May 2, 2005 -- LAS VEGAS — This past weekend, Steve Wynn's $2.7 billion hotel the Wynn opened. So many private planes that they had to fly into the nearby airport of Hendersonville.
May 7, with a hip Brett Ratner party, the younger crowd tests out the place. This weekend was the older money. Not the tattooed navels set. The Tiffany jewels set. Like the Steve Roths. He owns Vornado realty. The Sidney Poitiers. He owns Oscars. The Donald Trumps. You know what he owns.
The Leonard Lauders. He was shop shopping. Checking out the hotel's Dior, Chanel, Brioni, Vuitton, Cartier, Graff stores. She'd gone antiquing. In a town where money goes as fast as marriages in L.A., antique shops and hock shops are a great bet.
It was Elizabeth Taylor in a wheelchair. Steve Lawrence, but Edie Gorme I didn't see. Leslie Moonves and Julie Chen, who said: "I went to work 4 a.m. to do the morning show. I finished 6 a.m., so I'm here to enjoy." Connie Chung and Maury Povich, who said: "It's the last opening where you'll ever see me." I don't know what that means but I wrote it down anyway. Dominick Dunne, trolling for Vanity Fair gossip, was to dine with a couple in the Steakhouse but couldn't remember who, and is probably still standing at the maitre d's desk. Robert Wagner and Jill St. John. She'd suffered a fall skiing in Aspen, had surgery, now has a cane and said: "My healing present, all I want is for my husband to take me for a visit to New York."
Faces like George Hamilton with ex-wife and best pal Alana; Burt Bacharach, who personally escorted his wife to the loo; Barbara Sinatra; Carl Icahn; Barbara Walters, with the Oscar de la Rentas. Charlie Rose who interviewed Steve Wynn. Names like Bud Yorkin, health nut Kirk Kerkorian, who's nearly 90, looks 60 and never had a facelift. Paul Anka who opens mid-August on a four-year deal with Atlantic City's Borgata. Food critic Gael Greene schlepping around the different restaurants. Remember Siegfried and Roy's horrific tiger mauling experience? Hospitalized Roy unable to talk for months and months? Both came, Roy in a wheelchair and speaking to friends.
Shaking all hands, papa President George Bush without Barbara but with Secret Service. On one side of the casino that breaks even on $2 mil a day — Lee Iacocca. Near the baccarat dealers imported from Foxwoods — Tommy Mottola. Chefs Daniel Boulud and Sirio Maccioni. Manolo Blahnik, who, when Mrs. Barry Slotnick asked: "Why aren't your shoes made wider?" blew her off with: "Ask my managers." And two great-looking broads side by side. I don't know about bewitched, bothered and bewildered. About be-furred and be-diamonded Natalie Cole and Patti LaBelle, I know. Sing and bling. Or as Patti put it: "Girl, only Jews and blacks really get it together."
Donna Karan fresh from Bali: "My late husband Steve's sculptures are in front of the hotel. How could I not be here?" Atlantis owner Sol Kerzner sniffing out the competition. Everyone whispering how great Don Johnson looks, and him whispering: "I'm happy to be here. It's our anniversary. My wife and I are married six years."
Paramount movie chief Sherry Lansing and husband Billy Friedkin, off to Israel for five weeks. Said Sherry: "I'm excited. I hear there's a Banana Republic and Gap in Tel Aviv." Steven Spielberg and Kate the missus. He got onstage when Hugh Jackman introduced him, and when he got off-stage he told me: "It was unrehearsed. I didn't know he'd call me, and I was worried I'd trip going up the stairs." Lordy, those amateurs are all the same.
Had anything happened in that ballroom, America's entire entertainment industry would have gone splat. It was songwriter Carole Bayer Sager, moneymaker Barry Diller, record king Clive Davis, Grammy-winning musicman David Foster, George Schlatter, who every four years organizes our Inaugurals.