GOING ONCE: Given the demise of conspicuous consumption, it’s perhaps understandable why the winning bidder for a $150,000 custom-made Dennis Basso full-length Russia sable coat at Monday’s live auction for the Aspen Art Museum would choose to remain anonymous. Apparently, that deep-pocketed paddle waver also picked up a $45,000 diamond Chopard watch before Simon de Pury lowered the final gavel. Tom Ford was another get — one admirer shelled out $24,000 for lunch with the designer-turned-director at Spago with seven friends, which works out to a mere $3,000 a person.

Basso was on hand at Monday’s event at the St. Regis Hotel to be certain his fashion show unfolded without a hitch. Jamie Tisch, Shoshanna Gruss and Dana Taylor were a few of the faces in the 600-person crowd while Kate Hudson, Goldie Hawn and Aerin Lauder were among the notables spotted bopping around town. While most vacationers were taking it easy, Basso said he will be manning his store at The Little Nell until his trunk show there ends Saturday.

This story first appeared in the December 30, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.


NO MORE SNOW DAYS: The old snowed-in excuse won’t fly this winter for Boston runners looking for an excuse not to work out, thanks to a new initiative cooked up by New Balance. The athletic company lined up a deal with the Department of Conservation and Recreation to ensure locals will have clear running paths along the Charles River through this spring’s Boston Marathon. New Balance chief executive officer Rob DeMartini said, “Outdoor recreation is vital this time of year with so many athletes training for the Boston Marathon. We want to help provide area fitness enthusiasts, both serious and casual, the best terrain along the Charles River.”


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