Quest Magazine December 2021

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$5.00 DECEMBER 2021

THE HOLIDAY ISSUE

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ROCKETTES RETURN TO RADIO CITY MUSIC HALL NEW YORK, NEW YORK 2021




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116 110

CONTENTS The holiday i ssue 88

QUEST HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE We’re

stocking up on treasures for everyone

on our list. From shiny new shoes to a sparkling new ring, we’ve found essential holiday gifts to keep the coming days both merry and bright. by brooke kelly

102

THE FLAMES OF FAME: THE SHORT AND SAD LIFE OF JOANNE CONNELLEY

Flipping through Debutantes: When Glamour Was Born (Rizzoli) brought back memories of a little girl from New Jersey named Joanne Connelley, who came out at the Infirmary Ball in New York in 1948. by david PaTrick columbia

108

GOLDEN OPPORTUNITIES

From our 2002 archives, the late Michael Thomas

deftly describes the travails of being a demure debutante's dutiful escort.

110

GSTAAD GLAM

This picturesque resort town nestled in the Swiss Alps

is the setting of Assouline’s latest tome, Gstaad Glam. by brooke kelly

116

These indomitable New York institutions—from Rockefeller Center to Michael's—all go the extra mile

EMBRACING THE SEASON: NOW MORE THAN EVER

to give us a sense of holiday cheer. by madeline Garfinkle and brooke kelly

128

SKIING IS A DANCE AND THE MOUNTAIN ALWAYS LEADS

The slopes

have long been a playground—for skiing, and style. by elizabeTh meiGher

128


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86

74 88

CONTENTS C olumns 30

SOCIAL DIARY

72

HARRY BENSON

74

TAKI

76

BOOKS

Examining Valcour: The 1776 Campaign that Saved the Cause of Liberty.

76

DESIGN

A glimpse into the magical career of Bunny Mellon.

82

EVENTS

Braman Motorcars reveals the 2022 Rolls Royce Black Badge Ghost in Palm Beach.

84

BOOKS

Merrill Page’s Earth Medicine discusses healing in seasons and cycles. by robert JanJiGian

86

SOCIAL CALENDAR

132

YOUNG & THE GUEST LIST

136

SNAPSHOT

A glance at this season’s most merry events. by DaviD PatriCk Columbia Our photographer remembers his time spent with Prime Minister Harold Wilson.

Ivy League banter and Michael Mailer’s Heart of Champions.

by

by

taki theoDoraCoPulos by

tony hall

m aDeline G arfinkle

Our guide to the best galas and luncheons this month and in the New Year. Pretty young things party in New York and London. by brooke kelly

Quest families share their Christmas cards with our readers.

by

robert JanJiGian



questmag.com EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

DAVID PATRICK COLUMBIA DEPUT Y EDITOR

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CONTRIBUTING WRITERS

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HARRY BENSON CAPEHART PHOTOGRAPHY BILLY FARRELL MARY HILLIARD CRISTINA MACAYA CUTTY MCGILL PATRICK MCMULLAN NICK MELE ANNIE WATT


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PUBLISHER’S LETTER

Clockwise, from bottom left: Taki Theodoracopulos and Michael Mailer; Steve Millington and Michael McCarty at the 30th anniversary party for Michael’s New York in 2019; Rockefeller Center’s iconic Christmas Tree; Tony Hall and the cover of Valcour: The 1776 Campaign that Saved the Cause of Liberty; David Patrick Columbia in 1964; Danny Bayard of Braman Motorcars.

28 QUEST

Finally, we welcome back contributor Tony Hall to these pages, whose review of Valcour: The 1776 Campaign that Saved the Cause of Liberty, astutely recalls how the strategic agility of America’s fledgling Continental troops—at arms on Lake Champlain in 1776 under the command of (then) patriot General Benedict Arnold—staved off the Royal Navy’s fleet just long enough to insure the Colonists’ fabled victory at Saratoga, and ultimately our new Nation’s independence from the Crown. Should “fledgling America” sound eerily of-the-moment, perhaps it’s more than coincidence. Over these past 21 months, our country has faced down an immeasurable vulnerability with brave resiliency. Family gatherings and marriages are on the rise, and so too is church-going. With near gusto, we are returning to our more normal way of life. And if we are still lacking in our national leadership, which I sadly suspect remains true, we as Americans have recaptured a stronger moral framework and an impregnable embrace of our humanity. This proud publisher sends his hopes, once again, for a sturdier New Year with “Peace on Earth to Women and Men of Goodwill.”

Chris Meigher

ON THE COVER: The Radio City Rockettes perform “Parade of the Wooden Soldiers” during Christmas Spectacular, which will run at Radio City Music Hall until January 2, 2022. Courtesy of MSG Entertainment.

PAT R I C K M C M U LL A N

WE’RE NEAR TOUCHING year-end—smack in the midst of the Holiday Season—and the joy and merriment seem more genuine and heartfelt than in recent years. And with good reason. We’ve regained our footing, and our collective direction is steadier and tracking more firmly on course. Our bodies and souls have been tested and bent. But unbroken we have surfaced, ever stronger for the struggle. It’s the human condition, and dare I say ... the “American way.” The streets of Manhattan again reflect the positive and knowing faces of those who have endured, yet emerged more compassionate and kind. Not unlike the streets in every Quest community ... Palm Beach and Greenwich ... Charleston and Nashville ... Millbrook and Miami ... a visceral reawakening has happened and we are the wiser for it. The cliches of the Season ring truer than ever: “To a Healthy and Happy New Year”—you bet, as our mental health and physical well-being have never been more prized. The heroic plight of a deeply shaken populace has been acknowledged. And appreciated. Within this bountiful Holiday number that you’re reading, there is much to be grateful for—and to be celebrated. Our annual Gift Guide, edited by our (soon-to-be) blushing bride Brooke Kelly, sniffs of self indulgence and unmasked opulence. Why not ... we’ve earned and deserve this moment of extravagance! Even our beloved Taki, the snarkiest of favorite columnists, is effulgent with sincere praise for his pal Michael Mailer’s uplifting new film, Heart of Champions, loosely derived from the highly acclaimed book, The Boys in the Boat. We’ve also reprised a Christmas column from the late Michael Thomas, where he deftly described the travails (and possibilities!) of being a demure debutante’s dutiful escort. Reading on, Quest’s editor supremo, DPC, shares the tragic tale of Joanne Connelley and her own rise and fall—a sad result of her first, and ultimately fatal bow to the unconscionable expectations of her ambitious mother’s social descendancy. And speaking of well earned excesses, our coverage of the Rolls Royce Black Badge Ghost introduction (see pages 82 to 83) barely captures the elegance and energy brought to this event by Braman Motorcars’ very own impresario, Danny Bayard—a soft spoken gentleman and bespoke whisperer to the automotive lifestyle.


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D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A

David Patrick Columbia

NEW YORK SOCIAL DIARY WELL, HERE WE ARE, at the end of another year, and for many millions of people all over the world, it has been a difficult and confounding year. Yet this is the time to celebrate many things, including our being here and being together. It is a time to consider the Good and the Great,

those aspects of life itself that keep us moving forward. On the first Thursday morning of last month, November 4, 2021, I had the accidental pleasure of seeing our new New York City Mayor-elect Eric Adams speak before his campaign staff, supporters, and associates after winning

the election the previous Tuesday night. I make a point of not discussing party politics on the Diary because with each of us, it’s always a matter of personal opinion, which is the right of all of us. However, I had been watching the Mayoral race from afar. I’d volunteered and

voted in elections both locally and nationally over the years. I was first inspired as a college student witnessing a personal campaign experience when John F. Kennedy made a midnight appearance on a cold late October night in 1960 in Lewiston, Maine at this only days before the 1960 Presi-

I N ST I T U T E O F C L A S S I C A L A R C H I T EC T U R E & A R T ’ S A W A R D S D I N N E R I N N E W YO R K

Russell Windham and Suzanne Tucker 30 QUEST

John Rogers and Peter Lyden

Eric Osth and Janet Ross

Kirk Henckels, Linda Stabler Talty and Peter Talty

Michael Diaz-Griffith and Hadley Keller

Elizabeth Graziolo and Tham Kannalikham

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D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A MU S E U M O F A R TS & D E S I G N ’ S A N N UA L B A L L I N N E W YO R K

Alexander Hankin and Christina Senia

dential election. Most of the hundreds attending, having waited in the cold for hours (JFK was about three hours late), were very excited to just witness his presence, but then to be even more impressed by his youthfulness and authority. Not a few of us, I’m sure, went away thinking that someday maybe someday they’d like to run for President of the United States. Youth is always game. I’m sure that within a few years or another decade that such a thought had evaporated and disappeared from almost all. My emotional investment in elections, particularly the top offices, has lessened mea32 QUEST

Friday Lynton, Mia Wright-Ross and Cheryl Riley

William Sofield

surably since those days of golden youth. I do constantly observe and read about the world, the politics, the financials and the “leadership” daily—like a lot of people who follow those roads in life. I’ve lived long enough to see the Chief Executive accompanied by a couple of Secret Service men, to nowadays when it often seems like hundreds of individuals are guarding the Presidential Self. And for good reason— since power provokes enmity and always has, for good rea-

Russell and Marian Burke

sons and for bad. But this recent Thursday morning on a video on the New York Sun site I watched and heard our Mayor-elect speak for the first time, and it felt like we were witnessing an actual New Day in New York. I was very moved by his presence, his words, his enthusiasm and his common touch and his Common Sense. I was reminded of that night in Lewiston, Maine 61 years ago this month (coincidentally, the birth year of our new Mayor). I found myself re-

Barbara Tober and Tim Rodgers

Fe Fendi and Di Mondo

sponding by repeating some of his words of wisdom and victory as he spoke. It pleased me also that he is among other things, a man of color, ready to aid and lead all of us of all colors in solving the problems of us humans in these harried times of ours. I found myself wishing, maybe even believing he could really restore our faith in our city and in each other. After witnessing his ebullience and his public conduct, it seemed that I was indeed seeing a real leader. Maybe a great leader— always a possibility no matter how rare. I tend to think along those lines, and for all of us New Yorkers, every one of us,

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D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A I am hoping it is so, and that he will succeed. He’s got what it takes (and he had a great mother, which he relayed) and he knows whence he came— from where we all came to this moment. So here’s to our and to our new Mayor; may his presence benefit all of us and our great city of dreams and possibilities. The upcoming end-of-theyear season is also a time for many of us to consider the gifts. Not only those we’ve given but those gifts we receive. For those who celebrate the year end holidays with gifts to others, the first thing that comes to my mind is books—books that restore,

re-invent, rescue, and resolve many things. I’m drawn to history that stimulates our basic questions about ourselves, our existence, our hopes, our pleasures as well as our fertile imagination of what came before and who we are. There is a new book just published by Jill Spalding titled LUXURY: A History. I had no expectations on receiving it. We live in a world where the use of the word “luxury” is commonplace in the business of promoting products and locations.

This is a book that at a price ($75!) can just decorate your coffee table elegantly with its physical presence and size. But this is also a book that from the moment you open it, will arouse your curiosity. It is a history of us, humankind, throughout the civilizations of yore right up to the moment of reading these lines of edit. I first heard about it from a friend, Alejandra Cicognani, who is representing the author in her effort to publicize her work (of art) on which she has labored assiduously over the years to

complete with perfection. Its simple cover with its title in red with an otherwise entire background in gold is obvious but by itself, unimpressive. On one level or another—and there are many levels to “luxury” when you think about it— it gives you the satisfaction of reading and seeing, full of images familiar as well as many of which may be unknown to a reader. Jill Spalding is a modern historian. She takes us on a voyage of life that presents all of its aspects and effects both recognizable or unimaginable until exposed. You will see and learn, and be reminded of those things and those people and experiences that may be

V E R O N I C A B E A R D ’ S S I P & S H O P I N PA L I S A D E S , C A L I FO R N I A

Kathy Gallagher, Sara Jensen and Beatrice Ridgley 34 QUEST

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D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A N E W YO R K L A N D M A R K S P R E S E R VAT I O N FO U N D AT I O N ’ S FO R U M

Megan Grehl and Come Menage

familiar—or vaguely or unimaginable—all providing the thrill of discovery. A perfect book and a perfect gift especially at this moment at this time at the end of this year. More books as gifts (can’t resist): My friend Joe Armstrong sent me one: Notable Texans Remember Their Childhoods by Gaylon Finklea Hecker and Marianne Odom. As a kid growing up in New England, the world out there to this boy with an imagination was New York and Hollywood. That huge place in the Southwest, Texas was big and had cowboys and cattle and oil millionaires. But was truly 36 QUEST

Christina Davis and Zibby Tozer

Tom Krizmanic and Ian Wardropper

other-worldly to me, more like a legend. As a grown-up, I have even come to know a lot of Texan natives. They’d migrated to the big towns for their work, and often for fame and fortune as well. They were always a cut above in their approach to their work, as well as in their interests. And very often the most sophisticated. This book, with its subtitle, Growing Up In the Lone Star State, I was naturally curious. This one is 47 oral history interviews of their childhoods growing up there. An amaz-

Brandan Haw and Christine Goppel

Lou Nowikas and Dayssi Kanavos

ing array of prominent and famous men and women such as Mary Martin, Lady Bird Johnson, Dr. Denton Cooley, Liz Smith, Jimmy Dean, Dan Rather, Debbie Reynolds, Bob Schieffer, Jaclyn Smith, Rex Reed, and Tommy Tune to name just a few. There’s Ruth Simmons (“A sharecropper’s daughter”) who grew up to be the first Black president of an Ivy League university. Now a half century later, she’s headed Brown University from 2001 to 2012, headed Smith College from 1995 to 2001, and

has held other trailblazing roles at USC, Princeton, and Spelman College. Her professional associations and honors are abundant. The story of her childhood is fascinating and a lesson. And a pleasure to learn about. I wouldn’t have thought it would all be that interesting to me personally—children’s lives growing up in Texas in the early to mid-20th century? But the childhoods were those I could relate to. You’re reminded of your own experience, what we all have in common in this life. Our beginning is ultimately the story. Many of these interviews were children of the Depres-

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D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A sion; or children of children of the Depression. And mostly children of families who were often just getting by. BUT. The mood of that land was upbeat in the long run. The code word was WORK—at whatever they had to do to feed themselves and their families. And when those children went out into the world they worked at what they liked to do or had to do. It is an amazing array of individuals, some very famous, some heroes, some ordinary working people, and mostly from lower middle income families—but all with a kind of optimism borne of effort and caring and passion. The variety of interviews keeps it

fresh because of course, we’re all different. The interview with the man who grew up on the King Ranch (originally 1,250,000 acres) fascinated me. Every kid knew about the King Ranch when I was growing up in Massachusetts: the ultimate cowboy ranch. I was transported back just reading about it. These experiences, the memories of youth and childhood draw you naturally into that time in your own life. You’re relating to all of them as different levels of a universal experience. But also in the remarkable, enormous, abundant

world that was and still is on many levels, Texas—a land on its own while being a State of the U.S. And one more can’t put downable: Face the Music, a memoir by Peter Duchin (with Patricia Beard). This is the story of a long and glamorous and successful life BUT…that was the public life. This is the story of a man whose mother died when he was six days old, left with a father who was a full-time working performer, bandleader celebrity, very frequently absent, who died when the boy was 12—homeless and family-less.

