VIVA LA CASITA: John Demsey held a cocktail party at his town house on New York’s Upper East Side Monday night in honor of the upcoming Casita Maria Fiesta Gala on Oct. 22, at which he is being honored. Casita Maria is an arts and education center in the Bronx that serves the Hispanic community. Chairwoman Jacqueline Weld Drake hopes to raise $1 million at this year’s event, which will be held in the ballroom at the Mandarin Oriental. While that’s a significant jump from the $600,000 raised last year, Weld noted that the gala is one of the most festive events of the New York social season.

“At midnight, we have to pull the plug on the band,” she laughed, “otherwise it would go until 2 o’clock in the morning.”

For his part, Demsey, a group president of the Estée Lauder Cos. Inc., said he has had a long association with Casita Maria, noting it was the first benefit he attended as a young executive in his 20s.

Among those helping Demsey celebrate Monday night were Prince Dimitri of Yugoslavia, Aileen Mehle, Zac Posen, Cornelia Guest, Ann Dexter Jones and Lady Liliana Cavendish, who bemoaned the fact that her favorite MAC Viva Glam lipstick — the Pamela Anderson rendition from about six years ago — is running out. It brings her luck, she explained.

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