New Orleans socialite Mickey Easterling knew how to throw a party. The untraditional celebration at her death made national headlines.
Easterling's body was on display at the Saenger Theatre, a glass of champagne in one hand and a cigarette in the other. She posed on one of her favorite backyard benches from her beloved Lakeshore home.
Now, the home where so many theatre greats and other celebrities frequented over the years is for sale. The home is nestled on one of the Lakefront's most prestigious streets. There are only 17 homes on Lakeshore Drive and realtor Robert Ripley says they only come up for sale once in a generation.
Mickey Easterling's home is filled with stories.
"She was a wonderful philanthropist and social activist. She was really important in getting the Saenger back as a live theatre," Ripley said. "As a thanks, the Saenger would always have their cast parties here," Ripley said as he gestured around the Colonial home.
The house was built in 1964 and has six massive columns in the front. The beautiful driveway is grand and so is the inside.
"Its a beautiful two-story foyer and the massive chandelier is imported from Paris," Ripley said.
The curved stairs make a statement.
"It's the perfect way to make an entrance to the party. The guests are downstairs having champagne and down would float Mickey."
"Robert Goulet, Richard Burton from Camelot," Ripley said. "The house has been a wonderful source of entertaining from the whole city."
A formal living room still sparkles from Mickey's era of glamour.
"Silk Damask curtains and silver wallpaper designed for high style," Ripley said.
The room's focal point is a fireplace that is hand carved Italian marble that Easterling brought back from one of her trips to Europe.
There are more travel stories in the den.
"The wet bar is closed by two bronzed Persian prayer doors. She brought those back from Morocco where she spent every summer," added Ripley.
Around a corner is a 500 bottle wine room, chilled to perfection. A guest bath is an intricate hall of mirrors.
"I think it's important your style looks good and she had a mirror at every opportunity for that," said Ripley with a smile.
Easterling's bedroom is bare, but elegance remains. Silk draperies still hang at the windows. A master bath is fit for the Queen of the New Orleans social scene.
"She has an incredible Jacuzzi tub in the middle of a huge bathroom with 24 karat gold faucets," Ripley said.
Behind the house was one of her favorite entertaining spots. The pool is surrounded by beautiful sculptures.
"She was a big patron of Ida Kohlmyer and in Ida's earlier period in the 70's she did big bronze sculptures like you see by the pool. Lena Horn and Elizabeth Taylor have been swimming in the pool," Ripley said.
If these sculptures could talk, they could tell stories of the who's who Easterling wined and dined here.
She entertained the former President of France Valéry Giscard d'Estaing at the home during the Bicentennial. She met him in Morocco and in France at the cooking school.
Much of the estate has already been sold at auction. The statues in her back yard will be sold as well.
The house is for sale for nearly $1.5 million.