Monday, August 14, 2006
NEAR TIJUANA SELLING MY CHICLES This last weekend , a car service arrived at my door and picked David and I up for the drive to San Diego--Yes ,Bravo can sometimes SPLURGE!!! I was settling into my Towncar, until I realized the unbelievable traffic ahead of us. All we could do was sit , nap and try and find comfort in the fact that neither of us was driving! FOUR and a HALF HOURS later (I kid you not), we arrived at our destination, the chic "W Hotel" in Downtown San Diego. And because of the horrible drive, we never enjoyed the "W" hotel experience of swimming in the pool, the luxurious spa or the cool sand-filled "Beach" on the second level. Note to self: must go back sometime soon! The "W" was very "uptown" and sleek, in contrast with its San Diego guests-- the men all in board shorts, flip flops. Or in their best "Tommy Bahama'' leaf-print shirt with Khakis (Oh dear!). And this was their "Going Out on the Town" outfits. Their women counterparts I have to say were better dressed, in sexy cocktail dresses and great high heels. We ventured into the Gaslamp District , the nucleus of nightlife in San Diego. Sidebar: The Gaslamp District is the new Tijuana, but much more upscale! It was crazy-packed, teaming with locals and tourists enjoying a Saturday night on the town. It was so packed, we could barely walk on the actual streets. It was reminiscent of old New Orleans, the French Quarter District. Lots of young people including army guys , and trashy girls. Picture West Hollywood on a Saturday night--but for Straight people. I also thought about how Downtown Los Angeles wishes it was this happening. We enjoyed an amazing dinner at "Croce's" , thanks to one of the managers, "Big Daddy Matty", who gave us the "Red Carpet" treatment at the restaurant as well as afterwards , taking us out to various cool bars in the Hillcrest section of the city, including Lei. Big Thanks to BDM and his friends for making us feel at home. Sunday was the "Project Fashion" event at "Las Americas" Outlet Mall produced by the Fashion Careers College, the oldest in Southern California, Cox Media and Bravo. I co-hosted the event , which included an hour long fashion show showcasing students' original designs as well as retailers such as Neiman Marcus, Calvin Klein and Hurley from the Mall. The Mall itself is huge and located in San Ysidro, right next to Tijuana. You could see the "wall" that divides the two countries and I must say it was impressive being so close to it. The event was attended by hundreds of shoppers and "Project Runway" fans, who lined up to get autographs from me plus sign up for the amazing sweepstakes/prizes being offered. The line got so long that the organizers had to cut it short--I am not kidding. It was wonderful to meet all the people who came out to the event, young and old, fashion students, mothers and husbands and little girls who wanted me to sign their Barbies. I even took photos with babies--I felt almost like a politican running for office. Maybe a "Fashion Police Department" office. It was a special treat for me to meet a lot of fans from Baja California and Tijuana ,Mexico , who watch the show via satellite. There is a strong Mexico fanbase and I was delighted to meet a lot of them, and shared my thoughts of "selling my chiclets in Tijuana." I also did a pre-interview with a local San Diego TV channel promoting the event. After the show, the prizes were given out, including "Goodie Bags" filled with lots of fun stuff, including the aforementioned "My Scene Project Runway Barbie". Another lucky winner, the guy pictured here in the plaid shorts and polo shirt ,won a Roundtrip ticket for two to attend the Finale Fashion Show at New York Fashion Week!!! His girlfriend was jumping up and down and screaming and then proceeded to come up to me and hug me non-stop. I have a feeling she is going to take his ticket and go with her girlfriend instead! I had a great time, thanks to the wonderful staff from the Fashion Careers College, especially Tanya and David, who were only too kind to help in any way, and all the student models who were excellent in working the runway. After it was all over, David and I boarded our car and went back to Los Angeles, only this time it took only two and a half hours. Thank God for that!