BY RUTH CHANDLER VARONFAKIS
As the air filled with anticipation and the fragrance of exotic spices, the gems of Las Patronas celebrated their 63rd annual Jewel Ball, Silk & Spice Saturday. The guests, many of the women bejeweled and wearing authentic saris, traveled to India through a spectacular passageway of bright swaths of richly colored silks, replete with a live elephant at the La Jolla Beach & Tennis Club's entrance.
Looking resplendent, Ball Chairwoman Jennifer Greenfield, co-chairs Laurie Allen and Sally Warren, and Las Patronas President Lydia McNeil escorted their guests into opulent Raj tents where sword and fire dancers and Roppongi's scrumptious hors d'oeuvres set the tone.
Julie Matibag's artistic vision resulted in a spectacular ballroom where guests dined surrounded by turquoise, white, and gold walls, including a waterfall that reflected an image of the Taj Mahal beneath a blue Indian sky of billowing silk.
Jewel Ball guests have come to expect the very best and they were not disappointed. The Ball celebrates a year's effort by the dynamic women of Las Patronas who raise funds annually for nonprofit organizations through such generous underwriters as James and Dianne Bashor, Alex and Kathy Likianov, Caroline and Nico Nierenberg, and Donald and Darlene Shiley.
Joining the merriment were Iris and Matthew Strauss, Wendy and Stu Segal, Linda and Rick Dicker, Terri and Richard Kelly, David Copley, Joan and Irwin Jacobs, Jeanne Jones and Don Breitenberg, Laura and Fred Applegate, Ann and Phil White, and Steven Strauss and Lise Wilson, who will chair next year's Ball.