On Tuesday evening, January 14, 2014, the Kaufmann de Suisse fine jewelry boutique on Worth Avenue held a cocktail reception honoring the 2014 Palm Beach Zoo & Conservation Society Dinner Dance Chairs: Chairman James Berwind, Honorary Chairwoman Michele Kessler, Event Chairs Whitney Bylin and Thomas C. Quick and Auction Chairwoman Samantha Storkerson.
The cocktail reception was a precursor for the Zoo’s annual gala, “A Garden in the Wild” Dinner Dance, which takes place Friday, January 31, 2014, at The Breakers in Palm Beach.
Hosted by boutique owner Moneca Kaufmann, the evening was a sparkling success with an exceptional crowd of more than 125 guests who received a personal invitation to view and adorn the jeweler’s exclusive creations. In addition, guests were able to mingle with some of the Zoo’s most notable animals, partake in a photo booth by TapSnap and enjoy delicious hors d'oeuvres by Christina’s Catering, including their customized “ZooCakes” animal cupcakes.
On display during the event, was the Kaufmann de Suisse-designed “Paraiba Star of the Ocean Jewels” necklace featuring the 191.87 cts. Guinness World Record largest Paraiba tourmaline. The elaborate composition celebrates the complex ecosystem of the oceans and the interconnectedness of man and animal. Details on the auction of the piece will be announced later this year.
Auction Gala Chairman, Samantha Storkerson modeled a pair of 18-carat white gold diamond chandelier earrings from the Cascade Collection valued at $23,500, which will be auctioned off the night of the Dinner Dance.
Kaufmann’s generous support of the Zoo includes the design of a limited number of solid sterling silver high-relief key chains with all proceeds of the sales going to the Zoo. The key chain features the likeness of Mira, the Zoo’s newly-debuted Florida panther, the state animal of Florida and one of the world’s most endangered animals.
“A Garden in the Wild” Dinner Dance promises to be one of Palm Beach’s wildest nights. The theme for the 2014 event is a most appropriate choice, given the Zoo’s brand-new name that highlights a renewed passion for creating a more sustainable zoo. This year’s Dinner Dance theme, in celebration of all things living at the Zoo, ties in to its mission of inspiring people to act on behalf of wildlife and the natural world.
The Zoo aims to protect species from extinction and to promote development that preserves the environment, while conserving native flora and fauna. Ecosystems continue to be threatened by unchecked waste and pollution, so educating Zoo guests about the benefits of being environmental stewards through responsible use of natural resources is vital to achieving the Zoo’s mission.
The Dinner Dance begins at 7 p.m. with cocktails and mingling with some of the Zoo’s most fascinating animals, and then dinner and dancing to Soul Survivors will follow at 8 p.m. The evening will be led by gala Chairman James Berwind, Honorary Chairwoman Michele Kessler, Event Chairmen Whitney Bylin and Thomas C. Quick, and Auction Chairwoman Samantha Storkerson.
Chairman’s Committee members include: Lillian and Luis Fernandez, Candace and William Hamm, III, Ann and Charles Johnson, Karin and Joseph Luter, Susan and Lloyd Miller, Amy and John Phelan and Katherine and William Rayner. King of the Jungle benefactors include: James D. Berwind, Florida Crystals Corporation, Mr. & Mrs. William H. Hamm, III and Stephen and JoAnna Myers. Gold Benefactors include: Mr. and Mrs. Michael M. Connors, Florida Crystals Corporation and Florida Power & Light Company. Silver Benefactors include: The AMG Foundation/Kerry & Sean Healey, Mr. & Mrs. E. Llwyd Ecclestone, Mark & Mary Freitas, Gunster, Tracie & Gary Krieger with Barclays, Kim Campbell, Noreen Zanft, Susanna Hager, JP Morgan, Stephen E. Myers, Palm Beach Kennel Club & The Rooney Family, Amy & John Phelan and Thomas C. Quick. Bronze Benefactors include: Howard Cox, The Marvin H. Davidson Foundation, Inc., Mrs. John R. Donnell, Allison & Lee Hanley, Jr., Charlie and Ann Johnson, Ted Hartley & Dina Merrill, Mr. & Mrs. Sam Hunt, Jorie Butler Kent, Ambassador & Mrs. Howard Leach, Mr. & Mrs. Dudley Moore, Jr., The William H. Pitt Foundation, Inc., Mr. & Mrs. Mike Ramos, Nancy & Bill Rollnick, Frances G. Scaife and U.S. Trust.
About Kaufmann de Suisse: Kaufmann de Suisse is the winner of five Diamond International Awards, and has built its reputation as one of the world’s finest designers of custom-made jewelry. Since 1954, the company is regarded as one of the most exciting and identifiable jewelry designers anywhere today. With boutiques on Worth Avenue in Palm Beach and on Crescent Street in Montreal, Kaufmann de Suisse caters to the discriminating international connoisseurs of traditionally crafted, hand-made sumptuous jewels.