By Lieba Nesis
The wealth in the Hamptons is unparalleled; with a lifeguard recently recounting giving swimming lessons in a home in the Hamptons which contained three pools and a trainer telling of a client offering any sum if she took up residence with an exercise starved family. These are the Lifestyles of the Rich and Uber Rich as Vanity Fair recounted the one-percenters feeling poor compared to their much richer new neighbors. Despite the vast riches of its inhabitants the Hamptons crowd is one of the most underdressed, unassuming bunch as they peruse town in flip flops, sweatpants and crappy cars-this is not Rodeo Drive. And yet pop-up stores such as Valentino in Southampton and Gucci in East Hampton realized the importance of getting these eyeballs on their products even if actual purchases are scant.
Jean Shafiroff, María Fishel, Marion Waxman, Lucia Hwong Gordon and Michele Herbert at Waxman luncheon (Photo: Libea Nesis)
The Hamptons nightlife this summer is literally kicking with venues such as Southampton Social Club, Blu Mar, and anything in Montauk reporting record crowds. Despite a late evening the prior night, on Friday I headed to the Waxman Cancer luncheon where $300 got you a delectable meal of chicken or salmon at T-Bar Southampton, a day of socialization with 125 of the most elegant women in the Hamptons and a fashion show by famed Israeli designer Kobi Halperin.
The Waxmans honored philanthropist Jean Shafiroff and she was dazzling in a Kobi Halperin blouse and Dolce skirt. Jean is the “first lady of the Hamptons” appearing on the cover of last weeks “Social Life” magazine and hosting two to three events a week. On Friday night, much of the same crew headed to “The Muses” venue in Southampton for the first ever Angel Ball in the Hamptons. Russian born socialite and philanthropist Janna Bullock, dazzled at the ball in a Frederick Anderson gown, after opening up her Meadow Lane mansion for an Angel Ball luncheon days earlier. Janna exudes effortless class as she entertains frequently at her Hamptons and Florida homes.
Due to Covid, the Angel Ball switched the venue from Cipriani in October to the Hamptons in August. Celebrating its 25th year 440 of New York’s finest paid $1,500 a ticket to the sold-out event. I have a dozen friends who tried to gain entry weeks ago but were refused. A problem with the summer season in the Hamptons is after spending $200 on the perfect hairstyle an hour later most attendees, myself included, look like they never saw a hairbrush or blow dryer.
The Ball was light on celebrities with LL Cool J dominating the cocktail hour along with Russell Simmons and titans David Rosenberg and Howard Lorber-unfortunately co-chair Mary J. Blige was a no-show. To date the foundation has raised more than $38 million to over 300 researchers. At its conclusion, the Angel Ball welcomed regulars Flo Rida and DJ Cassidy who entertained the masses with an electrifying energy. For the first time ever, Flo Rida called the men on stage to join him for some revelry as the women patiently waited in the wings.
Saturday proved no less exciting as Rudy Giuliani held an event at Capri Southampton with Bill O’Reilly and other fellow Republicans. An hour later the indefatigable Jean Shafiroff hosted the Animal Shelter Gala in a tent at Southampton’s Pond Lane. Shafiroff, joined by Stephen Baldwin and her daughters, looked resplendent in a green gown as the crowd danced and partied with abandon, while others already headed home to avert the impending hurricane. As I rushed in an uber to head back to New York I later learned the Hamptons was largely spared the ravages of Henri-with just a few hours of rain-manifesting how privileged the privileged really are.