Beverly Hills is synonymous with world-class shopping, movie stars, and palm trees galore. This we know. But with this fall's opening of the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, the city is hoping to become a cultural destination, too. On Friday night, Annenberg teamed with Jamie Tisch and James Ferragamo to celebrate the center's upcoming inaugural gala with a cocktail reception at the Gagosian Gallery. Salvatore Ferragamo will sponsor the October 17 festivities, with actors Brad Pitt and Robert Redford serving as celebrity cochairs. Fresh in from Florence, via New York City, Ferragamo's grandson, and the company's leather-product director, James spoke about the label's commitment to the arts, before waxing nostalgic about the West Coast. "I love it here," Ferragamo told Style.com. "One of my first working experiences was selling shoes in our Beverly Hills store during the holidays, when I was at NYU."
Seemingly unfazed by the unseasonably warm weather were seven models clad in creative director Massimiliano Giornetti's Fall line of wool, patent leather, and shearling coats. "If I were a woman and I were cold, I'd be wearing all of these clothes right now. But I'm schvitzing, so pray for snow," joked Decades' Cameron Silver, himself sporting a more airy gray-and-yellow suit from the Spring men's collection. Nearby, other guests marveled at an architectural model of the 2.5-acre center, which will house the five-hundred-seat Goldsmith Theater and a café inside the former Beverly Hills post office. For Tisch, who has been involved in the years-long planning of the complex, its imminent opening merits much fanfare. "It's going to be amazing," she said. "With the Annenberg Center, you have the possibility of everything from ballet to theater to modern dance, and it will be especially thrilling to have all this just down the street."