Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Cafe wars vamp up in Bubble Bay

        Graeme Goldberg, the 6'6" Eastender, and host of DeeBees fires the first shot tonight with a customer loyalty party as a re-vamped Cosmopolitan opens directly opposite in the Eastern Suburbs society haunt of Double Bay.
       The Cosmospolitan has been undergoing major renovations since the Sir Standford Hotel shut down last year and is now open for business and drawing many of the older customers who favoured it's expansive outdoor seating area to while away the hours gazing at the passing parade.
  Double Bay-or Double Pay (or Bubble Bay) as kids refer to it because of it's expensive boutiques that come and go with great regularity, had hit hard times in recent years that seemed to co-incide with the collapse of the Ritz Carlton Hotel, once the favoured bolt hole of visiting celebrities like Bob Dylan, Princess Diana, Presidents Clinton and Bush and the stage for the final exit of INXS frontman Michael Hutchence.
         But retailers are reporting a mini-boom with the great US financial calamity as more and more people delay holidays abroad.  Expect GG to roll out the usual suspects-Leo Sayer, Max Markson and boxers Jeff Fenech and Joe Bugner.
      Meanwhile on Wednesday the New Zealand born businessman and yachtsman Neville Crichton will host a glittering shindig to launch the new Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano at his Waterloo showrooms.
      There has been a parting of the ways between Chrichton and Tony Graziano, the amiable former boss of Ferrari and Maserati in Australia. Both are staying mum on the reasons but it was Graziano who used his connections to secure a deal to transport stars like Sophia Loren and Catherine Deneuve on their Sydney visits gaining valuable column inches in the media.

 It even paid off handsomely when Graziano stepped into the breach to get the most successful Miss Universe winner Jennifer Hawkins to her hometown of Newcastle during her triumphant homecoming tour after Rolls Royce / Bentley sniffed at the prospect proclaiming "we don't have that many customers up there", a reference to the steel city's working class origins. Hawkins repaid Graziano by purchasing the Maserati Tony chauffeured her in.

Guests arriving at a function to launch a new harbour cruiser last week were startled to see a glaring Neville Crichton as Tony Graziano 'gate-crashed' the launch and parked a Maserati at the entrance complete with a couple of glamour girls. Graziano is now flogging used autos and specialising in luxury Italian cars.