Luxury Hostess Gifts

By Liz Seccuro

Our clients at Dolce Parties (see page 45, Winter 2007 issue) frequently rely on us in matters other than event planning: They ask entertainment-related questions like “What can we take as a hostess gift that goes beyond flowers or a bottle of wine?” Here are several ideas for presents likely to impress (or, at least, gratify) your host or hostess.

Ruzzetti & Gow silver-dipped seashells. Any of this firm’s sea creatures—the silver-coated or gold-gilded shells, in all their variety; the coral centerpieces; the shell-encrusted mirrors and sconces—should please anyone enamored of the ocean. There are many gifts from the sea in the $50 (for a gilded cockle placecard holder) to $200 (for a partial-gilded pectin shell) price range.
A crystal caviar bowl with pewter floral accents and a tin of caviar! For your gourmand friend, this would be the ultimate gift. For the bowl, by William Yeoward ($175), go to; for the caviar ($46 to $505 for one-to-two servings), visit Don’t forget to throw in a mother-of-pearl spoon!

Custom ice cream. This is our favorite new pick. At you can custom-design any flavor of ice cream. Choose your base (percentage of milk fat, ranging from 8% Italian-style gelato base to a sinful 14% “super creamy” base) and then your flavorings. Some of our favorites include black licorice, banana, cardamom, jackfruit, lavender, lychee, and, of course, chocolate. Then you can add nuts, candy, or fruit ripples folded in. Amazing—couture ice cream at its finest! A 4-pint, one-flavor order is $49.95. You can add flavors, of course, for the right price. 
For the Asiaphile, five sets of gorgeous hardwood chopsticks. They come in an ebony box—beautifully wrapped and including chopstick rests. The Luxury Japanese Chopsticks Set is $29.99, Also in this category, a handsome sakes set (pitcher and two cups) in white or black porcelain by artist Kaete Brittin Shaw. The set is $100 at

Customized trainers from Nike for the athlete (or faux athlete) in your life. The sky’s is the limit.

Candy-colored cashmere (affordable) women’s sweaters. They’re $138 from J. Crew, in V-neck, crewneck, cabled, tee.

For the jet-setter, Hermès Beach Towels make whimsical—and packable!—presents. They’re $450 each at                   

A sterling silver Tiffany & Co. pool-table chalk holder. It’s beyond indulgent; your hosts will never view their pool table in the same way again. It’s $165 at

Liz Seccuro, Creative Director of Dolce Parties, has planned events—dinners, drinks parties, product launches, movie premieres, bar/bat mitzvahs, baby showers, and, of course, weddings (more than 300 of them)—not only in New York City and Connecticut, but all over the U.S. and abroad.

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