Night of romance

Dick and Patty Van Patten (center) with co-hosts Carol Wior (second from left) and Nashville singer/songwriter Eddie Reasoner and Connie Stevens (far right).

It was a heart-felt Valentine’s evening party to honor legendary Hollywood lovebirds Dick and Patty Van Patten. Billed as a “Night of Romance” featuring an intimate evening with award-winning Nashville singer/songwriter Eddie Reasoner to salute the Van Pattens on their 53 years of marriage, international swimwear designer/host Carol Wior orchestrated it all for her long-time friends.

From the moment guests arrived at her Hancock Park estate, known as “Villa di Leonardi,” a special romantic ambiance was felt beginning with a candle-illuminated red carpet and giant size hand-made Valentine hearts leading up the driveway.

Wior’s home, built in 1912 and recently remodeled, served as the romantic setting. A circular foyer entrance, stained glass windows and sweeping staircase was filled with more than 500 Madame red roses. At the base of the stairs, a vintage 1917 Grand Knabe piano was decorated with dozens of long-stem red roses and white glitter candles. A pianist played romantic classics.

Original love songs written and performed by Reasoner and his guest musicians set a romantic tone for the evening. Reasoner is well known for his original music for film and TV, and is one of the most recognized recording artists featured on The Weather Channel.

An overflow crowd of nearly 250 friends and Hollywood stars welcomed the Van Pattens. A delicious array of “aphrodisiacal” foods, desserts and delicacies tantalized the guests.

Mior’s dining room, decorated in sterling and lavender roses, was highlighted by an ice sculpture heart in the midst of fresh shrimp served on a bed of seashells. Nearby, a server prepared sweet or savory crepes of your choice. The buffet table boasted a fresh pasta bar with choices of tomato or alfredo sauces with chicken picata and homemade Italian meat balls.

Dick Van Patten remarked that after all these years he still finds his wife as the love of his life.

“My wife was a June Taylor dancer, and when I first saw her on stage, I said to my manager, that’s the girl I’m gonna marry,” Van Patten said. “I must have been right, because it’s lasted 53 years.”