GIFTING SUITE: ROGER NEAL STYLE HOLLYWOOD BEAUTY & COUTURE ACADEMY AWARD SUITE

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ROGER NEAL STYLE HOLLYWOOD BEAUTY & COUTURE ACADEMY AWARD SUITE

[Note: I visited six pre-Oscars Gifting Suites this year. (Well, actually, it was eight, but two are not worth telling you about!) As always, each one gets its own write-up, in the order that I visited them. This is the fourth of them, so please make sure to check back for the next two week-days, and to look at the previous columns, as well, to learn about all the fabulous-ness. (And after that, there will be two wonderful stand-alone goodie bags to give you the scoops on, as well!) This one was mainly beauty services, so I went it alone, with no contributing writer.]

The Roger Neal Style Hollywood Suite was so happening that I had to attend it both days! I didn’t want to give up even one of their fabulous beauty services, (which is what they’re known for, and whose results can be seen in the big pic of me at the top, snapped by Mr. X,) and the practitioners are all so conscientious that they give each client extra time. So, after the three services I received on the first day, I had to leave because my presence was required elsewhere. (Isn’t it always?)

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Photo by Karen Salkin.

But I was happy to return the very next day for a manicure, and to meet the sponsors, of course. (Not to mention to eat some more of the delish lunch that the lovely Neal fam is kind enough to provide for everyone on-site.)

As has been the case in recent years, this event was held in the Penthouse on the rooftop of Beverly Hills’ Luxe Rodeo Hotel. The services are on the patio, in curtained-off “cabanas,” which are close enough to the rest of the action so that guests can still feel a part of the hubbub, even while getting pampered.

Susan Carlson and her wonder machine. Photo by Karen Salkin.

Susan Carlson and her wonder machine. Photo by Karen Salkin.

I got there bright and early the first day, to not have to rush through anything. These are the services I received, in the order that they occurred:

My Beautiful Bare Skin—First up was a muscle-tightening facial from the uber-pleasant Susan Carlson. That woman knows her stuff! There are so many parts to this treatment, I don’t know which to laud first! Her machine helps lift many areas of the face and neck with micro-currents, and she also has tricks for pain in your body, and even some help for memory! You’ll just have to experience it all for yourself, to understand just what I’m talking about. www.mybeautifulbareskin.com

Byrnn, with her back to us, working on a mystery guest. Photo by Karen Salkin.

Byrnn, with her back to us, working on a mystery guest. Photo by Karen Salkin.

Massage By Brynn—I had already had the pleasure of having caring massage therapist Brynn Cannon work on me last year, so I knew what to expect this time. And, let me tell you, this was no little chair massage; it’s a real, honest-to-goodness, lie-down-and-get-naked-if-you-want-to full-body massage! At a suite! How fabulous! Brynn knows just what to do for each spot, and I love that she really likes to give each guest his or her full time, which is rare. And I think she even can go to your house to do it all! www.massagebybrynn.com

Daniel Dinh, hard at work on a guests' lashes. The results of his handiwork can be seen in the big photo of Karen Salkin, at the top of this column. Photo by Karen Salkin.

Daniel Dinh, hard at work on a guests’ lashes. The results of his handiwork can be seen in the big photo of Karen Salkin, at the top of this column. Photo by Karen Salkin.

Long Mi Lashes by Daniel Dinh—Daniel is one person I truly enjoy in life. He deserves all the goodness he’s ever gotten, like his upcoming reality show. I absolutely don’t watch anything in that genre, but you can bet I’ll be checking this one out. I don’t know which I like better–Daniel or his fabulous eyelash extensions! He really is the best at it. And he makes you laugh while he’s working, even though he’s concentrating really hard on making his clients their most beautiful. He always comes up with funny sayings; this time, he told me, “Life is long, but my lashes are longer!” And he was correct about that—he applied “multi-layer with volume” lashes to my own, and I’ve looked like a knock-out since then.  (They’re what I’m rocking in the photo at the top of the page, along with my new manicure.) www.longmilashes.com

Karen Salkin's holographic nails, done by Shelly Hill, (who also took the photo.)

Karen Salkin’s holographic nails, done by Shelly Hill, (who also took the photo.)

L.A. Sparkles Mobile Service (Manicure)—What do Gwen Stefan and I have in common, besides our love of Blake Shelton’s humor? Shelly Hill manicures! So, now you understand why I just had to return to the suite the next day for one of her manicures! Besides that your nails look gorgeous when she’s done, and they really last, Shelly is so pleasant and helpful while she’s working on you that it’s like just doing your nails with a girlfriend. But one with nail talent, which no one really has, unless their pal is Shelley! And now, she’s a totally mobile service, so you can make believe that she’s your friend! Or maybe that you’re Gwen Stefani. (You can find Shelly on twitter @LASparklesmobileService.)

After all that, I spent the rest of my time there thusly: I chatted with a wonderful, patriotic gent; learned about the suite’s charity of choice; and sampled the food, of course! (That last one I did on both days!)

Bill Harrison and Karen Salkin.  Photo by Mike Wech or Tim Lowry.  (I'm not sure which one took it because I had eyes for only Bill!)

Bill Harrison and Karen Salkin. Photo by Mike Wech or Tim Lowry. (I’m not sure which one took it because I had eyes for only Bill!)

The gent is World War II vet, Bill Harrison, who was gifting his book, 6 Days on a Raft. The charming fellow was on hand to regale us all with the tales of his scary time stuck on a raft in the Pacific Ocean!!! OMG! I made him laugh by comparing his harrowing experiences to my own, when I was in the circus!!! We put our heads together, but we couldn’t really figure out just which one of us was in more danger! I can’t wait for the movie of his saga that’s about to be made. I’ll be happy to take any role in it, even that of a shark circling the raft! www.desertrockentertainment.com

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Roger’s charity this year, The John Ritter Foundation for Aortic Health, is one that’s near and dear to my heart. I knew John for many years, and now I know his son, Jason. I’ve still never gotten over the shock of his passing. His widow, Amy, (whom I’ve also known for a long time, but hadn’t seen in ages,) was on-site to tell everyone of the organization. I give her credit for turning her loss into helping others avoid the same fate. To learn more about aortic health yourself, go to www.johnritterfoundation.org

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Of course, you need fuel for all this action, and we got that, big-time, with the soulful lunches provided by Sweetie Pie’s NoHo, which has taken over that adorable Phil’s Diner space in NoHo. I had been wanting to try their fare for awhile, so I was grateful for this opportunity.

One of the perks of my “double date” at the suite is that their menu was a bit different both days, so I got to sample a lot of their menu items. Even though I’m medically not supposed to be eating anything this delicious, it was all calling my name, so I decided to use a few bites here and there as my monthly “cheat day.” And I was sooo glad I did! I tried a little bit each of fried chicken, baked beans, mac ‘n cheese, and a barbecued wing, and balanced it all out with salad, (which had the sweetest sliced strawberries on the side one day,) corn on the cob, and green beans. I even had a bite of their banana pudding. And every single dish was sooo flavorful. www.sweetiepiesnoho.com

Each VIP guest walked out with a big bag of goodies, rather than having to gather them on-site, which is sooo much easier when you’re rocking just-done talons, and relaxed shoulder muscles!

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