The Wu Clan
Hilary Rhoda, Shu Pei Qin, Martha Hunt, and more toast the designer at the Asia Society's annual gala
A mid-March blizzard didn't stop the likes of Eddie Borgo, Cynthia Rowley, and Nate Lowman from turning up at The Pierre hotel last night for the Asia Society's Asia Week Benefit Gala. And with cuisine by all-star chefs Simpson Wong and Pichet Ong, music by the Peter Duchin band (which had guests spinning around the dance floor before the main course), and a raucous live auction that saw a private luncheon and art tour with the Society's senior vice president, Melissa Chiu, go for a cool $15K, partygoers quickly forgot about the unfortunate weather.
While some guests came in sky-high stilettos and ball gowns, or traditional dress (one woman turned up in a spectacular icy-white kimono), others, like Hanne Gaby Odiele, wisely dressed for the snow—the model wore slick black wellies with her sequined Anna Sui frock. Sui herself had just returned from opening a new store in Tokyo, where she encountered another kind of storm. "When we arrived, it was seventy degrees and sunny, but all of a sudden there was a huge sandstorm that came over from China, and the whole sky was yellow. It was like science fiction!" she said.
During dinner, all eyes were on honorary chair Jason Wu, who made an emotional speech about his experience with the arts in his native Taiwan. (Wu even cracked a joke, saying of his youth, "I was really bad at math, which is really bad for an Asian.") "I hope I'm doing Asia strong," the designer told Style.com. "The Asia Society has done a lot to promote intercultural relationships, and I'm honored to be here." Having turned up with the likes of Michelle Harper, Hilary Rhoda, and Jenny Shimizu (nearly all of whom were dressed top to toe in Wu, naturally), the designer told us that he's looking forward to the release of his upcoming Lancôme collaboration, but he's most excited about his goddaughter's christening this Sunday. "She's wearing polka-dot mini Wu!"