This is the story of how that boy climbed out of those profound life-losses and made a life of glamour, success, popularity, and serious losses along the way. I’ve known Peter personally for decades. He has always had that glamour-boy/ celebrity personality socially. This is the story of the drive he’s possessed to keep that image on the forefront despite a backstory that is touching, even alarming, and yet naturally brave and courageous, despite the profound losses that fate provided the boy and the man. A page-turner, and a book that defines courage. Meanwhile back in little ole Manahatta…still talking

A L Z H E I M E R ’ S D R U G D I S C O V E R Y FO U N D AT I O N ’ S L U N C H EO N I N N E W YO R K

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Jana and Gerold Klauer

Tom and Susan Lowder

Alice Shure and Marybeth Howlett

Alan Patricof and Bonnie Pfeifer Evans

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PATRICK MCMULLAN

Howard Kaneff, Mitchell Kaneff and Leonard Lauder


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D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A A L A VO N AU E R S P E R G ’ S T R U N K S H O W I N PA L M B E AC H

John and Jennifer Egan

about books. The past several weeks have seen an opening up of the social activity, namely the philanthropies and their events. This has come as a great relief to many New Yorkers. Life-restoring. Philanthropist Joan Davidson celebrated the 9th Alice Award, streamed from the Rare Book Room at the Strand Book Store. This is the fifth consecutive year that The Strand has hosted The Alice Award. Mrs. Davidson established the award in 2013 to honor her mother, Alice Manheim Kaplan, who loved and collected the illustrated book as a work of art in itself and an essential document of a civ40 QUEST

Ralph Isham and Ala Von Auersperg

Alexis Waller with Stephanie and Serina Fairchild

ilized society. The award, which comes with a $25,000 prize, is given annually to a richly illustrated book that makes a valuable contribution to its field and demonstrates high standards of production. It is a book that represents excellence in all aspects of the work; idea, text, illustration, design and quality of production. Also, books selected by the award jury for the Alice Short List each receive $5,000. This year’s winner is Strata: William Smith’s Geological Maps, with a Foreword by

Robert Macfarlane. The University of Chicago Press Executive Editor Karen Merikangas Darling, Books Division, University of Chicago Press, accepted the award. Mrs. Davidson, president of Furthermore, established the Alice award to honor her mother, Alice Manheim Kaplan. Mrs. Kaplan loved and collected the illustrated book as a work of art in itself and an essential document of a civilized society. The $25,000 award is given annually to a richly illustrated book that makes a valuable contribution to its field, and

Jayne Chase and Amy Hoadley

John Damgard

demonstrates high standards of production. Furthermore, the name of the literary philanthropy, was founded in 1995 by Mrs. Davidson. It is a unique form of philanthropic support for nonfiction publishing that has given grants to nearly 1,400 publication projects—for writing, for research, illustrations, editing, indexing, printing and binding—totaling over $7 million. In establishing the Alice, Furthermore celebrates the program’s history of honoring outstanding book publishing as well as furthering its goal to provide significant support for the continuing creation of time-

ANNIE WATT

Rosemary Harder and Monique Ogilvy


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D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A

Gathering together is an integral part of the holidays for most families. They hunker down under one roof partaking in traditions and celebrations that have been passed down through the generations. They busy themselves with special family activities and prepare festive meals that help make the holidays special and bright. And they decorate! Twinkling lights, themed throw pillows, scented candles, garlands, ornaments, and specialty décor embellish every room. Ahead of the hustle and bustle of the holiday season take some time to quickly prep your home. One of our favorite tips is to declutter! Before you dig out the garaged boxes of holiday décor take a tour around your home to clear out the clutter. Create toss, donate, and keep piles to sort your items and tidy up your rooms. Donating items, especially around the holidays, is always encouraged. Revamping your entryway is another favorite tip of ours. It’s the first thing your guests and visitors see when they enter your home and should always make a good impression. Outfit your entryway with a new rug, coat hooks, and a small bench or console table. Adding personal touches such as framed photographs or artwork, and a few of your favorite knickknacks will make your entryway cozy as well as functional. Our last tip is to refresh your walls. Freshen up dull walls with a new coat of paint or opt for a different hue to give the room a whole new look. These quick and easy tips will help your home be picture perfect for the holidays! Gil Walsh Interiors www.gilwalsh.com

less and beautiful books. Furthermore is a program of the J. M. Kaplan Fund, which was founded in 1945 by Jacob M. Kaplan. This is a good American story. Jacob Merrill Kaplan was born in Lowell, Massachusetts in 1891. He grew up poor, attended public schools, and peddled soap in the street to help his mother to feed the family. After finishing school, he traveled to the sugar-producing countries in South America. Within a year he had learned enough (at age 18) to be organizing sugar planters. By his 20s he was running molasses companies. When he was 25, he went to work as president of the Oldetyme Molasses Company, and married Alice Manheim and started a family. By his 40s, he was teaching the wisdom of cooperative production to grape growers and re-organizing and running Welch’s Grape Juice. A man of the people, he loved the life

of the city and was a great walker. Setting out every morning from his home on Park Avenue, he’d walk to the Fund’s office on 34th and Madison, taking in the world around him. He knew the world he was looking after. When he was in his early 90s, he turned over the running of his fund to a new president, his daughter Joan, while keeping an active interest in its activities. The range of his philanthropy was vast and wide—from assisting composers and musicians, to helping the New York Botanical Garden save a grove of virgin hemlock along the Bronx River Gorge. From providing to city parks, establishing a Mobilization for Youth program on what was then known as the Lower East Side, it helped rescue Carnegie Hall from the wrecker’s ball in the 1960s, as well as starting work on the South Sea Seaport. In its 75 years of existence, the Kaplan

FA E N A A R T ’ S 1 0 YE A R A N N I V E R S A RY I N M I A M I

Hortense Malaval and William Blair Meyer III

Abby Barroll Brown and Erin Lazard

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Chloé Lazard and Alan Faena

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D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A C I N E M A S O C I E T Y ’ S P R E M I E R E O F J U L I A I N N E W YO R K

Andrew Saffir and Sara Moulton

Fund has provided financially to a wide variety of projects in the people’s interests, as well as nonprofit bookstores and new rehearsal and recital space at Carnegie Hall. It helped channel Federal dollars into the bus and subway system; encourage programs to preserve and rebuild neighborhoods; reclaim the waterfront for recreation; foster greenmarkets and similar urban amenities, and help the helpless whether they were mistreated children, the elderly poor, or victims of political persecution abroad. Her father’s daughter. Long before the creation of Furthermore, Mrs. Davidson has been very active in all matters of the city and community, well-known for her innovative support of the environment, 44 QUEST

Daniel Boulud and Martha Stewart

Sophie Sumner

preservation, the arts, and civil liberties. In the past 70 years, her father’s Fund has focused its support in the areas of historic preservation, the buildings as well as the natural environment, human rights, and arts and culture. To date, the Fund has contributed 17,000 grants totaling over $246,000,000 to important causes around the world, many in our hometown of New York City. His memory still knows the world he was looking after. Meanwhile, the social events coming back to life: The Viennese Opera Ball hosted their Swing Dinner Dance Gala, “The Golden Age,” at a private club in Manhattan. The gala was scaled down from previous years with limited capacity. But was still a

great return of the extravagant affair. The Ball is a nonprofit association and celebrated under the auspices of the US Austrian Chamber of Commerce. Each year, it supports charitable projects that are connected to communities in New York or Vienna. The proceeds of the Swing Dinner Dance benefit the Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation for Cancer Research. This year’s Gala co-Chairs were Jean Shafiroff and Denise Rich. The Honorary Gala Chair was Governor and Mayor of Vienna, The Honorable Michael Ludwig; Consul General of Austria in New York, The Honorable Helene Steinhaeusl, and the Director of the Austrian Cultural Forum New York, Michael Haider.

Julia Chatterley

Summer and June Ambrose

The annual white-tie charity gala celebrates the cultural and economic relationships between Austria and America. It was founded 66 years ago by Austrians immigrating to the United States as a tribute to both their former hometown—Vienna—and New York. Performances by Metropolitan opera singers, the Viennese Opera Ball orchestra, ballet performances, the West Point color guard, midnight Quadrille and many more surprises contribute to a glamorous and delightful night. More to celebrate: The Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) hosted its 12th Annual Fall Symposium and Luncheon virtually on Thursday, October 28th. The event raised $1.2M for

BFA

Donna Karan



D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A C O C K TA I L PA R T Y AT T H E C U LT U R A L S E R V I C E S O F T H E F R E N C H E M B A S S Y I N N E W YO R K

Mark Gilbertson and Kathy Prounis

Rebecca Short, Rowena Cameron-Mowat and Julia Yoon

drug development research to prevent, treat, and cure Alzheimer’s disease. The event featured ADDF Co-Founders and Co-Chairmen Leonard Lauder and Ronald Lauder. Hosted by ADDF board member Paula Zahn, the celebration honored Howard Kaneff, Chairman Emeritus, and Mitchell Kaneff, Chairman and CEO, of Arkay Packaging with the Charles Evans Award for Leadership. Also awarded with the Melvin R. Goodes Prize was Miia Kivipelto, MD, PhD, Professor in Clinical Geriatrics at Karolinska Institutet, Center for Alzheimer Research and senior geriatrician and Director for Research & Development of Theme Aging at Karolinska University Hospital, Stockholm, Sweden. 46 QUEST

Jennifer Gyr and guest

Jacqueline Mack, Tori Mellott and Ellen Niven

Leonard Lauder praised the awardees and their decades of support. “I’ve known Howard and Mitchell for several decades, both as dear friends and respected business partners. When Howard’s late wife and Mitchell’s mother, Cherry, started experiencing Alzheimer’s symptoms, there was no definitive way to receive a diagnosis. Thanks to the ADDF and support of steadfast supporters, like the Kaneffs, that is no longer the case—we now have the diagnostic tools to provide patients and families with the answers they deserve.” ADDF was founded by the brothers in 1998. It is dedicat-

Stewart Manger

Shawna Barrett, Anne Goodwin and Hélène Comfort

ed specifically to rapidly accelerating the discovery of drugs to prevent, treat, and cure Alzheimer’s disease. It is the only public charity solely focused on funding the development of drugs for Alzheimer’s, employing a venture philanthropy model to support research in academia and the biotech industry. Through the generosity of its donors, in the last 23 years, The ADDF has granted more than $168 million to fund more than 650 programs for Alzheimer’s and related dementias in academic centers and biotechnology companies in 19 countries. To learn more, please visit alzdiscovery.org.

On a Monday night, The New York Public Library hosted its annual Library Lions Gala at the Stephen A. Schwarzman Building to raise critical funds to support the Library’s mission of inspiring lifelong learning, advance knowledge, and strengthening communities. This year’s Lions honorees included author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, journalist Tina Brown, novelist Jonathan Lethem, and philanthropic leader Darren Walker. More than 350 gathered in The Rose Main Reading Room for dinner and a program, which also celebrated last year’s 125th anniversary of the Library. Tony Marx, President of The New York Public Library, opened the evening welcoming guests and

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announcing that this year’s event raised more than twice its previous record in critical funds—nearly $5.8 million! Marx then introduced New York State Governor Kathy Hochul who spoke to the enduring quality of the library, stating that, “this library will endure for another 125 years.” Marx then introduced Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, who recounted some of his personal experience having grown up in Brooklyn and taking out books from the Kings Highway branch. This year’s Executive Chairs were Mr. and Mrs. Stephen Schwarzman. The Host-Chairs included Dr. Mahnaz Ispahani Bartos and Mr. Adam Bartos, Howard and Eleanor Morgan, Kathy Rayner, James Tisch and tehe Honoreafble Merryl H. Tisch, Nanar and Tony Yoseloff. This year’s co-chairs included Annette de la Renta, Catie Marron, and Abby and Howard. And more! The 15th Annual Hope

For Depression Luncheon returned! On a Wednesday, the Ballroom of The Plaza Hotel was abuzz with the fascinating and critical discoveries taking place in the treatment of the disease. Audrey Gruss knows well the ripple effect of depression—her mother Hope suffered greatly from this debilitating disease when there was so little known about it. Michael Phelps was the award recipient this year. His commitment to spreading the word about depression is significant. He was the first of the elite athletes to speak out about depression and the attending guests were all eager to hear how he handled depression while winning 28 Olympic medals. Other prominent individuals who have spoken out about depression include Brooke Shields, Terry Bradshaw, Ashley Judd, Anderson Cooper, and Mariel Hemingway—to educate the public, correct misinformation, and reduce the stigma

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D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A A M E R I C A N F R I E N D S O F B L É R A N C O U R T ’ S D I N N E R I N N E W YO R K

George Sape

associated with illnesses of the mind and brain. Meanwhile back to the books: Several new titles have crossed this desk. Jane Lahr, the literary agent, sent me a book that is even more than a book. It is called The Radiant Tarot; Pathway to Creativity by Alexandra Eldridge and Tony Barnstone. Tarot. I am familiar with the gist of it. Or thought I was. I had a “card” reading years ago by a woman named Dezia Restivo who also wrote a monthly column in Quest at the time. I was moving to Los Angeles to pursue my own career as a writer, and a couple of friends of mine gave me a 50 QUEST

