Magazine article The Spectator

High Life: Taki

Magazine article The Spectator

High Life: Taki

Article excerpt


I am surfing along the Cycladic islands on Puritan, a 125ft classic that was launched in 1929 by John Alden and has remained among the most beautiful sailing boats ever. Everything on board is original, including the MoMC, my two grandchildren and my son. I boarded her at Porto Heli, where the granddaughter of Aleko Goulandris was married last week in a two-night bash I shall not soon forget. It was a mixture of young and old, Marietta Chandris being in her very early thirties, the groom the same age. I was among the oldest people there, a repeat performance that is getting me down sooner rather than later. I made up for it by getting so drunk even the youngest among the crowd of 500 were embarrassed.

And the crowd was a good one, the last hurrah of Athenian society, not a celebrity or Kardashian or Hilton among us. All the Greek royals were present, Greek industrialists and ship owners, plus the king and queen of Holland and German nobility. It would have been a paradise for name-droppers, the trouble being they were conspicuously absent.

Michael and Loula Chandris, the parents of the bride, put on a hell of a bash, yours truly getting off to a slow start because her father, Aleko Goulandris, was such a close friend. I hadn't been inside his property since his death, and it took a strong drink to lift me from sad thoughts.

There were two gatecrashers on both nights, Taki and Maria, aged 11 and nine, but apparently both were so adorable dancing and showing off, people actually applauded them. My, my, I had to have two show-offs for grandchildren, didn't I? What I appreciated was the lack of dressing down by the guests, a horrible habit practiced by so-called power players in order to look cool. This calculated 'schlubbiness' has also infected Greece, but it was absent at the parties. Relaxed does not mean look like a slob, and relaxed was the theme on the second night. The first was dark blue and neckties. Not one black motorcycle jacket over a white T-shirt was seen, a fact I thanked the God of fashion for, whoever he might be.

I know, I know, I sound prissy, don't I? But have you ever seen modern tycoons in skinny jeans or cargo shorts and puffed up muscles they couldn't use to beat their way out of a wet paper bag? …

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