John Perona

John Perona

One of the greatest party hosts of all time was a dapper fellow by the name of John Perona. For 30 years until his death in 1961, John lived at the epicenter of international café society as the owner of New York’s legendary supper club, El Morocco. Glamorous Hollywood movie stars, European royalty, South American millionaires, and prominent society figures all cozied up on the club’s fabled zebra-patterned banquettes before dancing the night away to Gershwin and Cole Porter tunes beneath white palm trees.

El Morocco
On Tuesday, September 16th, auction house Doyle New York will hold a landmark sale, El Morocco: The John Perona Collection, that includes rare treasures from the nightclub that are sure to inspire modern-day salonnieres. Highlights of the sale include Perona’s personal copy of the El Morocco Family Album, a 62-page folio of nearly 350 photos—many autographed—of the club’s most famous and glamorous patrons, including Marilyn Monroe, Marlene Dietrich, Clark Gable, Gloria Swanson, and Gary Cooper.

Lot 691 is a treasure trove of rare autographed photos

Want to add some great old-Hollywood party style to your next fête? Consider bringing home one of these trinkets; our personal favorite is this fabulous bar set by Cartier in its original fitted box.647

Lot 647 is a collectible Cartier Sterling Silver Bar Set 


Lot 697 features scarves, ashtrays, and other gifts that Perona gave his VIP patrons  


Lot 648 includes vintage bar accessories and a traveling cocktail set in a leather case 

El Morocco menu

Lot 699 includes menus and other printed memorabilia from the New York supper club

Also in the sale are more than 1,000 rare photographs from the 1930s through the 1950s, depicting the biggest Hollywood stars of the day enjoying their nights hobnobbing at Elmo’s, which the club was affectionately nicknamed.

For more information about El Morocco: The John Perona Collection, or to bid in person or by absentee ballot, visit the auction site or call 212-427-2730.

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