This week saw some of the world's handsomest men converge at Kolkata Knight Riders co-owners Juhi and Jay Mehta's Malabar Hill residence for a dinner party. And assembled eminent hunks included KKR co-owner Shah Rukh and players Robin Uthappa, Andre Russell, Yusuf Pathan and Waseem Akram.
Given Juhi's growing interest in spirituality and 'green living', the menu was all vegetarian and included such summer delicacies as "Corn and water chestnuts in coconut milk", "mushroom kadhai", "palak paneer", a pasta counter, followed by ice-cream and freshly cut mangoes.
SRK, Sheetal and Robin Uthappa and make up artist TJ Shah
The Mehtas, as always, were at their hospitable best and the evening, which included Andre and Robin regaling the gathering with their karaoke skills, Yusuf Pathan's young son engaging guests with his youthful exuberance and Akram and wife adding to the merriment, left all with a warm and fuzzy glow.
And take a look at SRK — it would be hard to find a portrait where he's looked this … sigh… drop dead gorgeous!
Yacht's the way!
Imagine being on a luxury yacht in the company of not only some of the world's wealthiest men but also it's most celebrated musicians and tech tycoons. Word comes in that the likes of Stevie Wonder, Sting and AR Rahman were hosted recently by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen on his super luxury yacht for what is becoming his annual celebrity sail.
Allen, the owner of one of the world's largest yachts — the "Octopus" (it boasts of a hangar for its two choppers, a glass bottom pool, a 10-person submarine and a state of the art music-recording studio), is a well known philanthropist, maverick and investor, (net worth estimated at $17.7 billion) whose jaunts with some of the world's most creative minds have been well documented.
The Octopus is one of the largest yachts in the world
In 2014, he hosted a party on board the Octopus during the Cannes International Film Festival, where guests are said to have included Adrian Grenier and Sharon Stone.
Paul Allen, Sting and AR Rahman
Those who've been on these cruises say that these meetings of minds at sea often give rise to some of the most sparkling conversations and synergetic projects; and whereas most of the invited musicians are happy to perform for the other celebrity guests — sources say that this time when Rahman was requested to render a soulful song or two he declined politely as he did not have his required musical support.
But as we were saying — imagine sailing on a faraway sea listening to Stevie Wonder or Sting singing their hearts out to the waves and the sky?
Does it get better than this? We doubt it.
In his defence
It is rare to come across a group of people who are sympathetic to the case of flamboyant beer baron Vijay Mallya, so the other day when we did — we paid attention.
According to his friends, Vijay is being treated unfairly and being made a scapegoat. "Right when he found that his airline business was becoming unviable because of high fuel costs, VJM had gone to see then Fin Min Pranab Mukherjee, to apprise him that he would have to shut it down.
Mukherjee, it seems, had heard him out and then coaxed him in to continuing so as to avoid the collateral damage a closure would afford the thousands of Kingfisher employees, who would be jobless as a consequence," says a friend.
"Towards this end, Mukherjee had got a friendly bank to give Kingfisher Airlines a sizeable loan (or two)." This, say his supporters, clearly demonstrates that Mallya's intent was honourable and he was only following the advice of the powers that be.
We may not agree with this supposition but as we earlier said, it is so rare to hear any defence of Mallya these days and so, we recalled it for you.
Hipster haunt to close
She's always been something of an enigma wrapped in a mystery; we're talking about Priya Kishore, the Oxbridge educated waif, who ten years ago, created Bombay Electric, the go to destination for all manner of Mumbai hipsters. Which is why a collective groan was heard amongst the city's Bo-bos (bourgeoisie bohemians) when it was heard that BE would be shutting shop this week and preparing to move its headquarters to London.
"We look forward to channelling the brand's energy in a new and exciting form in London," said Kishore, about the move.
As for its clientele — there's always Nicobar, another hip concept store for Bo-bo's that's opened just down the road.
Theory of relativity
The apple, they say, doesn't fall too far from the tree. Two apples in this case. Both wonderful to behold, but said to be rotten to the core. And whereas we have no way of knowing the truth behind the stories of the two sisters whose antics have made the high and mighty of Mumbai sputter in to their goblets of Châteaux Laffite, here's some more from the Pali Hill Diaries, for whatever it's worth.
Apparently the girls are only following in the footsteps of a close relative, some one who pretty much "seized" a sizeable inheritance through what is said to be "foul means" within their own family and was ostracised as a result. Old time society insiders say that though this happened in an era bereft of media coverage, the grapevine had been just as riveted and scandalised. Oh dear. And we thought an apple a day kept the doctor away!