Coco Chanel's Ghost Haunts The Ritz
We just came back from an enormously captivating lunch with Justine Picardie, the author of new book Chanel, Her Life. Justine got unparalleled access to the orphanage Gabrielle Bonheur "Coco" Chanel grew up in, never-before-seen photos (including ones of her shooting guns with Winston Churchill), and sleepovers at Coco's old stomping grounds, including the Ritz in Paris. (Insider tip: The advertised "Coco Chanel Room" isn't actually the one that hosted the designer. Her real quarters were near the attic, tucked away from all the action, and much more modest than you'd think.) While sleeping in her bedroom, Justine kept being bothered by flickering lights, flying lightbulbs, and whispering sounds...all confirmed as "impossible" by the electrician that visited the next morning. When she talked about it with a staff-member at the Ritz, she was told that she was a lucky recipient of "Gabrielle" visit. Spooky!