Marie-Noelle Pierce, Jerry Wonda and Leah Pisar-Haas

Stephanie Demascus and Jake Misisco

going away gift of a reading by Dezia. She was a little English lady, blonde, charming and outgoing, but professional in her approach and delivery. I’d never had my cards read and I was indifferent to the experience except that Dezia was intense and charming. Seats taken, she’d pick up cards (playing cards) and held them like a fan closer to her face, and then utter some piece of information that she was “seeing.” She knew from my friends that I was about to move to Los Angeles. As she looked at the cards expressing some details that I don’t remember,

Olivia Tournay Flatto and Jean-Christian Agid

she said “you’re going to meet a royal woman who wears rose colored glasses and has houses on three oceans.” “In L.A.?” Kind of wild I thought to myself, although what would a royal woman be doing in Los Angeles. I don’t recall anything else she said that day all those years ago (this was 1978), but I loved the idea of it: royal–womanrose-colored-glasses-houses-onthree-oceans. However, aside from the novelty of her description, it was irrelevant to my new adventure, which is what it was at the time—and I forgot about it. However, about six months after I’d moved to L.A., a

Marie-Monique Steckel and Judith Pisar

Aurelie and Nicolas Cauchy

friend of mine, a designer named Luis Estevez who was very plugged into the community socially, invited me to a cocktail party one early evening in Beverly Hills so I could meet people. The hostess, Lady Sarah Spencer Churchill, was a tall Englishwoman—who was wearing rose-colored glasses—looking very chic as well as charming in her greeting. Although Dezia’s prediction did not enter my mind since I never took it seriously in the first place. I knew very little about Lady Sarah at the time, except that she was the daughter and the sister of the Dukes of Marlborough, the granddaughter

PATRICK MCMULLAN

Mailys Vranken and Alexandra Morris



D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A of Consuelo Vanderbilt, and who came of age growing up in Blenheim Palace. She was titled although not royal. Allthough I later learned she had houses overlooking the Pacific, the Caribbean, and the Aegean. She also later became a significant person in my life. It didn’t occur to me at the time of the meeting or even the getting to know her, that it was exactly as Dezia had off-handedly described it. Tarot it was not; not like this book by one of Jane Lahr’s literary clients that Jane had sent me. This was on another level, and a most interesting one. I actually thought “tarot” was just “reading” the cards. Never having given it a thought or much interest, I knew nothing. Unaware of the specifics of tarot, I asked Jane, since they were her clients. It turned

out she was very personally knowledgeable about it. She said “there have been many, many Tarot decks down the centuries— since the 1400s— but the Eldridge/Barnestone deck is one of the most positive, and beautiful, and captures the archetypal imagery so it can be comprehended by all.” The author Tony Barnestone and the artist Alexandra Eldridge both have worked for years with archetypal images, the universal symbolic language, and relating them to creativity. The art is inspired by “Gaia mind,” where all creations forms—animal, vegetable, mineral—affect our planet in life supporting ways. This book along with its 78 beautifully illustrated

cards comes in a beautifully designed case (booksize). Its cover is the artist’s work. This is a treasure, a gift for anyone who interested in Creativity and the Transformed Self. Jane Lahr summed it up: “…working with cards brings forth what is hidden in our subconscious into our consciousness awareness. Some decks are DARK and the energy is dark. The Radiant Tarot is luminous. And at this historical moment, positive energy in a world challenged by COVID and natural disasters is so urgently helpful. This ancient form of divination opens a direct connection to who we are—and a connection to the divine—our inner voice.” Meanwhile there were oth-

er matters occupying my time. On a Monday at the beginning of the month, I was working on a history of an old townhouse on 85th Street and Park Avenue that I had long been impressed by simply because of its architectural uniqueness compared to the style of mansions along the avenue. There is something cinematic about it that has always provoked my curiosity as to what kind of people had lived there. It was built early in the 20th century, so whoever the original occupants were, they had undoubtedly left. Obviously they were wealthy, because it was mansion-size, but the style spoke to me of an interesting individual personality, and intimate. What I learned from the history of 1015 Park Avenue was that it was built and occupied by an old New York

B A R B A R A ST U R M ’ S D I N N E R I N N E W YO R K

Katie Intner 52 QUEST

Charly Sturm

Eric Rutherford and Igee Okafor

Emily Bromfield and Chrissy Rutherford

Aweng Chuol

Kate Bock

BFA

Leigh Nordstrom and Barbara Sturm


2021-22

MASTERWORKS SEASON YEFIM BRONFMAN JOINS

PALM BEACH SYMPHONY JANUARY 10

K

nown for his commanding technique, power and exceptional lyrical gifts, piano virtuoso Yefim Bronfman will again play to sold-out houses as the New Year begins. There is still time to secure tickets to his concert with Palm Beach Symphony on January 10 prior to his return to Carnegie Hall on February 18.

With 20 GRAMMY ® Award nominations between them, he joins Palm Beach Symphony Music Director Gerard Schwarz, who also serves as Music Director of the Mozart Orchestra of New York and the All-Star Orchestra. Bronfman performs the challenging Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 3 in a program that also features Liadov’s Kikimora, Op. 63 and Shostakovich’s commanding Symphony No. 5.

DA R I O AC O S TA

Bronfman knows how cold winter can be from his birthplace in the Soviet Union to his time in New York where he has been honored with the Avery Fisher Prize, an honorary doctorate from the Manhattan School of Music and named a 2007-08 Carnegie Hall ‘Perspectives’ artist. Join us as we give him a warm welcome this January in Palm Beach.

Tickets are $25-$95 and are available online at www.palmbeachsymphony.org and by phone at (561) 281-0145


D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A C F DA ’ S FA S H I O N A W A R D S I N N E W YO R K

Dapper Dan

family by the name of Morris. The family in the 18th century were owners of most of the land that today makes up the Bronx. The generation who built and lived at 1015 Park also had a daughter named Alleta—known to friends and family as Leta. As it happened, I knew Leta later in her life because she was a longtime friend of Lady Sarah, and was also married to a man named Peter McBean and lived in San Francisco, as well as Newport. She was also a close friend of Doris Duke from childhood and throughout their long lives in both Newport and in New York. Doris Duke had always been a passing curiosity to 54 QUEST

Michael Kors and Rachel Zegler

Evan Mock and Julia Fox

this writer. When I was a kid, her name was famous to us ordinary people as one of the “richest” girls in the world. I’m referring to the 20th century version of “rich,” which is not to be confused with this century’s version—greatly inflated as it is otherwise. Despite being a private person, because of her personality—aside from her great wealth—Doris Duke grew up to flash around with lovers who were celebrated, socially or otherwise. Her father Benjamin Duke died in1925 when his daughter was 13. When Doris was a small child, he’d bought “Rough Point,” a mansion in Newport built by Frederick Vanderbilt.

Zazie Beetz

Because Mr. Duke was “new,” he cultivated a friendship with the Morris family to gain entry socially. It’s often been said that on his deathbed he told his grieving daughter to “trust no one” in her life, and he left her his huge fortune. Because of her inheritance, Doris Duke was a celebrity with a lifestyle attracted public attention. She was a celebrity, as famous in some circles as a movie star. I saw her only once, in Sardi’s restaurant during the pre-theatre dinner hour on a weeknight in the mid-1960s. Sardi’s entry foyer was crowded, when she entered with her grey-haired escort

Law Roach and Zendaya

Christian Siriano and Drew Barrymore

looking chic and simply bejeweled with a single bracelet of emeralds laid out in the shape of a watchface. Smartly dressed. with her hair pulled back, she had the classic profile of determination, with bright eyes under strong eyebrows and a naturally serious air of intimidation in its gaze. She was Doris Duke. Coincidentally, around that same time—on October 7, 1966—she had had a terrible accident at “Rough Point,”her house in Newport when she had “accidentally” drove her car into the man who was opening the gates for her, and killed him. This was front page news everywhere. The man, Eduar-

BFA

Cara Delevingne and Anya Taylor-Joy


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D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A do Tirella, an interior designer who had been staying with her, was advising her on decorating the interior of the mansion. Not a few assumed he was also her boyfriend, although he was known to be gay. He had been the driver of the Dodge Polara station wagon as they were leaving the property, and had stopped and got out of the car to open the towering gates. Later, she said she moved over to the driver’s seat to complete the exit and “accidentally” stepped on the accelerator, hitting the man directly. He died. Her testimony was oddly suspicious about what happened as reported in the press. For she accelerated with such

power that the moving car moved directly into the man at the gate and dragged his body across Bellevue Avenue and up a tree. Those who knew Doris wondered sotto voce what really happened as the victim had been staying with her for several months and was known to be leaving to return to his home in Los Angeles which he occupied with his male partner. Her explanation to the cops who showed up was acceptable to them, and there was no police investigation. Case closed. Although, however, earlier

this year, Peter Lance, a journalist, published a book called Homicide at Rough Point. After it was published, Lance met a man named Bob Walker who was only 13 years old and a Newport paperboy. On that fatal October day, he told the reporter that he happened to be delivering Duke’s copy of the Newport Daily News just as the crash occurred. On arrival Walker had heard two people arguing—a man and a woman. Then he heard screams of a man and the sound of a car crashing. Tirella was thrown onto the hood as it crashed

through the gates. But then the car stopped with a jerk, and then the car suddenly lurched forward as Tirella screamed, dragging him underneath and across the road. Reaching the gate the boy witnessed the car crashing against the tree. He rushed over to it as a “tall women” got out, and he asked if she needed any help. She screamed at him to “get the hell out of here!” three times, and with that, the kid got back on his bike and took off. When he got home, he told his father what he had seen. His father, on hearing, made his son swear he’d never tell anyone about it. Five years later, the then-older boy did ask

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his father why he was told to keep it a secret that day. His father replied: “The life of my son was far more important than going up against Doris Duke,” the father told him, adding “knowing the power of this woman, I didn’t think you would make it out alive if you told the story. I had visions of you doing your paper route and a truck running over you, and that would be the end of it.” Whatever Leta McBean knew about the accident is unknown to me. Her relationship with her childhood friend continued, although at one point in the late 1970s around the time Doris had met her then “adopt58 QUEST

Whitney Donhauser, Daryl Uber and Ellen Goodwin

Melanie Roy and Kathy Angele

ed daughter,” she suddenly stopped speaking to Leta. This was a first. The reason was always a mystery to Leta, as she recounted to her friend Lady Sarah at the time. Although eventually communication was resumed. A few years later, Leta died after a long illness in 1986. By that time in Doris’ life, Age had become the main issue. Her vast fortune had increased enormously over the decades and she was a billionairess. The great mansion her father had built in Fifth Avenue had long before been given to NYU to use for academic purposes—she bought a Park Avenue penthouse for her New York resi-

Lise Godvin and Evan Clark

dence (which todays belongs to New York Post columnist Cindy Adams). The enormous farmland property in New Jersey, which was her country residence from her New York life, along with her other three residences remained in her possession. She had long before set up a foundation that would eventually possess the greatest part of her wealth directed specifically to philanthropy. She had a great, longtime interest in reincarnation and had apparently convinced herself that she would be returning as another life. How she regarded her life, her relationships and her moments with Mr. Tirella, will

Busayo Olupona

Isaac Mizrahi

never be known. But she had arrived at the reality of life: She’d come to its conclusion. Her final days were noted by the press as it had been all her life. This time there still was a “man in her life”—her butler Bernard Lafferty to whom she had named executor of her billion dollar estate only six months before her death. At the time, Lafferty was regarded with some suspicion about the legacy. Although ironically, as fate would have it, Lafferty’s life afterwards turned out to be brief—he died three years later, and Doris’s legacy remained in place for the good of others, recipients of her generosity and caring forever after. ◆

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H A R RY B E N S O N

IT SEEMS LIKE YESTERDAY THE RIGHT HONOURABLE The Lord Wilson of Rievaulx, KG, OBE, PC, FRS, FSS is the full title of Harold Wilson, who was twice the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom—from October 1964 to June 1970, and then again from March 1974 to April 1976. I photographed the Labor Party Prime Minister in 1965 during the Christmas holidays at 10 Downing Street, the official residence of the Prime Minister. The following year, I photographed the PM with President Lyndon Johnson in the White House on his visit to Washington, D.C. Wilson’s accomplishments during his time in office are most impressive: abolishing capital punishment; theatre censorship; and decriminalization of male homosexuality. He pushed through many forward-thinking bills, including the Race Relations Act of 1968; the Divorce Reform Act of 1969; and the Abortion Act of 1967. Think about it… that’s quite a legacy. An Oxford History Don before becoming Prime Minister, interestingly, he refused to commit British troops to the Vietnam War. Yet he offered to try to negotiate a peace agreement with the North Vietnamese. Over the years, I often photographed Harold Wilson and found him to be an amicable subject… it was an interesting time for me, covering the political goings-on in Britian— both the Conservative and the Labor Party Conferences in Brighton and Scarborough. I enjoyed it actually. Then I moved on to the American political scene—each president quite compelling in his own way. I am actually working on a book of my photographs covering the political scene over the last 50+ years… I’ll keep you posted. u 72 QUEST


Prime Minister Harold Wilson at home in London in 1964.

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TA K I

‘HEART OF CHAMPIONS,’ NIGHT OF FUN Clockwise from top left: Rowing in the Charles River at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts; Heart of Champions; the men’s crew team at Yale.

