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Gallery: Life’s a ball and party…

Durban - Durban’s most glamorous charity ball and hobnobbing high tea took place within a week of each other – both calling for equal attention from those who live for leisure.

The Sunflower Fund Charity Ball, in association with International Bank Vaults, has made a home for itself at the Southern Sun Elangeni Hotel. Held at the beachfront establishment for many years now, people have become fond of the pomp and ceremony. Most of the ballgowns I spotted on Friday night were hired, but it was still great to see guests making an effort to dress up.

Sebastian Bracco, Bianca Allan, Jenna Houghton and Darran Haines at the Sunflower Fund Ball.Melissa Wright and Mandy Wright at the Sunflower Fund Ball.Bianca Warren and Simone Mann at the Sunflower Fund Ball.Hlengiwe Khanyile and Nqobile Mayaba at the O Tea Party.Onica Sibisi and Khanyisile Sauka at the O Tea Party.Catherine Ziqubu, Lihle Shabalala and Makhosi Mhlanzi at the O Tea Party.

Bianca Warren, in a red sequined dress, was simply the most stunning.

Just as elegant – but quirky as ever – was Karen Monk Klijnstra in a Frida Kahlo vibe outfit. Both designers, along with Kathrin Kidger, who I didn’t spot on the night, contributed to the fund-raiser.

Most guests are “return offenders” and know the programme of eat, be entertained and auctioned all too well. In fact, they mingled and ate rowdily over the angelic voice of Sam Landers and the Glitter Girls, Liesl Coppin, Marion Loudon and Lisa Bobbert (who are surely used to it by now).

I love this event and it’s wonderful that almost R300 000 was raised that night, but I think it’s time they changed it up a bit.

They dress up for the occasion and come to party.

Andrew James, national make-up artist for Lancome, and singer Jimmy Nevis (Elephant Shoes) were a hit. However, it would be nice to have a truly motivational speaker in the line-up so that you feel you’ve left with a bit of that “Oprah aha!” magic. And for this approximately five-hour tea I think it’s fair to ask for less sugar and more protein on the table please.

Special touches like the fortune cookie on my place setting – which contained a message from Oprah – made this a memorable occasion. - Omeshnie Naidoo, The Mercury

Pictures: Jacques Naude and Omeshnie Naidoo

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