teatime with heart
Houston leading ladies and their lovable little ones celebrate Children's Memorial Hermann at haute high tea
Some of Houston's most influential ladies, their adorable children, and families toasted the work of a leading pediatric hospital doing great-hearted work for kids everywhere.
Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital hosted its always memorable Mommy and Me High Tea event, a refined afternoon blending teatime, fun for all ages, and a celebration of the hospital's Children’s Heart Institute team. Host committee members Amanda Boffone, Dr. Julie Longoria Chen, Christine Falgout-Gutknecht, Jayne Johnston, April McGee, and Felicia Stone welcomed guests to the elegant affair at The St. Regis Houston.
Always a bit of a storybook affair, the high tea welcomed attendees via a balloon-draped grand staircase and a scene of chinoiserie patterns, vibrant pinks, and plush taupe accents. Event creative director, Lauren Gow of Deutser, oversaw every detail, starting by ensuring that the St. Regis's crystal adorned Astor Ballroom was festooned with ornate tables decked out with bright pink floral arrangements in an array of blue and white ginger jars.
On theme, each table setting was centered with pink scallop-edged menus and fact cards, which highlighted key achievements of the Children’s Heart Institute. The afternoon sumptuous feast included cheese, charcuterie, and accoutrements, and more. St. Regs staffers also crafted tea sandwiches such as cucumber-watercress with boursin cheese, smoked salmon with caper egg salad, and bresaola beef with provolone — all paired with the tableside tea service.
Little ones noshed on chicken tenders, grilled cheese, fruit, and french fries. Sweet treats for dessert were served on rattan carts overflowing with fruits, tarts, and macarons.
Parents raised a glass at the “Build Your Own Bubbly” bar, while watching their children enjoy the craft tables, face painting, and jumbo-sized games. A CMHH tea time favorite, the teddy bear workshop, ensured each child could create their own furry friend from start to finish with the help of Build-A-Bear.
More IG-worthy photo moments included chinoiserie-wrapped furniture and a cotton candy cart that wove heart-shaped cotton candy.
In keeping with its brand of educational and elegant affairs, the high tea served up eye-opening information on the hospital's innovative work and care. Amalia Stanton, senior vice president and chief of strategic communications and marketing for Memorial Hermann, welcomed guests, thanked the host committee, and noted to the audience that the high tea was Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital’s first family event since before the pandemic — with both adults and children guests.
Marissa Kiefer, senior vice president or Memorial Hermann and CEO of Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital, discussed CMHH's advances in high-risk pregnancy and neonatal critical care services, plus its renowned programs in pediatric trauma, neurosciences, fetal, and cardiac care.
She also highlighted the little-known fact that Memorial Hermann/CMHH is the only hospital in the Greater Houston area that treats entire families under one roof.
Then came time for rock star surgeon Dr. Jorge Salazar, who regularly and expertly performs life-saving work at CMHH. The gifted executive co-director of the Children’s Heart Institute at Children’s Memorial Hermann Hospital and Professor and chief of pediatric and congenital heart surgery shared the innovative ways he and his team treat pediatric congenital heart defects — many of which need to be seen to be truly appreciated.
Salazar, who has fearlessly saved lives of young patients who were turned down at other hospitals due to their overwhelmingly complex heart conditions, also introduced a touching video starring Slade, one of his patients, and Slade's mother, Nancy. The poignant video drove home the message that CMHH, Salazar, and his team customize treatment to children and their families — from diagnosis to procedure and recovery.
Anne Neeson, executive vice president, Memorial Hermann and CEO of the Memorial Hermann Foundation, cited Memorial Hermann's cutting-edge and life-saving work, but noted that the what makes the hospital truly stand out distinguishing is its comprehensive and family-centered approach to patient care. To that end, she added that CMHH offers support services like child life, art therapy, music therapy, and our facility dog program — all meant to synergistically and holistically integrate the highest quality of care.
As the event ended, departing guests discovered thank you notes in their vehicles along with heart-shaped cookies displaying the CMHH logo elegantly frosted across the top. A sweet ending for a lovely and educational afternoon, indeed.
Seen on the scene: Susan Sarofim; Lori Sarofim; Melissa Juneau; Roslyn Bazzelle Mitchell; Amalia Stanton; Jennifer Allison; Anne Neeson; Rachel Regan; Monica Bickers; Anne Lee Phillips; Alex Stillwell; Tonya Callender; Stacy Johnson; Marissa Kiefer; Katie Arnoldy; Dr. Jorge and April Salazar; Allie Fields; Alex Stillwell; Melissa Sugulas; Dr. Damien and Kelly LaPar; Edie Lee; Beth Zdeblick; Audrey White; and Maya Pomroy.