It's an annual ritual leading into the Emmy Awards, as celebrities flock to the luxury suites, beauty lounges and swag suites that pop up all over Hollywood and Beverly Hills. And what's not to like, as top companies vie for their attention?
Things started off with Doris Bergman's 3rd Annual Primetime Emmy Style Lounge, held at Café Boheme in West Hollywood. Nominees like Jason Ritter from "Parenthood," Dot Marie Jones from "Glee" and Mare Winningham of "Hatfields & McCoys" enjoyed a lovely lunch in the restaurant's garden after collecting overflowing bags of goodies. There were comfy flip flops from Terox Footwear, stylish chapeaus by Baron Hats, seriously cool purses made from recycled candy wrappers by Ollin Arm Candy (we loved the Betty Boop!) and Radar watches with interchangeable faces. William Shatner even made the scene, along with Eva LaRue, Angeline Rose Troy, Ben Feldman, Nadine Velazquez and "Anger Management" star Daniela Bobadilla, who plays Charlie Sheen's daughter on the show.
"He's really respectful of me," the 19-year-old ingenue said with a giggle, "which is good, because he really is old enough to be my dad!"
And what was the oddest thing at this one? Red wine flavored with chocolate from Chocolate Shop Wine.
"Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" diva Adrienne Maloof offered up her mansion high in the hills for the Softcup Beauty Retreat, on the same day she put the 20,000 square foot estate on the market for a mere $26 million. She and hubby Paul Nassif are in the midst of a messy divorce, which obviously means it's party time! Diane Neal, Taryn Manning, AnnaLynne McCord and Lisa Rinna joined Maloof's "RHBH" pals Kyle Richards and Camille Grammer for pampering that included spray tans, eyebrow shaping, blow outs and manicures. Everyone sampled the Maloof family's latest venture, ZING Vodka, a flavored spirit that tastes like red velvet cake.
The oddest swag at the beauty retreat was the sponsor's product, a reusable menstrual cup. Don't even ask.
The 10th Annual HBO Luxury Lounge Featuring L'Oreal and Motorola was held at the Four Seasons Beverly Hills Hotel and packed in the performers. Nominees including Steve Buscemi from "Boardwalk Empire," Peter Dinklage of "Game of Thrones," Hugh Bonneville, who is so great in "Downton Abbey" and Edie Falco from "Nurse Jackie" scooped up Logitech 900 headphones, Nautica scarves, Brahmin handbags, Pandora bracelets and Motorola RAZR M smartphones.
The line formed for L'Oreal manicures, pedicures and makeup applications; Michelle Fairley, the wonderful Catelyn Stark in "Game of Thrones," settled in for some serious pampering, as did "Homeland" star Morgan Saylor.
The strangest thing at the HBO Lounge wasn't so strange, just yummy. Basil Hayden's, the super-premium bourbon, had bartenders whipping up a wildly yummy Dragon Dance cocktail (in honor of "Game of Thrones"), mixed with Serrano peppers, lime juice and blackberries.
Naturally, the Emergen-C Gift Lounge Backstage at the Nokia Theatre got the biggest stars, as it was held backstage during the actual show. So it's no surprise that winners like Jon Stewart, "Breaking Bad" star Aaron Paul and "Modern Family" favorite Eric Stonestreet made the scene, along with favorites including Ron Howard, Tina Fey, Ginnifer Goodwin, Hayden Panettiere, Melissa McCarthy, Elisabeth Moss and Connie Britton.
They scooped up everything from Zerona body-shaping treatments (not that many of them needed much help in that department), New Balance Minimus 1010 sneakers, Black and Decker hand vacs, Aquaswiss watches and even TiVo Premiere 4 DVRs, as they all need to record their own performances, naturally!
Of course, none of the stars attending the Emmys actually needed the energy boost from the Emergen-C sponsored backstage lounge to help them carry home all the gifts, as this is one swag suite that does it right -- they deliver!
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