I FIND MOST FILMS nowadays as fascinating as a lengthy history of orthodontics, but then I’m spoiled rotten having watched old black-and-white pearls such as From Here to Eternity, The Asphalt Jungle, and Our Man Godfrey. When Chariots of Firecame out some forty years ago I went bananas. My 74 Q U E S T

uncle had competed in both the ’32 and ’36 Olympics in the hurdles, and my father was on the relay team. Athletics back then were for pure amateurs only, and as in the case of the great Jim Thorpe, anyone caught having ever been paid even a dollar for competing in any sport in or out of the Olympics was

obliged to give the medal back. Chariots of Fire captured the will, luminosity, and purity of the amateur athlete who competes honorably for glory and would


TA K I rather die than cheat. Which brings me to the latest film my friend Michael Mailer has directed, and whose premiere I attended last week in the Bagel. In brief, it’s Chariots of Fire on water. Heart of Champions was inspired by a true-life story that took place back in 1936. Nine working-class boys in America’s Northwest decided to challenge the upper-class crews that made up the Harvard, Yale, and Princeton crew teams, which were competing to represent Uncle Sam at the Berlin 1936 Olympics. To everyone’s amazement they ended up winning, going to Berlin, and winning again, beating Italy and Germany in the final. Apparently even the Führer was

antithetical to art or the creation of art. Here’s the director talking to me about the film: “The values espoused in the movie—sacrifice, team above self, sublimation of ego, and leadership— meant more then than they do now.” Michael also wanted to tell a story during a time when it was okay to get into a fistfight over a girl and not have it labeled a toxic-masculinity event. Here I take a parenthesis. Last week in London I had drinks with heroes at an undisclosed location. I am not being mysterious but following their rules. Perhaps a few readers will know what I mean. I am not being coy, just proud of having met with the best Britain can

at 5 a.m. and rowing. Michael lusted after girls and went after them, and unlike Zuckerberg he landed them galore. He also drank Scorpion Bowls at the Hong Kong in Harvard Square, was a very good student, and even had time to see his father, Norman, when the great novelist deigned to come around the quad and criticize. (You drop your left before the right cross, and Ptolemy was not only once a pharaoh but also an astronomer.) So, once the movie presented itself, Michael Mailer was offered the chance to direct and he jumped at it. I won’t spoil it for you, but Harvard loses at the end, at least I think it does as I was seated next to Arki Busson at the premiere and he had

From left: Michael Mailer; Mark Zuckerberg;

CO U RTE S Y O F H A RVA R D B U S I N E S S S C H O O L ; G E T T Y I M A G E S ; J O E L F U RT E K ; C R E AT I V E CO M M O N S

Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss.

impressed when told of their background. There have been books (Boys in the Boat) and documentaries about it. Michael’s movie has nothing to do with that event, and is set in 1999 at a fictional university battling against Harvard and other grand schools. The star is that wonderful actor Michael Shannon, who gives a great performance as a Vietnamveteran coach who reads his boys better than any Freud ever could and then some. Michael unfolds the mystery of certain characters over the course of the movie. One can no longer do that in the era of social media as it takes a few minutes online to reveal pretty much anything one needs to know about anyone. Social media is antithetical to mystery, according to Michael, and by extension

ever provide. Now back to the film. Harvard is sort of the bad guy in the movie. Michael Mailer is a Harvard grad and has nothing but great affection for his alma mater. (I think the place stinks.) But if he hadn’t gone to Harvard, Michael would never have done the film. Crew at the stinky place is not a sport but a religion. Everyone who wasn’t as ugly or as nerdy as Mark Zuckerberg went out for freshman crew. No matter how short, weak, or fat, how athletic or clumsy, freshmen went out to row for their lives. Michael did not. He boxed, becoming captain of the boxing team and going on to the finals of the Golden Gloves where he lost in a split decision after a nonstop, violent toe-to-toe match. Oh yes, and another thing: Crew requires getting up

just cracked a joke about a very pretty girl who was rather clingy in the film. A party chez moi followed, and as luck would have it we overdid things. But it was a Thursday evening and I didn’t have to fly to London until Monday, so I let it rip. I was inspired by the movie. American revisionists seem to think people should forfeit their history, customs, heroes, and freedoms to a self-appointed elite. I say screw you, you’re not worth a bucket of warm spit, and like the communist in disguise that you are, you will end up in the rubbish heap of history. There, take it from Taki, go see the movie and punch the next person who cancels you rather hard in the mouth. u For more Taki, visit takimag.com. DECEMBER 2021 75


VALCOUR: LOSING A FLEET SAVING A NATION IF YOU’RE A SAILOR with a particular interest in the American Revolution, you could do worse than cruise Lake Champlain below the ramparts of Fort Ticonderoga. You’ll sail through the Americans’ moorings, where, in the summer of 1776, the first warships of the new nation lay at anchor. All but a few of these armed vessels would be destroyed or scuttled later that autumn in the first naval engagement of the War of Independence, which took place 60 miles farther down Lake Champlain at Valcour Island. Outmatched by the Royal Navy, which possessed an overwhelming advantage in ships, guns, and men, the Patriots’ audacity at the battle at Valcour Island helped keep their revolution on course, argues Hudson Valleybased Jack Kelly, author of Valcour: The 1776 Campaign that Saved the Cause of Liberty. The strategy of the colonies’ Northern Army was to delay and defer the single, critical British victory that would have divided New 76 QUEST

England from the mid-Atlantic and southern colonies. By ultimately denying Britain that victory in 1776, Schuyler hoped to ensure its defeat. That strategy informed the Americans’ actions on Lake George and at the battles of Hubbardton, Bennington, and Fort Anne in 1777. It also explains American naval warfare on Lake Champlain in 1776. According to Kelly, Arnold’s plan was to detain the enemy long enough for the weather to turn bitterly cold and the fighting season to come to its natural end. The expected siege of Crown Point and Ticonderoga would then be postponed for at least another year. Arnold, of course, was that Arnold— General Benedict Arnold. He shared the belief that if the Americans could stall the enemy and delay its advance up Lake Champlain and down the Hudson, they would eventually find success—as they

C R E AT I V E CO M M O N S ; F O RT T I CO N D E RO G A M U S E U M CO LLE C T I O N

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ultimately did in 1777, when the Continental Army defeated the British at the crucial Battles of Saratoga. In 1776, under Arnold’s direction, the Americans built a fleet of gunboats at the shallow end of Lake Champlain, at Skenesboro, now Whitehall, once capable of harassing the British fleet, which was growing in size by the week. Americans and the British were, in effect, engaged in an arms race, though with different ends in view. The British, typically, sought to assemble a force of overpowering strength with which they could assert control over the northern lakes with one decisive victory. That was never the Americans’ aim. Like the French in the Seven Years War, the Native Americans and colonial outfits such as Rogers Rangers made a virtue of their lack of resources by cultivating speed, agility, and unpredictability. To be sure, General Arnold needed more than two lake schooners and a small pack of gunboats if his fleet was to be more than “a glorified scouting mission,” as Kelly puts it. Arnold needed rowing galleys, and by October 11th, they arrived, just in time, at Valcour, the island chosen by the Americans as the best place—from a tactical vantage point—to engage the enemy. Riding at anchor in the strait between Valcour Island and the New York mainland, Arnold’s flotilla awaited the arrival of Sir Guy Carleton’s fleet, which included the largest ship ever to sail Lake Champlain, the magnificent 90-foot frigate, HMS Inflexible. Expecting an American defense far more formidable than it actually was, Carleton had wasted precious time assembling a massive invasion force. As it happened, it never saw action. After surviving an eight-hour skirmish in which two American schooners were lost and one British gunboat sunk, Arnold dropped back, edging his way down the shallow strait. The gathering British fleet was arrayed in two lines near the entrance of the channel. Late that night, with muffled oars, Arnold and the remains of his fleet rowed between the

blockading British vessels without, incredibly, raising any alarms. “We went through them entirely undiscovered,” Arnold’s second-in-command, David Waterbury, wrote John Hancock, the president of the Continental Congress. Once the British realized the American flotilla had escaped, they pursued it up the lake, just as Arnold had anticipated. Of the 16 ships he commanded at the start of the battle, only a few reached Fort Ticonderoga safely. Had the British not been delayed, they might have yielded to the temptation to attack the vulnerable Fort Ticonderoga that autumn, rather than wait for summer. Historians now agree that Britain’s decision to postpone the invasion by a year was just enough time for the Americans to assemble the political and military strength necessary to defeat General John Burgoyne at Saratoga. As the 19th century naval historian Alfred Thayer Mahon wrote, “The little American navy on Champlain was wiped out, but never had any force, big or small, lived to better purpose or died more courageously, for it had saved the lake for that year.”◆ From above: Valcour Island and Lake Champlain as seen from the Au Sable Marsh Wildlife Management Area in the town of Peru, New York; watercolor on paper painting titled “God Bless our Armes” by C. Randle, c.1876. Opposite page, from above: Oil on canvas painting titled “The Battle of Lake Champlain Oct. 11, 1776” by Carlton T Chapman, c. 1925.; Valcour: The 1776 Campaign that Saved the Cause of Liberty by Jack Kelly. DECEMBER 2021 77


DESIGN

THE MESMERIZING WORK OF BUNNY MELLON BY MADELINE GARFINKLE


P E R M I S S I O N O F I S A B E LLE R E Y; CO U RT E S Y C R I S T Ó B A L B A LE N C I A G A M U S E U M ; P H OTO BY PA R E D E S : P G . 2 7 8 , 2 8 1 , 2 8 3

CO U RTE S Y T H O M A S LLOY D ; © 2 0 2 1 A RT I S TS R I G H TS S O C I E T Y ( A R S ) , N E W Y O R K / A DA G P, PA R I S . U S E D W I T H

This spread, clockwise from left: Bunny Mellon in front of her iconic Oak Spring Home; cover design for Bunny Mellon Style; an evening gown made in Bunny’s collaboration with Balenciaga.

BUNNY MELLON STYLE, a whimsical new book published by Gibbs Smith, offers an intimate glimpse into the life and career of one of the most influential women of 20th century design. Rachel Lambert Mellon, colloquially known as Bunny Mellon, charmed the world with her innovative eye for design, razor-sharp instincts, and pristine intentionality, giving way to world-renowned and mesmerizing work. In a foreword by Tory Burch, Burch notes Mellon’s innate sense of harmony. “There is nothing frivolous...just beauty, balance, and integrity.” The DECEMBER 2021 79


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ensuing pages outpour with life through the creative spirit of her projects that are, quite literally, works of art. When collaborating with Mellon on her “Memory House,” architect Okey Turner recalls what made her work so singularly fascinating. “Like most people make photo albums, she organized her life and put it in a house.” Turner also discussed her sharp sense of vision for the space. “An inch [really does] make a difference,” he writes. Much of the book is dedicated to her Oak Spring home shared with her husband, Paul Mellon. The home is both understated yet all-encompassing in its beauty. The iconic dining room faces south with French doors and windows that allow for the room to shimmer in a constant glow. The library’s modern exterior lends itself to large openings to execute Mellon’s vision of “letting the outside in.” The magic of Mellon’s work lies in her motto: “Nothing should be noticed.” Sticking to this concept, she created spaces that outpour with the kind of seamlessness that can only be achieved through pristine craft and strength of artistic vision. u


DESIGN Clockwise from above: Bunny with I. M. Pei setting a stage in the East Wing of the National Gallery of Art; Mellon in her garden; a piece from Mellon’s collaboration with Balenciaga, featuring a bolero of yellow silk covered with green gauze and faceted yellow-toned glass buttons. Opposite page, from above: Mellon’s “picnic house” in Nantucket; Mellon, wearing her classic circle skirt and garden hat and Schlumberger enameled bangle, giving a tour.


ON A MAGICAL AUTUMN evening in Palm Beach, in a meticulously maintained showroom that resembled a fabled Broadway theatre, Rolls Royce CEO Martin Fritsches introduced the newest model of this legendary car marker’s bespoke carriages—the 2022 Rolls Royce Black Badge Ghost. The exclusive audience, handpicked by Rolls and Braman Motorcars was treated to a five-course gourmet dinner while the Palm Beach Symphony—in its full complement—serenaded the guests with arias and movements from Brahms and Chopin alike. As a decadent dessert was being served (with vintage Australian port), an

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exquisite dance troupe staged by Rolly Villaverde literally pulled the Black Badge Ghost through a cloudy mist and onto the dance floor, much to the amazement and delight of the knowing crowd. When the applause finally subsided, Braman’s very own Stephen Grossman saluted the genius of Rolls Royce’s 117 years of unparalleled quality, and invited his guests to take their hand(s) at the wheel of this already prized and exceptionable collectible. It was a spirited night of great ghosts to remember, and Steve Grossman reminded all in attendance that Braman is far more than a motorcar company; it’s a lifestyle! ◆

J O S E P H C A RU S O / B R A M A N M OTO R C A R S

AN ICONIC GHOST ROLLS AGAIN


EVENTS

Clockwise from Top: Darrel Taylor toasts his good fortune with Rolls-Royce President Martin Fritches after winning the evening’s door prize; Jacqueline Astudillo of Florida Crystals and husband Steve Jamieson next; Rolls-Royce Southern Region General Manager Martin Corunsky and Product Training Specialist Amanda Baldwin; Keyshia Ka’oir Davis at valet with her bright Orange Rolls-Royce Ghost chatting with Martin Fritches. Opposite page, clockwise from above: The 2022 Rolls Royce Black Badge Ghost; Palm Beach Symphony Orchestra conducted by Matthew Cooperman; Rolling with the Finest Dance Company performers.

DECEMBER 2021 83

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BOOKS

Merrill Page and her new book, Earth Medicine: A Field Guide (opposite page).

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DOWN TO EARTH

C A P E H A RT

BY ROBERT JANJIGIAN

MERRILL PAGE wanted to be a doctor. But somewhere along the way, from her home bases in Cincinnati and Washington, D.C., and later Marin County, California, and Taos, New Mexico (with stops in Spain, Palm Beach, Palo Alto, Guatemala, and Argentina along the way), she found her calling as a healer and authority in the practice of alternative medicine. Her philosophy emphasizes balance and harmony as the keys to living a healthy life. With Earth Medicine, her recently released guide to healing, Page suggests that alternative treatments and practices can be integrated into the everyday routines of so-called normal or conventional people who may have already embraced some of these familiar practices such as yoga or acupuncture. While she does appreciate the mystical aspects associated with Eastern or native people’s cures, Page is also understanding about those who might be skeptics about nontraditional methods. Page, who says traditional Western medicine and the medical system’s failure for her personally prompted her exploration and adoption of alternative ideas. As a teenager, she battled an eating disorder, and found later that the her “cure” eventually involved addressing spiritual, mental, emotional, and physical issues. “You need to surrender to reality, to find harmony inside yourself,” she explains. “You have to find out what’s right for you.”

