Carolyne Roehm has always been noted for her wonderful taste, so when she finally does settle into her One Sutton Place apartment three months hence, it should be something to see. It will take that long for her to get the place in the shape she wants it. Mica Ertegun and Chessy Rayner of Mac II, interior designers to the rich and famous, will do the decorating.
Carolyne has moved — or is in the process of moving — from the beautiful Park Avenue duplex apartment she shared with billionaire financier Henry Kravis when their marriage was still intact. According to the divorce settlement, it is his to keep. Incidentally, that divorce becomes final at any moment, and that is when his friends say Henry will marry his new love, the Canadian economist Marie-Josee Drouin, and move into the apartment with her. He’s besotted.
It had to happen. A roman a clef — or maybe a roman de verre — is in outline form on the philanthropic Bass family of Texas. Sinking her teeth into the story is the British writer Shirley Eskapa, whose novels sell like jellied eels in Britain. Her latest book, “Blood Relations,” (St. Martin’s Press) comes out in the U.S. in 1994.
Apparently, Shirley, a member of a rich and prominent London-based South African family, never met a Texan she didn’t like, and Lone Star lore always has been a passionate interest. But then, so is Mideast intrigue, and that too will ripple through the pages. As Shirley has unlimited money for research, rest assured the digging will be deep. And still, it will all be pure fiction, with the usual disclaimer that the characters therein are but figments of the author’s imagination. Sure, sure.
Although superstars Meryl Streep and Glenn Close have been professional rivals for years, you will see them together, sweet as pie, in the forthcoming Isabel Allende novel-into-film, “The House of the Spirits.” They play sisters-in-law who bond to each other like blood sisters, which led to a feeling of mutual respect. “I did feel as if I were working with my very own sister,” says Close. We’re still waiting for Meryl’s two cents.
Don’t tell Sly Stallone — not that he gives a fig — or a fig leaf — but his infamous ex, busty Brigitte Nielsen, is getting ready to marry for the fourth time — to her Swiss mister, Raoul Ortolani. If that name doesn’t sound familiar, it’s because he usually uses his mother’s maiden name, Meyer, when he’s racing his cars. If it still doesn’t seem familiar — well, who gives a fig?
Mrs. William McCormick (Deeda) Blair, the Washington beauty, celebrated her birthday at a dinner party in her honor given by Khalil Rizk at his wondrous East Side townhouse. Deeda looked like a Boldini and a Sargent rolled into one in a ravishing black dress with a full skirt, dripping with lace and romance. William McCormick Blair flew in from Washington for the fun, and all of the Blairs’ swell New York friends were there. That is if you consider swell such as Princess Firyal of Jordan, Blaine Trump (in black and white lace by Carolyne Roehm), the famous artist and sculptor Fernando Botero, Prince Dimitri of Yugoslavia, Carroll Petrie (in a black dinner suit by Gianfranco Ferre), Mary McFadden, Lee Thaw, Carolina and Reinaldo Herrera (Carolina wore a brilliant red suit trimmed in black lace by Carolina Herrera), Alexandra and Arthur Schlesinger, Patricia Patterson, Jackie and Nicky Drexel, Gale Hayman and Bill Haseltine, Susan and Dr. Fred Plum, Susan and John Gutfreund, Jerome Zipkin, Kenneth Jay Lane, Nelson Seabra and Eben Pyne. It’s up to you.
After little jaunts to the Nile, Jordan, Korea and Japan, Lisa and Jack Anderson flew back to their Palm Beach place for the holidays, where they entertained the locals and some top-drawer Brits. That is, if you consider the Earl and Countess of Bathurst and industrialist Sir Christopher and Lady Lewinton top-drawer. And you’re a silly twit if you don’t. General Alexander Haig and Mrs. Haig, William Benton of the Ford Motor Company, John Reynolds 3rd, the president of Palm Beach’s Everglades Club, and Durie and Francis Appleton were all at the Andersons for the English toffs. And that gang wouldn’t leave their villas for just any old body, believe it.
The Winter Antiques Show, now in its 40th year, has set its gala preview for Jan. 20 at the Seventh Regiment Armory on Park Avenue. Architectural Digest is sponsoring the event, and AD’s editor-in-chief Paige Rense and the fashion world’s Bill Blass are the chairmen. Veronica and Randolph Hearst are the honorary chairmen. How perfectly sweet of them all. (By the way, the Antiques Show describes Bill B. as “the legendary designer who wedded the sophistication of European couture with the no-nonsense approach to American fashion.” I don’t see him having trouble with that, do you?)
The reception for collectors and benefactors will open the show at 5 p.m., and if you care to stare at something besides the furniture and objects, you can always look around for Carroll Petrie, Charlotte Ford, Jan Cowles, Chessy Rayner, Louise Grunwald, Kip Forbes, Kenneth Jay Lane and John Loring. They’ll all be there, maybe with antique bells on. A whole new crowd will come swinging in at 6:30 p.m. for the patrons preview party. Benefiting will be the East Side House Settlement in the South Bronx.
J. Barry Ferguson will do his exquisite floral displays, and the Armory’s historic Tiffany Room will be decorated by some preeminent designer, yet to be named. This year, Carol Mercer of Secret Garden Landscaping in East Hampton will design a garden at the show, and everyone’s pretty excited about that.
This year, superb antiques from 65 prominent dealers throughout the United States and Europe will be on display — and for sale, naturally. It would be nice if some antique lover like Barbra Streisand would come along and buy everything in sight but, as we all know, Barb’s unloading.
That was Princess Firyal of Jordan, resplendent in gold lame and with her auburn hair in a French twist, at the Rainbow Room with a party of such lovely friends. She ordered a dainty filet of sole, one of the reasons she fits into that gold lame — but you knew that.