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South Coast Plaza Executive Director Debra Gunn Downing and <em>Santa Barbara Magazine</em> President, Publisher, and Editorial Director Jennifer Smith Hale

Gail Arnold

South Coast Plaza Executive Director Debra Gunn Downing and Santa Barbara Magazine President, Publisher, and Editorial Director Jennifer Smith Hale


Noche de Fuego Is One Hot Night

Santa Barbara Magazine and South Coast Plaza Host Event


On July 14, Santa Barbara Magazine (SBM) and South Coast Plaza cohosted Noche de Fuego (Night of Fire), which celebrated the start of high-goal polo season and the publication of both SBM’s summer issue and its annual Santa Barbara Polo magazine. More than 300 oh-so-pretty and stylishly attired guests descended on the Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club’s idyllic grounds for this exquisite alfresco evening event.

Guests at this invite-only soirée included friends and business associates of both hosts, polo club members and players, and other lucky individuals, with millennials in full force, but every age group well represented. Bon Fortune Style & Events created an Argentinian gaucho-themed space marked by high style and a relaxed feel.

Many guests chose to stand for easy mingling, while others opted to recline in lounge areas comprising luxurious sofas, armchairs, and rugs scattered throughout the space. Massive wood arches defined the grill area, while pergolas lined the sides. Torchières, fire tables, and Argentinian grills lent a romantic, amber glow throughout the space. The bar offered Margerum wines, cocktails featuring Tito’s Vodka, and other libations, while a vintage zinc trough filled with champagne bottles and flutes beckoned guests to help themselves.

Argentinian chef Agustin Mallmann (nephew of the even more renowned chef Francis Mallman), led a team of 10 chefs in preparing authentic Argentinian asado. Highlights were heavenly seared scallops atop corn humitas and grilled-to-perfection whole wild salmon. Of course, there was also meat in abundance — whole prime rib eyes cooked for six hours over wood embers. After dinner, DJ Fab Allain cranked up the tunes and guests danced into the night.

Santa Barbara Magazine is an award-winning magazine that publishes five issues annually featuring stories on S.B.’s people, homes and gardens, architecture, food and wine, history, and the arts. It also publishes Santa Barbara Polo magazine.

South Coast Plaza (SCP) is an international shopping destination in Costa Mesa featuring more than 250 boutiques and restaurants as well as the Segerstrom Center for the Arts. An easy day trip from Santa Barbara, SCP offers seemingly endless shopping options in a pleasant environment.

If viewing this from a mobile device, click on “Desktop site” in top right to see more photos. Send event invites to Gail at society@independent.com.

By Gail Arnold

Advertising Director Sarah McCormick with Executive Editor Gina Tolleson

By Gail Arnold

Royce Woodbury, Seamless (South Coast Plaza’s PR firm) owner Sheri Mobley, Margerum Wine Company owner Doug Margerum, and Marni Margerum

By Gail Arnold

Lead Chef Agustin Mallmann (center) with chefs Zach Gones (left) and Alex Clark

By Gail Arnold

Jody Boyman and Kathy Freston

By Gail Arnold

Britt and Tommy Fisher

By Gail Arnold

Laura and Erick Goycochea

By Gail Arnold

Whole prime rib eyes cook for six hours on wood embers.

By Gail Arnold

Guests enjoy the soirée.

By Gail Arnold

Guests enjoy the soirée

By Gail Arnold

South Coast Plaza Executive Director Debra Gunn Downing and Santa Barbara Magazine President, Publisher, and Editorial Director Jennifer Smith Hale



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