A surprising and quite interesting aspect of Earth Medicine is the inclusion of many recipes for what Page looks upon as essential parts of a healthy life. She likes to “blur the boundary between food and medicine,” believing that what we eat can improve our overall well being. Among the most important ingredients one should have in the pantry or fridge are: ginger, yogurt, elderberry syrup, masa flour, garlic, onions, olives, olive oil, and local honey. Her book in some ways is a tribute to Laura Esquivel, one of Page’s heroes, whose 1989 novel, Like Water For Chocolate, features recipes as each chapter’s opening. Page, after all, was an English and Spanish Literature major at Stanford. And did complete pre-med study at George Washington University. She’s also a mother of four sons, whom she is always after about turning off lights. “Artificial lights agitate the nervous system,” she states. Early in 2022, Page will launch the Earth Medicine Institute Taos, a facility designed to educate professional practitioners of alternative medicine via courses, symposiums, and publications. It is not a treatment center. Virtual classes are expected to be offered in the late winter. u For more information, visit earthmedicinetaos.org. DECEMBER 2021 85


CALENDAR

DECEMBER

On December 10th, the New York Botanical Garden will host its cherished Winter Wonderland Ball at 7:30 p.m. for an evening of cocktails, dinner, and dancing. For more information, email events@nybg.org or call 718.817.8766.

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“EYE BALL”

Lighthouse For The Blind will hold its 75th Anniversary “Eye Ball” at the Pelican Club in Jupiter. There will be dinner, dancing, and a performance by visually impaired artists. For more information, call 516.586.5600 or visit lhpb.org/events/75thanniversary-eye-ball.

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CHRISTMAS STROLL

Through December 5th, the Nantucket Christmas Stroll will return with holiday cheer. For more information, visit nantucketchamber.org/stroll.

hold its 2021 Dance Magazine Awards at 7:30 p.m., with a pre-show starting at 7:00 p.m. For more information, call 212.758.0024 or visit worksandprocess.org.

guest CC Sabathia, former New York Yankees pitcher. For more information, visit give. iicf.org or email sparkyouth@ cmevents.net.

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RIVERSIDE HAWKS

ANNUAL BENEFIT DINNER

Insurance Industry Charitable Foundation (IICF) Northeast Division will host its 15th Annual Benefit Dinner at the Ziegfeld Ballroom with special

The Harlem based non-profit, Riverside Hawks, will hold its 60th Anniversary Celebration on December 7th at The Plaza Hotel. For more information, call 212.889.4694 or visit riversidehawks.org.

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PALM BEACH ARTS FEST

The 5th Annual West Palm Beach Arts Festival will take place on December 4th and 5th at the Armory Art Center. The event will feature two days of art, shopping, and music. For more information visit armoryart.org/event/5thannual-wpb-arts-festival.

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DANCE MAGAZINE AWARDS

Works & Process, the performing arts series at the Guggenheim, will 86 QUEST

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SIP, SAVOR, SHOP

The Opportunity Early Childhood Education & Family Center will host a holiday sip and shop at The Colony Hotel in Palm Beach between 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. For more information visit opportunitypbc.org/ sipandshop2021.

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TAIL-WAGGING FUN

Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League will hold its 50th Anniversary Christmas Ball at the Sailfish Club of Florida. Guests will be greeted by adoptable pets and then head inside for a festive evening of cocktails, dinner, and dancing. For more information, email j.pellecchia@peggyadams. org or call 561.472.8842. FOOD AND WINE FEST

On December 3rd through the 5th, the Nantucket Christmas Stroll will return with holiday cheer and festivities. For more information visit nantucketchamber.org/stroll.

Palm Beach Food & Wine Festival will return through December 12th with events throughout the city. Ranging from a poolside Chef’s Welcome Party to a five-course meal at Catch Seafood & Raw Bar, the festival offers dozens of unique experiences. For more information, visit pbfoodwinefest.com.


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PALM BEACH SYMPHONY

The Palm Beach Symphony will hold its annual Holly Jolly Symphony Fête at The Beach Club at 10:30 a.m. For more information, visit palmbeachsymphony.org.

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LEADERS IN EDUCATION

On December 9th, Peggy Adams Animal Rescue will hold its Christmas Ball at the Sailfish Club of Florida. For more information, email j.pellecchina@peggyadams.org or call 561.472.8842.

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The New York Botanical Garden will hold its cherished Winter Wonderland Ball on December 10th. For more information, email events@nybg.org or call 718.817.8766.

The American-Scottish Foundation & Burns Society of New York will host its Scottish Christmas Celebration at Union Club. For more information, call 929.499.9025 or email americanscottishfoundation@ gmail.com.

MorseLife Health System will hold its 38th Annual Dinner and Entertainment celebration at The Breakers in Palm Beach from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. For more information, call 561.471.5111 or visit morselife.org.

WINTER WONDERLAND

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DASH AND DINE

B FA ; K A RY N K I P LE Y P H OTO G R A P H Y

The Promise Fund of Florida will hold its annual Pink Tie Guy “Dash & Dine” reception at Club Colette in Palm Beach. For more information, call 561.307.8000 or visit promisefundofflorida.org.

SCOTTISH CHRISTMAS

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NASHVILLE’S NUTCRACKER

Nashville Ballet will present Nashville’s Nutcracker. For more information, visit nashvilleballet.com.

MORSELIFE DINNER

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ROTUNA SOLSTICE CONCERT

Works & Process at the Guggenheim will present a concert by the Eyal Vilner Big Band. For more information, call 212.758.0024 or visit worksandprocess.org.

Leaders in Furthering Education (LIFE) will hold its annual Lady in Red Gala at the Breakers Palm Beach from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. This black-tie evening will be filled with entertainment from musician Dionne Warwick, comedian Rita Rudner, and musical couple Marilynn McCoo and Billy Davis, Jr. By invitation. For more information, call 561.582.8083.

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HOSPICE EVENING

The Palm Beach Island Hospice Foundation will host its annual Hospice Evening at the Henry Morrison Flagler Museum on January 13th at 7:00 p.m. The event will raise money to continue the organization’s mission to support local hospice care and provide innovative programs for families in need. For more information, call 561.832.8585 or visit pbihf.org.

On December 15th, Nashville Ballet will present the time-honored holiday classic, Nashville’s Nutcracker. For more information visit nashvilleballet.com. . DECEMBER 2021 87


QUEST HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE B Y B R O O K E K E L LY

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THIS SEASON, as we get ready to deck the halls, we’re stocking up on treasures for everyone on our list. From shiny new shoes to a sparkling new watch, we’ve found essential holiday gifts to keep the coming days both merry and bright. 88 QUEST

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5 1. Ralph Lauren’s beloved Polo Bear is embroidered on the front of this festive Tartan Polo Bear Throw Pillow, which is crafted from wool with plush cotton velvet at the reverse. $285 at ralphlauren.com. 2. In celebration of Manolo Blahnik’s 50th anniversary, the NADIRA stiletto high heels are finished with a gold disc on the sole, and are presented in limited-edition packaging. $1,095 at manoloblahnik.com. 3. A perfect gift for the pop culture lover is the limitededition Dom Pérignon Rosé Vintage 2006 Bottle, designed by Lady Gaga. $349. 4. A stunning 18ct yellow gold ring from Elizabeth Gage featuring a deep-red oval faceted rhodolite garnet (18.32cts). The gallery of the ring is decorated with 32 round brilliant cut diamonds (0.53cts in total). $28,140 at elizabeth-gage.com. 5. Buccellati’s 18k Gold & Diamond “Rombi” Drop Earrings. $17,500 at betteridge.com. Opposite page: 1. The Hand-Embroidered Paillette Crepe Jersey Gown in shimmering gold by Michael Kors Collection is perfect for any holiday party. $8,990 at michaelkors.com. 2. Rolex is presenting a

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new gem-set version of its Oyster Perpetual Lady-Datejust. Crafted from 18 ct yellow gold, this watch showcases the captivating shine of the diamonds that adorn every surface. Price upon request at rolex.com. 3. The Saint-Louis O Christmas Tree Paperweight. $4,400.

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5 1. A classic game suitable for all the family, Aerin’s Otto Tic Tac Toe Set is a decorative addition to a bookshelf or coffee table when not in use. $925 at

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aerin.com. 2. Romantic, rebellious, or introverted, the jewelry in Wempe’s Playlist by KIM collection can be combined with incredible versatility. The Wempe BY KIM Playlist 4-corner Ring in 18k Rose Gold ($1,015) and the Wempe BY KIM Playlist 9-corner Ring in 18k White Gold ($2,015) are shown here on two chains to create a layered look. Visit wempe.com. 3. Bring the Peanuts gang home for Christmas with Stubbs & Wootton’s Christmas Tree Slippers. $550 at stubbsandwotton.com. 4. Santa Maria Novella’s Rosa Gardenia, Firenze 1221 Edition Eau de Cologne is the delight of a garden blossoming again—a new wonder made of rose, gardenia, bergamot and almond flowers. $135 at smnovella.com. 5. La Prairie’s Skin Caviar Lifting and Firming Luxury Ritual Set will help lift while profoundly enhancing the appearance of firmness. The box features an integrated mirror, and has been designed to be kept as a vanity case—a refined addition to any room. $2,255 at laprairie.com.

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1. Shown on the runway in Sydney, Zimmermann’s Postcard Floral-Appliqued Linen-Silk Midi Dress imbues free-spirited femininity with a vintage, jet-set glamour. $2,650 at modaoperandi.com. 2. Keep your hands free

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with the Cross Body Pouchy, which holds your phone and credit cards. Designed & handmade in New York City. Available in various colors at the MoMA Design Store. 3. Vhernier’s Calla Wrap Bracelet in 18K pink gold. $17,400. 4. Casa de Campo Resort & Villas in the Dominican Republic will kick off a series of holiday events with a Tree Lighting Ceremony on December 5th. Book a trip for the family at casadecampo.com.do. 5. Each Christmas Cracker by Asprey contains your chosen gift, as well as a festive paper crown, Christmas motto, and balloon. Gifts an assortment of sterling silver and enamel options. From $325 at asprey.com.

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6 1. Puiforcat’s Silversmith Knives in stainless steel hone the link between the joys of cooking and the pleasures of the table. Available with a 6 Knives Block at puiforcat.com. 2. Patek Philippe’s Calatrava Yellow Gold Wristwatch. $24,603 at betteridge.com. 3. Gift a chic urban look with the Destin Loafers in suede goatskin by Hermès. $1,250 at hermes.com. 4. Impeccably tailored custom clothing is the ultimate gift—or the perfect personal indulgence. A hand-crafted garment from Paolo Martorano Bespoke is sure to delight, whether you are

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the generous giver or the fortunate recipient. Why not both? Private fittings by request at paolostyle.com or 212.363.0135. 5. The Grey Goose LimitedEdition Lunar Eclipse Kit includes a Boston shaker, cocktail measure, bar strainer, stirrer, and bottle of Grey Goose. $350 at drinkgreygoose.com. 6. A blend of rums aged for a minimum of four years under the Caribbean sun, BACARDÍ Añejo Cuatro has a unique taste and a soft, golden color. More information at bacardi.com.

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3 1. A Palm Beach favorite is the Bentley Continental GT Convertible—sleek and chic—with 542 horsepower that’s ready to impose its will on the pavement by your command. For more information, call 561.564.0715 or visit bramanbentleypalmbeach.com. 2. Burton’s The Anon M4 Toric Goggles are ideal for those who love the slopes. $320 at

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burton.com. 3. Brunello Cucinelli’s Ffecked wool, silk, and cashmere Deconstructed Blazer with peak lapels. $3,995 at brunellocucinelli.com. 4. A striking extra-large domino set with bold black and white 3” x 6” game pieces is available at Linda Horn. Fitted in a long black box edged in white. Can also be used as coasters! $495 at lindahorn.com. 5. The Koi fish is a symbol of luck, but in this case it’s also a stunningly detailed accessory with intricate hand painted gemstone scales and a jet black enamel eye. These Jan Leslie Sterling Silver cufflinks are available for $495 at janleslie.com.

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2 6 7 1. Estée Lauder: A Beautiful Life (Assouline) opens the door to the legendary woman who made her name known all over the world. $195 at assouline.com. 2. Claridge’s: The Cocktail Book includes over 400 recipes from the iconic London hotel throughout the years. $28 at shop.claridges.co.uk. 3. The Kitchen Whisperers: Cooking with the Wisdom of Our Friends (HarperCollins) is a beautifully written tribute to the CO U RTE S Y O F R E S P E C T I V E B R A N D S

people who teach us to cook and guide our hands in the kitchen. $27 at harpercollins.com. 4. Valcour: The 1776 Campaign That Saved the Cause of Liberty (MacMillan) is a suspenseful story of one of the most crucial and least known campaigns of the Revolutionary War. $29 at us.macmillan.com. 5. Step into beautiful images and poetic paths by Alexandra Villard de Borchgrave that take you on a spiritual journey of self reflection with REVERIES: In Search of Love, Hope, & Courage. $15 at amazon.com. 6. Elizabeth II: A Queen for Our Time (Rizzoli) is an affectionate celebration of the beloved monarch. $45. 7. Capote’s Women: A True Story of Love, Betrayal, and a Swan Song for an Era reveals the complex web of relationships and scandalous true stories behind Truman Capote’s never-published final novel, Answered Prayers. $20.

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ADOPT A SHELTER PET! Peggy Adams Animal Rescue League will adopt over 6,000 animals into loving, forever homes in 2021. PeggyAdams.org • 561-686-3663 • Email@PeggyAdams.org West Palm Beach • Florida


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1. A trip to The Charlotte Inn in Edgartown revisits the grand and glorious lifestyle of Edwardianera England. For reservations, call 508.627.4751. 2. The limited-edition Nécessaire à Parfum, a perfume case adorned with the emblem of Cartier, the Panther. $590 at cartier.com. 3. The perfect gift for travelers, children, and loved ones, St. Christopher has become known as both a spiritual and cultural symbol of protection and safe travel. 18k gold, red enamel, and emerald cabochon stones. $5,600 at heritagejewelryny.com. 4. These Hunter boots offer a slimmer fit that’s great for city-living, but still able to withstand the elements. $170 at hunterboots.com 5. The HOPE Lifestyle Fragrance Collection features travel-sizes of the brand’s signature scents, and all net profits from the set go directly to the Hope for Depression Research Foundation (HDRF). $200 at hopefragrances.com. 6. Available at

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Jennifer Garrigues is a unique Moroccan metalwork box. Bone inlaid, interior lines with painted leather. 8.5”w x 6.5”l. $795 at jennifergarrigues.com.

