Gorgeous Fashion and Flowers at the Conservatory Ball

Deborah Royce, Alexandra Lebenthal, Gillian Miniter
Deborah Royce, Alexandra Lebenthal and Gillian Miniter at The New York Botanical Garden Conservatory Ball. All photos: ©BFA.com/Angela Pham and Kelly Taub

The New York Botanical Garden celebrated its 125th Anniversary with a very glam and flowery fete on June 2nd. Like the Frick Garden Party, their annual Conservatory Ball ranks high on the list of the city’s most beautiful events, which isn’t too surprising since the party is held in the New York Botanical Garden (the group the gala benefits)!

So yes, there were plenty of fantastic blooms—urns spilling with roses, peonies, and hydrangeas—flowering trees and a garden featuring tens of thousands of cornflowers, larkspur, hollyhocks, peonies, and columbines, inspired by the paintings of artists likeWilliam Merritt Chase, Childe Hassam, and John Singer Sargent. This garden was specially created for The Botanical Garden’s new exhibition Impressionism: American Gardens on Canvas.

Ariana Rockefeller
Ariana Rockefeller

Since Oscar de la Renta was one of the evenings sponsors, you knew the fashion was going to be five star and it was, with a lot of guests, like Ariana Rockefeller, Gillian Miniter, Alexandra Lebenthal, and Deborah Royce wore the label, choosing ODLR gowns with floral motifs.

The New York Botanical Garden: Conservatory Ball

More than 450 supporters of the NYBG turned out, including Oscar de la Renta Creative Director Peter Copping, Oscar de la Renta CEO Alex Bolen and his wife, Eliza Bolen, Kick Kennedy, Ariana Rockefeller, Rudolph and Judith Giuliani, NYBG Chairman Maureen Chilton and her husband, Richard Chilton, Cornelia Guest, Sylvester Miniter, Marjorie Gubelmann, Anne and Bill Harrison, Kate Levin, Sharon and Bill Jacob, Kamie and Richard Lightburn, Barbara Cirkva Schumacher, Tina and Steve Swarz, Nathalie Kaplan, Elyse Newhouse, Muffie Potter Aston, Cece Black, Michel Witmer, Chris and Grace Meigher, Janna Bullock, Margo Langenberg, Frederick Koch, Michelle Smith of MILLY, Yliana Yepez, Di Mondo, and jewelry designer Mish Tworkowski.

Carmen Thain, John Thain
Carmen and John Thain

The evening began with cocktails at 7:30 p.m. in the Perennial Garden before moving to dinner and dancing in the Conservatory Tent. Stephen STARR Catering Group oversaw the menu, Vince Giordano and the Nighthawks provided the entertainment during cocktails, and Soulsystem Orchestras did music during dinner. DeJuan Stroud designed the Conservatory Tent.

Margo Langenberg, Frederick Koch
Margo Langenberg, Frederick Koch
Gaia Matisse, Andrew Warren, Reya Benitez
Gaia Matisse, Andrew Warren and Reya Benitez

If you missed the gala make sure to take in Impressionism: American Gardens on Canvas, which looks at the horticultural inspiration behind American Impressionism, a movement that flourished at the turn of the 20th century. In the Art Gallery, view a complementary display of more than 20 paintings and sculptures by the artists who inspired the garden, like Childe Hassam and John Singer Sargent. The exhibit is on view through September 11. For more information go to: nybg.org/impressionism

About The New York Botanical Garden: This National Historic Landmark, founded in 1891, consists of a 250-acre landscape in the Bronx supporting over one million living plants in numerous collections. The Garden is also a major educational institution, teaching more than 300,000 people annually about plant science, ecology, and healthful eating. Nearly 90,000 of those served by the Garden’s education programs are children from underserved neighboring communities.

The New York Botanical Garden also operates one of the world’s largest plant research and conservation programs, with nearly 200 staff members—including 80 Ph.D. scientists— working in the Garden’s state-of-the-art molecular labs as well as in the field, where they lead programs in 18 countries. For more information, go to The New York Botanical Garden