[At this time last year, I had to miss all the MTV Movie Awards fun because I was busy finishing-up cleaning-out my childhood home in New York. It was a depressing, horrible task, made worse by knowing I was missing out on all the fabulous gifting suites and events in LA! So, this year, I’m thrilled to be in sunny Los Angeles, and celebrating the awards. I made it out to three fabulous suites, with my contributing writer, Alice. Please make sure to not miss any of the fun we’re telling you about! This is the first of three.]

Photo by Alice Farinas.

Photo by Alice Farinas.

I began the festivities with a visit to Debbie Durkin’s RockNRolla Ecoluxe Lounge, which was, indeed, rocking!

It was held in the perfect venue for it—the club Avalon, in Hollywood. Debbie had it all decked-out, complete with giant projections of the event’s moniker, and The Daily Blossom’s beautiful flower arrangements all around. The whole atmosphere was really special. I’ve been to that club many a time, for a myriad of events, and have never seen it so alive and attractive as at this one.

And it was wonderful to have all that space to move around in, rather than at many of the usual venues, where you can breathe. And we were able to sit in the semi-booths while we ate our delicious food, or even just to relax and take in the panorama. It was all really a pleasure.

Karen Salkin and Mollie Gray. Guess which girl has the flatter stomach? Photo by Alice Farinas.

Karen Salkin and Mollie Gray. Guess which girl has the flatter stomach? Photo by Alice Farinas.

Debbie’s events are always conducive to everyone mingling, so we got to spend some time with young dancer Mollie Gray, of whom I’ve been a fan since Season Six of So You Think You Can Dance. She told me she’s twenty-four now, but she still looks like a little kid, so good for her!

You know that, at these suites, to many of us, the “gift of grub” is the most important gift of all, and Debbie always feeds us royally.  To that end, she had lots of food and beverages for us, including recyclable boxes of refreshing Icebox Water.  Here are the highlights of the rest of the comestibles and potables:

OMG!  Photo by Alice Farinas.

OMG! Photo by Alice Farinas.

Fresh & Meaty Burgers—I’ve had these juicy and flavorful burgers before, so I was thrilled to see them here. And they were set-up outside the venue, in the parking lot, so it had a fun “secret entrance” kind-of feel to it. We had a choice of beef, turkey, or veggie, along with their yummy fries. We chose beef, with all the trimmings, and they were so delicious that we would have eaten even more if they hadn’t filled us up the first time. Yu-um!!! We’re already planning our next trip to their Florence Ave. eatery.

Can you find Karen in this pic? Photo by Alice Farinas.

Can you find Karen in this pic? Photo by Alice Farinas.

Infiniti SweetsChoices Recovery sponsored this stunning “Sweet Choices Candy Bar,” that guests just could not get enough of! Alice said that the gorgeous gourmet candy was “amazingly displayed” and “so decadently delicious.” All the choices were in shades of pearlized blue and white, and included coconut and cream soda jelly beans, giant gum balls, mini malted milk balls, and even two sizes of birthday cake cupcakes. We loved it all!

Photo by Alice Farinas.

Photo by Alice Farinas.

Sugar and Spyked—Alice noted that, since most of these cookies and other luscious-looking sweet treats were laced with whiskey (and other alcohols,) guests could “kill two birds with one stone,” if you get her drift! (A little sugar and a bit of alcohol.)

Beachwood BBQ & Brewery—Alice, a beer lover, was impressed with this award-winner.  Her favorite was the “delicious” Foam Top Cream Ale, which she deemed “so light and refreshing; it totally quenched my thirst!”

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Photo by Karen Salkin.

Slim Chiller–These tasty drink mixers can be blended with or without liquor, (although with is preferable, of course) for a fun and refreshing drink. And now they make freezer pops, as well! (The pops already have the alcohol in them.) And the best part is that all their products are low calorie! How fun!

Brain Toniq—The maker of these canned beverages that are designed to help one’s brain power, (and they also have one called Trim Toniq,) was gifting attractive tees, polo shirts, and skull caps. So now we’ll all look hip while drinking their tonics!

Now to the highlights of the non-ingestible gifts!:

Shama Jade designer, Maria Cordeiro, demonstrating her yoga suit.  And she's pregnant!  Photo by Alice Farinas.

Shama Jade designer, Maria Cordeiro, demonstrating her yoga suit. And she’s pregnant! Photo by Alice Farinas.

Shama Jade–Jumpsuits are really making a comeback this Spring, and these colorful yoga ones, designed by adorable Brazilian, Maria Cordeiro, really pop! Alice said, “You can see her creativity in the patterns,” and even the one-color ones are “very fun and functional.” To demonstrate, Maria even stood on her head for us…and she’s pregnant! Great idea–if my stomach sticks out in my new jumpsuit, I’m just going to tell people that I’m in the family way, too! Only my baby won’t be due for a few years!

Fullips—I’m too excited about this temporary lip-plumper to even think, so here’s what Alice wrote: “Okay ladies, did you ever wonder what you would look like with fuller lips, but were too scared to get injections and fillers? Well, look no further! These little plastic gadgets work with gentle suction. Now you can have fuller, plumper lips without the drama!” They must be working because, when I got home from the event, Mr. X asked if I had plumped my lips, and all I had done was look at the product!!!

Stage Men’s Collection—Don’t let the name fool you—they have jewelry for females, too! Actually, it all looks wonderfully unisex, and hip and happening. I don’t know how any of the guests chose just one piece!

Photo by Alice Farinas.

Photo by Alice Farinas.

Primo Lash–Make-up artist Victoria Rowe was on-hand to make the guests look great, if they so chose.  She had done Debbie’s make-up earlier, beautifully.  She was helping everyone look their best, (even if you didn’t have time for a touch-up,) by gifting Primo Lash, a new-to-the-market eyelash-growth serum.

Camp Run-A-Mutt—This is where Debbie sends her precious pup, Custos, so you know they’re caring! They provide daycare, boarding, group training sessions, and private lessons, and at this event, they gifted bags with several items for you and your dog.

Barefoot Athletic Company–They were gifting their own goodie bag of all fun stuff: solar-powered tees, eco-friendly workout tees, caps, and bracelets made from recycled glass beads, which each have a charm for a different sport. It’s a whole ensemble! All the recipients need to add is shorts, and they’re good to go!

Photo by Alice Farinas.

Photo by Alice Farinas.

Nash Motorcycle—Don’t get excited—they weren’t gifting hogs! But, in addition to providing an on-site tattoo artist, (who was doing real permanent tats!!!,) they were gifting stylish natural leather “key keepers.”

Letters To The Universe—A trio of teen-agers was on-hand, asking guests to write—what else?–letter to the universes! I do it every day in this e-zine, but I’m sure some of the others enjoyed getting things off their chests. And then we each left with a sweet little bag containing a “pearl of wisdom,” which was an actual pearl, in this case, rather than a bon mot, like I always provide you guys!

The fun continued later on that night, in Bardot, the upstair lounge of the venue. Debbie was a fabulous hostess, and the entire day was a success! Exhausting, but successful, which is how all events should be!


1 Comment

  1. Hi Karen,

    Thanks for the great mention in this article. It was nice meeting you last week and we hope to see you again soon!

    Camp Run-A-Mutt South Bay

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