There are many invitations one desires when waiting to see what you’ll be attending during Fashion Week but there’s one little invite that makes all of us secretly happier than almost any other: an exclusive invite to attend Robert Verdi’s Luxe Lab Retreat during Fashion Week. The brainchild of the celebrity stylist/media personality/cultural maven, this gorgeous oasis in Chelsea plays host to many tastemaker celebrations throughout the year, but during Fashion Week it opens its doors to a select number of individuals where you can sit, relax, eat and attend some exclusive sneak preview parties and events. The invite is sort of your golden ticket to a little fashion-savvy candy factory, luxuriously decorated and managed to the nth detail by Robert and his very capable, friendly staff. When I got mine, I have to admit: I did a little happy dance.
This year the program was entitled “Survival of the Chicest” and it lived up to its moniker because the location of Luxe Lab sat squarely between the Bryant Park tents of Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week and the Meatpacking District-located Milk Studios where MAC & Milk was held. For five solid days, we were treated to nutritious meals by Blueprint Cleanse, cocktails by multiple sponsors (you’ll see Bethenny Frankel’s Skinnygirl Margaritas featured on the new season of The Real Housewives of New York City -they shot an episode at the Lab while we were there), karma readings, a preview of the Tarina Tarantino spring collection and luxurious hair and makeup in the CVS Reinventing Beauty suite located in his to-die-for bath and vanity area. Robert is the consummate host and as proof-positive of the well-curated guest list, celebrities of all kinds popped in and out without anyone batting an eyelash. Yes, it’s New York but when you get to eat lunch with most of the cast of America’s Next Top Model, you have to just smile to yourself: only Robert Verdi could pull this off.
There are many sad things about Fashion Week coming to a close, but one of the most bittersweet is that our time at the Luxe Lab had to end. Bedraggled and harried when we entered, every one of us left Luxe Lab well-fed, more calm, gorgeous and ready to hit the shows again. That’s the magic of Robert Verdi and his lovely Luxe Lab: making the world a little more fabulous, one fashionista at a time. We love you, Robert, and thank you. See you next season!