Local Profile: Jill Zarin

Inside Her Luxury Luncheon for Thyroid Cancer Research

Now in its fifth year, Jill Zarin’s Luxury Luncheon has become a fête of fabulous proportions, one that could only be orchestrated by the former Real Housewives of New York star. Held at her home in Southampton, Camp Zarin, it’s an afternoon of endless food provided by Carlyle off the Green and samplings from New York Prime Beef, Antico Noè, and a colorful candy bar to boot. All of this is accompanied by Whispering Angel Rosé and craft cocktails from Empress 1908 Gin and Tito’s handmade vodka to sip on while shopping the exclusive designer trunk show after having your photo taken on the red carpet.

While finalizing plans for the big event, Jill found some time to share with us why this year has taken on a new, more personal meaning, give a few hints at the guest list, and shed some light on her time on Real Housewives.

Tell us about Luxury Luncheon, how did the project first come about?

After I became a Real Housewife on Bravo, my life changed in so many amazing ways. One of them was being invited to some pretty spectacular events reserved for A list celebrities in the past. I remember going to the Jingle Ball Gifting suite at MSG and being gifted some of the most amazing products ever. It wasn’t just about how much the item was worth, but the exclusivity of it or the fact that no one had it yet.

I always felt a little guilty and that I didn’t do anything to deserve this special treatment so, I wanted to share it with my closest friends. To start, I began by contacting my favorite brands and asking them to contribute to my dream of making my closest friends receive the same special feeling I did at the gifting suite. Without hesitation, brands accepted my ask and so began my first annual luxury luncheon.

At my first annual Jill Zarin’s Luxury Luncheon each woman that was special to me received a Golden Ticket that granted them access to a gifting suite, beauty services and even exclusive shopping at designer trunk shows to benefit charity at my home in the Hamptons.

Over the last two years my team and I have incorporated both ladies and men together and added lots of different activations that anyone can enjoy like the Iguana Yacht tours. Who wouldn’t love a luxurious tour of Shinnecock Bay aboard an amphibious watercraft? This year we’re topping the yachts with Schiller –Water Bikes that are built like road bicycles but actually oat on the water with the help of pontoons!

Every year I think this is my last event, since I believe I can’t possibly top what happened the year prior. It’s not until my event planners Ticket2events hit me with new ideas to wow my guests, do I realize that we can do this again and hit it out of the park. I don’t want to ruin all the surprises coming this year, but I will tell first that you can expect NuFace to be there giving away five minute face-lifts, New York Prime Beef serving up Kobe Beef Steaks and even a giant unicorn in my pool from #floaty!

What is the one thing you wish guests would learn about the cause when attending?

To please be generous in their life. I did this to share everything I have with my friends and I believe in paying it forward.

What will be different this year compared to last year’s event?

The biggest difference is that we are selling a limited amount of tickets to the public. This event is held in our home and was always reserved as an invitation only event for our friends and family, but this year we are raising money for thyroid cancer research, in honor of my husband Bobby who has thyroid cancer, and who is literally in the fight for his life every day. We want to raise as much money as possible so we’re allowing a small amount of tickets to be sold to the event.

Any special guests we can expect?

I like to think that every guest is special to me. If you mean to ask if you’ll be seeing any celebrities at the event then the answer is Y-E-S! The event has been honored to host some of the most fabulous women from the Hamptons to Orange County and even some special men too. Attendees over the years and who are always invited back are Christie Brinkley, Beth Stern, Luann D’Agastino, Aviva Dresher, Cynthia Bailey, Kelly BenSimon, Lara Trump, Jonathan Cheban, Philip Bloch, Vicki Gunvalson, Chef David Burke, Chef Roblé, famed artist Domingo Zapata, Sarah Wynter, Andrea Canning, Patti Stanger, Vern Troyer and many more!

You were on a recent episode of the The Real Housewives of New York City, as a guest star. While dining with LuAnn and others and mentioned how you “miss the drama.” Do you miss being on the show? Would you ever consider returning?

There are things that I miss and a few things I don’t. I admit I do like drama sometimes! Never say never, but I think my recent appearance on RHONY might have been my last appearance on the show.

Do you think the show has changed through the years, especially since you left? How so?

I think I will let the bloggers answer this one!

Do you regret anything that’s ever happened on screen?

If I remembered what happened on screen I probably would regret things but I don’t hold onto things that long and I’ve been gone a while.

What’s next for Jill Zarin?

You’ll have to watch and see what happens!

Tickets are available at attendJZlunch.eventbrite.com