Roaring Twenties Revisited

By Richard Mineards   |   October 18, 2018
(all photos by Priscilla)

Bellosguardo, the 23-acre estate 100-million-dollar estate of the late reclusive copper heiress Huguette Clark overlooking East Beach, opened its imposing doors to the public for the first time in six decades when the 22,000-sq.-ft. mansion’s newly formed foundation threw a memorable Great Gatsby gala, which attracted more than 500 guests and is expected to have raised more than $500,000 for the cause.

The fab fete, co-chaired by Sandi Nicholson and Josh Conviser, was a throwback to the 1920s with many of the women in ornately embroidered flapper outfits and men elegantly dressed in black tie, tails and top hats, or white dinner jackets.

After being valeted by Blue Star Parking and viewing a 1933 Chrysler Roadster and 1933 Cadillac limousine that was in the family garage, guests were welcomed in the elegant hallway and directed on grey carpet to the house’s main rooms, including the reception, library, and music rooms, with intricately carved Grinling Gibbons-style wooden paneling, which had been imported from Europe, as well as being used at the family home on New York’s Fifth Avenue.

Visitors were also admonished not to touch the walls, or anything else on display, including beautiful oil paintings of Huguette’s parents, which loom large over the impressive entrance overlooking 1000 feet of Pacific Ocean frontage.

The impeccably trimmed gardens behind the mansion, decorated by Montecito event whiz Merryl Brown and Revelry Event Designers, were the main venue for the bounteous bash, catered by the Biltmore, who provided buffet tables around the grounds serving an eclectic array of fish, meat, and vegetarian dishes.

Fan dancers entertained while the band Gen8 performed music that would have been familiar to Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, later replaced by a sextet of energized singers warbling disco hits from the ’80s, which ensured a packed dance floor under the beautiful moonlit sky.

Among the hoard of historical denizens were executive director Jeremy Lindman, actor George Hamilton, Michael Hammer, former mayor Helene Schneider, sheriff Bill Brown, Allen and Anne Sides, Lynda Weinman and Bruce Heavin, Leslie Ridley-Tree, Jeff and Hollye Jacobs, Dick and Noelle Wolf, Pat and Ursula Nesbitt, Peter and Mireille Noone, Henry and Rita Hortenstine, Michael and Nati Smith, Doug and Marni Margerum, Robert and Marlene Veloz, Joan Rutkowski, Mara Abboud, Diana Starr Langley, Kristi Newton, Wayne and Sharol Siemens, Dennis and Carolyn Miller, Wendy McCaw, Tom and Eileen Mielko, Robert Lieff and Susan Leeds, Chris Toomey, Hiroko Benko, Ray Winn, Barry and Jelinda DeVorzon, Andy and Kim Busch, Tom and Heather Sturgess, Peter Kavoian, Anne Towbes, Nina Terzian, Luke Swetland, Eva Guerrand-Hermes, Arthur von Wiesenberger, Eric and Nina Phillips, Jennifer Smith Hale, Robert and Val Montgomery, Kimberly Hayes, Bill Nicholson, Bill Dedman, Paul Orfalea, Tom Parker, Sharon Bradford, Perri Harcourt, Randy and Roxi Solakian, John Daly, and Janet Garufis.

Most swellegant soirée!


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