Sunday, June 13, 2004

KALORAMA: Weiss' Wyoming Avenue World

Jennifer 8. Lee scores the front cover of The New York Times' Sunday Styles section with an indepth piece on Juleanna Glover Weiss, who is being toasted as Washington's new it hostess. Weiss, former spokesman for Vice President Cheney, lives in a fashionable townhouse on Wyoming Avenue in Kalorama, just a few minutes walk from the homes of Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and the French ambassador.

In a city defined by passive aggressive political incivility, Weiss -- a 35 year-old lobbyist who is registered to represent the new Iraqi government -- provides neutral territory for bipartisan socializing. Lee's piece seems to have solidified societal conventional wisdom that Weiss is the heir to the grand hostess throne once held by the likes of Katharine Graham, Sally Quinn and Pamela Harriman. And Weiss, according to Lee, has carefully carved her own niche "[b]y carefully building -- and then trading on -- professional connections to journalists, Republican leaders and Middle Eastern diplomats, Mrs. Weiss has maneuvered herself into the middle of Washington's cozy media-political complex."

From The New York Times' Jennifer 8. Lee:
Seven years ago, when most of her peers were still renting studio apartments or living in shared homes, Mrs. Weiss, then single, began inviting Washington's young establishment-in-waiting to casual get-togethers in her two-bedroom condominium in the Foggy Bottom neighborhood.

One wedding, two homes and three children later, she has moved from kegs of Sierra Nevada and Chinese takeout to nearly monthly parties that feature valet parking, bartenders and coat checks at the house she bought with her husband for $1.5 million in 2002.

Wyoming Avenue: Where Journalists, Policy Makers and Power Brokers Meet. The Oculus has actually been to Weiss' beautiful home located on Wyoming Avenue a block west of Connecticut Avenue. It has a grand foyer and staircase appointed with detailed prints of plants and flowers, with a formal living room on the left. The house can accommodate a large crowd, but the house's layout is fairly chopped up, which can cause gridlock in the dining room, with people milling about the appetizers and the bar. The doorway to the side deck is even more clogged, creating frustrating traffic patterns. While the vodka at the bar was decent, the premium liquor was out of reach, but on display in the kitchen.

So how does one go about writing a profile on Ms. Weiss' position in Washington? Get invited to one of her parties. The Oculus spotted Ms. Lee at Weiss' home at a party earlier this spring.

Lee's profile on the city's new hostess with the mostess comes months after Wonkette and others had a field day with a New York Sun article that declared that the young Lee herself was the new Katharine Graham. (The Sun article was apparently written by one of Lee's former co-workers from The Harvard Crimson; also, a majority of those quoted in the article were all Harvard alums.)

More information:
"The Days and Nights of Juleanna Weiss" [The New York Times]


Post a Comment

<< Home