Catherine Saxton

Ivana Trump and Count Roffredo Gaetani with
Gina Lollobrigida
Photo by Anita & Steve Shevett

BOYS TOWN OF ITALY:  Well, you didn't need to be Italian to enjoy this glamorous evening, but it did help!  Created after WWII by an American priest to help the orphaned boys in Rome, this charity has grown into one of the most prestigious and fun events on New York's social calendar. This year's honorees included the legendary Gina Lollobrigida, who at 71 (gasp!) still exudes the star quality that made her a household name.  Famed director Franco Zefferrelli shared the spotlight.  Ivana Trump and Italian beau businessman Count Roffredo Gaetani di Aragona were among the 1000 guests to salute these two great filmmakers.

HILLARY OR LAZIO: Following in my Italian mood, I was one of the lucky 50 to meet personally with Senatorial hopeful Rick Lazio at Tano's restaurant.  The indefatigable Ed Bergassi who can organize any event at any time, and make a ton of money doing it, brought politicians and labor leaders from across the city to meet the Republican hopeful. Having met Hillary recently, I've now been up close and personal with both candidates.  Who would I pick?  Well, as it's a secret ballot I'll never tell.  But if you want to put money on Lazio, it might be a safe bet as the next Senator from the great state of New York.

Having fun in the Hamptons

ALONG THE HAMPTONS: As parties slow down in New York, they certainly heat up in the Hamptons.  Even though the weather was slightly chilly, the Evening In Havana theme that Della Rounick chose for her party was a heartwarming success!  Her beautiful new house was bathed in light, and warm sounds belted out to great the guests and set them in a festive mood.  Color, color, color was everywhere. A steel band, a vivacious Disco DJ, fantastic food, and a fabulous time was had by all...and that included Denise Rich, Marty Richards, Dennis Basso, Adrienne Arpel, Neil Sedaka, and the list goes on, and on, and on!

Nurit Kahane (l-r),
Della Rounick,
Michele Herbert

ALZHEIMER’S GALA: Elsewhere in the Hamptons on a warm sunny Sunday afternoon, there was a committee meeting at the home of publisher Earl Graves.  Perched on the inlet overlooking Sag Harbor, the setting was an ideal beach/country place to talk about this fall's Alzheimer's Gala honoring the legendary Rita Hayworth.  Princess Yasmin Khan, Rita's daughter by Aly Khan, was on hand to rev up the troops.  Yasmin has, in 16 years, taken this little known disease and placed it in the national spotlight.  The Gala gets bigger and better every year, and it is because of the dedication and commitment of a group of caring people.  Add to this year's list of sponsors American Express, Anheiser Busch, and so many others.  Joining "Yazzie" were Kathy and Rick Hilton, Claudia Cohen (who is this year's honoree), Nurit Kahane Haase in charge of the journal, Susan Hess who brought along houseguest Joe Namath and serves as this year's Gala chairwoman.  Della Rounick was one of the crowd, Ken Chenault of AmEx, and so many others on this glorious day.

PRIVATE AFFAIRS: Of course, in the Hamptons life is all about choice.  So, if you went to the Alzheimer's meeting, you either had to rush off to the Princess Grace Polo Match before or after the event.  It's so tough being in two places at the same time, but scheduling in the Hamptons has become a very fine art. Prince Albert was on hand for the festivities, raising money for his mother's favorite U.S. charity.  But reports had a truly tacky crowd in the VIP tent, and not too many swells on hand.   Ah well, slowly the Hamptons is slipping down market on its public events.  The REAL place to be is always at the private affairs.

BARE FOR NUDES: Francesco Scavullo is considered one of the world's greatest photographers. The man who raised the art of magazine covers to a truly unbelievable height when he created all those Cosmo covers under Helen Gurley Brown.  The divine Miss Brown recently hosted a party for Francesco's new book Nudes, and the dress code for the evening was:  BARE!  That certainly created much consternation amongst the visiting guests, and after event planner Matthew Rich's phone was deluged with anxious callers, it was changed to "whatever!"  The party was at Local on West 47th Street, and a feast for the eyes and palate was the treat for all partygoers.

CELEBRITY SPOTTING: That's just as important as great food.  A new eatery, Manhattan Bistro, is attracting all the right attention.  In fact, to celebrate its recent launch, there were free jazz evenings for diners.  One major attraction was Kyle Eastwood, jazz bassist, who has the great good looks of his father, and a fabulous music style all his own.

FOIE GRAS CROWD: Just before she had to leave NYC for LA where her Spin City role will now be played, Heather Locklear made a Bistro stop in a whirlwind shopping spree in Soho.  Noted for its fabulous food and fantastic foie gras, restaurant Two Two Two (yep, it's at 22 West 79th Street), really gets the celebrity crowd.  On recent evenings you could see ex-Presidential advisor Dick Morris and Eileen (long suffering wife!) were deep in conversation and a huge slab of foie gras (is there any other?).  Millionaire's millionaire Regis Philbin and cohort Michael Gelman were seriously into truffles, and soap queen Eileen Fulton maintains her still svelte figure with foie gras, truffles, and angel hair pasta!  Way to go, lady!

Ivana Trump with Franco Zeffirrelli
Photo by Anita & Steve Shevett

CHAMPAGNE WISHES AND CAVIAR DREAMS:  That's the life for international celebrity Ivana Trump.  Ivana recently won a major decision against Lady Elizabeth Anson, cousin to Queen Elizabeth II.  It's been eight long years in the making, so the verdict was particularly sweet for Ivana, seen here celebrating with a friend.  Presently Ivana is launching in the Mediterranean with her three children and mother. It's certainly a champagne life to this lucky lady.

AU REVOIR: I'm off to the Riviera now...and Venice too.


Catherine Saxton has been a part of the New York social and celebrity scene for
the past 25 years. She has worked with Presidents, Kings and Princes,
plus celebrities including Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelley,
Donald & Ivana Trump, Madonna, and on, and on.

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