Saturday, January 21st
6:00PM — Headed to airport while most of my friends are headed to pre-dinner drinks. Nothing like JFK on a Saturday night.
7:05PM — Self check-in shows no upgrades available (to my extreme dismay), but I know a little trick. I switch my seat to the row right BEHIND the first bulkhead row—the window seat there doesn’t have a seat in front of it! You have a window to lean on and all the leg room you want in front of you…almost like flying Business. Almost.
8:45PM — Packed gate. See that Elettra Wiedemann and Chanel PR Maria Escovar are also on my flight. The fashionable are starting to flock!
8:47PM — Plane is delayed. How very American (Airlines).
9:15PM — Finally boarding.
9:30PM — Wheels up and I stretch out. Chug a bottle of water with enough assorted vitamins to make my seat mate look at me sideways. Skip gross airplane dinner and go straight to sleep. Have to hit the ground running. Only four short days in Paris, not fourteen like during Ready-to-Wear!
Sunday, January 23rd
7:57 – Bon Jour! Not quite like waking up in a bed, but not too bad. Actually slept! Landing in about an hour.
10:05 — After quickly passing through customs and collecting my bag, I am in the car on the way to Hotel Le Meurice, home to ELLE’s editors while in Paris.
11: 14 — Upon check-in I learn my room is not yet ready, but am assured that it will be perfect when it is. How very French.
11:22 — Decide to go for a walk. Head out through the Tuileries. Hard to miss that the Roue de Paris is up in Place de la Concorde! It’s a gigantic Ferris Wheel modeled after the Grande Roue de Paris built in celebration of the 1900 World’s Fair. Have never ridden the big wheel, but this might be the trip.
12:10 — Strolling down Rue Fabourg Saint-Honore past the Coste Hotel and their spectacular flower shop next store. Must stop and take a pic.
12:30 — Hear from a friend who lives here in Paris asking where I am since she is headed to Le Meurice for the famous Meurice burger — how perfect! Looping back to the Meurice. Perhaps my room will be ready after lunch.
12:48 — Run into uber-PR flack Pierre Rougier back at Le Meurice. Stop and chat. He’s been here a while (for the men’s shows last week) and now has the Versace presentation tomorrow to produce.
13:20 — Friends finally arrive, Meurice burgers ordered!
13:34 — Waiter is back at our table to tell us there is a “petite problem.” They are out of Meurice Burgers. Merde!
13:35 — Panic ensues.
13:36 — After much pleading he promises to try to resolve the problem.
13:47 — He returns. We can have the burger, but there are no hamburger buns. We explain that if that’s the only problem then there’s no problem at all. Fashion girls don’t eat the bun anyways!
14:35 — Room is ready and heading up to unpack, shower and nap. The perfect French afternoon.
15:03 — Quickly unpack and hang clothes. I have brought a different coat for each day: a Chloé, a Céline, and Max Mara. Took up a lot of room, but important because that’s mostly what people see of your outfit in the winter. Everything else is very edited.
15:20 — Lights out for a nap.
17:15 — Email from friend Nancy Walsh, another Chanel PR. Reads: Just landed! Castigs at 7! Dinner at Cafe Castiglione? I’ll be there!
19:02 — We meet in the lobby and walk over. Nancy’s just flown in direct on a 10 hour flight from Chanel’s event in Las Vegas. My mission, which I have no choice but to accept: help keep her awake until 9.
19:14 — No sooner are we seated but friend and ELLE’s former Associate Publisher Dan Ragone (now president of Interview) breezes in. He’s been here all week and always has an update on the best clubs: right now it’s all about Silencio and Rasputine.
19:32 — Another familiar face: Cary Leitzes, art guru and people connector breezes in. Cary helped produce our Women In Art portfolio. Can always count on Castigs to make you feel right at home.
21:07 — Mission accomplished. Back at hotel it’s time to double check invitations for tomorrows Haute Couture shows which have been delivered…and then off to bed.