Dinner on the Upper East Side is rarely a casual affair, but there were signs Tuesday night that the party Marjorie Gubelmann was hosting for Roberta Armani and the tome “Inheriting Beauty” was more luxe than usual. For one thing, a topic of conversation among guests during cocktails was the best mode of transport for getting from Gstaad to St. Moritz. “Car or helicopter?” wondered one. Secondly, the hostess set an over-the-top tone early by breaking out the good stuff, namely a gigantic diamond drop necklace. “Marjorie, I can’t stop staring at your neck,” said Tory Burch midway through the meal of veal saltimbocca.
“I can’t either. I’m going cross-eyed,” Gubelmann replied. “It’s very ‘at home,’ don’t you think?”
This story first appeared in the February 14, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Meanwhile, Gigi Mortimer was schooling London transplant Poppy Delevigne (who moved here last weekend) on navigating her new ‘hood. “Fat men pee loudly: Fifth, Madison, Park, Lexington,” she instructed Delevigne in an unforgettable mnemonic.
After dinner, guests such as Eva Lorenzotti, Alessandro Nivola and Alex Kramer moved to the living room for cigarettes and gossip while Armani, Kerry Washington and Delevigne took to the dance floor with wild abandon.
Downtown, the snowy, slushy weather didn’t keep the likes of Parker Posey, Alan Cumming and Amanda Brooks from attending the New York Academy of Art’s TriBeCa Ball. The event, which had been decidedly more buttoned up in years past (it was traditionally black tie) boasted a funkier feel this time around — cocktails held amid tableaux vivants in upstairs classrooms (in one, a performance artist swallowed a balloon whole) and a “bohemian chic” dress code (which prompted some to don turbans and headdresses).
Meanwhile, a newly blonde Anna Paquin gamely trekked across the East River for the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s gala, sleet be damned, so she could see her “X-Men” co-star Patrick Stewart take on the title role of “Macbeth.” Also in the crowd were similarly stalwart supporters Alex Katz, Lou Reed and Laurie Anderson. But perhaps Stewart was too believable as the ruthless tyrant: The actress left at intermission. As for the British-born actor, he found the weather befuddling: “I was trying to figure out what kind of omen it was before the show tonight,” he said. “This is normal for New Yorkers, but we haven’t seen snow in several years.”
The next afternoon, Jennifer Creel, Sandy Hill, Mica Ertegün and Coco Kopelman braved a torrential downpour to attend the Chopard-sponsored New York City Ballet annual luncheon. The program this year, entitled “Ballet Is Man — Too!,” featured a series of all-male solos from various Balanchine works.
“It’s so refreshing because the men are so often overlooked,” enthused Fé Fendi, adding, “And they were handsome, too!”
After the group enjoyed chicken salad and tarte tatin on the New York State Theater’s Promenade, co-chair Nina Griscom gave kudos to her fellow stylish ladies before revealing the winners of raffle prizes from donors like Valentino and Hermès.
“Thank you for coming out on this really heinous hair day,” she said.