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1. Short sleeves and a center button closure, J.McLaughlin’s Sarabeth Puffer Jacket is the quilted topper of the season. $248 at jmclaughlin.com. 2. F.E. Castleberry continues the tradition of personalization—albeit irreverently, of course—with bold stripes and sans serif initials on this vintage Mark Cross briefcase. $2,500 at fecastleberry.com. 3. These diamond and platinum Twisted Horn Earclips from Verdura reimagine the classic hoop earring. $59,500 at

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verdura.com. 4. Give the gift of elegant dining at Renato’s, Palm Beach’s premier destination for gourmet cuisine and impeccable service.

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Visit renatospalmbeach.com. 5. Diptyque’s Limited-Edition Carousel Set with the 190g Baies (Berries) Candle will bring a festive touch to any home. $128 at diptyqueparis.com. 6. Leopard is always a good idea, and Veronica Beard’s Avenel dress does it right. $698 at veronicabeard.com.

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1. Harry Winston’s Berry Cluster Ruby and Diamond Pendant. Price upon request at harrywinston.com. 2. Treat the family to a long weekend at The Colony Palm Beach. For reservations, visit thecolonypalmbeach.com. 3. Charlotte Kellogg’s Laurel Silk Jacket ($350) and Slim Cut Dupioni 4. Known for its wonderfully retro refrigerators, Smeg has launched a 1950s-inspired 2-Slice Toaster. $179 at nordstrom.com, or head to Nordstrom’s first-ever home décor destination, located in the flagship store at 225 West 57th Street. 5. You can’t go wrong by gifting the Roger Vivier Jewel Box. This set comes with a pair of pendant earrings, a hair clip, and a hairband—all finely crafted with precious crystals. $1,595 at rogervivier.com. 98 QUEST

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Stretch Pants ($300). Visit charlottekellogg.com.


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1. The BMW X5, Red from Best Ride on Cars includes working music and horn sounds, LED lights, forward and reverse options, doors that open and close, and remote control access for the convenience of parents. $449 at maisonette.com. 2. Quentin Blake’s A Christmas Carol (Rizzoli) is a beautiful gift edition of a timeless classic. $15 at rizzolibookstore.com. 3. Bundle up your little one in full-body warmth with Canada Goose’s Baby Lamb Snowsuit. $395 at canadagoose.com. 4. Made for the littlest of feet, Ugg’s Classic Koala Stuffie is a zip-up boot inspired by favorite stuffed animal toys. $80 at ugg.com. 5. Roller Rabbit’s Holly Jolly Hathi Pajamas. $65 at bloomingdales.com. 6. Wonder & Wise’s plush dinosaur rocker with a sturdy wooden handle. $149 at saksfifthavenue.com. 7. The unique FAO Wooden Nutcracker is the perfect accent to any table, mantel, shelf, and more. $60 at faoschwarz.com.

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1. Pointy Snout Caviar’s Tasting Trio Set: 50 grams each of Siberian, Ossetra Select, and White Sturgeon Supreme caviar presented in the brand’s signature stylish blue box with a sturgeon-engraved stainless or to indulge in all at once. $800. 2. Man’s best friend deserves a spot on your Christmas tree too! Bombki’s handmade glass Tree decorations are timeless classics. Starting at $38 amara.com. 3. Got a loved one who’s hard to shop for? Lock in a lifetime of memories with a Barton & Gray Mariners Club membership, offering unlimited access to a fleet of Hinckley yachts. Call 617.728.3555 or email info@bartonandgray.com. 4. Send something sweet with Dear Annabelle’s Candy Cane motif notecard set this holiday season. $80 for a set of 10 at

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dearannabelle.com. 5. Gil Walsh Collection’s Sullivan Pet Bed is available at the design studio in West Palm Beach. It can be ordered in an array of stain and water resistant performance fabrics and trims to match the customer’s home décor. $5,200. Call 561.932.0631.

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steel caviar key. A gift to spread out over three celebratory occasions


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1. Give a friend, loved one, or yourself the gift of JECT! Become a member and enjoy 20% off Wrinkle Reducer treatments. 10% off all other services and products. Perks from brands like SoulCycle, and enjoy JECT swag. Starting at $99, visit jectnyc.com for details. 2. Roberto Coin’s Love in Verona Diamond Pave Zipper Necklace in 18K white gold with Diamond Flower Accent, 9.35cts. $39,500. 3. Ralph Lauren Women’s Custom Packable Jacket. Your choice of colors for the body, sleeves, zipper, and Polo Pony, and the option to add a name or message on the interior label, this jacket is truly one-of-a-kind. $298 at ralphlauren.com. 4. Plan a special trip to Ocean House, the historic Rhode Island beach hotel that has been meticulously reconstructed to pay tribute to its storied past. Call 855.678.0364 or visit oceanhouseri.com. 5. Annabel’s, the legendary social club in London, will hold its annual Christmas Fair benefiting The Caring Family Foundation, which will open to non-members for 24 hours on the 1st of December via annabel’s.co.uk. The incredible wine and spirit selection includes this Annabel’s for the Amazon limited-edition PATRÓN Reposado Tequila ($95). Proceeds from each of these bottles will plant 22 trees in the Amazon. 6. Chanel’s festive Fall/Winter 2021 Collection is perfect for the holiday season, featuring sequin silhouettes and stylish looks for a trip to the slopes. More information at chanel.com.

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THE FLAMES OF FAME: THE SHORT AND SAD LIFE OF JOANNE CONNELLEY B Y D AV I D PAT R I C K C O L U M B I A 00 QUEST


SPENDING AN AFTERNOON editing my overloaded bookshelves is a ponderous exercise because I’m attached to my books the way some of us are attached to family photo albums. Sentiment flourishes, and I find it difficult to let go of many. Among my souvenirs was a book for which I wrote the introduction—Debutantes: When Glamour Was Born by Diana Oswald (Rizzoli). Although its social importance no longer exists, the “debutante” was still a sacrosanct tradition when I was a young man of college age, celebrated in New York and surrounding environs, and other major American cities as well as in France and England mid-20th century. Perusing the book’s stories, I was reminded of a little girl from New Jersey named Joanne Connelley who came out at the Infirmary Ball here in New York in 1948. Her debut marked the height of the tradition, as the 17-year-old made the cover of LIFE, the most widely circulated and influential weekly magazine in America. The cover brought her brief international fame and fortune overnight, for what would become a star-crossed life. She was a beauty, very blonde, with large and piercing blue eyes; an “extraordinarily middleclass” girl according to one who knew her then. Shy around the “adults,” she was sure of herself when it came to getting a reaction from the opposite sex. After puberty, “pretty” became “beautiful,” and eventually “gorgeous”— the kind of looks ambitious girls in those days would kill for. She was, so it seemed, not so ambitious on the face of it. Dutiful, respectful, obedient, even compliant. Nice girls were. Or so it seemed. The mother was another story. A one-time (but never forgetting) debutante, Margaret Dorner, who as a young girl married a handsome IrishAmerican named Jack Connelley. Mr. Connelley, like his wife, was not in Social Register, but he got around. The child, Joanne, was born in 1931, just after the bottom had dropped out of the American stock market. The Connelley fortunes were tanking too. A few years later, Mother and Father divorced. Margaret, now a young woman with child, re-married and became Mrs. Huntington Watts, right out of the Social Register. She was back on track. But

Joanne embodied Margaret’s dreams. Daughter would be brought up to expect the best, and she would have it. By the mid-1940s, her mother’s marriage to Watts faded away. Margaret was back working in an exclusive Upper East Side dress shop, eking out a living to keep the precious child in private school. By her mid-teens, the child was developing into a lady. Petite, wellformed, buxom; the hair naturally golden blonde. There was a feverish mistiness to her hazel eyes, the kind that boys read as sex. The temptress was a virgin. On first sight, someone else might see sadness, or anger in that face. But then when she smiled, the sun was beaming, gone were all hints of darkness. “At 21, she had gone from being a beautiful pawn to an expensive accessory …” She was not bright. She was pleasant—

girls her age found her fun, rather than threatening. The personality was docile and willing to please. Which boys would read as sex also. Joanne just wanted most to please her Mother. Margaret was her spirit, her guiding light. And her nemesis. Mother had big plans. By age 17, a very young woman in Joanne Connelley’s world of ambition had few choices. College, if she could afford it—which she could not. Or a job—meaning a menial one, for the glass ceiling was then very low. Or she could marry, then the most legitimate pursuit in the minds of most women in those days. And, to a rich man; a very good idea. New York City in 1948 was the center of the world, bustling at all hours of the day and night. The country had emerged from

the war unharmed and the Depression had turned into the greatest boom in history. There were hundreds of nightclubs, as well as in all the big hotels like The Plaza, The Pierre, the Ambassador, the SavoyPlaza, the Waldorf, The St. Regis. On upper Fifth Avenue there were still dozens of mansions occupied by the rich. Piers along the West Side teemed with luxury steamships arriving daily from all over the world. There were seven daily newspapers that everybody read—often two or three everyday. Republicans got the The Herald-Tribune in the morning and the Telegram in the afternoon. The Times went to the liberals and the hoi polloi read the Daily News and the Daily Mirror and then read the Post and the Journal in the afternoon. All the papers had syndicated columnists who kept the public tantalized with the inside stories on society and the Hollywood stars. The biggest was Walter Winchell (30 million readers daily syndicated) in the Mirror in the morning. Dorothy Kilgallen, and Cholly Knickerbocker, the latter being a nom de plume for a column called the Smart Set, were in the Journal-American in the afternoon. They all covered society. Society girls, starting with Barbara Hutton whose coming out party in 1930 startled the nation with its cost ($52,000—about $4 million in today’s dollars), were fodder for readers. In the late ’30s, the ravenhaired, debutante Brenda Frazier became as famous as Shirley Temple. Then there was Gloria Vanderbilt coming of age. And Cary Latimer, Mimi Baker and Cobina Wright, Jr. Glamour girls—all beautiful and presumably rich, a dream come true. This was how Margaret Watts saw Joanne’s future. A social debut was the first step. That was still part of the ritual of becoming a woman in society. A girl might marry a boy she met at her coming out. Margaret didn’t have a dime, but had access to clothes. The Infirmary Ball was a bargain; each girl paid $50 to bring one escort and $10 for each additional escort. For Joanne Connelley, it was her mother’s ride to the end of the rainbow. And the girl’s ride to freedom from her mother. On the evening of December 20, 1948, she was presented with 124 other girls to DDEECCEEMMBBEERR2 20 02 21 01 0 0 3


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former wife of Clark Gable. Sweeny and Connelley made a beautiful couple straight out of Town & Country magazine. He was also twice her age. Marriage was next. Mother quit the dress shop and moved to Paris, and the newlyweds moved to Palm Beach. It was all glamour, all good. Palm Beach was then, in the 1950s, little more than a village, its part time residents still often arriving by private railroad car or yacht. It was the Old Guard, a haven for WASP snobbery. Black people left the island before dark. Roman Catholics and the Our Crowd Jewish families were tolerated—despite having seriously participated in its creation—although by the ’40s were beginning to intermarry. The Duke and Duchess of Windsor reigned over the “the season” with their annual stay at the villa of

railroad executive Robert Young and his wife Anita. Vanderbilts, Phippses, Fords, DuPonts were names that filled the captions in the Shiny Sheet. It was a town of a month of Sundays —big drinkers, big rocks, a town of too many with too much time and too much money. Nevertheless, it was also a prize that mothers like Margaret Watts (and press agents) prayed for. As did their daughters. For the 19-year-old new arrival on the party circuit, Joanne Connelley, toast of the New York gossip columnists, Palm Beach was like the Morning After. Mr. Sweeny played golf, while Mrs. Sweeny sat around—pool or the bridge table— with women often twice, sometimes three times, her age.

Many were rich and worldly. Joanne’s new social peers were used to the life of utter leisure, with nothing to do but amuse themselves. Palm Beach then was like Peyton Place for the rich. In 1950, she gave birth to her first child, a daughter, Sharon. Two years later came a second, Brenda. Motherhood made few demands on her. Soon she was bored, and probably boring. Cinderella was now a girl with too much time and too much money. Drinking became part of her daily regimen. She was a young drunk, in a world where they were all ages. She developed the classic vanity syndrome of worrying about her weight. The situation was further hindered by diet pills. They took off weight and gave you energy; a miracle! That, with a couple glasses of gin, and you could be on another planet. Sleeping pills could bring her back to the satin sheets for a nap. She was in the proverbial danger zone. She had begun to lose interest in her husband, who had already lost interest in her. She fell into the “guidance” of Dominican diplomat Porfirio Rubirosa, international playboy/lover of so many famous blonde (and rich) women such as Barbara Hutton and Doris Duke (both of whom he married) and Zsa Zsa Gabor. He was famous among his set for the size of his equipment, which was often said to be in at least a semi-state of preparedness at all times. At 21, only four years out of boarding school uniforms, Joanne Connelley had gone from being a beautiful pawn to an expensive accessory. And then high maintenance. In short time, the Sweeny marriage was over. There were more men in her life, and none of them her husband. In 1954, Bob Sweeny—naming Rubirosa as the other man, and getting custody of their daughters—divorced her. He had no choice; she had already flown the coop. The year before in Switzerland, she had met Jaime Ortiz-Patino, known to his friends as Jimmy Ortiz, a member of the Bolivian tin mining family, and only two years older than she. By the time of her divorce from Sweeny, she had already accepted Ortiz’ proposal to marry. Europe in the mid-1950s still climbing out of the ravages of the War, was the exciting place to be. Now the ex-Mrs.

EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY; GETTY IMAGES; AP WIREPHOTO; YOUSUF KARSH

society at the annual Debutante Cotillion Ball, benefiting the New York Infirmary. The Infirmary Ball was (and still is) prestigious, with girls mainly from the best old New York families. As well as the boys escorting. And so it was: Winchell reported that the Connelley girl was “a stunner.” Dorothy Kilgallen and Cholly Knickerbocker concurred. A few weeks earlier, in late November, Margaret Watts introduced her daughter to a hungry and enterprising young press agent named Ted Howard. Howard was always on the lookout for a beautiful girl who looks good in clubs, which attracts men with money, and more publicity, and all kinds of possibilities— every flack’s dream. Within weeks, Joanne, with a handsome escort, began hitting El Morocco and the Stork almost nightly—smiling behind a glass of Champagne, dancing the rhumba with the South American millionaires. The girls riding the subway to work read about her the next morning, almost smelling the perfume, hearing the music and thinking: How lucky to be her! It was all so swift that any girl might think it always happened like this. Joanne Connelley did. In mid-January 1949, just 18 years old, her face was on the cover of LIFE, the biggest selling magazine in America. “One of the prettiest of this year’s crop of debutantes,” pronounced the editors. A Ted Howard/Margaret Watts coup! The cover of LIFE was national fame itself. Photo editors across the country feasted their eyes on her fresh loveliness. Captioning her with the words “debutante” and “society,” they began to run her picture as often as it was provided. By the springtime, her name and/or her face was in one or all of the papers across the nation every morning. Movie scouts saw it too. Screen tests were offered, (and taken—she flunked). And marriage proposals. Suitor number four won. He was Robert Sweeny Jr., a lanky California-born millionaire, R.A.F. hero, and one-time (1937) British amateur golf champion. Tall, dark, and handsome, Sweeny was already famous for his affairs with Barbara Hutton (to whom he’d been engaged), and Lady Sylvia Ashley, famous herself as widow of Douglas Fairbanks, Sr. as well as a


Counterclockwise from top right: Zsa Zsa Gabor; Porfirio Rubirosa with Barbara Hutton; the marriage of Joanne Connelley and Robert J. Sweeny, Jr. featured in The Fresno Bee, 1949; Doris Duke; five debutantes (Cornelia Duryea, Cynthia Cogswell, Joan Lloyd, Grace Dyer, and Sarah Pell) from the Infirmary Ball, where Joanne Connelley made her fateful debut. Opposite page: The Duke and Duchess of Windsor, 1971.

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Counterclockwise from top right: The divorce of Jaime Patino and Joanne Connelley announced in The Knoxville Journal, January 16, 1955; Joanne Connelley; a clipping from the Chattanooga Daily Times after Connelley’s death in 1957; Robert Sweeny, Jr. and Joanne Connelley, 1949. Opposite page: Dolly Hylan Heminway Fleischman O’Brien, Charlie Munn, and the very bored 21-year-old ex-debutante, Joanne Connelley Sweeny, at a ball in Palm Beach, 1952.

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Sweeny was traveling in the same orbit as Elsa Maxwell, the Windsors, Maria Callas, Mona von Bismarck, Aristotle Onassis, Aly Khan, and Rita Hayworth. Her fame in America had crossed the Atlantic. And, she was now marrying a Patino, she was destiny’s child. Years later, she was remembered by the people who knew her then only for her looks. “She was like a well-decorated cake,” recalled Lady Sarah SpencerChurchill, eldest daughter of the 10th Duke of Marlborough and granddaughter of Consuelo Vanderbilt Balsan: “good to look at, but nothing of substance.” The Ortiz-Patino engagement came with $250,000 in jewelry (or about $5 million in today’s purchasing power). The night before the wedding, however, something went wrong. Whatever it was, Joanne wanted to back out. There was a scene. Mother’s pressure was applied. Daughter was in no position to back out. She’d left the Sweeny marriage without a sous. Do, or die. The marriage was performed in Margaret Watts’ Paris apartment and the newlyweds headed to Capri for the honeymoon. Almost immediately, sordid rumors about them began spreading. One day, seven weeks after the “I do’s,” Jimmy Ortiz returned to their villa to find his bride on the bedroom floor, unconscious. Sleeping pills. When she recovered, she suddenly departed, with her money and her jewels. Ortiz frantically searched for her. He finally found her in a dingy penzione in Naples, limp and dank and barely conscious. Pills. Taken to Rome for treatment, she fled from her husband again. This time to Lausanne. Then Paris. Then London, then back to Rome. Now a 25-year-old girl—willful, helpless, and in the classic addictive mode, heading for her “bottom,” she was destitute, except for money Sweeny would send her. She was taken in by an American reporter Mike Stern looking for a good story. She gave him the details of her dilemma—a marriage of abuse and brutality. Poor Cinderella, defiled by her prince: perfect tabloid headlines. Stern sold the story to a magazine. Ortiz sued. Stern was fined, and Joanne was held in contempt for not showing up in court.

In 1954, Jaime Ortiz-Patino filed for divorce from Joanne Connelley, now 23, on grounds of desertion. In the suit he referred to his wife as a “worthless woman who did everything for money.” She drank too much, she took too many drugs. And he wanted his jewelry back. But the docile little middle-class girl from New Jersey wasn’t giving up so easily. She still had a mother. And Margaret Watts was thinking of their future: hers and her daughter’s. They fought back with suits in France, Switzerland, and England. Mr. Ortiz-Patino, Joanne Connelley countered in her suit, was a “drugsodden wife beater” who abused her so that she “lay down to die.” The divorce suit lasted longer than the romance and the marriage combined. The stress and pressure of it put Joanne’s life on hold. Now she really

did have a drug problem. There was Dexedrine to wake her up, diet pills to slim her down and speed her along, and more sleeping pills to take it all away. All in the name of keeping up appearances. Not to mention that the baby fat that she obsessed about at 21 had become a matter of fact at 25. She settled with her mother in a remote, rented house in Neuchatel, Switzerland. Very occasionally she traveled to Paris and St. Moritz. She was not a recluse, but she was already out of the picture. In June 1957, three years after the marriage ceremony that she tried to avoid that night in Paris, the lawsuits were finally settled. The golden girl of 1949 got approximately $100,000 in cash. She also got to keep the jewels. The total was a few million in today’s dollars. The results were said to have left her optimistic once again. She would

start over. She wrote to Ted Howard in New York and told him of her plans. She wanted to get a screen test, to get the “build-up” again. After all, it hadn’t been that long, she was still the beautiful young girl on the cover of LIFE—albeit, now with a serious drug addiction. Late in the morning of June 31, 1957, two weeks into Joanne Connelley’s new life, a maid entered her bedroom and found her “unconscious and pale, breathing heavily.” Panicked, she called for Margaret Watts. Fearing the worst, Margaret called a priest for the last rites. Then they rushed the young beauty to the hospital. But not in time. Wrapped in a bathrobe, still wearing the $100,000 diamond Jimmy Ortiz had given her, Joanne Connelley had died. The cause of death was listed as a heart attack. She was 26 years old. Although from that now-distant snowy December night at the Infirmary Ball in New York when the sun shone on her, only eight short years had passed, it turned out to be one long suicide trip. Her passing was reported in The TIME, Newsweek and all the American papers. “She was the beauty with the miseries,” wrote Dorothy Kilgallen in her best sob sister prose. “She had the brilliant smile for the photographers and the terrible tears when the bedroom door was closed. She was equipped for nothing more than posing and taking orders. You couldn’t really feel sorry for her.” She was, in the words of Reinaldo Herrera, who as a very young man knew her at her zenith, “one of those incandescent people whose life was very intense and short-lived.” A friend remembered her as “a kind girl with a vivid interest in people and things. All she needed was a man who could really lead her.” But in the end, all she had was a mother with whom she holed up in a remote villa in the Alps. Few mourned her passing. She had been the meal ticket for her mother. To her own children, she was the mother they would never have. To her husbands she was dispensable, disposable; and to the press, another pretty picture gone up in the flames of celebrity. To herself, what was left? ◆ DECEMBER 2021 107


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QUEST ARCHIVE: DECEMBER 2002

QUEST ARCHIVE: DECEMBER 2002


GSTAAD GLAM B Y B R O O K E K E L LY


S L I M A A RO N S / G E T T Y I M A G E S ; CO U RTE S Y O F A S S O U L I N E P U B L I S H I N G ; C L A I R E M E N A RY

BOOKS

AS ACTRESS Elizabeth Hurley once recalled, “Gstaad oozes glamour and style and is as picture-book pretty as anywhere on earth.” And, hence, this snowy resort town nestled in the Swiss Alps is the setting of Assouline’s latest tome, Gstaad Glam. The book opens with an introduction by Geoffrey Moore, a restaurateur who spent his childhood days in Gstaad with his father, late actor Roger Moore. Moore delves into the town’s history, ultimately crediting the opening of the railway line from Montreux to Gstaad on December 20, 1904, as the beginning of the Gstaad we know today. World class ski runs and iconic establishments like the Gstaad Palace Hotel followed soon after, putting the quaint town on the global jet set’s radar. Fast forward to the 1960s—after decades of improvements and new construction—and Gstaad was coined “the place” by TIME magazine because of its international acclaim and distinguished part-time residents. In addition to its 124 miles of ski slopes, Gstaad’s attractions include iconic hotels like the Hotel Olden and the Grand Bellevue in the heart of the village, and gourmet restaurants like the Sonnenhof, a favorite among locals, or the Eagle, a chic members-only option. Highend fashion boutiques line the main promenade, perfect for post-skiing shopping. All of this is set against a From above: Soaking up the sunshine on the slopes of Gstaad, 1961; the cover of Assouline’s Gstaad Glam. Opposite page: Alfresco breakfast on the balcony of the Gstaad Palace Hotel. DECEMBER 2021 111


From above: The courtyard at Posthotel Rössli offers a relaxed atmosphere in the fresh alpine air; Chef Edgard Bovier’s Champagne Fondue with black seasonal truffle at Le Cerf. Opposite page: Balloons rise over snowcapped mountains at the Gstaad International Hot Air Balloon Festival, 1991; private jets are a favored method of arrival among Gstaad visitors. 112 QUEST

B O B M A RT I N / G E T T Y I M A G E S ; D O M I N I K K AU E R

backdrop of a comfortable year-round climate— never getting too hot in the summer or too cold in the winter—meaning there is no “off-season” in Gstaad. As Homera Sahni, producer of In the Spirit of Gstaad, perfectly summarizes, “[It is an] enchanting village in all seasons. Sound of cowbells in the summer, tranquility of snowfall in the winter…The Palace overlooking the village, like a giant chess piece.” Moore contrasts the essence of Gstaad with other similar ski resort towns like St. Moritz, characterizing it as having “less of the bling factor and [priding] itself on a more low-key atmosphere.” Notwithstanding its uniquely subdued nature, Gstaad has become celebrity magnet since the 1960s when the English rat packs would build their winter homes there to enjoy luxury comforts and much-desired privacy. Celebrity frequenters to Gstaad have included Princess Grace of Monaco,

R E TO G U N T L I & A G I S I M O E S ; H A N N A B Ü K E R - CO U RTE S Y O F L AU R A G RO H E D E S I G N ;

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I M A G E S ; K AT H R I N G R A LL A / CO U RT E S Y O F H U B LOT P O LO G O L D C U P G S TA A D ; TA R A S A H N I

R E TO G U N T L I & A G I S I M O E S ; G U N T E R F I S C H E R - U N I V E R S A L I M A G E S G RO U P - G E T T Y

BOOKS

David Niven, Frank Sinatra, Prince of Wales, and Liza Minelli, all of whom would mingle in the same restaurants and bars without bothering one another. This level of class is also understood by the locals, who are unfazed by the celebrities and routinely wine and dine in the same establishments. While glitz and glamour are in abundance in Gstaad, local tradition and culture are always close by, and the book perfectly showcases the town’s elegant and unexpected treasures through the words of its favorite frequenters. u From above: Terrace at the home of art collector, and former Le Rosey student, Francesca ThyssenBornemisza, near Saanen; businessman Bernie Ecclestone’s jet at the Saanen airfield. Opposite page, clockwise from above: Iglu-Dorf Gstaad (Igloo Village Gstaad) in the mountains of Bernese Oberland; Architect Antonie Bertherat- Kioes’s holiday chalet in Gstaad was converted from a generator statio; Saanen airfield is host to the spectacular Hublot Polo Gold Cup; Ryan Laver hiking in Saanen, 2021. DECEMBER 2021 115


EMBRACING THE SEASON: NOW MORE THAN EVER B Y M A D E L I N E G A R F I N K L E A N D B R O O K E K E L LY


COURTESY OF MSG ENTERTAINMENT; BFA

ROCKEFELLER CENTER

The first Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center was raised during the Depression-era construction of the complex, when workers pooled their funds together to create a holiday beacon for New Yorkers and visitors alike. It was a humble tree by today’s standards, standing at 20 feet with decorations of strings of cranberries, paper, and tin cans. While today’s iteration of the tree has grown in stature and the decorations

This spread, clockwise from left: Ice skating on The Rink under the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree is one of New York’s quintessential winter activities; Christmas Spectacular Starring the Radio City Rockettes; for almost a century, the Rockettes have been American icons. DECEMBER 2021 117


The iconic “Parade of the Wooden Soldiers” number in Christmas Spectacular is a stunning display of precision and clever choreography and has been a fan favorite since the show’s inception. Opposite page: Scenes from Chanel’s recent party celebrating the outdoor “Chanel N°5 in the Stars” exhibition, which was on display in November.

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COURTESY OF MSG ENTERTAINMENT; BFA

more extravagant, it remains the same world-wide symbol of Christmas as it was in 1931. The 2021 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree lumbered into New York on November 13th from Elkton, Maryland, and will be lit on December 1st. Public access is back after a pandemic-induced hiatus, making this year’s viewing the most anticipated in recent memory. The evening will feature live performances by stars like Alessia Cara, Carrie Underwood, Harry Connick Jr., and Brad Paisley. Following the 2020 cancellation of their show—the first in 87 years—the Rockettes are also back and celebrating the return of Christmas Spectacular. This one-of-a-kind Christmas tradition will run at Rockefeller Center’s Radio City Music Hall until to January 2, 2022. Also packed once again is Rockefeller Center’s iceskating rink, where Chanel most recently celebrated the 100th anniversary of its No. 5 fragrance. The rink, as iconic as the brand, was adorned with the Chanel logo and decorative perfume bottles to celebrate the “Chanel N°5 in the Stars” exhibition. The return of the beloved holiday traditions at Rockefeller Center is the true signal that Christmas in New York is back! DECEMBER 2020 00


While Saks Fifth Avenue has become world-renowned as a luxury shopping destination, its roots to Manhattan make it a city staple—especially during the holidays. The flagship store is known for their extravagant holiday windows, each year going all out to spark joy and holiday cheer. This year, Saks launched its holiday campaign in support of the Obama Foundation’s Girls Opportunity Alliance. The much-anticipated window unveiling showcased its beloved light show tradition, this time featuring a special guest—former First Lady Michelle Obama. The dreamy and vibrant displays ignite optimism and joy through the theme of reconnecting with loved ones. When designing this year’s windows, Saks asked New York-area children to describe what they’ve been dreaming of doing with their families and friends during the holiday season. Their responses: carnivals, games, getaways—and these were showcased on the flagship’s legendary 10-story-tall building. “The holiday season is an important time for Saks to connect with our customers in a meaningful way through unique and memorable experiences,” said Saks CEO Marc Metrick. “This year, we are proud to support the Girls Opportunity Alliance and to champion the program’s mission to empower adolescent girls.” 120 QUEST

This year’s window displays pulled inspiration from New York-area children, including members of the Madison Square Boys & Girls Club, asking what they most dreamed of doing with their family and friends during the holidays. Their answers—carnivals, games, getaways— were showcased on the flagship’s legendary ten-story-tall building during in stunning, whimsical ways during the 2021 light show.

