Diary of the Week: The stars come out at Rio's OMEGA House and Le Dîner en Blanc

By Michael Killingsworth and Jessica Pollack

Seats at the 2016 Olympics are a rare commodity these days, but there’s another hot ticket in Rio de Janeiro – access to OMEGA House. Luxury watchmaker OMEGA has created an invitation-only destination for the duration of the Olympics, just as it did at the London Games in 2012. The Rio venue has welcomed a host of VIPs, from Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne and fellow brand ambassador Michael Phelps to model Alessandra Ambrosio and astronaut Buzz Aldrin.

Set on a prime block of Ipanema Beach and housed in a cultural centre adapted for the occasion, the venue is a luxurious party destination as well as a celebration of OMEGA's heritage as official timekeeper of the Olympics since 1932. Themed rooms featuring artful displays of vintage and modern watches, advertising imagery from days gone by and a photo gallery that highlights the Swiss company’s involvement in social projects designed to benefit vulnerable youth in Rio.

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A sea of white bathed downtown Toronto's Canary District on Thursday (Aug. 18) as Le Dîner en Blanc swept into town for one whimsical evening that saw 2,500 food and culture enthusiasts raising their glasses in an emphatic salut. The pop-up dining series, which boasts events around the world, had firmly cemented a strict all-white dress code - and what a stunning sight it was. Leading ladies like Jessi Cruickshank and Schitt's Creek star Annie Murphy dressed to impress as guests feasted on offerings from Food Dudes and Metro with wine pairings courtesy of Charlie's Burger. C'est magnifique!

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