It’s just Paris, New York, Palm Beach, & Rhode Island, too

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Darren Star and friends at The American Friends of the Louvre's annual gala at the Rainbow Room.

The American Friends of the Louvre (AFL) hosted their annual gala this past Sunday evening in New York City’s iconic Rainbow Room at Rockefeller Center. Since its inception, AFL has raised over $55 million in support of the Louvre’s mission, enhancing the museum’s accessibility, working to preserve and restore its collections, and advancing its world-class programming in Paris and around the globe.

It was Thomas E. Moore III’s inaugural gala as Executive Director of American Friends of the Louvre. Thomas was introduced to the podium by Christopher (“Kip”) Forbes, the Chairman of the Board, and followed by this year’s Gala Chairman, Darren Star, creator of “Sex and the City” and “Emily in Paris.”

Sotheby’s auctioneer Phyllis Kao kicking off the live auction.

A video featuring the cast of “Emily in Paris” kicked off the live auction, which included a luxury stay in Paris and private museum experience sponsored by Air France, the Ritz Paris and Musee du Louvre; as well as a journey to the Hotel Cipriani in Venice by way of the Orient Express, sponsored by the Belmond Group. A silent auction was sponsored by Ruinart, Met Opera, and Elizabeth Segerstrom, among others.

Gala attendees dined on Dover sole before dancing the night away to a live band. Notable guests at the gala included Mohamed Bouabdallah, Cultural Counselor of France in the United States and Director of Villa Albertine; Joan Kahn; Kay Unger; Naoma Tate; Dr. Andrea Achi; Chiwoniso Kaitano; Frances Lindemann; and Candace Bushnell, author of “Sex and the City.”

L. to r.: Kip Forbes and Joan Kahn; Alison Dichter, Thomas E. Moore III, and Frances Lindemann.
L. to r.: Teddy Kahn and Molly Lockwood; Judith Hernstadt and Will Roseman.
L. to r.: Candace Bushnell, Gamze Ates, and Lee Mindel; Alexandra Moore, Ellis Fenwick, and Kay Unger.
L. to r.: Brian Odour and Jamila Willis; Isabella Rupa De Conti-Mikkilineni, Meredith Dichter, and Sarah Pallack.
Thomas Schlesser, Peggy Leboeuf, Dorothée Charles, and Mohamed Bouabdallah.
L. to r.: Thomas E. Moore III and Mohamed Bouabdallah; Julia Elmaleh-Sachs and Max Markham.
L. to r.: Asia and Eric Chavous; Douglas Kahn, Joan Kahn, and Darren Star.
L. to r.: Ejim Achi, Andrea Achi, and Ernest Lyles; Michel Witmer and Naoma Tate.
Thomas E. Moore III, Ernest Lyles, Will Griffith, Alex Donner, Princess V. Lyles, and Jean-Philippe Prugnaud.

Zuhre Beytas brought over 50 beautiful big-hearted Palm Beach residents together at Sant Ambroeus Palm Beach to to personally thank each guest who has made a difference with their positivity, love and support.

Guests included: Diana Davis, Theresa Valinotti, Chase Backer, Annie Watt, Kyle Lucks, Alice Rowlands, Sean O’Harra, Megan O’Harra, Kim and Kurt Butenhoff, Adil and Ceyda Avunduk, Oguzki Ziltas, Briana Nespral, and many more and the entertainment was provided by violinist Lexey, Candice Ku, and Influencers Eliya Cioccolato, Daniela Sonnenfeld.

Camila Almeida, Berra Mertcan, Zuhre Beytas, and Erencan Taslicukur.

Zuhre’s World Non-Profit Organization is a 501C3, founded in 2023. Zuhre has helped to provide many of the low income families of Palm Beach County with food, clothing, toys and school supplies. By partnering with other organizations for the good of the community, they play a crucial role in transforming the lives of vulnerable children and those experiencing homelessness. Thanksgiving 2023 Zuhre’s World donated hundreds of turkeys to feed countless households and at Christmas time provided gifts items needed by adults and distributed over 200 toys for children.

You can help create a positive impact with your involvement, whether through volunteering, donating, or spreading awareness. Visit

Mary Lee Whitaker, Zuhre Beytas, and Tim Whitaker.
L. to r.: Dionne Hurtado and Tanja Vasileva; Eliya Cioccolato and Daniela Sonnenfeld.
Mark and Lisa Saur.
Sean O’Harra, Megan O’Harra, Kim Butenhoff, and Kurt Butenhoff.
Adil and Ceyda Avunduk.
Debbie Peterson, Zuhre Beytas, and Alicia Espinasse.
Mike Jones, Zuhre Beytas, and Briana Nespral.
L. to r.: Candice Ku; Oksana Sabal, Mila, and Steve Reyes.
Oguzki Ziltas and Briana Nespral.
Kathy Marks, Lisa Averill, and Charlotte Issow.
L. to r.: DJ Lexey and her electric violin; Rhonda and Cliff Fischer.
Tim and Don Whitaker.
L. to r.: Lauren and Robert Calvo; Kelly Willner and Gloria Giudici.
Diana Davis and Tanya Pergament.
Kyle Lucks, Gillian Dunn, and Adam Gold.
Sylvia Rice Mesaric, Biba St. Croix and friend, and Ivana Mesaric.
Elisha Singh-Kramer, Katie Campbell, and Chehrazad Mamri.
Alice Rowlands.

And late last month, Chuck and Deborah Goodrich Royce hosted a cocktail reception for The United Theatre of Rhode Island at their home in Palm Beach, Florida.

Chuck Royce is co-chairman of the non-profit’s Board of Directions and the major benefactor of the revitalization of the 1926 vaudeville theater, which reopened as a multi-purpose arts center in 2021.
About 70 friends of the Royces and United board members, and United Community Director Margaret Corini attended the affair at The Lido. Chuck Royce and Carly Callahan, United Executive Director, addressed those in attendance, who also were treated to a video that highlights the resurgence of The United and downtown Westerly.

Chuck Royce and Carly Callahan.
Some of the 70 friends of the Royces and United board members who attended.

“It was a privilege to share The United’s vibrant journey and impactful initiatives with our esteemed guests. Our collective endeavor to weave a rich tapestry of cultural and educational experiences for our community underscore the deep connections and legacy we’re building together.”

The United is located at 5 Canal St., Westerly, RI. For more information, visit

Chuck Royce, Carly Callahan, and Deborah Royce.
Michael Kovner and Jean Doyen de Montaillou.
L. to r.: Joan and Joseph Patton; Linda Martine and Layng Martine Jr.
James Stifel, Maureen Stifel, Ann Petersen, and Hollis Petersen.
Audrey and Jim Foster.
L. to r.: Audrey Moore, George Moore, and Catherine Moore; Victor and Mary Joe Orsinger.
Philip Norfleet, Carol Norfleet, Robert McCormack, and Mary McCormack.
American blues pianist and singer Al Copley.

Photos by John Sanderson/ (AFL); Annie Watt (Zuhre & United Theatre of Rhode Island)

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