Monday night The New York Observer joined forces with luxe residential complex Manhattan House for their Hamptons Preview Party. Guests mingled outside in the exquisite sculpture garden sipping wine and lemonade cocktails. Esteemed documentarian Albert Maysles sipped red wine and chatted with Anthony Haden-Guest, while “The Image Guru” Montgomery Frazier made rounds in a striped gondolier’s shirt and neckerchief.
Ligne Roset provided the furnishings for the evening, with trademark ruche sofas and chairs scattered throughout the garden. The design company also provided a bed for the event, arranged strategically beneath a low hanging tree alight with ligne roset fixtures. Guests, including self-described “beauty doctor” Dr. Lewis Feder schmoozed in the whimsical cot throughout the evening. Dr. Feder, master of all things glamorous, chatted with us about the state of the media. He praised the Wall Street Journal’s facelift in recent years, but disparaged the New York Times for “being a little too left. Its one step left of…. Karl Marx!” Dr. Feder exclaimed.
The Hamptons Preview also had an impressive showing from the luxury interior design set. A stately dressed Paul Chapman, president of ABC Carpets, told us he was enjoying the relaxed atmosphere. “As long as there’s no poison ivy, we’re fine,” Chapman added.
Before the night was through, two other guests warned The Observer about the insidious threat of poison ivy. Evidently unaccustomed to nature, attendees feared the worst even in Manhattan House’s pristine garden. This reporter, a California native, found herself uninformed on the subject of the perilous plant. We asked revelers how precicely one would identify the weed. “It has three leaves,” responded one guest with a haughty look. Befuddled as before, we carefully trotted over to the food, vigilantly counting leaves and avoiding all tripartite foliage. (We later determined that the panic was overblown; not a sprig of the stuff was found.)
Mini-burgers and finger sandwiches proved a huge hit among the guests. Just as a waiter would replenish the ever disappearing supply, a hoard of hungry Hamptonites would swoop in and polish off the batch.
Guests willing to wait were treated to thirty minute massages by the Exhale spa. Mounting massage chairs situated in bowers throughout the garden, weary invitees had their backs rubbed by the Exhale professionals.
Representatives from local businesses were also in attendance, displaying their wares for all to see. Perfumer Bond No.9 had a table featuring an arrangement of colorful New York scents. Indoor cycling company Flywheel had representatives on site with spirited demonstrations. A jazzy duo performed throughout the evening and added to the festive atmosphere.
After chatting and gossiping for a spell, guests sauntered through the palatial lobby of Manhattan House and out onto Third Avenue. We returned home and scrupulously checked for signs of poison ivy, finding none. We intend to invest in a large bottle of Calamine as a precaution. You never know what sorts of things might be sprouting in the wilds of Manhattan’s private gardens.