Roberto Cavalli walked in the door of his house on a recent Friday night and slung a black leather bag onto a chair—a salaryman, settling in for the weekend, in tight jeans and Cuban heels. He pushed his aviator glasses up the bridge of his nose and ran a hand over a gray-stubbled cheek. The day’s commute had been long: He’d flown from Jordan—where he attended Queen Rania’s birthday party—to Milan, and then home to Florence in his iridescent purple helicopter, the Cavalli equivalent of Metro-North. Now it was 10 p.m., dinnertime in Italy, and the table was set. Assorted Cavallis—his wife, Eva; their children Daniele, 24, and Rachele, 27; Cavalli’s daughter from his first marriage, Cristiana, 45; and a slew of significant others and grandchildren—were ready to talk and argue and drink and feast. But Cavalli, not willing to surrender the attention his homecoming had afforded, was brandishing a souvenir from his travels: a pair of pink plastic Barbie mules, edged in marabou, and a matching pink plastic Barbie cell phone. “Vuoi un regalo?” he said, drawing close to Rachele’s two-year-old daughter, Maria Eva, and enveloping her in a bear hug. She nodded. Cavalli knelt down low, placed the shoes on her feet, and showed her how to dial. “Amore, dammi un bacio,” he said, exacting his tribute. — read more from Wmagazine.com
Alex has written for Vanity Fair, Barrons, Bloomberg and Condé Nast Traveler.