“There ain’t nothin’ like a good oligarch to bring London to the table,’ said Pia Getty during a dinner and auction Saturday night that raised $2 million for the Raisa Gorbachev Foundation for children with cancer.
The turnout was impressive: Four hundred guests gathered for cocktails in the sprawling gardens of Hampton Court Palace, the onetime home of Henry VIII just outside London, including Bob Geldof, Imran Khan, J.K. Rowling, Emma Watson, Rosario Dawson, Naomi Campbell, Ralph Fiennes, Elle Macpherson, Joely Richardson, Anna Friel, Jemma Kidd, Natalia Vodianova and David de Rothschild.
“I’ve got to keep an eye on those two and watch what they’re drinking,’ said Giles Deacon, pointing to fellow designers Stuart Vevers and Hazel Robinson. “I have to make sure they don’t walk out of here with a painting or something.’
The gala later moved to the palace’s Stud House for a white-tie dinner hosted by Russian billionaire Aleksandr Lebedev and his son Evgeny.
Although Elton John and the Scissor Sisters performed, the star attraction was undoubtedly Mikhail Gorbachev, who was there with his daughter Irina and granddaughters Anastasiya and Kseniya.
“He’s such a hero,’ gushed Sabrina Guinness, who recalled that last year she sat at the former Soviet leader’s table during a similar gala at Princess Diana’s family’s estate, Althorp, and did vodka shots with him. This year, however, she had to make do with Oscar-winning playwright Tom Stoppard. Nearby, her relative Daphne Guinness chatted with Tom Wolfe “about writing, what else?’
Halfway across the globe, Jacqui Getty‘s Spanish-style house in the Hollywood Hills was the scene for a Moroccan-style lunch on Monday honoring James Ferragamo. The fashion scion, who was recently put in charge of shoes as well as bags, proved an able salesman — he had no trouble interesting the crowd in his latest fall accessories. Over tiny colored glasses of mint tea on the patio, Anjelica Huston, Kristin Davis, Shiva Rose McDermott, Angie Harmon and Kate Mara attempted to design their own pair of Varina flats. “Purple patent or black satin? It’s such a dilemma,’ gasped Ever Carradine in mock consternation.
This story first appeared in the June 7, 2007 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
In the dining room, guests faced more indecision about which Eleanora bag was their favorite. “What do you think? Can I own this look?’ Getty asked Bridget Romanek as she slung a cream ostrich tote over her shoulder. At least under the orange-and-white tents, nobody second-guessed a glass of rosé wine. “Why not?’ joked Gwen McCaw. “There’s still an hour until carpool.’