The French Heritage Society held its annual gala themed “On The Riviera” on Wednesday November 8, 2017 with the evening beginning at 7:00 PM. For years I have attended this lavish event at The Pierre but tonight it was a smaller affair at 370 Park Avenue to celebrate its 35th anniversary with the main ball being held in Paris two weeks ago.
|Joe Fichera, Lucia Hwong Gordon, Geoffrey Bradfield and Kassidy Smith – All photos Lieba Nesis|
Those of the less fortunate Francophiles in attendance who were not invited to France had to settle for a small buffet dinner and some petit fours in New York.
|Sana Sabbagh and David Sadroff|
This organization highlights the pivotal alliance between France and the United States and seeks to restore French architecture and landscaping in the United States and France. This evening raised a record-breaking $1.1 million given towards 15 grant projects in France and 5 in the United States.
|Michele Witmer and Penny Grant|
Moreover, the student exchange program between the U.S. and France contains 39 exchange students with an architect-in-residence program that allows participants to spend time at the Chateau de Chambord to prepare the edifice for its architectural future.
|Jean Shafiroff in Victor dE Souza gown|
There were many lovely ladies this evening including Jean Shafiroff who stunned in a custom made Victor dE Souza gown accompanied by matching diamond gloves. De Souza is an incredible talent whose work should be displayed on the editorial pages of Vogue. This pale green tiered dress took him 3 months to make with the utilization of more than 25 yards of material. Victor wore an applique jacket of his own design that I mistook for couture Gucci or Dolce and Gabbana.
|Ann Van Ness|
Some other fashion standouts were Ann Van Ness in a sequined pink Dolce dress with fabulous Prada shoes and Lucia Hwong Gordon in a vintage peach feathered dress.
CeCe Black was divine in a blonde wig and white flapper dress while Sana Sabbagh came in an elegant Chanel jacket paired with black pants.
|James G. Brooks, Elizabeth Hartnett, Marie Pierce, Shaune Arp, Christian Gudefin and John Pierce|
After a live auction was held with goodies such as a 5-course dinner by Chef Daniel Boulud, guests headed to the dance floor to enjoy the tunes of The Bob Hardwick Sound. At 10:45 PM it was time to say “au revoir” to another exciting night in the Big Apple.
– Lieba Nesis