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Splendor in the Grass

Valentino's Dinner in Honor of Anna Wintour

Click here to view the article online at Vogue.




If a creature from another world with a penchant for fashion were on the lookout for an event offering up an inside glimpse at the movers and shakers of la mode, he should have chosen last night’s fete at the beautiful Chateau de Wideville, the residency extraordinaire of Mr. Valentino. Famous for his parties, he maintains a home that is so elegant and manicured few can rival it. The gardens are a particular joy with their perfectly square-trimmed bushes, and last night, I found myself wandering through the roses with John Galliano, and his boyfriend Alexis Roche, Amanda Harlech and her daughter Tallulah, and Suzy Menkes. All of us were oohing and ahhing at the sight, the scent, and the splendor. It wouldn’t have surprised me if Marie Antoinette herself turned up around the next corner.

On my way over to dinner, I walked past Harvey Weinstein also taking a stroll. He told me he had just flown in that morning from New York to support his friend, Anna Wintour. Wintour, the guest of honor, was of course the reason for said event. And Galliano, Riccardo Tisci, Marc Jacobs, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli along with Erdem Moralioglu,Christopher Kane, and fellow Vogue editors Alexandra Shulman and Franca Sozzani were there for the occasion.

When it came to the dress code, dazzling Valentino dresses were naturally de rigueur. Think classic reds (Princess Rosario of Bulgaria and Maria Grazia). Eugenie Niarchos went against the grain though—opting instead for a long blue Valentino dress with a white Peter Pan collar.

After cocktails on the terrace overlooking the garden, we all moved to another house, which looked as if it had been erected purely for the purpose of entertaining. (Knowing what über-hosts Valentino and his partner, Giancarlo Giammetti, are that may be the case!) Four long tables were decorated with an abundance of flowers while guests served themselves delights from the Italian buffet. 

Following dinner, everyone was summoned downstairs where family DJ Antony Souza was pumping electro tunes. We danced in the Valentino home “museum” covered in photos and paintings of the last emperor, making it truly a night to remember.


- by Elisabeth von Thurn und Taxis | photographed by Kevin Tachman

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