Moscow, Palm Beach, and the Hamptons

L. to r.: Janna Bullock's daughter Eugenia waits patiently for the orchestra to begin; Mikhail Simonyan performing with the Russian National Orchestra.

Social Safari. Private aviation has made air travel almost effortless for the privileged few and their lucky friends. How else could I have jumped from New York to Moscow, Paris to Istanbul and back to the Hamptons in six days and feel refreshed?

I left the New York for the eight-hour flight to Russia and landed with enough time for a visit to the famed Pushkin Museum and a nap in the National Hotel that boasts a perfect view of the Kremlin and St. Basil’s. The National, which opened in 1903 and continues to provide its comfortable and splendid accommodations, has retained its original art and antiques making it a prestigious destination.

As the cocktail hour approached I made the hour long drive to what’s called the “Hamptons of Moscow” where filmmaker Irene Langemann was shooting a German/French production on this unique area that is featuring women who are making a difference in the former Soviet Union. Two of these women are also active New Yorkers; Helen Yarmak, the internationally acclaimed furrier, jeweler, and designer who’s sable shawl is worn by Kate Moss on September’s cover of Vanity Fair, and New York real estate developer Janna Bullock.

I flew over to attend a concert by the Russian National Orchestra that featured violinist Mikhail Simonyan at the Bullocks’ country house. Janna and her husband Alexi had a glass pavilion erected on the lawn bordering their rose garden. Sergei Markov, the executive director of the RNOthanked Janna for her generous support. The cameras recorded the concert for posterity and then we tucked into the mountain of Beluga that you can no longer get (at least legally) in America.

Janna Bullock and her husband Alexi at the Russian National Orchestra performance

The Russian National Orchestra’s Executive Director Sergei Markov leads the applause

The next day we boarded a Challenger 604 bound for Paris where we fell over a lovey-dovey Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn (He’s no Brad Pitt but then she’s no Angelina) having breakfast at the Plaza Athénée.

Janna boarding her Challenger 604

Hermes sent two helicopters to whisk us off to the Prix de Dianne-Hermes in Chantilly. The theme this year was Tunisia, which meant a cavalry of riders on horseback in vintage native customs, producing a romantic Lawrence of Arabia effect.

There was a delicious lunch of lamb and couscous al la françoise under the Hermes marquee draped in green, burgundy and yellow silk. The marquee was beautiful but in desperate need of air conditioning, and I do mean desperate.

It’s simply too hot to be all dolled up in fancy hats and ties and suffer the consequences while trying to act cool as a cucumber.

At The Prix de Dianne-Hermes in Chantilly (Clockwise from top left): Janna Bullock and R. Couri Hay; Race-goers; Janna Bullock with her daughters Eugenia and Zoe; Stylish gentleman; An elegant race-goer.

Play time at The Prix de Dianne-Hermes.

The heat put a petit damper on the festivities although you couldn’t tell from looking at Mr. and Mrs. Bullock and their two attractive daughters Zoe and Eugenia amongst assorted Rothschilds, Niarcos’, Goulandris’ and a virtual horde of Hermes family members placing bets and cheering on their favorite horses. (I bet on Billy the Kid and lost 20 euros). Think Hampton Classic, with a French twist.

We left before the last race and went directly to a private airfield where our magic carpet was waiting to whisk us off to Bodrum in the South of Turkey. Jeffrey Steiner, the international billionaire business mogul who has a house in Southampton with interiors designed by Mica Ertegun has a palace in Bodrum with 27 bedrooms facing the Mediterranean. He had invited the Bullocks for a visit and a cruise on his elegant yacht The Queen South 11.

Vlada Krassilnikova and Jeffrey Steiner aboard Jeffrey Steiner’s yacht, The Queen South 11.

We went from the plane to dinner at Mey in Sef Murat, one of the charming outdoor floating restaurants that are situated on docks that jut into the sea. The ambiance is exotic and sexy; the fish, fresh from the sea, with delectable organic vegetables and fruits right plucked off the trees and right out of the garden.

Jeffrey’s grand house was also designed by Mica Ertegun and is a wondrous Aladdin’s cave filled with ancient treasures that any museum would be proud to display. I was given a gorgeous suite in one of the beautiful villas that dot the property.

The next day we boarded our host’s 100-foot sailboat, and cruised the Mediterranean, stopping in a secluded cove for an alfresco lunch with an interesting assortment of entrepreneurs and a gaggle of extraordinarily beautiful women. After dinner I said goodbye to the Bullocks’ and their comfy plane. They were headed back to Moscow and I to Istanbul where I lingered in the Caviar Bazaar sampling the dozens of choices before returning to the beach, our beach, the Hamptons. There’s no place like it, n’est-ce pas?

— R. Couri Hay

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The Cinema Society brought out le tout Hamptons for the premiere of “The Groomsmen”. The Hamptons Film Festival and the Wall Street Journal Weekend Edition partnered on this evening, which many called the most fun and glamorous Hamptons evening in a long, long time.

