Christina Aguilera cuddles up with Jordan Bratman at Cavalli. Photo by Alex Berliner, Berliner Studios

From Greek festivities at long time favorite Taverna Tony to a cozy celebration at the stylish new kid on the block called Lino’s, Malibuites have lots of delicious ways to ring in the New Year. But before we embrace the good times ahead, let’s take a look back at the best bashes of 2005.


Seems like every major scenester in town turned up at Roberto Cavalli’s fashionable fling in Beverly Hills. “The Simple Life” star Nicole Richie hit the red carpet with songbird Christina Aguilera while celebrity spinner DJ AM, rocked the house with a remix of tunes. Jack Nicholson, Cindy Crawford, Salma Hayek, George Hamilton, Carmen Electra and James Caan were among those settling into the plush leopard-print sofas.

Roberto made the rounds while Fran Dresher arrived with her perfectly coiffed pooch. There were fashion statements aplenty, with fanciful, frothy frocks that sparkled as much as the Veuve Clicquot they were serving.


Also on the fashion front, “Basic Instinct” beauty Sharon Stone presided over the annual Passport to Style at the Barker Hangar. After a splashy VIP buffet and cocktail reception, Stone charmed the fashion-conscious crowd with her live auction abilities, serving up smashing must-haves like a tennis game with Wimbledon champ Pete Sampras.

The stylish evening wrapped up with an electrifying special effects-filled fashion show featuring creations by Calvin Klein and Jennifer Lopez as well as those buffed-out beefcakes modeling the latest in boxers and briefs. Yowza!


Dozens of the world’s most famous tastemakers set up shop on the back lot of Universal Studios for the most lip-smacking fling of the year-Wolfgang Puck’s American Food and Wine Festival. Food fans got their fill, lining up for a delectable assortment of treats from celestial San Francisco chef Gary Denko as well as Food Network icons and iron chefs like Mario Batali and Bobby Flay. Of all the glitzy graze-a-thons, this one reigns supreme with celebrity chefs pulling out all the stops and dishing out their magic in person. Dee-lish!


It was party central as Hollywood hipsters old and new blew out the candles at the Hard Rock Hotel. The Simpson sisters, Tara Reid and Tommy Lee were among those helping the haute hangout celebrate its 10th birthday. Sushi king Nobu Matsuhisa served up magnificent mounds of mouth-watering Japanese fare while Coldplay, Jon Bon Jovi and Nine Inch Nails jammed into the early morning hours.


Rock and Royalty was the theme of Nancy Davis’ annual Race to Erase shindig at the Century Plaza. Locals Nicolette Sheridan, Catherine Oxenberg and David Foster were among those joining in the fun. Tom Arnold, Bill Maher and Tony Danza auctioned off hot wheels like a Ferrari F 430. And Tommy Hilfiger glammed it up with a glitzy fashion show followed by a performance by Earth, Wind and Fire.


Al Pacino made us an offer we couldn’t refuse. The acting legend received The American Cinematheque’s Lifetime Achievement Award with an all-star salute in Bev Hills. A flock of famous friends and co-stars turned out for the festivities including locals Charlize Theron and Ed Harris as well as Bruce Willis, James Caan and Andy Garcia.


A Gulfstream jet, a $5 million Rolls Royce prototype, oodles of million dollar bling and pricey one-of-a-kind timepieces, were just a few of the jaw dropping items on display at the Robb Report’s Best of the Best bash. The pampered high-profile crowd spent hours trying on a treasure trove of high-end toys before settling in for a succulent dinner of lobster, filet mignon with truffle sauce and Cornish game hens spiked with Calvados. The bash wrapped up with a David Foster-filled evening of entertainment.


It was some enchanted evening as music lovers celebrated the LA Opera’s 20th anniversary in style. Gary Marshall was the man of the hour making his opera directing debut with his light-hearted production of “The Grand Duchess.” Following the performance, the black-tie wearing revelers made their way to the Music Center Plaza which had been transformed into an enchanted flower-filled forest. Celeb chef Joachim Splichal served up a first class feast fit for a king, topped off by a serious birthday cake, fireworks and dancing under the stars. Bravo!

So for the year gone by, these are my picks. There’ll be even more good times in 2006!