stateside buddies Gina and Courty Miller, Mila Mulroney, Sharon Sondes and  Geoffrey Thomas, Carl Stibolt and Steven Stolman hosted a “Bloodies and a Bite” book signing at Lars Bolander’s West Palm Beach gallery.

There: Grace and Chris Meigher, Adrienne and Gigi Vittadini, Rod and Jackie Weld Drake, Merrilyn Bardes, Scott Moses, Stephanie Rockwell, James Berwind, Stephen Mooney, neighboring antiqueres Audrey and Stuart Peckner, Dennis Miller and Milan Hughston, Christies Palm Beach’s Meg Bowen, Pamela Fiori and Colt Givner, Stephen Mooney, John Firestone and Marsha Wilson, Jack Young and more.
Charles Cater, David Linley, and Scott Moses
David Linley, Stephanie Rockwell, and Scott Moses
Ray Raymakers and Rob Copley Merrilyn Bardes and Meg Bowen
Steven Stolman
David Linley and Sharon Sondes
Colt Givner, Jack Young, Melissa Parker, and Pamela Fiori
Jessica, Ben, and Mila Mulroney Chris and Grace Meigher
Jackie Weld Drake, Geoffrey Thomas, and Adrienne Vittadini

Photographs by Hilary Geary Ross & Lucien Capehart (PB Opera/Linley).