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One and Only

On a pier crammed full of A-listers, Giorgio Armani was the star

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"One Night Only," the invite beckoned. To be sure, Giorgio Armani's retrospective in New York last night is not something easily repeated. Nor would just any ordinary pier quite contain it—and so the extravaganza went down at Chelsea's SuperPier, which had been dressed up for the occasion in acres of pristine beige walls and carpeting.

The proceedings began with a runway show that looked back through nearly ten years of Armani Privé collections and included his July Haute Couture show, Nude, in its entirety. "It was quite emotional; it brought back a lot of memories of girls wearing [the clothes]," concluded Bruce Weber, one of the 700 or so people in the audience. The only important New Yorker not in the crowd was Mayor Bloomberg, but he made up for it by proclaiming yesterday Giorgio Armani Day.

By the entrance—which is to say, nearly 1,000 feet away—the likes of Jeremy Irons and Glenn Close toured Eccentrico, a meticulously arranged exhibition of Armani's more daring creations from 1985 to the present. "He's a living treasure," Lauren Hutton declared. Guests including Renée Zellweger, Martin Scorsese, Naomi Watts, and Oscar de la Renta queued up for photos with Mr. Armani. And nearby, inside a purpose-built nightclub, Leonardo DiCaprio and some of the other A-listers mingled while Mark Ronson got a legitimate dance party going.

Linda Fargo, wearing a black-feathered Armani homage of sorts, pondered all the man-hours and resources that Armani (the designer and the company alike) had poured into the evening and into the clothes it celebrated. "I don't think he would enjoy living without working—regardless of the tan," she said. "I'm a little ruined. Things are going to look a bit shabby after this."

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