Friday, April 12, 2013

Classic Acapulco


I'm sorry to say that still to this day, I associate Acapulco with The Love Boat.  Sad, but true.  But in the mid-twentieth century, the Mexican resort town was a hot bed of social swells, models, and movie stars who basked in both the sun and the limelight, partying practically non-stop while wearing very chic resort wear. Or so it seems that way to me.

According to Slim Aarons, the most popular person in Acapulco was actress Merle Oberon.  Aarons also mentioned that Oberon's Mexican villa, La Consentida, was considered to be one of the most beautiful resort houses anywhere.  (I'll show photos of her villa on Monday.)  And it seems that others agreed with Aarons' assessment, including Town & Country, which also touted her as one of Acapulco's most gracious hostesses, although the magazine referred to her by her married name, Mrs. Bruno Pagliai.  I admit that when I first saw the T&C piece, I didn't make the connection.

There were lots of other socialites who spent time in Acapulco, including Baron de Redé, Emilio Pucci, and Mrs. Yul Brynner, all of whom were photographed by Aarons while dancing, drinking, and having an all-around good time.

Image at top: Guests gather at the home of Merle Oberon. That looks like Oberon, the second from the right.

Mrs. Bruno Pagliai, aka Merle Oberon, in her Acapulco home



Andrew Goodman of Bergdorf Goodman



From left, Suzy Gilly, Anita Colby, Mary Wells Lawrence, Sloan Simpson, and Mrs. Yul Brynner




There was certainly a lot of bare flesh at this party, which took place at the home of Melchor Perusquia.




Marie-Hélène de Rothschild and Baron de Redé. De Rothschild looks demure compared to the others.





Wouldn't we all have liked to attend this luncheon hosted by Pat de Cicco, especially considering that Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., Oscar de la Renta, Reed Vreeland, and Emilio Pucci can all be spotted in this photo. (You might recall that de Cicco was the ex-husband of Gloria Vanderbilt.)

14 comments:

  1. Ahhhhhh Acapulco - we've had many a wonderful time down there - stayed at Las Brisa, road trips to Taxco to buy silver - Haven't been in years. Lovely post!

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  2. What a luncheon!(last photo)if I can be there would love to have been a fly on the wall + Merle Oberon's home looks divine. Kudos to you for being invited to speak in Chicago. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

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    1. That must have been some luncheon!

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  3. Makes me nostalgic--we used to go to Acapulco twice a year. But not to those amazing parties.
    Mary

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    1. Acapulco must have been an amazing place to visit back at that time. I suppose that it might still be today.

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  4. It's like the opening of Mad Men last week!

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    1. I missed it because I was watching Mr. Selfridge! I need to catch it On Demand.

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  5. Jennifer,
    the golden age of Aca- I was there once in around 1985, way past the gilded era- we rented a villa in Las Brisas called "Casa de Ensuenos" House of Dreams- I enjoyed it, we all got sunburns- I love the look of it, but not the high contrast between the poor locals, and the rich tourists-I walked by a nearby villa owned by W. Clement Stone, I think he was a somebody? Can't remember who! Too much tequila! :)

    Dean

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    1. I'm impressed that you can remember W. Clement Stone's name! Have you Googled him?

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  6. Your post makes me wonder if the time of elegant living & entertaining are now a passing idea. With email invitations to restaurants, text conversations & the ever casualness of relationships....many generations from you, they many not understand what a luncheon or a dinner party was...

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    1. HRH, As much as it pains me to say it, I think that style of living and entertaining is rare today. It's not dead yet, but it is unfortunately uncommon. Speaking of which, few people host luncheons anymore, and it's such a civilized way of entertaining!

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  7. Victoria12:50 PM

    Busy week so only catching up on blog posts now. For some reason comment box on later MO post has gone but wanted to say if you look at the chairs in the picture of the party in the above post (supposed La Consentida) they are the same as in the second post of La Ghala and possibly the same palm trees. So which house is which?!! The plot thickens.

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    1. I noticed that too, and it only adds to the intrigue! I wonder....

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