Friday, January 17, 2014

Palm Beach Entertaining, Mario Buatta, and a Pagoda Pool House

Season is in full swing here in South Florida, and in Palm Beach that means parties, parties, and more parties! It is no coincidence that Lilly Pulitzer - a name synonymous with Palm Beach - famously said, "Life is a party, so dress like it." Palm Beachers love to entertain, and as a wannabe Palm Beacher, one of my absolute favorite books is Palm Beach Entertaining: Creating Occasions to Remember. It provides a rare glimpse into the private homes and parties of some of Palm Beach's most notable hosts and hostesses, along with their recipes and tips for stylish entertaining, whether formal, informal, traditional or avant-guard.

One of my favorite chapters in Palm Beach Entertaining is "A Royal Evening," featuring a dinner party given for the Duke and Duchess of Marlborough, by Hilary Geary Ross, one of the most glamorous hostesses in Palm Beach and New York, and her husband Wilbur L. Ross Jr. 

Palm Beach Entertaining  © Jerry Rabinowitz 

Palm Beach Entertaining  © Jerry Rabinowitz 

Look familiar? This is the party pavilion/guest house (aka "Windsong Too") that was added to the Ross's 1939 Palm Beach Georgian Revival "Windsong." Architect Thomas Kirchhoff and decorator Mario Buatta, received the Palm Beach Preservation Foundation's Schuler Award for their design of Windsong Too, which was created for visitors as well as for entertaining.  Images below are from the the July issue of Architectural Digest and Thomas M. Kirchhoff Architect

Isn't it spectacular?! To get you into the Palm Beach spirit, here are a two delicious (and simple!) recipes from the Royal Evening menu:

Palm Beach Entertaining © Jerry Rabinowitz 

Pistachio-Crusted Chilean Sea Bass 

This is a perfect choice for entertaining, as the fish is cooked in the oven, not on the stove top, thus avoiding any unpleasant odors. 

Serves 4

     1 1/2     cups shelled pistachios
     3           cups multigrain flakes or whole-wheat bread crumbs 
     4           (6- to 7-ounce) Chilean sea bass fillets 
     2/3       cup Dijon-style mustard 

Preheat the oven to 350° F.

In a food processor, pulse the pistachios and multigrain flakes until fine. Transfer info a shallow bowl.

Coat each piece of bass with mustard on both sides. Dredge the mustard-coated fish in the cereal mixture and place on a baking sheet. 

Place in the oven for about 25 minutes, or until the fish is opaque and cooked through. 

Serve immediately. 

Palm Beach Entertaining © Jerry Rabinowitz 

Coconut and Macadamia Ice Cream Balls with Raspberry Sauce 

The combination of flavors in this desert is elegant and delightful. On another occasion try vanilla, chocolate, or caramel ice cream. It is also fabulous to combine flavors, serving a few balls of coconut ice cream with one ball to surprise the palate. 

Serves 4

     3          cups unsweetened shredded coconut
     2          cups roasted macadamia nuts
     2          pints coconut ice cream
     2          cups raspberries
     1/2      cup sugar
                 Juice of 1 lime

Preheat the oven to 350° F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

Place the coconut and macadamia nuts on the prepared baking sheet, place in oven, and toast until lightly golden, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a plate to cool.

Using an ice cream scoop or large melon baller, make 8 balls with the ice cream. Coat with coconut-macadamia mixture and return to the freezer until ready to serve.

In a blender, puree the raspberries, sugar, and lime juice until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Serve the ice cream balls in a decorative glass bowl, passing the raspberry sauce on the side.

Asparagus Charlotte with Beluga Caviar,  Palm Beach Entertaining © Jerry Rabinowitz 

This book is soooo good. It also features entertaining tips from Nancy Brinker, Sue and James Patterson's killer chocolate cake, a Christmas brunch with Mimi McMakin and Celerie Kemble, the late Evelyn Lauder's avocado-herb salad, and Mark Badgley's, James Mischka's cold tomato soup, Moscow Mule, and Gravlaks, and more. Written by Annie Falk (who you will want to follow on Pinterest) net proceeds of Palm Beach Entertaining benefit Children's Home Society.

Now you may recall this feature from the July issue of Architectural Digest also included The Ross's Southampton, New York summer house.  The early 1900's Colonial Revival is just as magnificent as their winter Palm Beach retreat...

I have probably ogled these pictures a million times since I received this delicious copy of Architectural Digest over the summer, but I had never noticed the pagoda pool house in the last picture, above... Do you see it? Well, my friend Linda at Calling it Home did! She featured this pool house in all of its pagoda perfection on Monday, and my heart skipped a beat. Here is a closer look! 

The newly constructed "Chinese Regency" style pool house and swimming pool were added to balance the existing tennis court during a renovation by Muse Architecture & Design. The garage, which was formerly functioning as the pool house, was renovated back into a garage and guest house. You can read more about the incredible renovation and new construction of the Ross's historic Southampton estate here. A few of my favorite images are below... 

I am wild for white Colonial homes with black shutters! 

And who wouldn't like to be greeted by blue and white planters flanking the front door? 

The black and white Greek key stair runner coordinates beautifully with the flooring. 

A pagoda mini bar/kitchenette in the playroom? Yes, please!

 Those floors!! No one will ever convince me that Chevron is a trend!

I'm dying for a close-up of those frog benches... how cute are they?? 

Picture-perfect, parklike grounds... 

So now that you have seen the Ross's Palm Beach winter retreat and their Southampton summer home, you may be wondering about their primary residence... their Manhattan apartment. It was also decorated by Mario Buatta, and it too is positively magnificent. Stay tuned for more! 


  1. Utterly delicious! All of it!!!! I adore the trompe l'oeil paintings in that garden room featured in AD. Pure fantasy!! xo

  2. I have to grab my copy of that entertaining book! I love that set-up and yes, the home is the perfect epitome of Elegant Palm Beach style!!!

  3. Love it all!! I'm nuts about white colonials with black shutters too- I keep telling my husband we have to end up in one some day!

  4. YOU picked some real winners here!!! Love that gracie bedroom and the black greek key!!

  5. Unbelievable and I can't get over the flowers on the, wow, wow, and sleeping in that bed...heaven!!

  6. Thank you for the sea bass recipe, but what is the oven temperature?
    Thank you for all the gorgeous images! I am subscribing,....came from the Splendersosa website and this is a treat!

    1. Oops, thank you so much for pointing out my omission! Preheat the oven to 350° F... I just corrected the post. :) And thank you so much for subscribing to my blog!!

      The Glam Pad

  7. What a great post!! I loved all the background behind the photos and the recipes. I can handle that pistachio crusted chilean seabass...I pinned that for future dinner parties. The glamour! I want to be invited to one of these parties. I think I want this book for Valentine's!!

  8. Thanks for the mention. I read that book, too. I am still amazed at how lovey the presentation is. Just dying over the indoors.


Thank you for your lovely comments. They absolutely make my day!

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