PaperCity Magazine

October 2013 - Houston

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 11 of 95

Day Three: I f there could be one word to describe Le Grande Nuit, other than amazing, it would John be red. Guests entered the property via the Taylor Cour Carrée upon a breathtakingly long red carpet flanked by a cache of servers proffering champagne. The red carpet wound through Gela Nashthe immense courtyard and into the museum's Taylor Pavillon Sully, where Becca greeted guests in an astonishing Jean Paul Gaultier beaded skirt paired with a black blouse and architectural red crocodile belt. "This skirt weighs about 40 pounds, so I'm just going to stand here like the statues!" she exclaimed, nary a hint of her effervescent personality hindered by her extra couture kilos. Movie star and musician Milla Jovovich was one of the first to arrive, ephemeral in an impressive Saint Laurent sequined gown from the Spring 2013 collection. She was followed by the gorgeous Charlotte Casiraghi, an absolute mini-me of her mother, Princess Caroline of Monaco, in a pink-and-red gown by Giambattisti Valli, who also attended the event. The ever-glamorous arrivals continued with designers Andrew Gn and Bruno Frisoni; actress Tracee Ellis Ross (daughter of Diana Ross); Duran Duran's John Taylor with his fashionista wife, Juicy Couture founder Gela Nash-Taylor, in Alexander McQueen; Bond girl Olga Kurylenko; Ariane Dandois and daughter Ondine de Rothschild; Irina Abramovich (Russian billionaire Roman's ex); and the beautiful Bianca Brandolini. Cocktails were offered at various bars during the journey through the museum, into the Venus de Milo gallery and on to Galerie Daru, where dinner was served amongst an array of Michelangelo's statues. L.A.'s Bourgeois Productions oversaw the task of set up and production, lighting the coffered environs, including the famed Winged Victory, in a sea of rouge. Red roses projected on the ceiling reflected the several-foot-high-tower on each table, filled with a freesia, roses, snapdragons and balloonsized blood red peonies. The scene was awash in VIPs: Hervé Van der Straeten, Hubert and Xavier Guerrand-Hermès, Louis Vuitton CEO Michael Burke, and Florida Governor Rick Scott with wife Ann. Personally, sitting across from Duran Duran's Nick Rhodes, I really couldn't tell you who else was there. But the real show came after dinner, when the crowd again moved through the otherwise unpeopled museum, settling under I.M. Pei's famous glass Pyramid for after-dinner drinks and dessert. As is tradition, Becca expertly led an impressive auction of a small selection of priceless trips and art, many of which were picked up by Houston folk. Personally knowing most of the guests helped, with Becca ramping up the value of each item by speaking directly to potential donors: "Oh, it's only money. Who will give me another Nick Rhodes Nefer Suvio Patrick Burk Greggory Burk Olga Kurylenko Tracey Amon Andrew Gn I.M. Pei's glass Pyramid, scene of the Diana Ross concert Le smoking at the home of Hubert Guerrand-Hermès few thousand?" The auction eventually brought more than a million dollars, contributing to the events' ultimate total exceeding $3 million for the Louvre's coffers. Then another lovely lady took the stage. Out came, while singing "I'm Comin' Out," the divine Diana Ross, in bright red vintage Bob Mackie, to the delight of the crowd. "Are you too young to remember this one?" she asked while singing "Stop i n the Name of Love," "Baby Love," "Where did Our Love Go," "You Can't Hurry Love" and, finally, "Ain't No Mountain High Enough." Every person in the crowd, from whatever country, knew every word. After the concert, we walked yet another red carpet from the Pyramid across the courtyard to Café Marly for the after-party, DJed by The Dolls, a hot duo from NYC. More drinking and dancing lasted until the wee morning hours, with everyone marveling at the outrageousness and fun of it all … until 5 am rolled around. Will Trois be the final installment of Liaisons au Louvre? Of course, one can never say never, but it's possible this was the finale, as Cason Thrash may have her eyes on a different horizon. Rumor has it Becca's taking on Venice next, but she would neither confirm nor deny. Alas, we must stay tuned for what's in store for la Becca, and keep our fingers crossed our names are on the next invitation list. Juliette Maillot Charlotte Casiraghi JeanPhilippe Prugnaud Cristina Buccellati Ceron Lindsey Love Alfiya Irina Kuanysheva Abramovich Joanna Przetakiewicz Derek Blasberg Bianca Brandolini George Farias Giambattista Valli Julie Macklowe Tired tootsies Sara Dodd Natasha FraserCavassoni Andrew Rhoda Jill Bikoff Behind the Scenes with Becca Cason Thrash Susan Tolson "T Ambassador Rivkin Becca Cason Thrash The illuminated Winged Victory presiding over the dinner in Galerie Daru ruth is, I have a love/hate relationship with the three-day event I created for the Louvre years ago. I host it every other year, since I need an entire year just to recover! Still, on balance, it remains one of my most treasured labors of love. Few people realize it is basically a one-woman show, except for my many great friends who support and attend, and a handful of very hard-working assistants joining toward the end of preparations for the event. And the preparations can be grueling ... selecting the venues (which, on its own, is full-time arm-twisting), reaching out to all our sponsors, securing every auction item including a major work of art, working with the caterers on menus and wines, and then there are the seating charts, which is always a nightmare with so many moving parts, especially over three nights of seated dinners. I have ended up being responsible for designing every evening's decor and work feverishly up to the last minute with several French florists, averaging five to six visits until we get it right. I select every plate, fork, glass ... design the invitation, the auction catalogs, the menu cards ... even the place cards are created in Houston. Next, I work closely with the production team in L.A., securing the talent, dealing with the contract and rider ... the stage, lights and sound requirements. No detail is allowed to remain un-scrutinized or unperfected! The biggest stress factor by far, however, is selling the event ... raising the money: tickets are $10k per person. Relative to so many other such events, I know LauL is a fantastic bargain for what you get, but nonetheless, that is not an insignificant amount of money for anyone "just to attend a party," regardless of the cause. :) Then there are the airfare, hotel, clothes, jewels ... it adds up quickly! All that said, "Trois" — as we began calling it after the second Liaisons au Louvre — was by far the hardest to sell. Who knows why; most likely the economy, maybe so many graduations this year, or weddings, and a new president in France asking for 75 percent tax on high-net-worth individuals certainly didn't help either! :) All combined, these circumstances made many who had attended in the past unable to attend this time. In the end, however, so many did come through! Great friends from all over the world moved mountains ... made it happen ... and LauL went in the books for three million! Now it's margarita-time in Houston. Rivals just about anything on this earth, don't you think?"

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of PaperCity Magazine - October 2013 - Houston