The Riviera Set
By Mary S. Lovell
A portrait of high society in the twentieth century, told through the stories of the guests of Maxine Elliott and Prince Aly Khan at the Château de l'Horizon in Cannes.
The Riviera Set is the story of the group of people who lived, partied, bed-hopped and politicked at the Château de l'Horizon near Cannes, over the course of forty years from the time when Coco Chanel made southern French tans fashionable in the twenties to the death of the playboy Prince Aly Khan in 1960. At the heart of this was the amazing Maxine Elliott, the daughter of a fisherman from Connecticut, who built the beautiful art deco Château and brought together the likes of Noel Coward, the Aga Khan, the Windsors and two very saucy courtesans, Doris Castlerosse and Daisy Fellowes, who set out to be dangerous distractions to Winston Churchill as he worked on his journalism and biographies during his 'wilderness years' in the thirties.
After the War the story continued as the Château changed hands and Prince Aly Khan used it to entertain the Hollywood set, as well as launch his seduction of and eventual marriage to Rita Hayworth.
Mary Lovell tells her story of high society behaviour with tremendous brio and relish, and this book has all the charm and fascination of her bestselling The Mitford Girls and The Churchills.
Mary Lovell is a fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. She is the author of eight previous biographies including the bestselling The Mitford Girls and The Churchills.
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- Publication date:
03 Nov 2016
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I loved every word — Sarra Manning, Red
Lovell dissects their lives and curates the interesting parts, bringing together the creme of high society. A sparkling group biography that brings to life a bygone era — The Lady
Lovell wears her detailed research lightly and has produced a sprightly, well-paced account, rich in fascinating anecdote . . . an entertaining and zesty read — Sunday Express
Lovell is superb on the great villas of the Riviera — The Times
[A] blissful book - it's like basking in the warm Med — Rachel Johnson, Mail on Sunday
Mary S Lovell's social history is a meticulously researched and highly entertaining story about the characters who populated this decadent world . . . confiding and intimate, and it's an illuminating read — Hannah Beckerman, Observer