Social Scene: The Ritz-Carlton opens with fanfare and fun |

Social Scene: The Ritz-Carlton opens with fanfare and fun

The infamous martini ice luge offered a unique martini delivery system (MDS)

Just what do you get for $300 million dollars these days? Well, you get a 170-room five star hotel with 23 private residences, 25 units of fractional ownership residences, a very cool looking restaurant by James Beard award- winning chef Traci des Jardins, a 17,000 square foot spa, and ski in/ski out access to Northstar-at-Tahoe’s perfectly manicured slopes. Of course, this isn’t just any hotel, it’s The Ritz-Carlton, darling. And with The Ritz-Carlton comes a certain element of saviors faire. Everything is elevated here and#8212; not just the locale, but the gold standard for unparalleled service and customer satisfaction, pampering and caring like no other, and the motto: and#8220;Your wish is our desireand#8221;.

The Ritz-Carlton Highlands in Northstar opened last week with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and parties to celebrate the hotel’s completion, which will be a boon to our local economy. Last Thursday general manager Allen Highfield and his top notch staff hosted the hotel warming party. Guests were asked to bring a canned or packaged food item or to make a monetary donation to local food bank Project MANA. More than 270 pounds of food and many cash donations were collected for this worthy cause. Some guests parked down in the Northstar Village and took the gondola up to the slope-side property- tucked in amid the snow laden pine trees. Due to the chilly weather, most chose to drive up the and#8220;highway to heavenand#8221; to the five star base camp.

The opening reception was held throughout the hotel, from the lobby’s and#8220;living roomand#8221; to the hotel’s signature Manzanita restaurant, to the martini bar set up in the foyer of the ballroom. The show-stopping, innovative martini delivery system was a very clever and#8220;ice luge,and#8221; featuring a Ritz-Carlton logo ice sculpture with an imbedded tube that schussed the vodka potion to a waiting large crystal martini glass! The champagne and wine were also flowing in Manzanita’s bar and guests were buzzing about the amazing new upscale hotel, with the Ritz-Carlton’s own interpretation of mountain design and decor. Subtle symbolic design elements reflecting the outdoors (earth tones accented with bold colors, lots of indigenous rock and cedar) all work in harmony to achieve an understated elegance and The Ritz-Carlton’s legendary quest for perfection.

Checking out the new ritzy retreat were Patti and Gary Boxeth, Leslie and Harvey Wagner, Eddie and Lynn Whitehead, Madylon and Dean Meiling, Marianne and Jim Porter, Martha and Jim Simon, Molly and Michael Graham, Elizabeth and Olof Carmel, Colleen Chapman, Emily and JJ Morgan, Steph Jensen, Meg Raymore, Nick Rab, Cindy Gustafson, Veronica and Ben Kaufman, Joan and Russ Jones, Steve Lapkin, Fritzi and Bill Briner, Marilyn and Ron Treabess, Penny and Steve Teshara, Paul Raymore, Brinn and Matt Wellise, Andrew Cross, Marcio Decker, Betty Scott, Geri and Stuart Yount, Ann and Roger Beck, Kathleen and Richard McLennan, Sue Fischer and Roger Lessman, Dave Wilderotter, Barbara Green, Linda and David Brown, Lynn Saunders, Lauren and Ron Parson, Sara and Ted Owens, Margaret Lewicki and Ernie Grossman, Patsy and Larry Sevison, Barbara and Fred Ilfeld, Deborah and Larry Young, Sue Rock and Tom Millhoff, Missy and Chaco Mohlerand and Amanda and Pete Friedrichsen.

and#8212;Vicki Kahn may be reached at

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