Veuve Clicquot Campagne held the Halloween party of the Year at a beautiful venue. Ace Gallery on Hudson street, NYC. The invitation only crowd poured into the stark white walled hall and were welcomed by live sculptured-like costumed women: so stone-like you could hardly see them blink. (see photo) The hall gave access to large, white decorated spacious rooms. Naturally the Veuve Campagne flowed till midnight. Your glass was filled as you walked around nodding to this one and that one and noshing on the Long Island Blue Point oysters at one station, bugala caviar at another, filet mignon at another and on and on while trays of hot and cold hors d’oeuvres were offered tempting you to take more. They had an elegant guest list, many in masks and costumes. The winners were King Arthur and Queen Gwenivere, dressed in their red regal robes. You couldn’t resist dancing your feet off to the rhythm of favorite DJ dance tunes. In another room many cued up to find the colors of their aura. In another, a serenity moving video played on a large screen that almost put you to sleep. It was quite a show. You couldn’t help but get into the party mood. From what I hear, this magnificent soiree is held once a year but in different parts of the United States. Wherever it is held people will travel to it.
Remember Asti’s Restaurant in the village with their singing waiters? Well, it is back again under the name of "Strip House" (not to be confused with Big Al’s Topless Go Go Bar), named the Strip House because of their famous strip steak. It is now under new management and has been attractively renovated with framed pictures of the old time stars: some a little racy for that era but so mild for today. It was a vintage affair and some guests arrived in vintage clothes for the launching of a new book by Tiffany Dubin and Ann E. Berman called "Vintage Style." The photography and designs and colors are so great the women will just love this book. They really did a nice job with it. Harper/Collins are the publishers and you can find it in book stores everywhere. And, if you go to the Strip House do try their oysters Rockefeller. They are divine!
There was Donna Hanover, our first lady of the City of New York, broadcast journalist, Broadway actress starring in the Vagina Monologues on Broadway, with scissors in hand cutting the ribbon for the inauguration of the Stanhope Hotel as a luxury Park Hyatt hotel. The legendary Stanhope Hotel is located on 81st. street and Fifth avenue across the street from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Though it has undergone a complete renovation, it still retains its European flavor when first built in 1926 as a manor house with goldleaf moldings and antique tapestries in their intimate public rooms. The Melrose restaurant features elegant dining and catered the affair that night. The Stanhope is for the discerning traveler who only wants the best in comfort, service and amenities. At the beautiful reception, where champagne and top brands of liquor were served along with superb food from oysters, caviar, luscious lamb chops, and more following the ribbon ceremony, I had a chat with the general manager, Terry Dunbar, who has been associated with the Park Hyatt hotels in London for a number of years and who has always yearned since childhood, when he used to pass by the Stanhope Hotel, to be a part of its management.
As a true American, Terry Dunbar’s dream has finally come ture. He has great expectations for the Stanhope and will continue in the tradition of pleasing his guest with ultimate pampering with a staff to attend to their every need. While a hotel, the Stanhope opens its doors to you with a warm, intimate and welcoming feeling. After all, that is what the Stanhpe, is all about, the pleasure and comfort of the guests in beautiful surroundings. If I were visiting New York it would be my first choice. It has been featured in The New York Times Food Art and on "Sex in the City."
Let us not forget this weekend is Veteran’s Day. Remember our heroes in your prayers. At the request of my readers, I submit my poem:
Looking Back Through The Years
Looking back, through the years
At the foot of his grave,
I see a young man, handsome and brave.
A West Point cadet in gold buttons and Army gray,
Marching on the field for the drill of the day.
At a Saturday night ball,
Their "Hop" in Cullem Hall,
He placed his glove in my glove.
We danced together and fell in love.
We clung to each other,
Hand in hand as we talked,
Strolling along "Flirtation Walk"
We’d steal a kiss, a warm embrace, a hug or two.
That’s all we could do.
The rules were strict.
The work was a grind.
A grueling four years,
Though he didn’t seem to mind.
"We’ll grow old together,
till there is more than a trace
Of character lines upon your face," I’d say
But, it wasn’t meant to be that way.
Under the swords we were we
In the chapel on the hill.
As I stand by his grave,
I can see it still.
A conflict broke out in a foreign land.
He was called to duty and obeyed the command.
Missing in action, he was for three and a half years.
A return of remains could no stop the tears.
He is buried here
And can be found
Among other brave soldiers
On the Academy ground.
A young life snuffed out,
And I wanted to shout,
"Lot’s have no more.
Dear God, keep us free
From another war."
-Dedicated to my Kenneth
London $399, RT Air/3 nights hotel with breakfasts, $50 Harrod’s gift. Book by Nov. 30 for travel Dec. 1 to Feb. 4, 2001.
St. Valentine’s Day on the ms Veendam, Feb. 9, $699, 7 day Caribbean.
12 day Norwegian Dream Trans-Atlantic from $699, oceanview $799, November 14.
Seniors on Norwegian Sky Alaska, $849 pp; Norway $549 inside, $649 oceanview; 7 day Eastern, Dec. 16, 2000. . . .(55 and older)
Holland America Maasdam, Dec. 10, 17, $599, 7 day Easter, Southern and Western Caribbean, Nov. 24 Vendam $599, Dec. 1, 8, 15 Ryndam, Dec. 9, $599. Sale ends Nov. 17. Hurry! Volendam, Nov. 22, Dec. 9, 12; Zandam, Nov. 2132, Dec 3 and 13 $1099, Jan. 26 Veendam, $699, inside must be booked immediately. Friday Nov. 10, Nov. 24, Dec. 1, 8 & 15, Jack Frost Frolic from $499 inside, $599 oceanview ms Veendam, 7 day Southern Caribbean. Last Call book by Friday, Nov. 10, Dec. 24 Christmas Week Caribbean, 7 days $899.
Check travel specials Monday through Friday at 12 noon on WNYX-TV Thursday at 1 p.m. Channels UHF 27 & 35.
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