There’s another annual tradition right around Valentine’s Day besides flowers and chocolate hearts—exclusive celebrity giveaway parties called “gift suites.” At these high-profile events, fashion entrepreneurs and high-end product purveyors lavish entertainment VIPS with bagfuls of goodies. This is where trends are set, styles take off and specialty items are given two thumbs up.
We were flattered to be invited to present copies of our 10th Southern California edition of Here Comes The Guide book at the “2009 Valentine Romance & Oscar Sneak Peek Gift Suite,” held at the glamorous Café La Boheme in West Hollywood on February 10. We like the idea of A-list couples like Melanie Griffith and Antonio Banderas browsing through our book, picking out a location for their next romantic getaway. (Eyewitness Report: Melanie’s car has a vanity license plate that says MG *heart* AB!)
Also in attendance were 2009 Miss Golden Globe Rumer Willis, Dark Knight’s Eric Roberts, Grammy-winner Tia Carrera, veteran actor Hector Elizondo and Desperate Housewives’ bad-boy, Neal McDonough, to name a few.
Not an entertainment biz big shot? No worries—here’s your own “sneak peek” at the most wedding and romance-friendly products that the celebs snapped up (besides our Here Comes The Guide books, of course!).
Orange County’s largest bridal boutique showcased wedding dresses at the gift suite, as well as special accessories to ensure that a bride walking down the aisle (or a celebrity walking down the red carpet) has everything secure: starlets were gifted with goodies like bra tape, “Nippies,” Spanx control lingerie and other undergarment secrets. One of our favorite wedding designers, Amy Michelson (HCTG *heart* Amy!), was at the Mon Amie booth. Us mere mortals can find Amy’s slinky wedding gowns at Mon Amie’s in-store Amy Michelson boutique.
Red-hot in NYC, Clara Kasavina introduced her glittery collection to L.A. glitterati to oohs and ahhs. We’re positively star-struck by Clara’s shimmery silver selections, some enhanced with lace, rosettes and of course scads of crystals! Clara’s bold jewel-tone clutches are great for MOBs or wedding guests who want to get noticed.
Experts in custom formal wear, Tom James stylists were on hand to outfit Antonio Banderas and William “Star Trek” Shatner (do you think his tux coat comes with the Starfleet insignia?). For the captain of your heart, check out Tom James’ informative article, “Tuxedo Essentials: Mastering the Finer Points of Formal Wear”.
These lip-smacking shades are wax-free, organic and eco-friendly…and they look wonderful! With all those Hollywood air-kisses, we’re not sure why the beautiful people need Lip Ink—but we KNOW brides will find this an essential tool in their wedding day makeup arsenal.
This family-run chocolatier has been crafting their artisanal confections for three generations. Flavors like Passion Fruit Chocolate or Champagne Truffle would make some decadent delight for the two of you. Or share the love with your wedding guests, and choose from a wide variety of elegantly dressed wedding favors. Can’t get to Mignon’s retail chocolate boutiques in Glendale and Pasadena? Don’t despair—you can buy these mouthwatering treats online. (Southern California brides can also order Mignon chocolate fountains for their wedding reception!)
If their personal trainer, private chef and diet coach have let them down, performers can always turn to the “It Works” Body System to get in shape for their next MTV video. Detoxifying and slimming, the Ultimate Body Applicator Wrap also promises a short-term fix for that walk down the aisle. So what if the results aren’t permanent? You can diet and exercise AFTER the wedding day.
Emblazoned with positive affirmations like “I Am Loved,” AquaMantra natural spring water recently won an international bottled water competiton. Motivated by the scientific work Dr. Masaru Emoto and the indie-documentary hit What the Bleep Do We Know?, the idea behind Aquamantra is that loving, healthy thoughts can energize and positively affect one’s consciousness (and also improve a water’s taste!). This might seem far-fetched, but the logo is so pretty and the mantra so apropos that Aquamantra is an inspired choice for your cocktail reception!
For those in search of a more potent potable, how about featuring vodka in your cocktail hour’s signature drink? Catering to true vodka connoisseurs, this luxury brand also comes with super premium packaging: decorative Venetian glass carafes and exquisite, Fabergé-style “eggs,” a tradition begun under Russian royalty. Let these gorgeous containers embellish the décor at your cocktail hour, accompanied by Russian-themed appetizers like caviar, lox and blinis. Imperial Collection Vodka also makes an impressive gift for the best man.
Inspired by the ancient Indian text dedicated to the art of love, Kama Sutra’s sensuous playthings are made from completely natural ingredients. Seductive scene-setters like edible chocolate paint kits and honey dust (complete with feather applicator!) are sure to enhance intimate encounters during your honeymoon and beyond. Kama Sutra’s gift tins are also evocative wedding shower presents for the newlyweds.