Day: August 28, 2016

More fashionable (and cool!) than ever: Louisville to seaside R.I. for a $12,000 weekend getaway

An occasional look at premium travel from Louisville.

Labor Day traditionally brings the summer to a close, and next weekend’s Louisville weather forecast calls for a scorcher, with temperatures rising to a steamy 90 degrees. Along with a presidential campaign that seems hotter by the minute, it’s time to scadadle — in style.

Todd Oldham
Oldham

Let’s follow the example of Gilded Age one-percenters, and head for a fresh summer getaway in Rhode Island. (That’s where telecommuting Boulevard Publisher Jim Hopkins is working right now.) Along the way, we’ll stop at the fabulous Rhode Island School of Design Museum in Providence for the new Todd Oldham fashion retrospective; that’s one of the designer’s more exuberant gowns in the photo, top. The exhibit runs through Sept. 11. Here’s our itinerary:

When: Friday to Tuesday. Airline: Delta. Route: Louisville to Detroit to Providence; total travel time is four hours, including a 40-minute layover in Detroit. We’ll then take a 42-mile scenic car ride to our final destination: Watch Hill. How much: $780 per ticket, for economy to Detroit, then premium economy to Providence. Delta reservations.

But with all the money we’ve saved without flying first/business, we can easily afford to stay at one of New England’s premier seaside resorts: Ocean House in Watch Hill. Part of the Relais & Chateaux group, Ocean House opened in 2010 as a meticulous re-creation of the original property lost to time and neglect. The present resort has 49 rooms and 18 suites.

Ocean House
The resort overlooks an emerald-green croquet lawn.

Our choice: The Spa Suite, with spectacular Atlantic Ocean views from its private 600 square-foot terrace. Price: about $9,500 for four nights, subject to availability. Plus, it’s just 10 seconds as the champagne cork flies to pop superstar Taylor Swift’s $18 million summer estate.

spa-suite-tile
The Spa Suite’s sitting area is an airy aerie.
Bottom line

Add meals and generous tips for staff maintaining amenities including the wear-only-white croquet green, and we’re looking at a $12,000 weekend for two.

Ford union in Canada votes to strike, and a Pizza Hut driver may have delivered love, too

A news summary focused on 10 big employers; updated 5:14 p.m.

FORD: In Canada’s Windsor today, 400 of 1,400 members of Unifor Local 200 voted overwhelmingly — 98.3% — in favor of a strike against the automaker. Ford had notified the union only last week it would cut production at its two plants there amid falling sales for vehicles powered by the engines they assemble (Windsor Star). In Louisville, Ford employs nearly 10,000 workers at factories building trucks and cars; more about Ford’s local operations.

Missed connections heartsPIZZA HUT: In the latest Craigslist “Missed Connections” ad of interest to Boulevard, a Pizza Hut customer in Beaverton outside Portland, Ore., writes: “You delivered my order on Saturday, asked to pet my dog. Long shot, but if you read this would you like to get coffee or a drink? You’ve the most stunning smile and beautiful eyes. If so, what was my dog’s name?” (Craigslist).

TACO BELL: In Gilmer, Texas, a newspaper writer recalls the tiny role a Taco Bell restaurant played in a chance encounter many years ago, when he and a friend saw a woman crying in one of the chain’s restaurants. “I mean, just crying her eyes out,” the writer says. “I remember looking at her and talking with a friend and judging her: ‘Why would she come to Taco Bell and just cry like that,’ I said. I can’t remember what my friend said exactly, but she scolded me and told me I didn’t know what she was going through. To that woman, now I understand” (Gilmer Mirror).

60 years ago today: a White House race amid Mideast troubles; the future mom of a ‘Silver Fox’ marries (again), and a strike threatens a big Louisville employer

By Jim Hopkins
Boulevard Publisher

The last Tuesday in August 1956 was quite like today: A presidential race geared up for the final, post-Labor Day push, amid boiling Mideast tensions and questions about one candidate’s health. Hot and humid, Louisville distracted itself with celebrity news: a very rich New York socialite with a blue-chip name had just married husband No. 3; years later, her son would become a famous TV news anchor dubbed the “Silver Fox.” And contract talks between a major local manufacturer and thousands of employees were the business story of the day. These were the headlines on The Courier-Journal’s front page that Aug. 28, 1956.

CJ front page August 28 1956
The Courier-Journal front page, Aug 28, 1956.

An editor’s playful headline, “Sweat-ery,” summed up what readers should expect that day: temperatures in the 90s, news to make them wince when many employers still didn’t have air conditioning. But the workplace differed in far worse ways.

Companies openly discriminated on the basis of gender and race. The help-wanted classifieds section for women included Curl’s Tavern on Brook Street, offering $30 a week ($265 in today’s dollars) for short-order cooks; applicants had to be white. Kleins Restaurant on Broadway needed a cook, too — but “colored,” adding: “apply at rear.”

White and colored clerks wanted
Help-wanted ads reflected 1956 segregated Louisville.

That summer’s presidential race was a rematch between the Republican incumbent Dwight D. Eisenhower, 65, and the long-shot Democratic nominee he’d beaten four years before: Adlai Stevenson, 56, and a former Illinois governor. Their dueling campaigns argued over whether the economy was adding jobs fast enough. But the greater concern was the crisis in Egypt, where new President Gamal Abdel Nasser had just nationalized the Suez Canal.

Eisenhower and Stevenson
Eisenhower and Stevenson.

Eisenhower, a retired five-star general, was heading back to Washington after a West Coast golfing vacation in Pebble Beach, Calif., with his wife Mamie; it was a pleasure trip, but also meant to project good health after a heart attack he’d suffered the year before.

The gossipy news? It was about Gloria Vanderbilt, born into one of the nation’s wealthiest families, and still known as the “poor little rich girl” because she’d been the subject of a high-profile custody battle between her mother and an aunt over a $4 million trust fund ($67 million in today’s dollars). She was 10 years old at the time.

Vanderbilt and Lumet
Just married: Vanderbilt and Lumet.

In a photograph on the CJ’s front page, the 32-year-old socialite posed for photographers with her new husband, the director Sidney Lumet; they’d wed the previous day. The marriage lasted 11 years until they divorced, and she married husband No. 4 — her last: Wyatt Emory Cooper. They would have two sons. The second, born when she was 43, was named Anderson Hays Cooper. (Her first son, Carter Vanderbilt Cooper, committed suicide at 23 by jumping from the ledge of the family’s 14th-floor apartment on Manhattan’s posh upper East Side, as Vanderbilt watched in horror, pleading for him to stop.)

The big business news was a strike Continue reading “60 years ago today: a White House race amid Mideast troubles; the future mom of a ‘Silver Fox’ marries (again), and a strike threatens a big Louisville employer”