As flash floods and tornadoes swarmed throughout North Texas on Friday, May 8, one very special spot remained untouched — Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek. Perhaps that’s because it was the site of the TACA Lexus Party on the Green. Who knows? Maybe Mother Nature was finally playing nice after her icy cold shoulder had cancelled TACA’s Silver Cup Award Luncheon back in March.
Just in case, TACA Executive Director Becky Young wasn’t going to play Russian roulette with the weather witch. Just two days before the event she had the Mansion auto courtyard tented and rearranged the floorplan to include the luxury hotel’s dining room, bar and ballroom.
The evening kicked off with the VIP’s like POG Co-Chairs Rawleigh and Kate Ralls, Lisa and John Runyon, Gillian Breidenbach, Laura and Justin Tilley, Keenan Delaney, Eneida Hatch, Diana and Francis Sommer, Tiffany and Paul Divis, Christy Coltrin and Golden Skillet creator Brad Oldham, Shane Allen, Matthew Crowe, Peyton Strouth and Barbara and Don Daseke partying in the tent filled with chefs cooking up a storm and adult libations always at hand. Billie Leigh Rippey was telling one and all about the newest member of the Rippey clan — Asher Christian Smith. The one-week-old was Billie Leigh’s daughter’s first grandchild, which petite blonde Billie Leigh beamed made her a “great-grandmother.”… In discussing the recent sale of his company, Hal Brierley reported that the new owners don’t mind if he “consults” in the same field, so he’s planning to start a new tech company that will focus on providing consumers with rewards for their time.
Kate Rose Marquez, fresh off her successful heading up of the Cotes du Coeur, wore a dress with no waistband, so she could try all the food stations. When someone told her that it’s “not exactly a Muumuu,” Cotes du Coeur Gala Chair Kristen Johnston quickly piped in, “That’s tomorrow night!”…Former City Councilperson/Realtor Mary Poss admitted that she was having to stop some of her buyers because prices were too high. What’s driving the business more than corporate relocations? According to Mary, it’s existing-company consolidations and expansions….Mansion Chef Bruno Davaillon smiled about this POG being his fifth one.
Rosewood’s Tracy Fitz was introducing Rosewood London Manager Michael Bonsor to locals. Scot-born Michael joined Rosewood in 2013 after working for the Claridge hotels. In describing the London hotel that’s just steps away from Covent Garden, he said the design is eclectic, with thousands of piece of art. It includes one of London’s most expensive suites — the 6,295-square-foot Grand Manor Wing with six bedrooms and goes for 22,000 pounds a night. It even has its own ZIP code! And just who rents such a place? According to Michael, it’s not celebs but rather business moguls from China… Another couple of newcomers to the area were Javier Moreno and Alba Reyes from Toyota, who were with Lisa and Marvin Singleton… Past POG Co-Chair Cindy Stager and Jill Tananbaum decided that this year they would break with their tradition of passing on the food. They were definitely going to sip and snack…Word quickly made the rounds that Rosewood London Chef Amandine Chaignot’s fish and chips rated seconds and thirds.
While acclaimed chefs whipped up delicious items resulting in dizzying collection of aromas, they also raised the degrees in the tent. Who would have thought with all that rain and unseasonal cool weather, heat would be a factor? Perhaps it was the steam playing games with his head, but WFAA’s Ron Corning was heard to say, “I hear Christmas carols.” Actually, it was DJ Lucy Wrubel and her lineup didn’t include holiday tunes.
After an hour, many sought refuge beyond the tent for cooler surroundings and more tastings. They followed a tented hallway to the Terrace overlooking Turtle Creek. The breeze was just enough to make long hair flutter, but nothing compared to the gale-like winds in other parts of North Texas. Some like Lauren Chapman found a table available and staked their claims. Others like Holly Reed and her folks Katie and Jim Reed, Lynn and Allan McBee, Simona Beal and Bob Gibbs followed the beckoning of the promised cool air wafting from the Mansion along with the aroma of more food being cooked up. Just within the doorway at the far right of the veranda, Chef Blythe Beck in her hot pink chef’s jacket acted like the welcoming committee.
In the main dining room Sheryl Maas all in white was nicely settled in a corner banquette. As she waited for husband Eric Maas and buddies Janelle and Larry Friedman, someone noticed a nice bauble on her hand. It was an early Mother’s Day gift — a Sue Gragg ring.
The Mansion bar’s with its low lighting was filled to the brim with folks like Randall Graham and Cody Baker finding the air a little cooler.
Lucky were those who made up Caroline Rose Hunt‘s entourage. They were escorted to an ultra-private dining room with a view of the grounds and even scored having food brought to them. It pays to know Mansion owners — past and present.
In the Garden Room Matt McAllister was holding court handing out house cultured yogurt, strawberries, New Mexico balsamic and coriander flowers.
Once in The Promenade and the Pavilion Ballroom, guests like Elizabeth Tripplehorn-Laurenzi and husband Alex Laurenzi discovered that the heat from the cooking chefs like a beardless Brian Luscher, Omar Flores, Danyele McPherson, Victor Palma, Stephen Rogers, Graham Dodds, Eric Shelton and Abraham Salum was starting to challenge the hotel’s A/C. But who cared about the temperature? Didn’t matter to Greg Patterson, who was signing up for the wine pull, or Lisa Ogle and her mom Nina Thornburgh, while husband Bill Ogle handled the emcee duties. However, the light blue and pink pashmina favors wrapped around the chairs seemed unnecessary for the moment.