COURTESY OF LUIS GUILLÉN FOR SAKS FIFTH AVENUE; BFA

SAKS FIFTH AVENUE


ANNIE WATT

DECEMBER 2020 00


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TOM SIBLEY; BFA

BLOOMINGDALE’S

The Bloomingdale’s 59th Street flagship has always been a landmark of classic New York glamor, particularly during the holiday season. This year, the much anticipated window unveiling revealed a vibrant and cheerful display that undoubtedly ignites joy—and that’s no mistake. The theme for their 2021 holiday campaign is optimism: “Give Happy,” which emphasizes the sheer joy and resilience in rejoicing with family and friends after a year of obstacles. Each display nods at nostalgia all the while incorporating a contemporary and modern twist. They showcase an old television set, old school video games, and other elements that signal at time’s past. The windows also feature an interactive element, allowing the visitors to not only admire the holiday decadence, but become part of it. One of the windows allows those passing by to see themselves in the display through a miniature selfie robot, becoming part of the art themselves. Another displays an igloo, where visitors can discover the old school video games and other hidden gems in the scene. While Bloomingdale’s windows never cease to disappoint, this year the department store went all out when it came to igniting holiday cheer and celebrating a return to the city—and each other.

From above: Bloomingdale’s at 59th Street; Santa Claus at the Bloomingdale’s party for the unveiling of the 2021 windows. Opposite page, from above: This psychedelic window, “Totally Rad,” reimagines the Christmas tree as an ’80s themed dinosaur, set against a video screen with retro geographic visuals that extend into the walls; this multicolor window, “Cozy Comforts,” highlights textures and celebrates all things crochet. DECEMBER 2021 123


Christmas is celebrated non-stop at the Doubles Club in The Sherry-Netherland. Each year, Wendy Carduner welcomes over 2,000 members and guests to enjoy eight days of Christmas luncheons. These Christmas luncheons are an established tradition; they are the warmest and most festive way to celebrate and share the season with friends. Everyone who joins in the festivities will be able to gaze at the beautiful desserts displayed in glass jars on the Dance Floor. This season, The Luncheons will begin on Wednesday, December 1st through Friday, December 3rd, and will continue on Monday, December 6th through Friday, December 10th. Throughout December, Doubles will also host a Christmas Dinner Dance with a live orchestra, Jingle Bell-themed buffet-style luncheons, an evening with a special Charles Dickens Prix Fixe menu, and a dazzling New Year’s Eve celebration. The spectacular Christmas décor will fill the club the entire month of December. 00 QUEST

PHOTO CREDIT GOES HERE

DOUBLES CLUB


Clockwise from above: A doubles Christmas Luncheon; Wendy Carduner and Santa; Rosemary Lieberman, Diana Feldman, Topsy Taylor, Joan Reins, and Charlotte Ford at the Christmas Luncheon. Opposite page, from above: Muffie Potter Aston, Somers Farkas, Susan Johnson, Amy Fine Collins, and Joanne de Guardiola at a

PN A HN O ITEO WCARTETD I T G O E S H E R E

table; festive reindeer décor; Daryl Roth, Joan Schnitzer, and Jamee Gregory.

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Counterclockwise from top right: The interior of Michael’s New York; General Manager Steve Millington with Director of Private Parties & Special Events Robyn Wolf; celebrating the 30th anniversary of Michael’s in 2019. Opposite page, clockwise from above: Michael McCarty, owner of Michael’s; the entrance of Michael’s at 24 West 55th Street in Midtown; Michael’s decorated for the holidays.

126 QUEST


COURTESY OF MICHAEL’S NEW YORK; PATRICK MCMULLAN

MICHAEL’S NEW YORK

Since it opened in the late ’80s, Michael’s New York has been an iconic Manhattan establishment, often frequented by the city’s most high-profile media personalities. The chic, classic American eatery offers an intimate dining experience as well as a unique, stylish space for groups to gather for special occasions, especially during the holidays. Since much of Michael’s clientle has historically drifted in from the nearby Midtown offices, owner Michael McCarty was patient when it came to reopening. Even as restrictions eased, he wanted to wait until the restaurant could welcome back their guests with an experience resembling what they already know and love about Michael’s. A little over a year after lockdown, McCarty has done just that, and their doors are open for guests to enjoy their oneof-a-kind dining experience. Along with being the media world’s “unofficial cafeteria,” Michael’s offers a glamorous space for private dining and parties that can accommodate anywhere between 20 to 150 people. With a stunning indoor garden, decorated with contemporary art from notable names like Frank Stella, Jasper Johns, Richard Diebenkorn, and Robert Graham, the atmosphere makes for a perfect holiday celebration. The menu is curated with attention to freshness and simplicity. Seeking out the finest ingredients, each dish is prepared to perfection and elegance. The New York institution prides itself on providing a world-class menu, great drinks, and excellent service to ensure a memorable experience for their regulars and first-timers alike. u


SKIING IS A DANCE AND THE MOUNTAIN ALWAYS LEADS BY ELIZABETH MEIGHER “Finally there was the great glacier run, smooth and straight, forever straight if your legs could hold it, your ankles locked, you running so low, leaning into the speed, dropping forever and forever in the silent hiss of the crisp powder. It was better than any flying or anything else, and you built the ability to do it and to have it with the long climbs, carrying the heavy rucksacks. You could not buy it nor take a ticket to the top. It was the end we worked all winter for, and all the winter built to make it possible.”– Ernest Hemingway 128 QUEST

S L I M A A RO N S / H U LTO N A R C H I V E / G E T T Y I M A G E S

Quest


S L I M A A RO N S / H U LTO N A R C H I V E / G E T T Y I M A G E S ; B E T TM A N N / G E T T Y I M A G E S ; S L I M A A RO N S / H U LTO N A R C H I V E / G E T T Y I M A G E S ; CO R B I S / G E T T Y I M A G E S ; P O S TE R D E S I G N BY TE D R AY; T I M G R A H A M / G E T T Y I M A G E S ; G E O R G E S I L K / T H E L I F E PI C T U R E CO LLE C T I O N / G E T T Y I M A G E S

This page, clockwise from top left: Nan Kempner on the slopes of Sugarbush in Vermont, 1960; Natalie Wood and U.S. Olympic ski racer Billy Kidd together in Kitzbuhel, Austria, during the men’s giant slalom for the World Cup, circa 1970; Manuela Boraomanero and Emanuela Beghelli on holiday in the Italian ski resort of Cortina d’Ampezzo, 1976; Brigitte Bardot hits the slopes in style with a furry friend, 1973; Prince Charles during a skiing holiday in Kosters, Switzerland, 1994; a vintage New England ski poster—“Snow trains” were once the backbone of New England skiing, when rail service from metropolitan areas was responsible for the sport’s initial popularity; a group of young friends lay out in the sun after a session of spring skiing in Ketchum, Idaho, 1947. Opposite page: Two women recline on improvised sunbeds, 1955, Cranmore Mountain, New Hampshire.

DECEMBER 2021 129


T I M G R A H A M / G E T T Y I M A G E S ; B E T TM A N N / G E T T Y I M A G E S


Quest

S TA N LE Y D O N E N F I L M S ; B A R RY Z E VA N ; RU S S E LL T U R I A K / L I A I S O N / G E T T Y I M A G E S ; PI E R R E VAU T H E Y / S YG M A / S YG M A V I A G E T T Y I M A G E S ; F R E D E R I C M E Y L A N / S YG M A V I A G E T T Y I M A G E S

SKIING IS A DANCE AND THE MOUNTAIN ALWAYS LEADS

This page, clockwise from top left: Audrey Hepburn donning Givenchy après-ski at Megève ski resort in the French Alps during a scene from the 1963 hit film Charade; Olympic skier Suzie Chaffee and Farah Diba, Empress of Iran, at Dizin ski resort in Iran, 1978; Jack Nicholson strolls through Aspen, Colorado, 1992; Mirja and Gunter Sachs at Swiss ski resort St. Moritz, 1970—Gunter Sachs was a German millionaire and former husband of French actress Brigitte Bardot; Princess Stephanie of Monaco skiing in Courcheval, France, 1985. Opposite page, clockwise from top left: Princess Diana with her sons, Prince William and Prince Harry, on a ski lift in Lech, Austria, 1991; Jackie Kennedy helps John F. Kennedy, Jr. take his first steps on skis at the bottom of a beginners slope on Mount Mansfield in Stowe, Vermont, 1964; German model Veruschka Von Lehndorff poses for Franco Rubartelli for Vogue, 1968; Victoria Beckham wearing red ski gear on the slopes in 2004; a rare ski poster for Idaho’s Sun Valley, from the 1940s.

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THE YOUNG & THE GUEST LIST BY BROOKE KELLY

The entrance of Annabel’s during its “Circus of Horrors” in London.


Clockwise from top left: Harrison Osterfield and Grace James; Josephine de la Baume; Micheal Ward and Sabrina Elba; Idris Elba with Richard and Patricia Caring; Princess Maria-Olympia of

DAVID M. BENETT/GETTY IMAGES

Greece and Denmark and Ella Richards.

HALLOWEEN AT ANNABEL’S IN LONDON ON OCTOBER 29TH, Annabel’s hosted its annual Halloween bash, “Circus of Horrors.” The club was transformed for an evening of thrills, and each rooms was terrifyingly themed—from the haunted ticket office, to the broken ballerina’s dressing room. Guests that evening included Annabel’s owner Richard Caring and his wife Patricia, Idris and Sabrina Elba, Princess Maria-Olympia of Greece, and Ella Richards among others. DECEMBER 2021 133


YGL

DOM PERIGNON’S DINNER BENEFITING BORN THIS WAY FOUNDATION IN HONOR OF World Kindness Day, Dom Pérignon hosted an intimate dinner with music by The Misshapes’ in support of Born This Way Foundation, co-founded by Cynthia Germanotta and her daughter, Lady Gaga. The evening took place at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and honored the ongoing collaboration between Dom Pérignon and Lady Gaga that celebrates artistic expression and creative freedom while raising money for the charity.

Camilla Stærk, Helena Christensen, Joshua Jackson and Pom Klementieff

BFA

Billy Porter, Amanda Seyfried and Joshua Jackson

Lauren Remington Platt Cynthia Germanotta and Indya Moore 134 QUEST

Stella Maxwell and Evan Mock


DEBUT OF “CHANEL N°5 IN THE STARS” AT ROCKFELLER CENTER IN NEW YORK IN EARLY NOVEMBER, Chanel hosted a party to debut “Chanel N°5 in the Stars,” an outdoor exhibition at Rockefeller Center that celebrates the iconic fragrance’s 100th anniversary. N°5, the first scent created by a woman, was an immediate success and remains the bestselling and most well-known fragrance in modern perfumery. The evening included a variety of special presentations on ice by the Brass Queens Band and professional skater Elladj Baldé, and a musical performance by Mary J. Blige. The iconic ice-skating rink was dressed in the Chanel N°5 logo.

Guests were treated to presentations on the ice Nardia Boodoo

BFA

Ella Hunt, Anna Baryshnikov and friend

Renee Rapp and Alyah Chennelle Scott

Mary J. Blige

Sadie Sink DECEMBER 2021 135


SNAPSHOT

SPECIAL DELIVERY

LONDON

136 QUEST

2021

H A R R I E T M A N I C E P H OTO G R A H Y; C A P E H A RT

THE PREDICTED DEMISE of the Christmas card in the digital age was somewhat premature and definitely inaccurate. Though some may have initially abandoned the traditional means of holiday greeting for the then-newfangled E-card, or later, even a posting on a social media platform, there’s been a recent resurgence in creating a more personal, old-fashioned kind of Yuletide dispatch. Perhaps the pandemic brought back the notion of reaching out to friends and family with a photographic expression to update everybody about family expansions or travels during the past year, without resorting to the much-maligned and often dreaded annual brag letter, through which we might learn of cousin Archibald’s graduation from his prestige preschool or Auntie Cecile’s totaling of her Lamborghini on her trip to Tuscany. After all, there’s Instagram—or PageSix, thanks to the right publicist—to present daily updates of one’s to-be-envied life and the myriad of adventures of the immediate family. But seriously, Christmas cards are a big business. More than a billion are bought and mailed via post each December in the U.S., generating about a third of the $8 billion annual total of greeting card sales. Quest asked several friends to share their own family holiday photo cards with readers. We think anyone on their lists would be pleased to receive one. Merry, merry!—Robert Janjigian u


The new Bentayga Speed.

The Ultimate Bentayga.

Discover more at 2801 Okeechobee Boulevard, West Palm Beach or contact Bentley Palm Beach by calling us at 561-564-0715 or visiting BramanBentleyPalmBeach.com The name ‘Bentley’ and the ‘B’ in wings device are registered trademarks. © 2021 Bentley Motors, Inc. Model shown: Bentayga Speed.

BENTLEY PALM BEACH A Braman Motorcars dealership


SWAP THE SNOW FOR SUNSHINE

DO WHAT MOVES YOU LIVE PASSIONATELY. DRINK RESPONSIBLY. WWW.RESPONSIBLEDRINKING.ORG © 2021. BACARDÍ, ITS TRADE DRESS AND THE BAT DEVICE ARE TRADEMARKS OF BACARDI & COMPANY LIMITED. BACARDI U.S.A., INC., CORAL GABLES, FL. RUM – 40% ALC. BY VOL.