22 April, 2009

Palatial Blue White Poolside Entertaining ...

A recent snippet from Elle Decor on Fashion Design Dennis Basso's gorgeous poolside retreat - I thought I would share with you, notably even more fabulous in my favourite - Blue & White colour scheme.... maybe I am little biased. Beautiful all the same... wouldn't you agree?

Photo Credit: Eric Piasecki
Fashion designer
Dennis Basso is the go-to guy for luxurious coats wrought from mink and sable and glorious handbags made of alligator and other exotic skins. But when the trendsetter isn’t crafting looks for the catwalk, he and Michael Cominotto—his partner and men’s style director for the Dennis Basso label—are all about good friends, hearty food, and easy entertaining under the weekend sun. After all, when you have 4,000 square feet of outdoor space tailored for convivial meals—notably a columned pool house built around a towering brick fireplace—why not enjoy it as much as possible?
“We love to be outside,” says the genial silver-haired Basso, whose escape from Manhattan is his and Cominotto’s two-acre property in the historic Long Island village of Water Mill. “We ask people of different ages and outlooks to join us, and we encourage them to bring their house guests. We especially like lunch, which is served late enough for everyone to finish playing tennis and golf before they have to arrive.”
At fashion designer Dennis Basso’s Hamptons pool house, the setting is as chic as the guest list. The simple but sophisticated setting is a major attraction too. Measuring 50 feet long by 20 feet wide, the one-story pool house is where much of the action takes place, amid frothy Kentia palms, lush ferns, and succulent jade plants. Interior designer Kenneth Alpert conceived it as a plein-air living room, so the pavilion-like structure offers ample comforts—beckoning sofas with navy canvas upholstery, white-painted wood armchairs sporting smart blue-and-white-striped cushions, and a generously proportioned cocktail table for candles, drinks, and snacks.
At one end of the breezy space is a fully stocked bar illuminated by a pair of oversize ginger-jar lamps. At the opposite end, high-backed wicker chairs are gathered around three pedestal tables for dining. Country-style flower arrangements interspersed with classic blue-and-white ceramics, from delft vases to Chinese Export figurines, decorate the tables. As curious guests soon learn, every piece has a story. “Remembering where we found each one—in Aspen, Europe, or the Far East— makes them all special,” Basso says.

Basso's Basics - Tips for entertaining from an A-list host
I like to use place cards for dinners, and they’re great when you have a crowd. To keep conversation lively, seat each guest between someone they know and someone they should know.
Mix and match glasses for a personal look, whether they’re by Baccarat or Williams-Sonoma. It’s the size and shape that matter, not the source.
If you’re married or partnered, work as a team. I make the table visually appealing; Michael sees to all the things I don’t think of, such as chilling wine and taking charge of the grill.
Establish a culinary theme. We run our kitchen based on our Italian backgrounds, which means serving classic dishes like antipasti, linguine alle vongole, and grilled vegetables.

For more on this story & interview visit Elle Decor

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