The poignant film, written and directed by Ed Burns (who also stars) won over a dazzling crowd that included Burns and his supermodel wife Christy Turlington, along with Christie Brinkley and Peter Cook, Howard Stern and Beth Ostrosky, Darren Star and Dennis Erdman, Rick and Kathy Hilton, Charles and Bonnie Evans, Fred Schneider (B-52’s), Judy Licht and Jerry Della Femina, Thom Filicia, Rachel Roy, Stephen Klein, Ross Bleckner, Jamee and Peter Gregory, Cornelia Bregman, Alex Kramer, Daniel Benedict, Gigi and Avi Mortimer, Emilia Fanjul, Daniel Benedict, Douglas Hannant and Frederick Anderson, Ferebee Bishop, Eva and Lorenzo Lorenzotti, Vanessa von Bismarck, Euan Rellie, Carlos Souza, Marjorie Gubelmann Raein, Christian Leone, Caroline Berthet, Marisa and Matt Brown, Gaby Karan, Beth Rudin de Woody, Harry Lefrak, Jessie Della Femina, Robert Zimmerman, Jaci and Morris Reid, Jackie Astier, Ivan Bart, Sessa and Richard Johnson, Eleanor and Jon Ylvisaker, Rachel Peters, Patty Raynes, WSJ’s Judy Barry, Richard Skeen and Andrea Norlander, producer Aaron Lubin and Cinema Society Founder Andrew Saffir.

Following the premiere, the glam crowd moved on to the Gin Lane oceanfront home of Chris and Allison Brown to enjoy dinner and blood orange mojitos prepared by Serena Bass. It was a beautiful evening with an almost full moon, a bonfire roaring on the beach, and the film’s creator Ed Burns receiving raves all night long from the stellar crowd.
Beth Ostrosky and Howard Stern

Marisa Noel Brown

Eva Lorenzotti

Jessie Della Femina

Christy Turlington and Ed Burns

Carlos Souza

Fred Schneider

L. to r.: Patty Raynes; Judy Barry, Larissa Fvechin, Darren Star, and Andrew Saffir; Eleanor Ylvisaker.

Jackie Astier and Gabby Karan de Felice

Jamee Gregory

Dori Cooperman

Christie Brinkley, Jack, and Peter Cook

Greg Calejo, Thom Filicia, and Scott Currie

Marjorie Raein and Daniel Benedict

Judy Licht, Andrew Saffir, and Beth Rudin de Woody

L. to r.: Rachel Roy; Frederick Anderson and Vanessa von Bismarck; Sessa von Richthofen and Richard Johnson.

Chris and Allison Brown

Charles and Bonnie Evans

Jen Raines, Rachel Peters, and Alex Kramer

Jerry Della Femina and Andrea Norlander

Rick and Kathy Hilton

Nick Gregory and Cindi Cook

Gigi and Avi Mortimer

Douglas Hannant, Peter Davis, and Christian Leone

Ferebee Bishop and Brooke Taube

Steven Klein (middle) and friends

It was “Dancing Under the Stars” at the Beach Club down in Palm Beach when the The Lord’s Place/Palm Beach Auxiliary held a fund-raising cocktails, cookout, and dancing (featuring the Palm Beach Society Orchestra). Junior Committee Chairs were Lisa Bytner, Laura Johnston, Laura Opdenaker, and Lucy Webster.

More than 125 attended with guests enjoying the evening overlooking the ocean with clear skies and perfect weather.

Sponsorship for the event was provided by Commerce Bank Private Banking. Joan Alleman underwrote the band and Sequin Jewelry, New York donated a lovely designer necklace and earring set for the raffle prize. Clarins USA donated the gift bags.

All proceeds from the evening went to The Lord’s Place is a non-profit, non-sectaran 501 (c)(3) agency dedicated to restoring dignity and self-esteem to the homeless by providing housing, food, education and support services designed to promote self-sufficiency, self-reliance and a stable environment for families and individuals in Palm Beach County.

Joan Alleman and Ann Washburn

Laura Opdenaker, Laura Johnston, Joan Alleman, Lisa Bytner, and Lucy Webster

John English, Theresa Barron,Tess Wilson, and friend

Geoffrey Webster with Margaret and John Kaywell

Roberta Drey, Ron Silverston, and Nancy Walsh

Lucy Webster, Helene Lorentzen, Millei Drayton, and friend

Sue Bailey

Phillip and Laura Johnston

Homer and Cheryl Marshman with Pat Flynn

Laura Opdenaker, Theresa Barron, and Tess Wilson

Tess Wilson, Jamie Dryor, and Theresa Barron

Margaret Kaywell


Photographs by Vlada Krassilnikova (Moscow); ©Patrick McMullan (Cinema Society).



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