Los Angeles – Last night Belvedere Vodka partnered with amfAR, The Foundation for AIDS Research for the organization’s Inspiration Gala in Los Angeles. Designer Tom Ford was honored at the fete with key guests in attendance Gwyneth Paltrow, Sharon Stone, Rihanna, Miley Cyrus, Justin Timberlake, Kristin Davis, Camilla Belle, Ashley Madekwe, Rose McGowan, Dita Von Teese and more with a surprise performance by Chris Martin of Coldyplay and Diana Ross.
A longstanding partnership, Belvedere Vodka has teamed up with amfAR on past Inspiration galas as well as during the Cannes Film Festival in which they released a limited edition Belvedere Silver Saber bottle to support the star-studded gala.
The evening kicked off with a cocktail reception where arriving guests were treated to a dedicated vodka bar, including key cocktails from Belvedere Vodka including the Classic Marini, Lavish Spritzer and Inspiration Fizz. Following, guests were ushered in into the dinner program which began with a surprise performance by Chris Martin of Coldplay. Martin was introduced by Gwyneth Paltrow who referred to him as “Father of the Year” and introduced her separated, soon to be ex-husband as “An old friend.” Martin played the piano and sang some of hits including “Paradise” and “I Used to Rule the World”
Following, guests were treated to a live auction hosted by Sharon Stone. Stone has been hosting amfAR’s auctions for the past years and her participation during the auction is one of the event highlights that the amfAR Inspiration Galas are known for. She quipped during the auction of her support for the organization, “I’ve gone home barefoot before, but never ashamed.” At one point during the auction singer Miley Cyrus outbid Tom Ford raising her hand at the last minute. Host Gwyneth Paltrow later quipped, “Miley Cyrus has more money than me!” Cyrus is reported to have spent around $500,000 on auction items and donations to the organization.
The piece de resistance moment of the evening was when Rihanna presented the amfAR Inspiration Award to Tom Ford. Tom has been seated throughout the program at a table with guests including husband Richard Buckley, Justin Timberlake, Rita Wilson, Rihanna and Gwyneth Paltrow. He recalled the time during the early fight with AIDS when he and his current husband would have dinner each night and then leave separately to visit friends who were dying in the hospital form the disease. He stressed the importance of amfAR’s continued work towards a cure.
Following the evening guests were treated to a surprise performance from legendary diva Diana Ross! Ross danced onto the stage singing her hit “I’m Coming Out” in a blue sequined dress and purple coat. She brought the crowd out of their seats with renditions of her hits “You Can’t Hurry Love,” and “Aint no Mountain High Enough.”